Monday, August 04, 2008


I am learning how to juggle. Yes, juggle. You read right. My sister-in-law was visiting a few weeks ago and she announced she was learning how to juggle. For the three days she was here I became her juggling coach, despite the fact that I had never juggled in my life.

One of the days she was here we went to Chapters (a huge Canadian bookstore) and right near the entrance in the $5 sin bin was a juggling kit which included three balls and a book. Is that kismet or what? We each bought one and I continued to give her instructions on improving her juggling. I didn't juggle once while she was here.

For the last three weeks I've been trying to teach myself how to juggle. There is a specific technique involved as well as progression. You start with one ball... work up to two... and eventually three etc. And each stage has it's own progression as well. I've been obsessively practising for a minimum of 30 - 45 minutes a day, usually after midnight and sometimes twice a day. Or if I need a break from the computer. Jeff can't believe how obsessive I've been about this. Either can I actually. I feel like I'm thinking about it all the time.

Out of the last three weeks that I've juggled I have definitely dropped more balls than I've caught but I have noticed improvement (and I don't even lose my temper when I drop the balls). It doesn't happen easily. I've heard you can teach a person to juggle in three hours. Maybe if they are under 22 and have been seizure free. For me, I think it will be three months!

As of today, after I do a warm up, I can juggle three balls for 6 - 8 cascades. I think I could do more but I get excited all of a sudden and end up losing control.

If you want to learn how to juggle I highly recommend it. It's a good work out for the body (picking up balls) and for the mind. It forces your brain to do something it is not used to doing. And this is exactly why I wanted to learn (the last part). I'm totally shocked at how relaxing I find it.

One of the best teaching tools I've used is this YouTube instruction video starring Jason Garfield: