Ever since I completed my challenge to juggle 5 balls in 30 days, I’ve wanted to do the same challenge but with juggling clubs.
I’ve never juggled clubs before, so I thought it would be a great challenge and a new skill to learn.
My mum just happened to have a set of 3 clubs, so I thought what a perfect time to start the challenge!
If you would rather watch my experience, check out my video below after juggling for 30 days!
Day 1 – 14 October 2020
Before starting this challenge, I wanted to see what my skill level was with clubs, and to record my starting ability to see improvement over time. So before watching any tutorials on how to juggle clubs, I started recording my juggling with a number of attempts.
As part of my first attempt, I managed to get the following catches: 1, 3, 3, 8, 8, and 19.
I made a video of day 1 ability, which can be seen here below. From the video, you can see that I can do 1 and 2 very easily, as the movement is very similar to juggling balls, which is mainly about timing. With clubs, there is the added skill of spinning the club at the right amount.
After doing this, I decided to watch some tutorials on how to juggle clubs. From what I watched, the following points stood out:
- The clubs should be thrown diagonally across the body. When I was first juggling, I was throwing them very vertically and close together – which can make them hit and also awkward to catch.
- When throwing and catching the clubs, they are landing and pointing at around 45 degrees off centre – this helps to catch and have a smooth motion to swing down then throw again.
- Clubs are held closer to the head than the nob/bottom.
While the videos showed technique, they didn’t really go over progressions. From watching people juggle, it seems essentially the same as juggling balls. For example, I will be using the following techniques:
- Master single club juggling in each hand and passing to other hand.
- Move on to juggling with two clubs but kept in separate hands, focusing on throwing at a consistent pace, height and rotation.
- Move on to throwing two clubs across each other and catching in other hand.
- Similar to above, practice throwing two clubs but in a circular motion (right throws, then pass left club to right hand and repeat).
- After mastering passing two clubs to each hand. Practice holding both clubs in one hand and throwing one club to other hand (set up for juggling three).
- Once comfortable with that, move onto three clubs. Start off by one to two throws and catching again.
- Practice above step constantly, by increasing the amount of throws and catches in succession.
Clubs I’m using
In terms of the brand / style of clubs I’m using – I literally have no idea haha. They are very basic, they don’t have any identifiable name or brand on them, just all made of plastic, quite light, and durable. One thing I would suggest if you were looking to get clubs, is trying to find some with padded handles – as it can hurt quite a bit when they hit your knuckles accidently!
After 5 days of practicing, I randomly started to juggle and managed to make 50 catches… I was quite surprised with how well it went, and it was by far the best run of throws I’ve ever done, everything seemed to go well.
Normally, I make about 10-12 throws before I do something wrong and start again.
It was great to see that I reached that number so quickly, but I’m aiming to be able to do that consistently.
Oh, and another thing that I’ve been randomly trying are double spin throws (letting the club spin twice before catching). I’ve even added this into a throwing set and being able to continue to juggle after it. This is super fun and definitely something I’d like to be able to do regularly.
Over the past 9 days, every day when I practice, I always start off with the same drills as mentioned above.
I’ve noticed that I’ve pretty much mastered the act of throwing them across to the other hand, and at the right height, so there are no problems there.
What I do need to get better at mainly is having the correct amount of rotation of the club – mostly when I fail a combination of throws, it’s because I either spin the club too much or not enough.
The clubs have rarely hit together in the air, and when they do, it’s because I didn’t rotate them enough.
So what I’ve been doing every time I start juggling, is drill of throwing the clubs in one hand and working on perfecting the amount of rotation. I feel as though I’m getting a lot better, and if I can get really good at this, it will really help with my progression.
I feel that what I’ve been doing has been working, so I’ll continue to do that, and perhaps try to find some extra drills.
Day 15 – 28 October 2020
Day 15 was a special day for this challenge!
During my normal practice of juggling every day (usually at least 10 minutes), after my warm up drills and progressions, I started juggling 3 clubs, and it felt easy… very easy..
At this point I’ve been able to make 50 catches quite easily but somewhat irregular. But on Day 15, I was getting 50 catches every time, easily! So I thought I’d try to go for a long juggling streak.
I started juggling, and at 50 I was feeling quite good, I had a good rhythm, it was feeling easy. At 75, I was feeling better and still throwing well. At 100, I was surprised at my ability to keep it up without anything going wrong, and at 132 catches, I made a mistake and stopped…
132 catches! After 15 days of practicing I’d say that’s pretty good! And strangely, I haven’t tried a record long juggle with 3 balls, but with clubs it almost felt easier – they are much bigger and easier to catch and so less likely to just miss it in the peripheral vision.
I was super happy with 132 catches, so I decided to make a video showing it, and more importantly, explaining what I’ve been doing and what I’ve done so far for me to be able to reach that. Check it out below!
Day 25 – 7 November 2020
My skill level up to day 25 has been really improving.
I can now juggle 3 clubs consistently, and I can easily reach 50 throws whenever I want. It’s become really easy to juggle 3 clubs, so I’ve been experimenting with double spin throws.
Instead of spinning the club once in the air and catching, I’ve been practicing doing a double spin in the air, then catching and returning to single spins and continuing to juggle 3 clubs.
This whole challenge I’ve just been juggling inside right next to my bed, before starting this challenge I thought I’d have to go outside everytime I wanted to practice, but I’ve found the small space in the bedroom really handy. It’s great for picking up a club if you drop it, it lands softly, and it helps to keep my body position in the same spot (as I’m unable to walk around and move forward) – so this has really helped with making sure I throw the clubs in the right position.
I’m probably not good enough at this stage to start incorporating different tricks (other than the double spins) – but perhaps over the next 5 days with more practice I’ll be able to add in something else, or just more double spins.
Day 30 – 12 November 2020
There we go! I’m at the 30 day mark.
Juggling 3 clubs feels really comfortable now, and enough so that I can include a few double spin throws and then continue juggling with 3 – which feels so amazing every time I can do it. I’ve been trying to build up to throwing two spins, then another two spins, which has worked a few time but not really well enough to keep juggling.
At the end of the 30 days, I put all my experience and knoweldge together and did my last practice of juggling 3 clubs. After a bit of a warm up, I found that I could basically juggle non-stop if I wanted to – which was really one of my aim, to get 100+ catches and to be able to juggle 3 clubs effortlessly and for as long as I could.
And there we have it! I’d highly recommend giving juggling clubs a shot, and if you can’t already, definitely look into getting some juggling balls – it’s so fun and challenging at the start, but after a few weeks of practice, it all becomes very natural and easy – and a great party trick!!
Glad to say that I was able to accomplish juggling 3 clubs.
Hmmm, what else could I learn? I’d ideally want to try something different than juggling specifically, as I’ve already got a good grasp of how to do it. Perhaps some other circus style skills.
I’d love any suggestions on what I could do next for a 30 day challenge!
I’ve got a few ideas on what I could do, but I think I’ll start them in 2021.
Until next time,