About The Double-Daring Book for Girls

How to juggle

Like most circus skills, juggling looks so easy when someone else does it. The first thing to know is that the balls don’t go in a circle. You don’t shuffle the balls to a single hand that throws them while the other hand catches. Instead, the balls cross paths, and knowing this goes a long way in understanding how juggling is done. One other thing to watch out for: Everyone’s tendency is to toss the balls too far ahead and, thus, to move forward as they juggle. Try to throw the balls straight up. It helps if you practice with your back against a wall.

Start learning to juggle by throwing with one ball. Toss the ball from one hand to another, in an arc. The ball should crest at the same height each time you throw it. You want to be able to rely on throwing the ball the same way and to the same height from both hands. Catch with the other hand—but make sure not to raise your hand to catch the ball; let the ball come to your hand. Then, toss the ball from hand two back to hand one, reaching the same height. As this becomes easier, find a rhythm by counting out loud: Throw, catch, throw, catch or One, catch, one, catch.

When you’re confident with the throw and can do it almost with your eyes closed, add a second ball. You’ll expand the rhythm, so that you will throw ball one, and when it reaches the highest point of the crest, you will throw ball two (from the other hand, of course), which will be inside the curve of the first ball. Try saying, Throw, throw, catch, catch or One, two, catch, catch. Keep practicing.

How to juggle

At long last, pull out a third ball. Put two balls in one hand and the third ball in the other hand. Throw first from the hand with two balls. As with two-ball juggling, throw the next ball when the one before it crests. Relax, throw steady, and focus. Practice counting One, two, catch, three, catch, catch, and stop after one round. Each ball should end up in the opposite hand. After some celebrating, continue on until you’re able to juggle three balls without stopping.