This glossary contains simple descriptions of props you are likely to find if you attend a Juggling / Circus Skills Workshop. “Juggling” in a general sense can refer to all forms of object manipulation such as diabolo, devilsticks, spinning plates etc, so it is more than just the art of throwing multiple objects in the air at the same time!
Astrojax – A toy that contains 3 balls on a string. One ball is fixed to each end of the string and the middle ball is free to slide between the two end balls. This skill toy allows you to do a combination of juggling, yo-yo and lasso tricks. It was invented in 1987.
Bar Flair – The practice of bartenders entertaining their guests while mixing drinks (such as cocktails) using bottles, cocktail shakers etc. “Flair” can include juggling and flipping the bottles, catching in the shaker cups etc.judi bola This skill became popular when seen on the 1988 film “Cocktail” starring Tom Cruise and on Britain’s Got Talent where the Bar Wizards made it all the way to the Grand Final in 2007.
Beach Flingo – A game where you pass a small ball between yourself and a partner using a bib that is made of trampoline type fabric. Very addictive and you can use these bibs to play volleyball or for a massive group game of keepy-uppy’s!
Bounce (Floor) Juggling – The art of bouncing balls off the floor in various juggling patterns.
Cigar Box Manipulation – Three rectangular shaped boxes which resemble cigar boxes but are much more solid. They are usually padded at the edges with a felt-like material. The basic tricks involve holding the two outer boxes, trapping one box in the middle (known as the “home position”) and then manipulating the middle box in various directions. W. C. Fields popularised this prop, and it gained popularity in the UK when Kris Kremo performed expertly with them on TV’s The Generation Game Christmas Special in 1993.
Club (Juggling) – One of the main juggling props. It consists of a handle and a body. You throw from the handle so that the club completes one or more spins before you catch by the handle once again. Referred to as “pins” and “skittles” by our American buddies or “torches” if they are set alight!
Club Rolling – When you roll a club on the floor, it will roll in a perfect circle. This allows many fantastic and interesting patterns to be created with 3 or 6 clubs.
Club Swinging – The swinging of two clubs around the body, arms and legs. This is a form of Contact Juggling as the props stay in contact with the performer at all times.
Contact Juggling – a form of object manipulation where one or more objects stay in contact with the body (hands, feet etc) at all times. The most common form of contact juggling is using a ball (usually an acrylic or stage ball). This was made popular in the film Labyrinth. Other props you can contact juggle with include Poi Spinning, Club Swinging & Pen Spinning.
Diabolo – A large hourglass shaped object which can be spun and caught on a string between two handsticks. The name is derived from a Greek verb meaning “‘to throw across”. Multiple diabolo’s can be spun on a string, and the possibilities for this prop keep on expanding every year with new people pushing the boundaries!
Devilstick (also known as devil stick, rhythm sticks, lunastix etc) – This consists of 2 handsticks (coated in rubber/silicone) and a larger stick in the middle which is manipulated in hundreds of different ways. Flowersticks have tassles on the end which allow it to move a bit slower in the air (making tricks easier to learn).
Feather Balancing – One of the easiest objects to balance as they move so slowly in the air. Peacock and Ostrich feathers are ideal. Try balancing on your hand, finger, chin, nose etc.
Fire Juggler/Juggling – Many of the Circus Skills props featured in this glossary have versions with wicks you can soak in fuel (such as paraffin) and light on fire. The main fire props include Fire Poi, Fire Staff, Fire Devilstick, Fire Diabolo, Fire Clubs and even Fire Balls (you may need kevlar gloves to be able to juggle these!)
Giraffe – Tall unicycle (usually between 5-6ft) where the pedals & wheel are connected by a chain. It can actually be easier to ride than a normal sized Unicycle as long as you aren’t scared of heights!
Glow Juggler/Juggling – Many of the Circus Skills props featured in this glossary have versions which you can light up. The more expensive glow props will even let you programme light sequences! Most common glow props include Glow Poi, Glow Balls, Glow Diabolo, Glow Devilstick, Glow Rings, Glow Clubs & Glow Staff.
Hat Manipulation/Juggling – Throwing and catching one or more hats using hands, feet, body and head. Tricks usually finish with the hat being thrown or placed back on the performers head.
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