At the risk of sounding evangelical..

Juggling is more than just tossing a load of stuff in the air and trying to catch it. It does not require special coordination - if you can catch a frisbee you can juggle. All it requires is an interest and an appreciation. Behind the throws, catches, bounces and the waving of the arms lie abstract patterns of various complexity. These range from the simplest 3 ball cascade to.. infinity.

The vast majority of jugglers are therefore inclined towards abstract pursuits, e.g. Mathematics, Physics, Computers and Music. They are intelligent with a high level of focus. When they juggle they can sense the patterns in time and space. This is why juggling photos usually look crap, i.e. they only capture a single instant in time. Also, jugglers who are using all their concentration on their pattern often don't have any left for composing their faces. For the same reason it is impossible to be stressed and juggling towards your limit at the same time. Like playing music, it demands all your attention. It's also a physical thing. It raises your heart rate and gets the blood flowing.

Learning to juggle gives most people a big buzz, especially if they saw it as some kind of rare magic beyond their capabilities. Progressing with juggling is a never-ending journey with a lot of lessons for life. It teaches you self-discipline tempered with patience. You have to accept there will always be better (and worse) jugglers than you, therefore you can only judge yourself against your own capabilities. It also teaches you that it's okay to drop, so long as each one nudges your juggling neural net. When you learn a new trick the immense satisfaction rewards the time spent working on it and the association between work and reward grows stronger.

And I haven't even started on the zen feeling of juggling eggs, hack mode, etc...

Juggling history

The origin of juggling lays far back in ancient history. As a close relative to dance, music and theatre performance arts, juggling has been around for ages, literally.

Pinpointing the start of juggling is futile and anyone who attempts is doomed to fail.

Some historians believe that juggling has been part of religious expression since the dawn of time, then designed to rid the shamans' tribes of evil spirits.

The first pictures of jugglers appear in egyptian wall paintings and Greek vases. The first date we have regarding juggling is in the time around 700 BCE, linked to events in ancient greek history, in that jugglers were "imported" from oriental countries.

The name Juggling

Some Latin scholars note that the latin word for juggler was ventilator, or thrower of knives, and attribute the word juggler to this. Far from everybody agrees however.

The general idea is that Juggling was such a strange thing, that there was no word for it - and chances are that jugglers were called "throwers of things".

A Jaculator (yes, same word base as ejaculation, without further connection) is means "thrower", and the most likely explanation as to where the word juggle came from.

From the word joculator (Joker or jester), the French came up with Joglar, which later became jongleur.

The spanish use the word malabarista, which is a bit of a mysterium. :)


A comprehensive list of juggling tricks, patterns, props and miscellaneous links.

General/ Miscellaneous

  • Juggling / Juggle
  • Juggling Information Service
  • Contact Juggling
  • Juggling music
  • Cold Start
  • Siteswap Notation
  • 3-ball Patterns

  • Learning to juggle / How to juggle
  • Three ball cascade
  • Over the top
  • Under the arm
  • Tennis
  • Half shower
  • Columns
  • Reverse cascade
  • Three ball shower
  • Three ball chase
  • Flash
  • Giraffe
  • Factory
  • ( Mill's Mess )
  • ( Mill's Mess variations )
  • ( Rubenstein's Revenge )
  • Mill's Mess

  • Mill's Mess
  • Mill's Mess variations
  • Mill's Mess with five balls
  • Mill's Mess enlightenment
  • Rubenstein's Revenge
  • 4-ball Patterns

  • Four ball fountain
  • Four ball synch fountain
  • Reverse fountain
  • Pistons
  • Five three
  • ( Over the top )
  • ( Tennis )
  • ( Flash )
  • ( Mill's Mess variations )
  • One-hand patterns

  • Two in one hand
  • Three in one hand
  • 5-ball patterns

  • Five ball juggling
  • Learning to juggle five balls
  • Five ball enlightenment
  • ( Five ball Mill's Mess )
  • Club juggling

  • ( Clubs )
  • Three Club cascade
  • ( Under the arm )
  • Buzzsaw
  • 4 Club Juggling
  • Passing Clubs
  • Props

  • Juggling balls
  • Clubs
  • Rings
  • Juggling eggs
  • bouncy ball
  • Cat juggling / Juggling kittens
  • Juggle chainsaws
  • Machete juggling / methamphetamines and machete juggling
  • Juggling stressballs
  • Unicycle
  • Fire spinning chains / Learning to spin fire / fire spinning / Poi / fire-dancing
  • Jugglers

  • Juggler
  • Heavy metal jugglers
  • Some idiot juggling three chainsaws
  • Christian Juggler's Association
  • Numbers juggling
  • Please /msg me with requests if you want your nodes to be linked to by this metanode. Thanks!

    Game terminology

    In the context of video games, juggling is the act of hitting your opponent into the air repeatedly. Juggling is especially common in "fighter" games (for example: Soul Calibur, Tekken, Virtua Fighter, etc) and in some first person shooters where the physics allow it (Quake Team Fortress, Quake 3 Fortress, and a number of other fps's).

    Juggling can also be applied to certain other situations. But basically, juggling is a series of attacks that virtually immobilize your opponent and give you a number of free attacks with which to hurt them.

    Jug"gling (?), a.

    Cheating; tricky.

    -- Jug"gling*ly, adv.


    © Webster 1913.

    Jug"gling, n.

    Jugglery; underhand practice.


    © Webster 1913.

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