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Passing

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Passing is juggling between more than one person. For basic 6-object passing, two people stand facing each other, each holding three objects. On a signal, both start juggling in time with each other. To pass, each person replaces a normal solo juggling throw with a throw that goes directly across to the other person. Both people do this at the same time, for example with their right hands, and then receive the incoming passes with their left hands. From the point of view of each person's pattern, the incoming pass behaves exactly like a normal crossing throw coming from that person's pattern.

The term "pass" may refer to either throwing an object to another person, or handing an object directly from one hand to the other (i.e. a hand off, feed, zip), as you would do in a shower. The term "self" in a passing context is used for any throw that isn't a pass (throwing an object so that you catch it yourself), but it can also mean throwing an object so that it is caught not just by the same person but by the same hand (a non-crossing throw). In a passing context, a non-crossing self throw is sometimes called a "heff".

Olga & Vova Galchenko 2004 WJF 7 Club Competition Routine04:27

Olga & Vova Galchenko 2004 WJF 7 Club Competition Routine

Club passing competition routine by Vova and Olga Galchenko

PatternsEdit

For any given number of objects, similar passing patterns to those used for that number can also be done with four more objects. For example, the patterns for 6 object passing are the same as the patterns for 10, 14, and 18. 2-counts for each of these numbers are done with all the throws at the same height and with each person juggling asynch, with the right hands synchronized and the left hands synchronized.

In the basic patterns for 2-person passing with an even number of objects, each person does a pass every few throws while juggling in a cascade, a wimpy pattern, or a fountain. The two patterns are synchronized, so that both right hands throw at the same time, and both left hands throw at the same time. If both people are juggling synchronous patterns, all four hands throw at the same time. The difficulty of the patterns increase as the passes become more frequent.

  • 6-count: Beginning passers usually start passing 6 objects with a pass on every 6th throw. The same two objects are passed every time they're thrown with the right hands (assuming the pattern is done right-handed).
  • 4-count aka "every others": This is a popular 6 object passing pattern where every 4th throw (every other right hand throw) is a pass. With 8 balls it can be done either entirely in the wimpy pattern, alternating between throwing a right hand pass and a left hand crossing throw, and then two crossing throws, or the two throws between passes can be non-crossing, so the pattern alternates between two throws of a wimpy pattern with one hand throwing to the other person, and two throws of a synch fountain. The second method is the one that would be used for rings and clubs since the wimpy pattern is impractical for those props.
  • 3-count: This is an ambidextrous 6 object passing pattern where every 3rd throw is a pass so that the same two objects are passed every time they're thrown. An 8 object 3-count is done by passing every third throw in an asynch fountain, with one juggler's right hand throwing at the same time as the other juggler's left hand.
  • 2-count aka "solids" or "everies": This is a popular pattern for passing any number of objects. Every right hand throw is a pass. An 8 object 2-count can be done synch (in a wimpy pattern) or asynch (in a 53 pattern). Normally asynch numbers can also be done in synch 2-count by making the passes higher than the other throws, e.g. 10 objects in a (6x,4x) pattern.
  • 1-count aka "ultimate passing" or "ultimates": This is an ambidextrous passing pattern where every throw is a pass. This results in two cascades or wimpy patterns each done with one juggler's right hand and the other juggler's left hand. It can be done asynch or synch. In a 6 object synch 1-count, the jugglers take turns throwing with both hands at the same time. In an 8 object synch 1-count, all four hands throw at the same time. In an 8 object asynch 1-count, one juggler's right hand throws at the same time as the other juggler's left hand. Collisions can be avoided in an 8 object 1-count by having one person throw passes on the outside of the pattern and the other person throw passes on the inside of the pattern.
Tutorial Request How to Pass Clubs (Basic!)09:09

Tutorial Request How to Pass Clubs (Basic!)

6 club passing tutorial

Passing patterns for odd numbers of objects are more complicated because those numbers can't be done by passing between solo patterns of half the total number of objects. For odd numbers, patterns with less frequent passes are not necessarily easier. In most odd-number patterns the jugglers' hands are still synchronized, but not always in the same ways as in even-number patterns.

  • 1-count: With odd numbers of objects, a 1-count can be done with every throw the same height, and only one hand throwing at a time. One person throws diagonal passes, and the other person throws straight passes. Both people juggle at a normal speed, each throwing in between the other's throws. The order the hands throw in depends on the number of objects being juggled. For a number just above a multiple of 4 (5, 9, 13, 17), the throwing order is: diagonal-passer's right hand, straight-passer's right hand, diagonal-passer's left hand, straight-passer's left hand. For a number just below a multiple of 4 (7, 11, 15, 19), the throwing order is: diagonal-passer's right hand, straight-passer's left hand, diagonal-passer's left hand, straight-passer's right hand. The straight-passer does their first throw (a pass) right after the diagonal-passer's first throw. If the diagonal-passer starts with their right hand, the straight-passer's first pass is with their left hand for 7 objects, or their right hand for 9 objects.
    • A less collision-prone way to do a 1-count with an odd number of objects is to have the diagonal-passer throw higher than the straight-passer. (The two jugglers should throw at the heights of the basic solo patterns for two consecutive numbers that add up to the number of objects being passed, e.g. 3s and 4s for passing 7, or 4s and 5s for passing 9.) In this kind of 1-count, the hands are synchronized: for a number just above a multiple of 4, one person's right hand throws at the same time as the other person's left hand, and for a number just below a multiple of 4, both right hands throw at the same time, and both left hands throw at the same time. To start the pattern, the diagonal-passer throws one object first, and then the straight-passer makes their first throw at the same time as the diagonal-passer makes their second throw.
  • 2-count: The 2-count pattern for 7 balls is the same as a 2-count with 6 balls except the passes are at 4 ball height instead of 3 ball height, and the hands are synchronized differently: one person's right hand throws at the same time as the other person's left hand. To start the pattern, the person holding more balls throws one pass first, and then the other person makes their first throw (a pass) at the same time as the first person makes their second throw.
    • A 9 ball 2-count is the same as an 8 ball 2-count except the passes are at 5 ball height instead of 4 ball height, and the hands are synchronized differently: the jugglers take turns throwing with both hands at the same time. Like the 7 ball 2-count, the pattern starts with the person holding more balls throwing one pass first, before the other person starts throwing.
  • 3-count: A 3-count for odd numbers is similar to a 1-count for odd numbers (the first method above): one person throws diagonal passes, and the other person throws straight passes, and only one hand throws at a time. The throwing order for the hands in a 7 object 3-count is the same as in a 9 object 1-count, and vice versa. In a 7 object 3-count, the throws are passed 4.5s and non-passed (crossing) 3s, and in a 9 object 3 count, the throws are passed 5.5s and non-passed (non-crossing) 4s. The straight-passer does their first throw (a pass) right after the diagonal-passer's second throw. If the diagonal-passer starts with their right hand, the straight-passer's first pass is with their left hand for 7 objects, or their right hand for 9 objects.
  • 4-count: A 4-count for an odd number of objects is the same as a 4-count for the even number just below that number (including the way the hands are synchronized) except the passes are higher than the other throws (e.g. passed 5s and non-passed 3s for 7 objects, or passed 6s and non-passed 4s for 9 objects), and the two jugglers don't pass at the same time: one person's right hand throws a pass at the same time as the other person's right hand throws a non-passed throw. To start the pattern, the person holding more objects starts juggling by throwing a pass, and the other person makes their first throw (a pass) at the same time as the first person makes their third throw.
  • 6-count: In a 6-count with an odd number, each person alternates between doing three throws of the basic asynch solo patterns for two different numbers that add up to the number of objects being used in the passing pattern. A 7 ball 6-count alternates between three 4 ball throws and three 3 ball throws, and a 9 ball 6-count alternates between three 5 ball throws and three 4 ball throws. Each time one of the jugglers does a set of three higher throws, the last of the three throws is a pass (a straight pass if it's at an even-number height, and a diagonal pass if it's at an odd-number height). To start the pattern, the person holding more objects starts juggling by doing three high throws (the last of which is a pass), and then the other person makes their first throw (also starting with three high throws) at the same time as the first person makes their fourth throw.
Daniel and Dominik04:50

Daniel and Dominik

Club passing by Daniel Ledel and Dominik Harant

The triangle and the feed are two popular 3-person passing patterns. In the triangle, each person throws to the person to the right, so if the jugglers pass in a 2-count, the objects go around in a circuit between the three people. In the feed, one person does a 2-count, passing alternately to the other two people who are doing 4-counts, and never passing to each other.

There are three basic patterns for passing with three hands:

  • For a number of objects that is a multiple of 3, all three hands throw at the same time.
  • For a number of objects that is 1 more than a multiple of 3, if the objects are thrown from one hand to the next hand in a counter-clockwise order, the throwing order for the hands is counter-clockwise.
  • For a number of objects that is 1 less than a multiple of 3, if the objects are thrown from one hand to the next hand in a counter-clockwise order, the throwing order for the hands is clockwise.
Stefan and Ben05:36

Stefan and Ben

Club passing by Stefan Brancel and Ben Hestness

Siteswap notation for passingEdit

A "throw" in passing siteswap notation is divided into multiple parts, the throwing instructions for each juggler. The notation <3|3> describes 2 jugglers each doing a 3 ball cascade. The "|" symbol separates throws made simultaneously by different jugglers. Normally the throws within a <|> are either all right-hand throws or all left-hand throws, but not all patterns have both right hands throwing at the same time. Juggling Lab uses the notation <R|L> before a pattern to indicate that one person throws with the right hand while the other person throws with the left hand.

A "p" after a number indicates that the throw is a pass. If the throw without a "p" would go to your left hand, the throw goes to your partner's left hand (on your right), and vice versa. If there are more than two jugglers, a number can be used after the "p" to indicate which juggler you're passing to, with the convention that the leftmost juggler in the <|> is juggler #1, the next is juggler #2, and so on. So for example, <3p|3p> and <3p2|3p1> each describe the same passing pattern, namely 6-object ultimates.

17-20 Ball Passing World Records00:47

17-20 Ball Passing World Records

Numbers passing by Dan Wood and Dave Leahy

See alsoEdit

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