Bounce Juggling FAQ

Last Modified: 11/94
Version: 1.1
                    Bounce Juggling FAQ
                    Ver 1.1 Nov 29th 1994
Maintained by Ramprasad Narasimhan (


This document contains responses to points on bounce juggling which have been asked on various occasions in the Usenet newsgroup rec.juggling. If you have been thinking of getting into bounce juggling or even if have already started and are looking for more ideas and help, you should find a lot of useful information here. The rec.juggling FAQ can be found in the Juggling Information Service, which can be located on the World-Wide Web (WWW) at

Maintainer's note

By any standards, I am only an average bounce-juggler and certainly no expert. I decided to start this FAQ primarily because I enjoy bounce juggling. Everyone going the bounce route will want these answered at some time or the other. I certainly had a lot of questions. For answers I would always look to rec.juggling or the JIS. I have answered some of the questions with from my own experience. Dr. Steve Salberg has helped by filling in any holes and writing his 5-ball force hints for this FAQ. The experts here are those who post to rec.juggling. Steve Ness has written often and his articles appear in this FAQ. When needed, I have liberally taken information from posts to rec.juggling and tried to give credit to the authors. If you disagree with anything I say anywhere in this file, please notify me by e-mail. If your name should have been here but is missing, please don't hesitate to send me mail. The main contributors are Steve Ness, Fran Favorini, Ab Wilson and Steve Salberg. Credits are to be found at the beginning or the end of the quoted portion.


1.0 What is bounce juggling?

1.1 Is bounce juggling easier than toss juggling?

It seems to be generally accepted that bounce juggling is somewhat easier than toss, given the same amount of practice at both.

Here are a couple of people's comments:

From: (Steve Ness) I can bounce 5 for a long time, much longer than I can keep 5 in the air I think this is common, but I think it's because of the accuracy of the throws rather than the timing. For a 5-ball floor cascade, I push each ball up only a few inches; the non-bounced 5-ball cascade with the same timing requires throwing each ball up several feet, with less accuracy and thus more mistakes. Similarly, once you get the timing the 4-ball pattern 633 with bounced 6 is not hard at all, and 8444 with bounced 8 is quite do-able because the bounced 8 throw is the same height as the 4s, whereas non-bounced 8s are too high for me to throw and catch accurately.

Alan Morgan: Well, I can barely bounce 5 and I can juggle 8 in the air so this rule doesn't fit for me but I think it would for most others. Bounce juggling for any particular number is slower than the "proper" way, plus the balls are moving very slowly when they reach your hands (exactly the opposite from "real" juggling) which should make them easier and less tiring to catch. Of course, the skills required are different but in general bouncing should be easier to do and easier to sustain for long periods (Pat McGuire being an extreme example of this - 20 minutes for a 7 ball bounce)

2.0 Which balls are best for bounce juggling?

2.1 Silicone balls

If you can afford these, these are the ones to buy. 2.5" and 2.75" seem to be the preferred sizes.

Advantages: Clean, good feel, great look, heavy, unbelievable bounce and traction for far distant bounce returns - expensive, but I've never regretted buying mine. Suggestion - ask for "seconds" when ordering, you might get a price break on blemished goods - Good luck - Best - Keith Johnson Providence, RI, USA

Disadvantages: Only the price has been mentioned as a major disadvantage. Also silicone balls get tiny gouges from hitting sharp objects. Dirt will stick to sillies, but it will wash right off.

2.2 Oddballs

Advantages: Bouncier than silicones, lots of color choices not as expensive as silicones

Disadvantages: Tend to chip, crack with age, don't look great, leave a rubber smell in hands and don't have the "silicone feel." Difficulty in finding the right surface to lift-bounce was mentioned in the net.

2.3 Lacrosse balls

Advantages: Good, nice weight. Good traction. Affordable.
Disadvantages: Get dirty, not as bouncy. Don't feel great. Also crack and yellow with age.

Several other bounce balls are sold by the vendors and you can try them and let us know if anything is of this class.

3.0 The Basics

3.1 LIFT versus FORCE bounce

There are two basic styles of bounce juggling: lift and force. In lift bouncing, the balls are thrown upwards without much effort, then allowed to fall to the ground, bouncing back up to be caught again. In force bouncing, the balls are thrown directly at the ground with a fair amount of force. Lift bouncing has a slower and more relaxed feel than force bouncing, and most people find it easier. Force bouncing is zippier and flashier and probably looks more impressive.

Try both and see how each feels. 4 and 5 balls are commonly juggled in force bounce patterns. Theoretically, any number can be force bounced.

3.2 Simple 3-ball tricks

Easy/Starting Stuff to try:
3 ball lift bounce cascade
3 ball lift bounce shower
3 ball lift bounce columns
3 ball force bounce cascade

3 ball lift bounce patterns are quite slow and thus can be learnt quickly. In lift, throw the ball up so that it lands just in front of the opposite foot.

In force bounce, the ball is thrown down from the RH so that it lands in front of the Right foot and it bounces back to the LH. Similarly, the throws from the LH lands nearer the left foot and goes to the right hand.

3.3 Is there a video available to learn Bounce Juggling?

Steve Ness:
Yes, there is one video carried by Dubé, Infinite Illusions and Juggling Capitol, among others. Opinion on whether to buy it or not seems to be divided. Here's what Steve Ness has to say about it:

"Ball Bouncing Juggling with Paul Bachman" published by The Idea Machine, Inc., 38 minutes.
I bought a copy in 12/93 for $25 from Juggling Capitol in SF, 415-434-8629.
It's in four sections:
Possibilities with 3, 4 & 5
How to begin
"English" in ball bouncing
Bouncing balls and stages

I have some reservations about the tape, but there's enough impressive stuff included to make it worthwhile, IMO. The first half of the tape (roughly) shows tricks and explanations, which for my money makes it worth having. The second half, from "How to begin" on, contains a lot of talk, with some useful information and some lengthy explanations on topics I didn't find very interesting (e.g. how to build a portable stage). I would also have enjoyed seeing a presentation of an entire routine, putting the many tricks shown individually into practice, but the longest sequence on the tape is an introductory segment of ca. 1:00.

Bachman does a lot of tricks (and he makes them look hard, as my wife points out; he is not from the "make it look effortless" presentation crowd). If you are interested in bouncing, you will almost surely see things you have not seen before, like multiplex throws during a 5 force bounce or his 5 force to 5 lift transition with a 77722 pirouette. If you're looking for tricks, check it out.
(Steve Ness)

4.0 What about 4-ball bouncing?

Steve Ness:
I enjoy the 4-ball forced bounce patterns; if you can juggle 4 in the air, they should come to you very quickly. Try in sync, columns; in sync, outward circles; in sync, splits. Then try out of sync, columns; out of sync, outward circles; out of sync, splits (hard). By holding one ball in your hand for a moment, you can move fluidly between in and out of sync patterns. I also like the four-ball box bounce; looking down, throw with rh across the top of an imaginary square and with lh across the bottom, your lh carries each ball toward your body after a catch and your rh carries each away. Also try first throw as in box, second throw straight down on both sides, third throw box in the opposite direction, fourth thrown straight down, etc.

Bounced 633 will come to you fairly quickly once you realize how slow the timing is supposed to be. Toss the 6 with a very slight lift, to the outside, then slowly throw two rather high 3s, then the 6 on the other side, etc. Non-jugglers love this trick, because at first they think you missed catching the 6 but then they realize that it is still in the pattern. Once you get 633, try the 3-ball pattern 6316131 with lift-bounced 6s, very similar to 633 in feel, this one confuses the uninitiated too. When the timing clicks, both 633 and 6316131 should be no problem. Similarly, 531 with lift-bounced 5 is easy, it's just very slow. Haven't tried 7333, I'll do so after I send this mail off. I do remember doing bounced 83333 long ago, just like 633 but with a higher toss to do the 8; this worked best with fairly low 3s, I recall, to speed up the pace so the 8 did not have to be too high. (Steve Ness)

More on 4 balls (Paul Pompi answers to):
Q:While we're on the subject, it seems the best pattern to bounce 4 balls in is columns. I tried doing a fountain and they went all over the place. Can the fountain be done easily if the right spin is put on the balls?

A:I think that a four ball fountain is about as easy as columns. Turn your wrists so your hands are pointing to the inside. Do an inward fountain: throws made at the inside of the body, catches made to the outside. Once you learn the proper hand positioning, it isn't that hard.

IMHO, the easiest 4 ball bounce pattern is synchronous, with the balls crossing. Throw one a little to the front of you to prevent collisions. Hope this helps.

This pattern is sometimes known as the cross or the wimpy pattern and is generally done as a lift bounce (especially with greater numbers). I like throwing _higher_ with one hand rather than _in front_.(Fran)

5.0 How to learn the 5-ball Lift Bounce? ((thomasl)) writes:
to begin bouncing 5, start by bouncing (in a lift bounce) 3 by making it very very exaggerated, high and slow. once you figure out how truly slow and easy this is, with 3 and you have a sense that the balls a) actually are lifted a bit, on the throw and b) that the balls cross on the way down you can begin with 5 (skip 4, for now, since 5 is the trick you really want) begin by "flashing" it , which, as you and everyone knows is simply throwing them all and collecting them (catching) cleanly this may be tricky at first, but it will come with practice get it down pretty consistently then you can start going for that extra throw, etc
(ok, yeah, go ahead and try to run them sometimes)

to begin:

one hand holds three flat (stacking comes with bigger numbers) the other holds 2
(i recommend a 2" silicone, made by guess who, but use whatever is handy) the ball nearest yr fingers, closest "inside", in the 3 hand, is sort of rolled off the fingers, with a slight lilt or lift -- it actually goes up a tiny bit, before going down (hence the name "lift-bouncing", rather than the faster "force-bouncing". since you have practiced with 3, you now understand this)
the throw is a tiny bit across, since the point at which each ball hits is opposite the side from which it was thrown -- it traces a diagonal (the balls cross in midair, and they do not collide, because they aren't in the same place at the same time)
watching someone do this pattern successfully, like all juggling stuff, helps a lot try to keep the rhythm even, and not syncopated -- you can tell when you rush a throw, because not only will you have a ball in your hand quicker, but you can hear it in the rhythm of the pattern, which should be a regular drumming drumming drumming, driving you slowly and totally mad yes mad hahahahahahahaha

bouncing is nice for that, it lets you hear your errors (like when your balls go boing boing boing boing thud all over the gym)

practicing in a corner or a play-pen of your own clever manufacture or a racketball court or some other surrounded area with a beautifully smooth floor (marble is the best, you may want to hang about at national monuments and museums) will save you lots of time spent running after your balls

Steve Ness :
Yes, bouncy balls are a joy, aren't they... Assuming you bought 5, you should try working on the 5-ball lift cascade, it's much easier than one would expect. My regular 5-ball cascade is uneven, in the 20 to 60 throw range usually, but I can do a 5-ball floor cascade for hundreds of throws, vary the height from shoulder (slow) to knee (fast), and even walk around while doing it (sometimes without collisions). The difference is that you need only a very slight push with your hand to lift the ball enough so that it ends up in the other hand, and since little force is required the "throws" (really "pushes") are vastly more accurate than aerial 5-ball cascade throws.

Hard tennis courts are good surfaces, and fenced, their disadvantage is that you cannot hear the throws hit; when you are learning 5, the audible feedback from a wooden floor is very helpful in getting your throws evenly spaced. If you do work on a wooden floor, try to find the beams under the floor; the bounce will be much better on a beam than on the springy space between beams. With bouncy balls it's particularly useful to stop before you miss rather than after, otherwise you spend too much time chasing them.

6.0 How do I learn the 5-ball Force Bounce? writes:
When I learned to force 5 it was frustrating at first, then after quite some time everything clicked, it all came together at one time. Looking back my problem was throwing the balls too fast. Try standing in front of someone who can do a solid 5 force and use their timing. (Make sure the person is not too much taller or shorter than you :-) It has helped most of the people I've tried it with. S l o w i t d o w n ! !

From: (Terry Jones)
for me, 7 lift is easier than 5 force.
i can keep 5 and 6 lift going until the cows come home, and had 7 lift up to a few hundred catches, but never got over about 30 catches with 5 forced. i never could figure out why. lots of people watched it. some days it was good, some days it was bad, most days i didn't even try the end i decided i was spastic and stopped thinking about it. others find 5 forced easier than 5 lift! rob weinstein can force 5 forever but (i think) cannot lift 5 - maybe this is wrong. anyway he finds the forcing very easy. i had a feeling it might be because of so much time spent playing cricket and having a right arm that can throw about a million times harder and more accurately than my left.

good luck...

Tiryn writes:
I talked with the Russian, Russland Flomenko in Hagen this summer, and although his English was less then perfect he was able to convey the Russian style of practice pretty well, and I have applied it to the force bounce: First of all, one's body and limb positioning should be as natural as possible, furthermore the amount of movement should be as minimal as possible, i.e. wrist should be as stiff as possible and forearms should do most of the work. Upper arms should be left to dangle as naturally as possible. This is true for all juggling. For force bouncing, it means that you should aim for a spot the same distance from your ankle as your hands are from your elbows. This technique should keep the amount of variables in the equation to a minimum and allow you to have a home position to return to when you make mistakes. As for learning the right amount of power to put into the throw I recommend three ball force bounce shower, making sure that the bounced ball reaches a high enough height that your shower self goes under the climbing ball as it reaches it's peak. Then I find it very important to make sure there is no back spin on the ball, but rather forward spin, so that if you threw the ball straight down it would bounce to your other hand's natural position, this is exaggerated you should not throw the ball straight down, but the spin should help the shape of the "v" to be even. Then of course 2 "V"s over-lapping. Using these techniques I was able to learn 5 ball bounce in about 6 hours, to the 25-30 throw point, and with hard practicing afterwards I can do about fifty throws, somewhat reliably, sometimes more, but Russlan also said that one should learn the techniques of a trick, and then move on not spending to much time on any one thing, until your are putting a show together, then it should be perfected.


Does a 5-forced beat a 7-lift?
Nope, not in my book. I can 5-force 'til the scouts come home, but 7-lift is *so* much faster that it's considerably harder to make accurate throws.
How did you learn it?
Trial, error and video.
Don't get *too* carried away with over-intellectualizing this. As is so often the case in juggling (and life), there is no *right* way. I've done it right up close to my feet and as much as 1-1/2 to 2 feet away (though I do find it easier the closer I keep it). A lot of it depends on your body posture. If you bend over more, you can bounce further away. If you stand up straighter, you can bounce close in. No right or wrong. Steve S

From: (Steve Ness)
I cannot say that I've learned it yet, but I have made some progress in the last couple weeks, going from a best of 8 catches to 10 to 12 to 14 to 22. I have been trying to stop before I miss rather than after, a tradition more honored in the breach than the observance but it does seem to help in gaining consistency. I warm up with 2, then 4, then 6, etc., and try to feel natural at each level before I go to the next, although my few good 20+ runs happened when I just went for it.

On my best runs, I feel like the pattern is just starting to click, working without my having to think about each throw. I am trying to keep my hands fairly wide apart, just outside my hips. I am trying to keep the balls in a consistent plane, and I seem to do best if I lean forward slightly and look down so that my eyes are in the hand/ball plane. Before the current rains started, I had some success when I went to a tennis court with chalk in hand and drew a couple little 3" boxes on the ground. Hate those ASCII drawings, but here goes:

                      --------|  |  |--------
The horizontal line defines the ball plane, and I throw from the rh toward the rh box and from the lh toward the lh box. My feet are just below (as seen from above) the outer edges of the boxes, I think. This seems to help because it helps you define your throws and see your mistakes. My biggest problem is throwing as hard with my lh as with my rh, the lh throws tend to get lower as I go along.

And don't underestimate the importance of finding a good space to work, with a consistent flat surface and something to contain balls when they go awry I like using a local tennis court. I stand a couple feet from a fenced corner, facing into the corner; when I miss, it is usually due to collision, and the balls shoot off but often stay more or less in the ball plane. If they hit the chain link fence and come back to you without your chasing them, you save lots of time.

The lift bounce 5 cascade now seems so straightforward and consistent to me that I tend to forget the hours of work it took me to get it. But when I think about it in retrospect, I remember pretty much the same steps I'm doing now on the force 5: slow progress, until at some point it started to click. Several force bouncers have told me that for them 5 force is much easier than 5 lift, that's comforting at my level.

More from Steve Salberg:
PROBLEM: All the balls don't go the same height.
Most people when they are just learning the FLASH (either in the air or bounce), try to only throw exactly the "flash" number - "5". Since they are thinking "5", once the first three are up there is a slight mental relaxation on the last one or two which is usually why these just barely get up into the pattern: "ONE-TWO-THREE..four five"

The best way I've found to conquer this is not to think "5" - think "7" or "8". In your mind you are going to continue past "5" so you will still have to get rid of those last two in order for you to continue (whether you actually are or not).

Another way is to try to throw the last two a bit HIGHER than the first three (you'll probably end up throwing them closer to the correct height: "one-two-three-FOUR-FIVE"

PROBLEM: The balls won't cross.
This is the key to cracking this particular trick. The hint that worked for me also helped with the next problem:

PROBLEM: The balls go "away" from me and I have to chase them.
Most people hold their hands either palms toward each other or even slightly palm downward. I think of holding my hands as much palm UP as I can manage with the hands also slightly bent up at the wrist so the palms are "cupped" back toward me slightly. The palm up method helps to throw the balls more "across" because of two reasons: (1) This position forces you to flick the wrist toward the little finger in a "chopping motion" as opposed to toward the other palm in a "fanning the flames" type of motion.

Further clarification:
(if you understand the "chop" and "fan" bit already skip to next paragraph)
Fanning - hold your hand out in front of you with the palm facing toward the other hand and flap the wrist as if you are fanning the air to get rid of some kind of smell or smoke.
Chopping - hold your hand palm up and flick your wrist as if you are chopping down a tree with the edge of your hand at the little finger.

(2) The balls will come off your hands over the thick muscle that is below your little finger (the Thenar Eminance). This will impart a bit of side-spin that will force the ball across even further.

Cupping the hands help keep the throws back towards you. I always tell beginners (3 balls and up) who have trouble with the balls getting away to think of throwing the balls "slightly back" toward yourself. This occurs with the cupped wrists for the force bounce. When I can achieve this feeling, I have my best runs.
And as with all 5 ball patterns - "it's not as fast as you think".
Steve S.

7.0 Tricks

7.1 Bounced Mills Mess

Ab Wilson on Bounced Mills Mess:
The trick I was trying for was 633 bounce MM. In this trick the 6s are thrown as lift bounces and don't really have much to do with the MM aspect of the trick. The MMing is in the 33 which are thrown as normal 3s and can therefore be MMed fairly (ahem) easily. No I never got it it solid.

It must be three months since I practised bounce juggling so it might be time I tried again. I never tried bouncing 3 in MM. 3 lift bounce MM would be fairly straight forward but v e r y s l o w, so slow that you might not be able to see the pattern very well.

The force-bounced mess is pretty easy, but not that inspiring to watch. The problem is that you end up with a pretty spiky pattern, which just isn't as seductive as the beautiful & sexy flowing curves of the classic Mess.

Now a force-bounced Rubensteins Revenge or Burkes Barrage *would* be quite hard - any takers?
- Andy (still trying to figure out how to do the 4-ball barrage)

7.3 Five balls

I'm not sure if I've posted this before but the bounced 5 multiplex is one of the easiest and nicest 5 ball tricks around in my opinion. It's similar to the tossed multiplex where each pair splits. If it's done bounced it's either slow (forced) or very slow (lift). Anyway, if you've read something strangely familiar somewhere before, it's just me trying to get my posting rate up.

5-Ball Double Bounce Cascade.(aka The "W")

Another difficult-*looking* trick is the 5-double bounced cascade. Surprisingly, I haven't read a thing about this here.I can do this for about 20 throws and then they collide all at once.

For those who don't know this trick, each ball bounces twice and lands in the other hand. (essentially taking a " W " path)

I practice this with 4 balls, where (say) all balls dropped from the left bounce twice, and from the right only once. This I find easier to do and can do for a long time.

7.4 Which siteswaps can be done by bounce juggling?

Contributors to this list are Steve Ness and Jack Boyce.

Note: The [] are nonstandard notation for transition sequences; e.g. [5]741[3]means that from 4 you can throw a 5 to get into 741 and a 3 to get out.

	 52512              -- Baby juggling pattern
	 72312  (bounced 7) -- Baby juggling pattern
         7131   (bounced 7)
         6316131(bounced 6)
	 6316131 	    -- easy and fun

	 50505  (These are useful for learning five)
	 633    (bounced 6) -- The most popular one, pretty easy
         741    (bounced 7) -- Try this one! get in with 5, get out with 
				a 3. [5]741[3] or [55]741[2]
         714    (bounced 7) -- Hard to avoid collisions
         831    (bounced 8) -- Surprisingly easy. [6]831[42] or [6]831[33]  
         84440              -- Like 633 but based on doing the 4 throws
         9151               -- This one is neat, feels like 3 ball shower
         9515               -- A little tricky

    5:   744
	 9515                    [66]9515[3]
         A55550  [The 'A' represents a 10 throw]

jboyce@physics1 (Jack Boyce) writes:

I've worked on bouncing site swaps for several weeks now.
THE BASIC RULE: Take the throw you want to bounce, halve the number, and then throw that high. By the time it bounces and returns to fall in your hand, it will have spent the correct amount of time in the air. For example, with 633 you halve the 6 to get 3; thus all the throws go roughly the same height (although of course the 6's are still thrown to the same side). With 831 the 8 is thrown like a 4, and so on. This rule of thumb works so long as the balls are relatively bouncy (> 60% return, say).

Once you get the hang of it, bouncing gives you an easy way to do difficult site swaps (with high throws). I encourage people to try it and see what you can come up with! Jack

Ab Wilson on 531:
5 3 1 (You bounce the 5 throw the 3 as normal and zip the 1. The only difficulty is in telling your hands *not* to catch the 5 but to let it bounce first.
Try 7131, thats really easy too.

8.0 Numbers

I didn't find much from the archives, so I am filling in what I remember from when I first tried 6 (ram)

8.1 6 BALLS:
I do this as 6x in site-swap. The throws feel exactly the same as the lift-5 throws, only both hands throw at once. For me, the ball thrown from the right hand goes under the ball thrown from the LH at the same time. If you have 6 balls, just go for it. (I have reached a 100 throws on occasion) Also, clean finish is possible with just the slightest practice. Those who can run this trick will embarrass you by showing how they can keep it going even when they lower their hands to about 2.5 feet above the floor. Remember that just means that the trick can't be that difficult.

8.2 7 BALLS:
I'm working on lift bouncing 7 at the moment and am starting to get there. Getting them going isn't too bad, it's stopping that I have problems with. The only advice I have is just go for it. If your 5 is pretty solid them you shouldn't have too many problems. -Brendan.

The stop is difficult. I try to catch the last ball on top of three held in my right hand. This requires a light touch, as the last ball wants to bounce off the three in your hand. Catch it by moving the hand with the path of the last ball and slowly stopping the ball. I spent considerable time practicing just this: hold three balls in one hand, bounce another ball and catch it on the three. I still do not have it solid.

When I got over the "wow 7!" feeling, the seven-ball cascade didn't seem that impossible. I am not saying I can do it but the first step is to realize that it is amazingly similar to the 5-ball lift bounce. I think my first few successful attempts (that didn't seem total chaos) were while I was standing on a small table. The extra height helps. Now, I am able to do seven better when standing on the ground. So try both. (I haven't gotten it down or anything like that. My longest run was 76 throws. I don't try for clean finishes, just minimum running after the sillies is my aim.) I find seven easier when I make the pattern wider. While trying 7 you should remember not to let your elbows droop as you proceed. Experiment different heights till one feels comfortable for that day. And don't neglect to practice 5 for L O N G runs. -Ram

8.3 8 BALLS:
Just like 6, only faster. I know, that many not sound helpful but that's what I did the first time I tried 8. I qualified on the first day. It is definitely not much harder than 7 lift. Easier, some may argue. My first day's run is still my longest. I don't get to try this often as one needs 1 or 2 spotters and running after 8 balls that just collided isn't fun. I have seen Greg Kennedy (?) of Philadelphia do 8 quite cleanly. It never seems difficult when someone else is doing it! -Ram

9.0 Bounce Passing

From (Francis Favorini)
(Allen Knutson) says:
Public reply to e-mail from (Ram Prasad):
What is the favorite (easy?) method of passing 8, bounce?(a multiple of 4 in gen)
Let me begin with several disclaimers. 1) Almost nobody passes numbers balls, so there isn't really a tried and true way. 2) Those who bounce, at least in competition, pass odd numbers Odd-God/ 1-count/thundershower/ultimates. 3) I myself don't bounce. That said, the only way I've seen anyone bounce-pass 8 (and 12) is in a 2-count, with all four hands throwing at the same time.

Fran continues this discussion:
This pattern works pretty well. It's a little tricky doing the self and pass bounces at the same time, but you get used to it. Each ball bounces only once with 8. Fred and I also 10 this way with the passes bouncing twice (selves still bounce once). Every ball still bounces at the same time. I suppose you could do 12 this way with three-bounce passes. I can't try it for a while since Fred is working nights for a few more weeks. :-( (Oh, we do these as force bounces.)

Ram: and of passing 10 (4x+2)?
Allen: Same disclaimers as above. Myself, I'm pretty sure I'd do a 2-count. But in fact the only way I've seen anyone bounce pass 10 was sitting in chairs four bounces apart - r.j's own Fran Favorini ( and his partner whose name I've forgotten. It was really fun to watch, because it was so slow, and mistakes would take seconds to be corrected.

Fran: Thanks, glad you liked it. It is fun to do for the same reason. I think we (well, it was Fred's idea) invented this pattern. We started with 8 and 3 bounces between. Here's the full description: it's a 2-count pattern with passes coming from the right and bouncing multiple times. All passes bounce at the same time. Throws from the left are selves and don't bounce; they are shower throws (1 in site swap). You don't have to be sitting, but it's easier because the passes don't have to bounce as high. This is also a nice change from doing 13 in 1-count standing--you're kind of bent over and you have to chase a lot of collisions (I mean just the occasional one ;-). We also did 12 with 5 bounces in between at Burlington. This was the first time we tried it, but it worked pretty well. Next year: 14! The passes are force-bounces. You can also do a solo bounce pattern that feels like this: multiple bounces from one hand, shower throw from the other. I think of it as a "bounce chase" pattern. Anyone know what I'm talking about? Does it have another name?

The easiest way to bounce 10 is a 1-count. It can be either synchronous or asynchronous. We do both. I like asynchronous better. Basically, it is two independent (Siamese) 5-ball bounce cascades, either in phase or half out of phase. This works pretty well for 4x+2 balls. It's a little ugly for 4x balls. This is because you have an even number on each side and one person has to throw a little higher to avoid collisions. We have had limited success with 12 this way. We do all 4 throws at the same time. A better alternative is to have one person cross and the other person throw straight. This way the crosser (Fred) just has to worry about throwing over his own pass, and not his partner's (mine). All 4 passes are still simultaneous. Also, it is closer to the odd number 1-count patterns. And Fred just likes crossing better. ;-) This method works better for us for 12. We do these as lift bounces.
Anyhow, enough for one post. Good luck! -Fran

10.0 Bounce Juggling Records

Here's the Bounce part of
                         Network Juggling Records
                         Version 15,  August 1994
                  Compiled by David Ward,

3 Ball Bounce Shower L to R         Russ Peters       12/12/91     6:10 AJA
3 Ball Bounce Shower R to L         Scott Ihrig        1/27/92     4:12 GRIN
3 Ball Lift Bounce                  Scott Ihrig        4/22/91    28:58 GRIN
3 Ball Force Bounce                 Fritz Grobe       11/27/91    20:00 BIFO
3 Ball Bounce Follow the Leader     Phillip SanMiguel  1/25/92    21:17 PUJC

4 Ball Bounce Follow the Leader     Phillip SanMiguel  1/11/92     7:09 PUJC
4 Ball Synch Lift Bounce            Arn Ward            1/3/92     4:54 PUJC
4 Ball Asynch Lift Bounce           Arn Ward            1/5/92     4:00 PUJC

5 Ball Lift Bounce                  Andy Ford          9/26/91     7:25 AJA
5 Ball Force Bounce                 Russ Peters       12/03/91     5:25 AJA
5 Ball Lift Bounce on Rolla Bolla   Fritz Grobe        2/16/91     4:00 BIFO
5 Ball Bounce Follow the Leader     Phillip SanMiguel  1/10/92     1:08 PUJC
5 Ball Lift Bounce shower (moving)  Fritz Grobe       11/27/91    25 c. BIFO
5 Ball Multiplex Bounce             David Pollock      2/28/92     3:52 GRIN

6 Ball Lift Bounce                  Russ Peters        5/05/92     1:24 AJA
6 Ball Double Bounce Splits         Terry Jones       11/27/91     0:25 BIFO
6 Ball Lift Bounce in 3 cascade     Fritz Grobe       11/27/91     0:40 BIFO
6 Ball Lift Bounce shower (moving)  Fritz Grobe       11/27/91    12 c. BIFO
6 Ball Lift Bounce on Rola Bola     Fritz Grobe       12/03/91     0:52 BIFO
6 Ball Bounce Follow the Leader     Phillip SanMiguel  1/11/92     0:30 PUJC

7 Ball Lift Bounce                  Fritz Grobe       11/26/91     0:55 BIFO
7 Ball Multiplex Lift Bounce        Terry Jones       11/27/91     0:50 BIFO
7 Ball Lift Bounce on Rola Bola     Fritz Grobe        12/3/91     0:51 BIFO

8 Ball Lift Bounce                  Fritz Grobe       11/26/91    30 c. BIFO
8 Ball Lift Bounce on Rola Bola     Fritz Grobe        12/3/91    22 c. BIFO

Bounce Passing records:

10 Ball 1-Count Lift Bounce         Andy Ford
                                    Russ Peters        8/11/92     1:01 AJA
11 Ball 1-Count Lift Bounce         Andy Ford
                                    Russ Peters        8/13/92     0:25 AJA
5 Ball 2 Person False Lift Bounce   Russ Peters
                                    George Strain      3/10/92     1:22 AJA

Bouncing at 1994 IJA Numbers Championships in Burlington:
Jay Gilligan   90 catches @ 8 ball bounce -- gold medal -- new IJA record
Fritz Grobe    36 catches @ 8 ball bounce
Jay Gilligan &
Fritz Grobe 	   64 catches @ 15 ball bounce -- gold medal -- new IJA record
	          364 catches @ 13 ball bounce
          	  872 catches @ 11 ball bounce
Fran Favorini &
Fred Strempel     52 catches @ 13 ball bounce
	          400 catches @ 11 ball bounce
There was a brief discussion on 10 ball bouncers:
I think this might be Tim Nolan. I remember seeing him bouncing 9 in Akron, which was a while ago.

I have heard of 10-ball bouncers, but can't confirm it. Certainly bouncing is easier for endurance things, since less force is involved; Pat McGuire bounced 7 for 20 minutes before deciding that he had better things to do with his life.
The record for bounce passing is 13 balls, by Fritz Grobe and Jay Gilligan; the air record is only 12. This is less significant in that so few people are into numbers ball passing. Allen K.

While we're on the subject, you can add Max Oddball to the list for bouncing 8 very reliably and working on 9. -Ab.

If there's anything that you would like to add or clarify, please send me e-mail.
Ram Prasad
Version 1.1-jis

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