the Passing DataBase

As in Kaskade 59, we are just the three of us ... and the song remains the same: what can we do with approximately 9 clubs?

This passing workshop is devoted to a few feed passing patterns with 8, 9 and 10 objects. They are all derived from actual regular practice sessions down here in Paris, in some dark and - this being written in winter - poorly heated room. Although these patterns are relatively rarely seen in the gyms, I believe them to be both interesting and useful for practising more standard patterns.
You will perhaps appreciate that all the proposed patterns can be juggled under a fairly low ceiling as they contain only single-spin throws (syncopations notwithstanding).

In all the patterns, the jugglers are denoted by J1, J2, J3. The feeder is J2 and the feedees are J1 and J3 .
In the triangle feed position, feedee J1 is the feedee on the right, from the feeder's viewpoint..

All patterns are illustrated (and summed up) by causal diagrams. The feeder J2 stands on the middle line, feedee J1 is above on the first line, and feedee J3 is below on the third line. The causal diagram also contains implicitely the starting position: each hand at the beginning of the diagram starts the pattern with 2 clubs, the other hands start the pattern with 1 club.

Eight-clubs feeds

Say you are three passing partners but you only have eight clubs. Do you desperately need to borrow an additional club?? No! Just as it is possible for two passers to have fun with 5 clubs, see the article on 5-clubs ultimate in Kaskade 56, there exist 8-clubs feeds that are both interesting and enjoyable. Alternatively, you may consider practicing these patterns as warm-up exercises before more serious stuff, or ... as chill-out sessions after some furious number passing.

Eight clubs fast/slow ultimate/ultimate feed

Everybody juggles an ultimate pattern: no selfs, only passes. But the feeder and the feedees follow different rhythms.

The feeder - on the middle line, in the diagram above - is on the fast side: he (or she, of course) juggles on a standard ultimate rhythm and makes only outside passes along the sequence: Cross, Cross, Straight, Straight, or in other words: R to J1R, L to J3L, R to J1L, L to J3R.

The feedees are on the slow side: they juggle twice slower than the feeder, as if doing one side of the 2-passers 5-clubs ultimate pattern on a rather quiet pace. This huge amount of time for the feedees between the passes can (must?) be put to good use to insert and improvise fancy variations: flourishes, pirouettes, additional throws such as Self+Handacross between passes, box variations: passing with the "wrong" hand while simultaneaously freeing the "correct" hand with a handacross, ...

Starting position: The feeder has 2 clubs in each hand, the feedees have 1 club in each hand.

Siteswap description: < (- , -) (2 , 3p2x) (- , -) (3p2 , 2) | (- , 3p1x) (3p3x , -) (- , 3p1) (3p3 , -) | (2 , 3p2) (- , -) (3p2x , 2) (- , -) >

Eight-clubs slow/fast ultimate/4-count feed

A reasonably simple pattern and a very nice one to watch. In this pattern, the usual triangle position of the jugglers is stretched to a straight line, the feeder J2 stands in the middle with J1 on his right.

The first feedee J1 is doing 4-count right-handed while the second feedee J3 is doing 4-count left-handed out of phase with J1, meaning that J3 will start throwing passes 2 beats after J1.

The feeder is now on the slow side of the pattern and he makes only passes on a very slow pace, but he will do them behind the back or under the arms for more fun and visual effect.

(Don't be abashed by the backwards going arrows, they simply mean that the feeder's hands remain empty for one beat after he has passed.)

The sequence of passes for the feeder is as follows: 1. throw behind the back with left and catch with the right, 2. pause, 3. throw behind the back with right and catch with the left, 4. pause.

Notice that the rest beats of the feeder allow him to indulge in fancy swinging movements between the catching and throwing positions. Also, the feeder might turn a half-pirouette now and then, resulting in normal outside passes and catches (try it, it really isn't difficult).

Needless to say, the feedees can try to throw all their usual 4-count tricks ...

Starting position: The feeder has 1 club in each hand, feedee J1 has 2 clubs in the right and 1 in the left, feedee J3 has 2 clubs in the left hand and 1 in the right.

Variation: Both feedees pass with the right hand making life for the feeder (slightly) more difficult.

Siteswap description: < (- , 3p2) (3 , -) (- , 3) (3 , -) | (3p1x, -) (0 , 1x) (- , 3p3x) (1x , 0) | (3 , -) (- , 3) (3p2 , -) (- , 3) >

Nine-clubs feeds

The nine-clubs shower feed is certainly the most popular passing pattern for 3 jugglers, be they beginners or advanced. And for good reasons: it really is a wonderful pattern! The only drawback of the shower feed is that it is strictly right-handed ... In my opinion, a passing session cannot be complete and really fulfilling without a few ambidextrous patterns. Come on: bring some relief to your left shoulder and give them a try!

Changing roles in the Nine-clubs PPS feed

The nine-clubs PPS feed has been already addressed in Kaskade 59. Here I would only like to mention that it is both feasible and entertaining to change roles on the fly in this pattern now and then.

One feedee wants to move to the feeder's side, making the other feedee the new feeder. How does it work?

One solution goes like this:
Assume that J3 , the feedee on the left of the feeder J2 , is also the "second" feedee, i.e. the feedee who receives the _second_ pass of the feeder. Now, J3 wants to move to J2's side, making J1 the new feeder, he will do this as follows: on his right hand pass beat, J3 begins to walk towards his new position on the (left) side of J2, catches the incoming club in the left hand, while still walking and turning leftwards in order to face J1, and throws the club back to J1 on his normal left hand pass beat.

So the entire move lasts for 3 beats. During this period J3 can either stop throwing selfs (and therefore manage 2 clubs in the left hand for a short while) or keep on juggling normally, throwing his two selfs (I find it easier this way).
Naturally, the ex-feeder J2 will have to stop passing to J3 : he will shift from PPS to PSS without transition.
While J1, the new feeder, will have to convert his first self into a pass to J3, shifting from PSS to PPS without transition.

The sequence of throws is summed up in the causal diagram:

Try it! Hilarity and drops guaranteed on first tries!

Remarks:
With every switch the hand order of the feeder's passes is exchanged: in the example
above from (RO = right outside, etc ...) RO LO LI RI   to   RI LI LO RO .
Oddly enough, if the "first" feedee wants to move, the transition is less natural. See by yourself!

Siteswap description: < 3p2 3 3 3p2 3 3 3p2 3p3 3 3p2 3p3 3 |
3p1 3p3 3 3p1 3p3 3 3p1 3 3 3p1 3 3 |
3 3p2 3 3 3p2 3 3 3p1 3 3 3p1 3 >

Nine-clubs PPH/3-count feed

An advanced 9-clubs pattern perhaps, since it is a little bit fast. What happens here is that the feeder will do Pass Pass Handacross while the feedees will follow a 3-count rhythm Pass Self Self. What? Pass Pass Handacross instead of Pass Pass Self!? How can it be?? Let us look at the causal diagram:

(the backwards going arrows represent the handacrosses)

Notice three points from the causal diagram:
- from the throw positions, one sees that the pattern is staggered: the feedees' passes are done half a beat after the feeder's
- from the lenghts of the arrows, the (single spin) passes must he higher than the selfs
- finally, note that the feeder's passes are straight while the feedees make crossing passes.

Starting position: The feeder and feedee J1 have 2 clubs in the right hand and 1 in the left, feedee J3 has 2 clubs in the left hand and 1 in the right. Each feedee waits for the feeder's pass to be thrown to him before replying by a pass.

Variation: The feeder makes crossing passes and the feedees make straight passes.

Siteswap description: feedees J1 and J3 delayed by half a beat
< 3.5p2x 3 3 | 3.5p1 3.5p3 1 | 3 3.5p2x 3 >

Nine clubs ultimate feed

A nice pattern, and quite doable if the feeder feels comfortable with 6 clubs ultimate. The feeder always makes inside straight passes. J1 showers left-handed and J3 showers right-handed.

Starting position: The feeder and feedee J3 have 2 clubs in the right hand and 1 in the left, feedee J1 has 2 clubs in the left hand and 1 in the right.

Variation 1: The feeder makes outside passes.
Variation 2: Both feedees pass with the right hand.

Siteswap description: < 3 3p2 | 3p3 3p1 | 3p2 3 >

Nine clubs Alan's Anguish

This pattern is similar to the Eight clubs fast/slow ultimate/ultimate feed examined previously: everybody juggles an ultimate pattern: no selfs, only passes ; but the feeder and the feedees follow different rhythms.
The feeder - on the middle line, in the diagram above - is on the fast side: he juggles on a standard ultimate rhythm and makes only inside passes along the sequence: Cross, Cross, Straight, Straight, starting with J3 on the left, in other words: R to J3R, L to J1L, R to J3L, L to J1R.
The feedees are on the slow side: they juggle twice slower than the feeder, as if doing one side of the 2-passers 5-clubs ultimate pattern on a rather quiet pace. Once you manage to get a reasonably stable pattern, the feedees can try to use the huge amount of time between the passes to insert and improvise fancy variations as in the 8 clubs version. Note that the feedees always pass to the closest feeder's hand, namely J2R for J1 and J2L for J3 .

The pattern differs from the 8 clubs versions in two respects however: the pattern is now staggered and the single spin passes should be higher than usual (say, as in 7 shower in singles). Also ... it is much more difficult!

Starting position: The feeder has 3 clubs in the right hand and 2 clubs in the left, the feedees have 1 club in each hand. Each feedee waits as long as possible before passing back to the feeder.

Siteswap description: feedees J1 and J3 delayed by half a beat
< (2 , 3.5p2x) (- , -) (3.5p2 , 2) (- , -) | (- , 3.5p3x) (3.5p1x , -) (- , 3.5p3) (3.5p1 , -) |
(- , -) (2 , 3.5p2) (- , -) (3.5p2x , 2) >

Ten clubs feeds

A few (low-ceiling) 10-clubs patterns to finish off this passing session.

Ten clubs ultimate feed

A logical follow-up of the 9-clubs ultimate feed ... but actually a completely different pattern! (and also a much more difficult one)

The feeder juggles a (relatively fast) ultimate pattern with outside straight passes. J1 showers right-handed while J3 showers leftt-handed. Both feedees throw crossing passes. The passes of all the jugglers should be high and lofty, and in any case, they should be higher than the selfs of the feedees.

Notice that the causal diagram is divided in 2 independent parts: each hand of the feeder passes 5 clubs with a different feedee (so that each feedee passes back to the hand that feeds him). You can also readily see that the pattern is staggered: the passes of the jugglers alternate along the sequence J2 J1 J2 J3 . The relative lenghts of the arrows clearly indicate that all passes should be higher than the selfs of the feedees.

Starting position: The feeder has 2 clubs in each hand, feedee J1 has 2 clubs in the right hand and 1 club in the left hand, feedee J3 has 2 clubs in the left and 1 in the right. Each feedee waits for the feeder's pass to be thrown to him before replying by a pass.

Remark: This pattern is also know as the gorilla pattern. Guess why!
Tip for the feeder: practice each hand separately (i.e. with only one feedee).
Variation 1: The feeder's hands pass simultaneously. This is what sometimes happens naturally after a while anyway.
Variation 2: The feeder makes outside crossing passes (and the feedees pass straight). I personnaly find this version easier than the true "gorilla".
Variation 3: Both feedees pass with the right hand

Siteswap description: feedees J1 and J3 delayed by half a beat
< 3.5p2x 3 | 3.5p1 3.5p3 | 3 3.5p2x >

Ten clubs shower singles feed

The ten clubs shower feed in doubles is very popular. Surprisingly, the single spin version is almost never seen.

The feeder will essentially do one side of 7-clubs shower in singles ... but with two partners instead of only one. This means that he will juggle on a slightly galopped rhythm, the selfs following quickly the passes, with selfs higher than usual and actually as high as the passes. For the feedees, they have to make lofty single passes to the same height as the feeder's, and certainly higher than the selfs ; moreover the feedees might be slightly galopped as well, the first self quickly following the pass.
The pattern is staggered: the feeder passes first to J1 who will wait as long as possible before passing back, then the feeder passes to J3 who in turn waits before replying.

A remark about the rhythm: in actual practice, the pattern is not as much galopped as the causal diagram suggests ; in order to even the rhythm, most jugglers will keep the clubs in their left hands for a longer time than they keep them in their right hands.

There is a collision problem here between the feeder's pass to J3 (on the left) and the incoming pass of J1: make sure that J1's passes are long and high enough.

Starting position: The feeder has 2 clubs in each hand, each feedee has 2 clubs in the right hand and 1 club in the left. Each feedee waits for the feeder's pass to be thrown to him before replying by a pass.

Variation: Switch back and forth from the the standard double spin version of the pattern to this single spin version.

Remark: In case of a drop, the pattern will rapidly settle down to a standard 9-clubs shower feed. It is possible to kick up the dropped club back into the pattern as follows: move the club on your right foot, then, on your (last - if you are a feedee) self beat, throw a lofty single pass with the left hand while simultaneously kicking up the dropped club to your right hand. Everybody will feel quite hurried for a few throws. Good luck!

Siteswap description: too tedious ;-)

Ten clubs sync shower feed

The last pattern is really advanced for the feeder. Essentially, he will do one side of 8-clubs shower in singles, passing a lofty single with the right hand while simultaneously throwing a same height single self from the left hand.

Both feedees juggle a right-handed shower pattern with passes and selfs as high as the feeder's (they should try to juggle as sloooow as possible ...).

(For clarity, the feeder J2 now occupies the _two_ middle lines of the causal diagram)Note that the pattern is not staggered: the feeder and the feedees pass simultaneously to each other.

Starting position: The feeder has 2 clubs in each hand, the feedees both have 2 clubs in the right hand and 1 club in the left hand.

Siteswap description: < (- , 3p2) (3 , -) | (3* , 3p1*) (3* , 3p3*) | (3 , -) (- , 3p2) >