The art of juggling is the oldest of the disciplines of circus. But its origin goes back to times much older, thus of the frescos of old Egypt sometimes represent juggler women such as for example at the time of religious ceremonies dedicated to the Pharaons. The Aztec have made sculptures representing of people juggling with the hands but also with the feet (antipodists). In the East, the chamanes and the priests used juggling to predict the future, to explore the unknown and to draw aside the danger. In occident, the juggler was used to animate the festivities, it was comparable to the troubadours and to the buffoons. As former French "jogler" wants to tell to have fun (of Latin "joculari", to joke, to jest). Still today, the primitive cultures of all the continents perpetuate this habit.
In the Seventies, to the United States juggling is descended in the street, this same phenomenon occurred in Europe a few years later; currently it became a true art of living while following the movement "new age". Many demonstrations in particular the circus spectacles or the theatres of street propose shows of juggling; a list of the principal spectacles in Midi-Pyrenees area (France) is proposed to you here.
One of the reasons of the popularity of juggling surely resides in the fact that to juggle is a ludic activity. But is also to learn how to control its body, to concentrate while thus making it possible to release its spirit of any concern or contrariety; 1 hour of juggling training is worth largely a session of meditation.
Juggling is not a discipline reserved for an elite (we've been too often simple witness of circus' artists), there are obviously various levels of difficulty, but to juggle in cascade with 3 balls is not more difficult than to ride bike.
Let us speak a little more technical, juggling gathers mainly several disciplines:
- the "toss" juggling, while using balls, bludgeons, caps, rings or any other purpose (the " Deluca sisters " juggled with balls of gun!
- the "contact" juggling in which the purpose used (ball) is handled using various parts of the body (hands, arm, nape of the neck, face etc. whole while preserving a permanent contact,
- the "gyroscopic" juggling, the such for example dinner plates, the twin wheel, the stick of the devil or the Yo-yo,
- the "balancing" juggling, where the juggler try to maintain in unstable equilibrium, one or more objects (knives, balls, pole ...) on different parts of his body (forehead, nape, foot ...)
- less spread, juggling with the feet (antipodism) or juggling with the mouth (table tennis balls).
Each one of these disciplines has its own very specific techniques, moreover it quite rare to find a juggler excelling in several of them. The number of jugglers, the combination of these disciplines make it possible to create infinities of possibilities which make juggling an activity completely opened with the innovation and the creativity.
Juggling has also its international federation (IJA), which regularly organizes meetings (called conventions) between jugglers; the objective being for the participants of various nationalities to share their passion in a festif and user-friendly atmosphere, but also without competition (juggling remains a ludic discipline with exchange between people). Thus in 1999 Grenoble accomodated more than 3000 followers; like all conventions, this one ended in a "big toss up" (final toss where all the participants juggle at the same time).
To put to you in appetite : click here to see some animated tricks, and here to see some video juggling-clips, the beginners will not be forgotten.