Forums > Beginner Staff Moves > STAFF - backwards and forwards...the difference?

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flash fire
flash fire

Sporadically Prodigal
Location: Sydney, NSW, Australia
Member Since: 25th Jan 2001
Total posts: 2758
Posted:Below is some replies to a thread which I thought could use their own topic:

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flash fire
flash fire

Sporadically Prodigal
Location: Sydney, NSW, Australia
Member Since: 25th Jan 2001
Total posts: 2758
Posted:spritie said:ok, Charles, this is where my utter confusion comes in. I am trying to understand what you mean by FORWARDS and BACKWARDS spinning. I tried to follow your explanations with a pencil in front of me. Well, I wound up doing exactly the same motion for what you called forwards and backwards. What exactly do you mean by "away from your head"? Does this mean if I am holding the staff with my right hand with my thumb pointing up the pole and I move my thumb down and to the left? Is this what is mean by FORWARD?Similarly, what do you mean by "push the bottom half of the staff away from you feet" which you mention in the explanation of reverse? Does this mean if I am holding the staff again in my right hand with my pinky at the bottom and I move it upward and to the left (which would be the exact opposite of what I did for the forward direction)? Is this reverse? Sorry, I'm just trying to understand here - not complaining about the terminology so please don't take it that way.

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flash fire
flash fire

Sporadically Prodigal
Location: Sydney, NSW, Australia
Member Since: 25th Jan 2001
Total posts: 2758
Posted:then flash muttered:I understand your issue sprite - learning backwards was a big problem for me.the way i learned it was to really exaggerate the movements...do them really big(doing BIIIG movements with staff in right hand) when I go forwards the back of my right hand passes across my face and and down to the left.when going backwards, my fist and fingers pass across my face and down to the left.I hope that helps a little. I know everyone has different ways of learning but big movements and watching the back/front of my hand was the only way I could learn...and don't forget, if you've never done anything backwards before and have been spinning for a while, it may feel *very* unnatural to you at first.

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flash fire
flash fire

Sporadically Prodigal
Location: Sydney, NSW, Australia
Member Since: 25th Jan 2001
Total posts: 2758
Posted:then spritie came back with:ok, flash fire, now I'm really confused.I really do want to figure this out and any help is greatly appreciated. How does my hand go down and to the left in both a forward and reverse motion? I definitely understand forward, but you are right, backward is giving me problems. In what I "think" might be backwards, my pinky goes up and towards the left so that I am looking at my curled up fist, and not the back of my hand. Is this right? (i.e. my pinky makes half of a clockwise rotation) Thanks for all the help here. then flash spouted:I think you've got it. thing to remember is that the leading end of the staff is what determines forwards/backwards (I personally call backwards 'reverse')If you hold your staff upright (vertical) and lead with the top end, you are going forwards. If you lead with the bottom end, you are going backwards.I just hope I'm speaking the same language as everyone else out there! and spritie reciprocated:thanks, that helps. However, I still have problems when people refer to which end is leading. What you might call leading with the bottom, I could call leading with the top since the staff is just one piece of vertical equipment. For instance, I could lead with the top and head either to the left or to the right but this is also the same as leading with the bottom and heading towards either the right or the left respectively. I think I am just seeing things slightly differently than most of the people out there, but actually doing the same stuff. [This message has been edited by flash fire (edited 21 September 2001).]

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flash fire
flash fire

Sporadically Prodigal
Location: Sydney, NSW, Australia
Member Since: 25th Jan 2001
Total posts: 2758
Posted:then charles came out with this little gem:Hmm, I just tried it with a pencil and it didn't work, try it with something large and pole shaped, that you have to grip with your whole hand.Here's a stupidly complicated model i've tried to draw. The G is the hand and the arrows show the direction of the staff.The Q is the other hand not being used.The sad-looking head is facing to your leftThis is a really adventurous and dumb picture of the staff traveling FORWARDS, away from the head of the spinner. The head is only used as a point of reference for you to get the spinning motion right, it has nothing to do with the spin, only the wrist and hands matter with the FORWARDS.............www<---..l..../o\____HEAD......l.....\_/ facing left......l.....[ ]......GooO......l......H......l......H......l--->.H.............H.............H.........HHHIf else, this will give people a good laugh (aaargh, the post took out all of the spaces at the front of it, i had to insert all the full stops to make it even again!)------------------Ahh phooey!!!!I spent ages making a dude holding a staff with little arrows and everything and the BB deleted all the spaces i put in front of it making it look like that mess up thereDoes anyone know how to do ASCII art on this BB?And Spritie (although you may have got it now, the movement isnt left or right. Its forwards (away from your body).The top end of the staff moves away from you and the bottom part comes towards you, with your wrist ans the axis. If you do it fast without flinching, you'll hit yourself in the chin (please don't).Does that help?

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flash fire
flash fire

Sporadically Prodigal
Location: Sydney, NSW, Australia
Member Since: 25th Jan 2001
Total posts: 2758
Posted:spritie apparently looked at accurate drawing above and was compelled to say:ok. I have it now. Thanks guys. Charles, we are doing the same things, but my way of explaining it is compeletly different than yours - hence part of the confusion I think. I'm good now and thank everyone for their help and clarification. Now, just to make doubly sure that I know which is forward and which is backward. If I am holding the staff in my right hand and I spin it in the clockwise direction, I am spinning it forward (yes?, please say yes). I know we don't want to label things as CW and CCW, but that is the easiest thing I can think of at the moment since I keep messing up spinning it to the right/left and away vs. towards.thanks - I think working this all out is great and all of you are doing a wonderful job. in a melodramatic response, Charles:----<i think im going to cry>----No, sprite, no (dramatic voice quavering)The direction clockwise etc doesnt matter, what matters if if you begin the motion with the end of the staff that is closest to you thumb or closest to your pinkey...--<sniff>--I think what we have here is that I think about a "leading edge" with staff moves and you think about the spin and direction.Our approaches may be so different in the way we visualise them that it will take a lot of work by either side to understand what the other is meaning.This is the whole reason for this thread beginning, if we can a have a common language that newbies can latch onto, it'll be easier than trying to adapt to each individual's mental approach to visualisation.I'm sorry Spritie, I think we'll have to meet and physically explain it to each other. Maybe in 2003. (no im not giving up, just postponing it for a while)Anyone else is welcome to have ago.PS Spritie, i went to email the staff man looking as he did originally to you, but you don't have an enail on the system. Could you add it at some point when its ok with you?---<sniff>---

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flash fire
flash fire

Sporadically Prodigal
Location: Sydney, NSW, Australia
Member Since: 25th Jan 2001
Total posts: 2758
Posted:in comes a voice of polite reason Ade:Ok, don't know if this will help, but:When thinking about your leading end - take a ribbon and tie it on one end of your staff. Hold the staff vertical (with ribbon at top). That's your leading end for a forwards/ingle move.Hold the staff vertical with the ribbon at the bottom - now make that the leading end - and you're doing a reverse/backwards.and spritie:Does leading mean to move the staff away from your body?

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Ade
Are we there yet?
Location: australia
Member Since: 14th Mar 2001
Total posts: 1897
Posted:[copied from other thread]Leading just means the end that starts first - the end of your stick matey.

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Frenzie
member
Location: Sydney, NSW, Australia
Member Since: 30th Jan 2001
Total posts: 515
Posted:Leading is the end that does the move first, and the other end pretty much follows its path.So with the forward move, the top of the staff (if u start with it vertical) would lead and the bottom end would follow. Try it and see if you follow. Once you see how the ends "follow" each other.Try the opposite end taking the lead and starting first, which will lead the to the backwards move.

- Industrial design knows of no article more useful than the milk crate -

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spritie
spritie

Pooh-Bah
Location: Galveston, TX
Member Since: 9th Sep 2001
Total posts: 2014
Posted:My problem is that I see the top end leading in both instances. I understand the motion of forward and backward (and the follow pattern as well). The way I see things is that you can make either end lead if you just look at it differently - which is what I seem to be doing from everyone else. I'm just trying to figure out which one is actually forward and which one is being called backward.

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flash fire
flash fire

Sporadically Prodigal
Location: Sydney, NSW, Australia
Member Since: 25th Jan 2001
Total posts: 2758
Posted:like my dad said to me once with regards to mathematics:"sarah, you don't need to understand it - just *know* it"perhaps you're looking to deep into it spritie? I guess what I'm saying is that so long as you know what we're talking about and you are able to do it, then it doesn't really matter if you are able to look at it in a few different ways
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lucky you for having greater perspectives!!
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DJ Dantana
veteran
Location: Stillwater, Ok. USA
Member Since: 15th Aug 2001
Total posts: 1495
Posted:Oh hell, you guys got ME confused and I know the difference... HAH HAH HAH!!! Some body needs to be officialy bitch slapped.... starting with myself...can any body help me do that??? No realy, I think part of the confussion comes from the fact that a staff can't really have one end leading, as they are both part of the same object....to even try to think about it in any other way makes my brain hurt. I think the nifty picture of the guy twirling the staff (ABOVE) shows a forward spin, holding staff in left hand you would see a clockwise spin when you look left.If I am wrong, somebody please reach out through this thread and slap me. But I think I am correct, and this is the best diagram I have seen, HECK...It is the ONLY diagram I have seen. Good job Charles

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DJ Dantana
veteran
Location: Stillwater, Ok. USA
Member Since: 15th Aug 2001
Total posts: 1495
Posted:to further clarify for the benifit of the audience. In this example the staff will not complete a full rotation, but it will suffice I hope.FORWARD SPIN- holding the staff in your right hand, with your right arm sticking strait out to the side, you will see the staff doing a counter-clockwise (anti-clockwise) spin. If you move the staff to the left side of your body while still spinning it, looking to the left you will see a clockwise spin. In all of this, a person standing in front of you will only see a staff grow longer and shorter. While a person standing to the side of you will see a staff spinning in a circle.hope this helps.

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vanize
vanize

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: Austin, Texas
Member Since: 21st Aug 2001
Total posts: 3899
Posted:Ok, as the person who actually taught Spritie to do the staff, I have to come to her defense and say that I'm a bit bewildered too, even though I think I get it. but I don't think that staff really lends itself to descriptions of "forwards" and "backwards" as easily as poi does. And the main problem I think is this. It is easy to define forward and backward with poi when you are doing the butterfly or weave, but what is forward and backward when you do the windmill or chasing the sun? I think you can't say. With staff, you are essentially doing windmill all the time, so in a sense there is no forward or backward as there is with poi. Now there are CW and CCW windmills, but this definition needs a reference to either the viewpoint of the spinner or an observer, which are going to be mirror images of each other if they face each other. For convention sake, I would default to the observers point of view. But evidently for some reason you all have decided against this sort of convention. Perhaps for good reason, perhaps not, but I'm not going to hunt it down right now.Another problem Spritie is having I think is that her hand grip on the staff is different than many others I've seen (including mine). So trying to tell her how her hand is going to look in forwards vs. reverse is not going to help. Actually, I should just keep my big nose out of this and let you staffers hash this out on your own, but I think you are having definition problems because you haven't agreed on a set and self consistant ways to start defining from. As a scientist, I see this problem all the time - even though, as scientist, we are supposed to do eactly that - agree on definitions. Don't make too much fun of Spritie (I know it can be awefully easy to do so some times though) - she is smarter than your average person, and most above average people too. While she may be easily confused by this discussion, perhaps it is an indicator that a little more thought needs to be put into this before you stick the world with confusing nomanclature.

-v-

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spritie
spritie

Pooh-Bah
Location: Galveston, TX
Member Since: 9th Sep 2001
Total posts: 2014
Posted:Thanks santanatwo. That did help. But is that really what Charles is calling FORWARD though? If it is great (and I will remember it as such) but I had somehow managed to convince myself that what you said is forward is actually what he is calling backward. At least, that is what "I" got out of his diagram - which I also thought was great.

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Charles
Charles

Corporate Circus Arts Entertainer
Location: Auckland
Member Since: 27th Jun 2001
Total posts: 3989
Posted:--------------------------------------------------------------------------------Thank you Vanice, it is good to get a little history and background.And thank you for reiterating my earlier point, that Spritie & myself have completely different ways of thinking about the staff. I had honestly and openly said that in an earlier post.The forwards/backwards train of thought (seems) is very common amongst most staffers I've met (NOT ALL). This way of thinking in critical in the way we perceive our moves and we become just as perplexed when someone else describes things to us without using the forwards/backwards model.In summary, I only think of one half of the staff when visualizing moves, the other half just follows. i might well be holding a sword that stops at my hand and doesnt have another end. Whereas (i think) yourself, spritie and a few others think of the toal spin or both ends at the same time, ana mazing feat that I don't feel I'm capable of doing!This is the whole reason for this thread, to attempt a common language so this becomes less of a problem, and so we can have more staff discussions on HoP for the benfit of all.Unfortunately, there is no way we can accommodate every single person's wishes and I will have to be draconian every now and then and just choose. Also, as far as I can tell, no-one has been "hard" or insulting to Spritie, if they had, I would have considered talking to them and maybe altering their post afterwards...Maybe my --<im gonna cry>-- was perceived as an attack if so, I apologise. It was merely an expression of my feeling at the time (as we are all allowed to do), but if you (or Spritie) wish, I'll happily delete that comment from my post.Thank you for your input and please keep looking and posting in the staff threads to come...------------------Charles (INFERNO)newdolbel@hotmail.comhttp://juggling.co.nzPS, Ade, your ribbon idea is great, perhaps colouring one half of the staff one colour and the other half another may be an even better option.[This message has been edited by Charles (edited 24 September 2001).]

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Frenzie
member
Location: Sydney, NSW, Australia
Member Since: 30th Jan 2001
Total posts: 515
Posted:I guess i learnt forwards and backwards in front of my body, rather than to the side, so it really did go forwards or backwards in the sense that we discuss here.------------------Frenzie - Industrial design knows of no article more useful than the milk crate -http://wickeffect.cjb.net**Updates to page coming shortly**

- Industrial design knows of no article more useful than the milk crate -

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Posted:ok - a staff has two ends the same. So you get confused if you are thinking that they are the same.imagine instead you learned how to swing a sword first. it has a point, and a leading end / edge.NOw swing your staff from a grip 3/4 of the way to the bottom (the top extending away from the index finger side of your hand). this *long* end is the leading end.Now even if you are holding the staff in the middle can you still imagine that end is the leading end? Thats what we are talking about.If you now swing it pinky first you are swnging it in reverse.You can feel the difference between doing figure eights pinky first or thumb / index first?well thumb / index first (leading) is fwds.the other way is reverse, and pinky first.Surely this is simple enough?Josh

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jedimastah
member
Location: Round Rock TX , US
Member Since: 18th Aug 2001
Total posts: 97
Posted:Here is a little diferent way of looking at it.Just spin your staff like you normally do.If you are looking at your staff comming up towards your head then you are spinning backwards.If the staff is going down towards your feet then you are going forward.

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Charles
Charles

Corporate Circus Arts Entertainer
Location: Auckland
Member Since: 27th Jun 2001
Total posts: 3989
Posted:Josh, it is simple enough to people like yourself and me who know what we are talking about. We visualise the staff move in a particular way and some others simply don't see it that way.Also be aware that others may well have a different move to what we call a FORWARD FIGURE 8, if so, then we will get confused when they explain their way.For me, it is the closed wrist action that defines a FORWARDS/BACKWARDS move, and if people use their wrist differently, we need to accept them anyway.It's simple to us but maybe not simple to others (personally, the idea of thinking about both ends at the same time makes me think they are the smarter ones, I sure as H*** can't do it!)Jedimaster - You seem to be forgetting that "coming towards" only makes sense to those of us who think FORWARDS/BACKWARDS in the first place. If you don't think this way to begin with, towards and away mean the same thing, but with different ends of the staff.Confusing huh?------------------Charles (INFERNO)newdolbel@hotmail.comhttp://juggling.co.nz

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Posted:It makes it hard to describe - we need ppl who can speak both languages.Also - this would be nothing to consider, if we all had decent webcams
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oh well
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I think I think of things in terms of leading edge / end due to my Martial Arts background. perhaps ppl there are ppl out there who twirl staves that have never thought of hitting anything with a tip (requires thinking in terms of leading end)gonna be a shitter to get communication lines uncrossed if ppl dont talk the same language.Josh


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