In competition, judges reward correct fundamentals of both juggling and twirling with Olympic flash card scores from 0-10 points. Seven judges moderate
the top events, with fewer used in preliminary and age level events. The USTA(U.S. Twirling Association) divides competitors into five levels of proficiency
- Fair, average, good, excellent and superior.
Each level has been divided into ten areas of focus:
-Three baton basics - intricacy of routine, releases, receptions, major and minor twirl classifications.
-Number of batons in the air at once.
-Aerial height - how low, medium and high tosses create contrast and rhythm. Most routines require a 45-foot ceiling!
-Collections - how gathering batons for a new move is affected by strength, control, placement and timing.
-Basic twirling techniques - followthrough, pattern, baton revolution.
-Ambidexterity. Combinations of baton and body movement.
-Dual pattern - the combination of vertical and horizontal patterns.
-Dual plane and tri plane (toss to the front, side and back in the same move).
-Dual direction - use of spinning batons in both directions to achieve greater artistic expression.
At the "fair" level, athletes will do basic three baton material. Juggling
maneuvers will include:
-Vertical pendulums (tosses in a cascade pattern in a plane parallel to the body)
-Crescents (one hand makes inside tosses, the other makes outside tosses)
-Box showers (making shower tosses as the twirler tosses to front, side, back, and side)
-Time tosses (crescents with a right-hand thumb toss and left hand backhand release)
-One hand juggles (using only one hand to toss and catch two or three batons), and
-Flat showers (shower turning to the left in a circle)
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