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Forums > Advanced Poi Moves > multi prop pros and cons...

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bluecat


bluecat

geek, level 1
Location: everywhere

Total posts: 5300
Posted:just got thinking after a post of Sui's over on tribe...

why do i do so many different things? and what benefits do i get from it, and what negative aspects are there...

background info:

i spin poi, staff, juggle (5 clubs, 7 balls, neither particularly solidly at the mo), contact juggle, balance, and talk shite, all to performance level. i also do a load of other things to an ok level - hackysack, trombone (though i do get paid for that too....) bits of hula, devilstick, diabolo (learning 2), capoeira...

now there are some really obvious benefits to doing so much. but why aren't i like on of those sensible people who dedicates time and becomes really good at just one two things?? take ronan, for example. he can contact juggle, but have you ever seen him pick up anything that wasn't a contact ball, a poi or two, or a spliff? no. and look where that has got him.

the reason i do so much stuff has to be partly nature, partly nurture. firstly, i have and had no television growing up. and my family is very artistic, so i was forced (not in a bad way) to find ways of amusing myself, and doing physical stuff.

thing 2: it took e until i was 16 to get any kind of sticking power - most school stuff was too easy (sounds bigheaded, sorry, but its not meant like that - there're plenty of things i'm crap at, but the scottish school system is not on eof them) so i never had to work hard at anything. I learnt to juggle when i was 12, but my brother was better than me so i didn't do anything about it until i was 20. D'oh!. anyway, the point of that is that when i did get it, i got it with a vengeance - if you could do it well, i was going to do it as well as i could.

thing3: i like patterns. and limiting yourself to just one prop means soooo many patterns are left untouched! ubbcrying i couldn't let that happen.

4 - i juggled first. for most people this would exclude them from developing the spinning gene ubblol but thanks to thing 3, i not only wanted to learn them, i wanted to learn them ALL, but with the same analytical mindset that jugglers have.

5 - i hang out at conventions a lot, with a lot of people, and perform a lot, with whatever people want. i quickly realised that hanging out was more fun if you could swap tricks, whatever pprop, earning money performing was much easier if you could say "door frame balancing? sure, i have a 4 minute routine with a door frame smile "

so, there you have it....

the pros?

well, first and foremost, i must know thousands of manipulators accross the world accross many traditional prop boundaries. ubblove

the money earned through having the variety is nice - my door frame act is now my biggest seller. wink

the ability to cross over toys and tricks and movements. yum - i must have borrowed thousands upon thousands of tricks accross from one prop to another - big suns into poi, antispin into diabolo, hybrids into clubswinging, swinging into juggling, balances fromcontact into everythings... wow.

the lack of boredom - if its just not my day with poi; well, there's always something else. biggrin

the negatives... frown

hmmm. surprisingly large number here:

i have to carry a huge amount of props anywhere i go, just to make sure i have the one that works for me right now

I sometimes spend a whole day flitting between props, never settling into one, never connecting with the people at a meet because i'm just leaping about from contact to juggling to poi and so on. this is really crap when it happens...

i feel left behind. i'll never be a world class juggler, so its ok there, but i like to think i can spin ok redface so when i turn up at a meet and i've been spinning stick for 3 months, and everyone is doing mad dancy poi hybrids with one head making an infinity and the other an inverted trifoil i feel a bit silly. and usually do some negative space to make myself feel better ubblol equally i feel the same about staff when i spend a lot of time on poi. and then within a prop itself - i've been juggling staffs and making tasty patterns, but i can't do ANY complicated 1 staff contact any more. ARGH!!!!! this is good for my ego, but not for my sense of encyclopaedia or general skillz...

just as i feel i'm getting good at something i get switched on to something else - either through boredom, or more usually through inspiration. this happens even more so when i'm performing a prop heavily. can be exceptionally frustrating. especially when it links back to the previous negative...

some people are singleprop friends only. so if i'm at a convention, and i happen to be mostly juggling, i tend not to see a lot of the people i'd like to because they are all in a corner geeking out over trammels. not that i don't talk to them, just that i spend less time than i would like with them, cause my motor sense has gone juggling.




i'm sure i could think of more, but i want to leave it open for others to as well.

Single proppers - are you happy? why haven't you been tempted by other props? do you find it helps keep focus? anything i should know about? tongue

multi proppers - do you regret/love it? why. why did you start progressing through props. what benefits/negatives would you draw from spreading your load, as it were? wink

smiles

Rob


Holistic Spinner (I hope)

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UCOF
SILVER Member since Apr 2002

UCOF

Carpal \'Tunnel


Total posts: 15414
Posted:I love being multi prop(er innit an' ting'?) as it means I shall never be bored again. Also, general hand eye co-ordination gets greatly improved rather than playing with just one ting' (and stuff too).



However, like you said - we have to carry so many props around it's no longer funny. Just a pain in the ass.





I started progressing through props, mainly due to boredom.. getting stoned.. and having other toys around me... also the fact of having so many cool friends doing so many cool things helped lots too.

The ability of being able to turn to any of my friends at any point and say "hey, teach me something cool and easy with this here <insert prop of choice here>" that greatly helped too.





Id much rather be a jack of all trades.. well.... Id actually prefer to be a master of all trades, but as that isnt allowed, I'll settle for being a jack of all trades, master of none biggrin


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fake teeth and glue
BRONZE Member since Aug 2003

fake teeth and glue

Checking who's online, watching you!
Location: somewhere

Total posts: 1972
Posted:the good thing about being a multpropper:

well for one (as you said) you never get bored, you put down one thing, turn around and trip over another and then incorporate that into a "routine" ubbrollsmile

you can find a prop anywhere, as you can use so many diffferent things, eliminating some of the need to carry everything around.

oh and because its really cool, and rad biggrin

weavesmileymeditatejuggle


you just lost the game!!!!!! !!!!!

knowledge is power, power corupts, study hard, become evil.

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DaG
GOLD Member since Jun 2005

DaG

Golf buggie driving instructor
Location: Brisvegas

Total posts: 156
Posted:I find that different props open up different movements.
Its really interesting to me to find myself transferring tricks and movements. like small doubles that I'm learning now, poi had helped a heap with the movements and timing and it works both ways as now i am better able to isolate my antispin points with poi because i have a different understanding of the movement.

same is true of devilstick and contact staff and the little i have played with contact ball has influenced isolations with all props.




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Durbs
BRONZE Member since Sep 2001

Durbs

Classically British
Location: Epsom, Surrey, England

Total posts: 5688
Posted: Written by: bluecat


i feel left behind. i'll never be a world class juggler, so its ok there, but i like to think i can spin ok redface so when i turn up at a meet and i've been spinning stick for 3 months, and everyone is doing mad dancy poi hybrids with one head making an infinity and the other an inverted trifoil i feel a bit silly. and usually do some negative space to make myself feel better ubblol equally i feel the same about staff when i spend a lot of time on poi. and then within a prop itself - i've been juggling staffs and making tasty patterns, but i can't do ANY complicated 1 staff contact any more. ARGH!!!!! this is good for my ego, but not for my sense of encyclopaedia or general skillz...

just as i feel i'm getting good at something i get switched on to something else - either through boredom, or more usually through inspiration. this happens even more so when i'm performing a prop heavily. can be exceptionally frustrating. especially when it links back to the previous negative...




To quote Meat Loaf - "You took the words right out of my mouth, it must have been while..." oh wait, that'll do wink


Burner of Toast
Spinner of poi
Slacker of enormous magnitude

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E_a_g_l_e


newbie


Total posts: 14
Posted:My opinion? Juggling is a juggling. I'm a multi propper and in my vision it's the best way of develloping: you can add some nice throws with poi if you juggle with clubs; you can use a contact ball moves in ball juggling; juggling with the devistick; swinging moves with the clubs taken from the poi.

1) Hey, man! Yeah, you! Support me %)
2) Sorry for my ****ing english.


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Spanner
BRONZE Member since Feb 2003

Spanner

remembers when it was all fields round here
Location: in the works... somewhere...

Total posts: 2790
Posted: Written by: bluecat



the reason i do so much stuff has to be partly nature, partly nurture. firstly, i have and had no television growing up. and my family is very artistic, so i was forced (not in a bad way) to find ways of amusing myself, and doing physical stuff.







Interesting...

Conversely, I had unlimited access to television while growing up and my family isn't particularly artistic (I'm the only one of us to learn a musical instrument, do an arts degree etc.).



I probably have my parents to thank for forcing me to find ways of amusing myself mostly thanks to their sheer negligence biggrin as I was "allowed" (left) to roam freely both home and abroad from rather early ages.

I loved school and did every extra curricular activity available afterwards to avoid going home, so I do wish I'd juggled/spun then as I'd probably be pretty uber by now.

As it stands, maybe it's no coincidence that, as much I appreciate the people who now look after me very well, I don't seem to be learning very much at all biggrin



The effects of this are that still not being used to being encouraged/taught by anyone even vaguely close to me, plus being rather shy, tend to equal minimal spinning/learning in "public".

This means that although I have various poi, juggling balls, a basic diabolo etc. and the will to learn, but during my rare spins with others, I might find myself able to learn a trick per day of a weekend on one prop but can then go for months without learning anything on any.

Not having gone through that usual learning curve though, I tend not to think in terms of the classic props and having concentrated on looking at it all, for example, from behind the prop of still/video camera instead, can make for some pretty unorthodox ideas about what's possible through object manipulation by mixing them all up a bit.



Anyway, on that note, luckily, whether you're great or guff at one prop or 10, it seems to be the props of cups of tea and/or spliffs which are the great social equaliser of this community - name me someone who hasn't dropped one of them wink


"I thought you are man, but
you are nice woman.

yay,

:R"

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Richee
BRONZE Member since Jan 2002

HOP librarian
Location: Prague

Total posts: 1841
Posted:SINGLE PROP

Are you happy?
-----------------------

Yes.

But, I want say ever next level of experience
is harder, but more enlighting.

I meen this is think about 'I've nothing new
to learn. What can I do?'..

Then the over-going of this is the step fur-
ther.

Why haven't you been tempted by other props?
--------------------------------------------------------------------------

I'was, but they are just source of influx.

I meen, I can contact, staff, diabolo,
devilstick, club, ball, ring,

(I can't hula-hoop, ARRGH!)

But only the basic and that count too.


Do you find it helps keep focus?
-------------------------------------------------

Good question..

But depends of the point of focus.


Anything i should know about?
--------------------------------------------------

TECH IS BACK! ubblol

PRO:
-----

-One love.
-Everything around.
-Fact that, still I do Po.

CON:
-----

-Less contact with people than before.
-Damn hard to find new move.
-Po / Work balance.

------------------------------------------------

Back to do something...

@echo off,

:R


POI THEO(R)IST

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bluecat


bluecat

geek, level 1
Location: everywhere

Total posts: 5300
Posted:ROFLMAO

my Po/Work balance is also not bad.

ubblol


Holistic Spinner (I hope)

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animatEd
BRONZE Member since Aug 2004

animatEd

1 + 1 = 3
Location: Bristol UK

Total posts: 3540
Posted:Hello wave

I'm a multipropper.

I'm also a mental.


Empty your mind. Be formless, Shapeless, like Water.
Put Water into a cup, it becomes the cup, put water into a bottle, it becomes the bottle, put water into a teapot, it becomes the teapot.
Water can flow, or it can Crash.
Be Water My Friend.

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Gnor
BRONZE Member since Mar 2003

Gnor

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: Perth

Total posts: 5814
Posted:Not just multiprop but multiple multi. Two or three of each type. There is no such thing as too many sets of poi. Is there?

Is it the Truth?
Is it Fair to all concerned?
Will it build Goodwill and Better Friendships?
Will it be Beneficial to all concerned?

Im in a lonely battle with the world with a fish to match the chip on my shoulder. Gnu in Binnu in a cnu

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mcp
PLATINUM Member since May 2003

mcp

Flying Water Muppet
Location: Edin-borrow.

Total posts: 5276
Posted:don't talk daft LTC, you might be a multipopper, but you only really manipulate one prop, your own body.

"the now legendary" - Kaskade
"the still legendary" - Kaskade

I spunked in my friend's aquarium and the fish ate it. I love all fish. Especially the pink ones. They are my bitches. - Anon.

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oli
SILVER Member since Jul 2003

not with cactus
Location: bristol/ southern eastern devo...

Total posts: 2052
Posted:i span poi for ages and never did anything else, then i learned to juggle (my main motivation for doing this is because i wanted to get better at throwing my poi..) im still a pretty [censored] juggler, but i like the challenge, and spend probably more time juggling than spinning these days... id like to get into diablolo at some point, that is probably gonna be my next mission, i like the way it looks...
so i geuss im not a real multi propper but not a single propper either. the main thing is i still have loads of fun ! smile


Me train running low on soul coal
They push+pull tactics are driving me loco
They shouldn't do that no no no

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Mr_Joe
BRONZE Member since Mar 2017

Mr_Joe

Part-time genius


Total posts: 59
Posted:I do a bit of most things. I find it's quite damaging to my progress at specific things, but good for finding crossovers and new ways to look at other props.

I've been doing diabolo since I was knee-high, but spinning and juggling are new weapons in my arsenal really. My girlfriend introduced me to poi, then I explored staff on my own and got into contact through Meg's tutorials, then I learnt to juggle 'cause I thought it might help every else then moved from balls to clubs and so on. Oooooh and I got a devilstick over the festive season, which I'm improving slowly at.

However much I love all this stuff I find I only ever make meaningful progress when I forsake my other toys and focus on one. Now I don't mean I won't pick up my clubs at all if I'm working on my poi (like at the moment) but there's no way in hell I can be learning new stuff on both at the same time...


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fake teeth and glue
BRONZE Member since Aug 2003

fake teeth and glue

Checking who's online, watching you!
Location: somewhere

Total posts: 1972
Posted:i find learning new stuff on different props at the same time helps as it gives my brain a rest concentrating on something different for a while, especially if something is really bugging me and i'm thinking too much, after a short while of something different i have cleared my mind of what i was doing and it seems simpler, if that makes sence smile

you just lost the game!!!!!! !!!!!

knowledge is power, power corupts, study hard, become evil.

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BurdaA
SILVER Member since Jul 2007

BurdaA

Sacrebleu
Location: At the quiet limit

Total posts: 377
Posted:I mostly spin poi... mostly. But own a variety of other stuff for when my mind wanders. The only other thing I'd consider myself competent with is my contact ball. Quite often I'll fancy something different, but ultimately my hands begin to itch and my eyes drift towards my poi, and then the whispers start.

Ropedart next..
..or fans..
...or.......


Poi(poi~y) n. : A Hawaiian food made from the tuber of the taro that is cooked, pounded to a paste, and fermented.
- part owner of Wooktastic

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fake teeth and glue
BRONZE Member since Aug 2003

fake teeth and glue

Checking who's online, watching you!
Location: somewhere

Total posts: 1972
Posted:yes it's the whispers that get you first, then the visions! *_*

you just lost the game!!!!!! !!!!!

knowledge is power, power corupts, study hard, become evil.

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E_a_g_l_e


newbie


Total posts: 14
Posted: Written by: mcp


you only really manipulate one prop, your own body.



You can call this topic "multi styles of body manipulations" =)

In fact, yeah. Every move with every prop gives you an experience of manipulations with any object. So you can juggle with clubs to be better with poi ubbloco


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animatEd
BRONZE Member since Aug 2004

animatEd

1 + 1 = 3
Location: Bristol UK

Total posts: 3540
Posted:Meg, I don't gettit.

do you mean I am more of a dancer than a manipulator?

or did you mistake the word propper for popper?

Anyhows. I play with pretty much any prop I can get my hands on.

I have OCD. One prop isn't enough for me. I need to play with things, make shapes, STRAIGHT lines, arrange things in pretty patterns. geometry. symmetry. I need things just so, in certain places. I need to feel in control, and by manipulating/spinning/juggling, I am in complete control.


Empty your mind. Be formless, Shapeless, like Water.
Put Water into a cup, it becomes the cup, put water into a bottle, it becomes the bottle, put water into a teapot, it becomes the teapot.
Water can flow, or it can Crash.
Be Water My Friend.

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Pyrolific
BRONZE Member since Jan 2001

Returning to a unique state of Equilibrium
Location: Adelaide, South Australia

Total posts: 3289
Posted:yeah I can totally identify with you bluecat! smile

and yeah - carrying around all the toys is the main concern for me. I have a demanding job (not performing) and so I know I'll never have the time to be really really good at even one prop - but I'm happy in my own world developing under my own steam in my own directions and having stacks of mates all over the world who make me go wow when I see em do their thing.

Josh


--
Help! My personality got stuck in this signature machine and I cant get it out!

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-sandy-
BRONZE Member since Jul 2004

-sandy-

old hand
Location: Bristol

Total posts: 716
Posted:Im also a multi-proper, this kinda happened by accident and there have been times when i've thought i really should put more time into say,staff because im putting all my effort into clubs atm. I've decided to take a more long term look at things though, if i work on lots of stuff bit at a time in 10 years ill be good at everything! (i hope)
Anyway, just one prop isnt enough to satisfy my seemingly inexhustible apetite to fiddle and play with stuff anymore.
Also, going professional has meant that i've needed to be more adaptable to what clients want, i didn't originally want to learn to club juggle but there is such a demand for it that i kinda had to, and once i started i got into it just as much as everything else, so no bad thing really.


"Don't do it naked!"

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UCOF
SILVER Member since Apr 2002

UCOF

Carpal \'Tunnel


Total posts: 15414
Posted: Written by: Josh

carrying around all the toys is the main concern for me. I have a demanding job (not performing) and so I know I'll never have the time to be really really good at even one prop - but I'm happy in my own world developing under my own steam in my own directions and having stacks of mates all over the world who make me go wow when I see em do their thing.



Bingo biggrin


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_khan_
SILVER Member since Nov 2004

_khan_

old hand
Location: San Francisco, California, USA

Total posts: 768
Posted:I play with three things, so I guess technically I'm a multi-propper, but not to the same extent as others here are. I've often pondered this topic myself, so I'm glad this thread got started.



Poi, contact ball and hoop are what I do. No regrets, except sometimes when I see an exceptional poi spinner I think to myself "I bet I could be doing that if it wasn't for all the hours I've spent hooping instead..." And so on for all the toys I play with. These thoughts are not helpful in any way.



My main problem now is frustration at not having enough time to practice everything as much as I want, but I can't say I regret picking up any of these toys, they're all so much fun. But hoop is the one I'm feeling most, so that's where my main focus has been lately.



I thought it would be cool as a performer to be able to do many things, but since my performance interest and ambitions have waned, full-on mastery of something is seeming more appealing, yet the thought of dropping any one of the toys I play with just makes me sad.


taken out of context i must seem so strange
~ ani di franco

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onewheeldave
GOLD Member since Aug 2002

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: sheffield

Total posts: 3252
Posted: Written by: bluecat




i spin poi, staff, juggle (5 clubs, 7 balls, neither particularly solidly at the mo), contact juggle, balance, and talk shite, all to performance level. i also do a load of other things to an ok level - hackysack, trombone (though i do get paid for that too....) bits of hula, devilstick, diabolo (learning 2), capoeira...




I'm pretty much the same, though not quite to your level of skill.

3 balls, 5 balls, contact, a bit of clubs, poi, meteors,unicycle, diabolo, 2 diabolo, 2 devil sticks (in the past),plus non-juggle stuff like flute, didj, guitar etc



 Written by: bluecat


the negatives... frown

hmmm. surprisingly large number here:

i have to carry a huge amount of props anywhere i go, just to make sure i have the one that works for me right now




This, for me, is probably the biggest negative- I really like the philosophy of travelling light, but generally end up lugging loads of stuff around, most of which, in hindsight, wasn't necessary, but, then again, there's been times when I something behind and then wished I hadn't.

(incidently, a big reason I never got into staff work, is cos, unlike poi, balls,meteors etc) a staff won't fit into a rucksack.



My approach is to do loads of things to a moderate level of skill, but also focus hard on a couple and learn to do them really well- kind of the best of both worlds.

A couple of decades back, when I started getting inot this stuff, I spent a lot of time on 3 balls (stage balls) and used to be known as '3-ball-dave'.

Recently I've decided to get back to my roots and make 3 balls a bit of a priority again.

It's led to an interesting conflict with the minimalist philosophy, as there's that part of me which would like to think that I can have a really small amount of stuff, yet it'll enable a lifetime of development and practice.

So, the ideal would be to have 5 balls suitable for both 5 ball work and 3 ball work.

However, one of the things which first got me inspired about 3 balls was aquiring a set of stage balls- from them on, doing 3 with beanbags just felt wrong- you can do all the moves, but beanbags just felt a bit 'lifeless' in comparison.

Yet, althouth stage balls are feasible for doing 5 with (and beneficial, as they force you to be more precise), they're totally impractical if, for example,you're juggling while waiting for a bus,or in a public area where balls rolling on the ground are a hazard.

So, that means a set of 3 stage balls, plus a set of 5 beanbags- which lacks that minimalistic element.

(Then of course, one of the stage balls will double as a contact ball.. but... it's not quite as good as a heavier acrylic..so add another to the bag and, before you know it, your rucksack looks like something you'd take on a ten day camping expidition and you're wondering 'what the hell have I got in there'... smile)

I'm rambling aren't I?

Essentially, it'd be cool to have one set of balls for everything- but it's not possible.







 Written by: bluecat


multi proppers - do you regret/love it? why. why did you start progressing through props. what benefits/negatives would you draw from spreading your load, as it were? wink

smiles

Rob



Benefits are, that the more different stuff you learn, the more you start to understand, not the process of learning the specific single skills, but understand the process of learning itself. The more you master that, the more you can apply it to anything

You develop the confidence that you can look at a skill and, instead of wasting time thinking 'I wish I could do that, or 'I'll never be able to learn that'- you go in with the sure and certain knowledge that, if you apply yourself, it's only a matter of time before you'll have got the basics of it down.


"You can't outrun Death forever.
But you can make the Bastard work for it."

--MAJOR KORGO KORGAR,
"Last of The Lancers"
AFC 32


Educate your self in the Hazards of Fire Breathing STAY SAFE!

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Hypnotic
GOLD Member since Feb 2006

Member
Location: Charlotte, NC

Total posts: 44
Posted:I agree with Khan about the practicing. If you have 4 toys to practice with over the course of an hour, that leaves 15min per toy. Enough time to keep your skill solid, but I find it tends to take about 20-30 min-ish to really get into a creative channel.

It frustrates me not to be as good as I want to be with everything I like (swords, staff, devils). Im now narrowing my practice to poi for awhile. Not that I still dont multi prop. I put 75% ish of my time on poi most days. Multi prop & prop combination at other times. All that i use goes toward poi and allows me to transfer what I learn to all the props, like a circle (twin (small) hoop and dbl staff).

Used in the right combination multi proping can strengthen your main prop.

In my mind the only REAL con is if you unbalancely practice, in which case you will learn alot a first but never progress to the heights that you want.

The main pro is using the right combinations can help make all 3 processes strong.

Then say a year or two down the road move into another say triangle but make sure to keep the ones you love close to your heart.


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16.15.8
GOLD Member since Jul 2005

16.15.8

I cant think therefore Im not
Location: In my backpack

Total posts: 291
Posted:Nice thread I must say!

I use two things, a contactball and a pair of poi.

And haven`t I tried more things? Interesting question and I guess it`s because when I wanna try other things it`s beacause im stuck in my poi, I cant get any further. And this is where many people go on to something else. And I dont mean that as a bad thing, probably the other way around cos im so stubborn that I stay with my poi and refuse to open my eyes for something else. But on the other hand, when I finally finds an exit from where iv bin stuck I feel so happy and my knowledge keeps improving and you reach a level when people ask for your help and that makes me feel good.
I never had a big knowledge about anything and now I have poi and I feel so good when I can help people. Yes it`s ridiculus that I feel good about helping people that has problem with there poi. Help people that really needs help instead is what people tell me when I say this. But I love what I do, can`t you let me be happy about this and enjoy the happy faces I see when teaching people?

Now I just writing without any idea of what im writing about but I let it be as wrote it.

So way do I use a big shiny contactball? Two reasons:

* It`s so easy to travel with and I can practice on a buss, on a small space or anywhere where I can have a ball in my hand. That you can surerly not do with poi smile

*it improves my bodycontroll alot and the fine differences between a body position and another.


"I dont like shoes, definitely not spinning with shoes, they make my feet feel flat, my feet are not flat...."

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squid
BRONZE Member since Mar 2017

squid

sanguine
Location: sur

Total posts: 382
Posted:For being a realm of balancing objects, its ironic how hard it is to balance using different tools. I can only consider myself dabbling in contact ball. Its an excellent travel tool and for focusing on my own body (where the ball rests, how my joints must rotate to continue balancing, ect).

That, in turn, has helped me immensely with my contact staff work, in exercises like palmspins, head spins, fishtails, angel rolls, and so many moves where I am trying to increase the rotation to a continuous kind of move (like jesus, and simple continuous halos) But, I dont think I would have ever picked up fishtails if it hadnt been for my flowersticks.

however, my staff work has never really been explored beyond that. It and contact ball have kind of been used as ways to help each other. They have, though, been useful in letting me distract my head from compex poi patterns that sometimes frustrate me.

When I play with contact moves like wibbles or when I move into experiments in negative space and the like, I find a connection to what I've learned in contact ball and it encourages me to try and practice the other and learn more.

Im with Richee in that I love focusing on my poi, but reaching those milestones and breakthroughs are coming less and less. Until I manage to actually comprehend the text of Alien Jon and others regarding the "poi code", I feel like I simply struggle slowly through the more complex poi techniques. Not that it isn't fun. I absolutely love it.

So, while I have multiple props, I only really consider myself a single prop user.

Pros:
-when it comes to travel (and travelling light) poi takes priority and life becomes simple.
-each of the other tools has definitely had an impact and influence on me being able to progress on the others.
-I feel my poi work has reached a more mature level that I couldnt have reached if I hadn't started experimenting with how different types of props are used and manipulated. (hybrids are much easier when understanding antispin staff thorougly)

Cons:
-sure I would love to do more staff, but until an expensive breakdown staff becomes feasible for me, it always gets left behind

-just because I focus on one prop doesnt mean I dont have a problem deciding on what tools to take: 2 sets of flags, 4 very different sets of poi, and 2 fire poi sets make the bag get bulky enough. Toss in an acrylic and one stage ball or lacrosse ball and things get silly. You start removing things from your bag like cameras, socks, and toothpaste just to fit that last set of tools.

-because practicing poi is the top concern, I havent felt like my staff work has progressed far enough, nor will I be likely to start working on short doubles anytime soon.


"to a man whose only tool is a hammer, the whole world looks like a nail." Abraham Maslow

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16.15.8
GOLD Member since Jul 2005

16.15.8

I cant think therefore Im not
Location: In my backpack

Total posts: 291
Posted:ditto Well written dude!

"I dont like shoes, definitely not spinning with shoes, they make my feet feel flat, my feet are not flat...."

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Pele
BRONZE Member since Dec 2000

Pele

the henna lady
Location: WNY, USA

Total posts: 6193
Posted:Jane of all trades here as well.



I have always come at this from a very different point of view. I was a performer first and was looking to expand my repetoire of skills (not toy specific). For me it was more of finding ways to cross the lines of "circus", "sideshow", dance and storytelling using the various skills, never to be the biggest, baddest or best but to make it fit with what I already do. Therefore, my list of pro's and con's will be directly related to that.





Cons of multi-prop for me:



-I too have found that transporting props is more problematic than it is for my friends who only juggle or only play fiddle, for example. Even a simple day out never really is.

-I have also found, like others, that I don't progress with single objects as fast. There are the odd moments where I look at someone and sigh wistfully, but in the end I am ok with it as long as I can work what I can do into the presentation I want.

-Not as cost effective, personally. If I were only into poi, let's say, then I am sure I wouldn't have spent as much money as I have on the various props I have purchased or have made.

-More props means more costume adjustments. Odd to think of, but alot of props I can't do fully in my skirts, so I had to adjust my costume to look like a skirt but be pants. Devil sticks in my bodice is easier than poi in it, for example.



The pro's for me:

- More is more markettable. I know that we've been hired for gigs over a friend who specializes in balloon twisting, for example. The more diverse we are across the board, the more we are able to book.

-Cross over. I have found that diversification has allowed me easier cross over into other props, even dance props such as melayaa (a kind of heavy, large veil) or cane have been influenced by my work with poi or staff, and the reverse, to be sure.

-Not bored. Yeah, I agree.

-I agree that it has also opened alot of personal relationships for me compared to those that I know who specialize. But, even beyond that, we have been approached by different people after shows who each liked a different element. I even see it with my son and his friends. One loves the staff and another the poi, but the neighbor girl who is terrified of staff and poi thinks devil sticks are more fun. We are able to cultivate relationships of budding interest with more people I think.



I can see the benefits and draw-backs of both specialization and diversification.



I have never regretted my choice to diversify. I love to learn. Through these tools I've learned alot about cultures, history and people and it seems the more I take on, the more I learn and the happier I am.



Beyond my shows, I also seem to think that my a.d.d. plays into my wanting to more stuff up, as well as my constant need for challenge. I get bored, or inspired, or...oooh look, Shiney!

biggrin





*editted for spelling

EDITED_BY: Pele (1209646388)


Pele
Higher, higher burning fire...making music like a choir
"Oooh look! A pub!" -exclaimed after recovering from a stupid fall
"And for the decadence of art, nothing beats a roaring fire." -TMK

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willworkforfoodjnr
SILVER Member since Aug 2007

willworkforfoodjnr

Hunting robot foxes
Location: Huddersfield, West Yorkshire

Total posts: 1046
Posted:I do a bit of everything too.

I started out juggling 3 balls, and was only interested in finding as many complex "rave" style patterns as I could. Did this for a couple of years and then moved onto 4+ balls and more traditional style juggling.

About the same time my friend was getting heavily into single staff but I was starting to get too obsessed with contact ball (especially in 3 ball juggling) tricks to really notice. I'd played briefly with poi, decided it was for sissy girls (i.e. I couldn't do it and really didn't want to smash my balls again) and left it alone.

Then comes double staff. In the last 18 months I've been playing with sticks more than any other prop, I love the body movement aspects, I can dance with it like I can dance with 3 balls, but it has a totally different effect.

I definitely didn't intend to play with lots of props. In fact I never intended to learn 4 balls to begin with, I wanted to be "the Best 3 Ball Juggler In The World (tm)". But I'm incredibly glad I have done. I love how movements and effects transfer between different toys, staying the same yet completely different.

Its even allowed me to do a little poi, although my style is a bit strange - easy spin stuff mixed with silly throws, whip catches etc

Its all a journey though isn't it? At the moment I feel like I've found the grail - staff juggling. I started out only wanting to juggle 3 objects, went on a journey and somehow ended up finding the ultimate 3 object juggling prop, its all happened just as it was supposed to.

It is pretty awkward with the transport I agree! I carry 4 staves and 7 balls around with me normally. If I'm going out for a full day in the park I need to add 7 clubs, a contact ball, sock poi, and of course 6 litres of juice, not easy to carry!

Um, I had a point I was heading towards but now I've forgotten it, hmmmmmm. I might add it later if my brain wakes up... confused


Working hard to be a wandering hippie layabout. Ten years down, five to go!

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Kusanagi


newbie
Location: Canada

Total posts: 23
Posted: Written by :bluecat

Single proppers - are you happy? why haven't you been tempted by other props? do you find it helps keep focus? anything i should know about?



I gotta say that your post is very timely in my case because stumbling upon this site has thrown all doors wide open to an entirely new world.

To answer your questions:
-Yes I am happy. I use poi and poi variations like poi flags and flow lights as well as the occasional glowsticking (although not in true raver form: I attach the glowstick to a weighted poi, otherwise I end up bleeding *g*)

-I hadn't been tempted by other props mostly through lack of exposure. I discovered poi by accident and I needed to get into upper body exercise in a major way. It looked fun, so it was easy to get into it. That being said, I'm doing the newbie thing here and I read about all those other props and it looks like so much fun. (And quite honestly, it feels a wee bit intimidating. People here are really smart, what with poi geometry and trinity stuff and all those complicated combo-hybrid moves... I feel like I know NOTHING. redface ) I might get into staff or juggling. I don't know... Maybe fans. Or maybe voi (veil+poi) bc I'd like to get into bellydancing.

-I really don't know about the focus thing, to be honest. I got into poi for exercise and I ended up doing a lot of dancing with it. (Not really performance stuff, just for my own backyard self-expression wink ) The flags I added because I wanted to spin slowly while learning a couple of things and I liked the visual of a slow moving flag coupled with the flow of a slower song (like Pink Floyd "Learning to Fly" or something more... I dunno, lyrical? like Queensryche "Silent Lucidity") To me it's about the whole thing and how it works together, not necessarily THE focus. I find that if I can get it all to work together, often times it will lead me to learning something new or "creating" a new combo. (I put the word in quotes bc after going through a few of the posts here, I'm pretty sure I wouldn't invent anything in my backyard that hasn't already been invented, sliced, diced and put back together backwards by a few of the geniuses running around here. LOL)

Things you should know? You probably know this already, but I think it boils down to your priorities and what makes you feel good. If performance bookings and meeting a lot of people is what is important to you, then by all means stick with your many props and get yourself a trolley for all the props. If you'd rather get really good at a few things, see if you can part with a few props.

Although, I think that in your hearts of hearts, you already know the answer. I get this feeling that you would be absolutely unable to part with (or put away, whatever) some of your props because they are an integral part of who you are at this point in time (or at the very least that's how you come across to me, like a very social and gregarious person). And if it' the case, then you have your answer, right?

ANyhoo, sorry for the long-windedness and thanks for geting me thinking. Enjoy your props,


Duct tape is like the Force: it has a light side, a dark side, and it hold the universe together.

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