The Kendama Forum

Forum categories => Tricks => Topic started by: br4d24 on 23 February, 2013, 00:11:27

Title: Practice Ideas
Post by: br4d24 on 23 February, 2013, 00:11:27
Hello everyone! I play kendama a ton and am progressing at an alright pace, but i would like to get some ideas for practicing and possibly helping myself progress at a quicker pace (if possible). This forum is the closest thing i have to actually jamming with other players (for now), so i dont get the opportunity to watch others in person and exchange ideas and tips :(

I made a little video in the park the other day... im no pro (only 1 month of playing so far) but maybe you guys can see if anything im doing could use some tweaking; because im sure there are tons of things i could do better! Also, what kind of tricks could i use to make combos longer? Possibly some grip switching tricks like big cup throw lighthouse. I specifically would like to learn some tricks allowing for a stylish transition from ken to sarah and visa versa.

Kendama Kelowna: A Day in the Park (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bCI2hOBL0y8#ws)
Title: Re: Practice Ideas
Post by: The Void on 24 February, 2013, 14:55:54
You're doing just fine for a month's play. Good work.
Instead of answering your "what kind of tricks"-type questions (which you should really be able to have a go at answering for yourself, having watched other videos[1]), instead I'm going to throw this lot at you:

Practise ideas:
-Think outside the (toy) box!
-"What would a tennis player do with a kendama?"
-"What happens if I do this trick in the other direction?"
-Pick 2 tricks at random. Now work out a transition between them. Now do 3.
-"How does jazz relate to kendama play?"
-Seen a trick that you think is "too hard for me"? Try it anyway. When it doesn't work, consider in what way it didn't work. Then try again paying attention to that element of the trick. Maybe that trick is still beyond you - okay, fair enough, but think about that element and how you can apply it to an easier trick, perhaps, or make an easier version of that element.
-That song lyric you're listening to… can you apply it to kendama in any way?
-"How would Humphrey Bogart do this?"
-Pick an easy trick. Now find 10 different ways to do it. Any slight differences! Close one eye, without using your ring finger, leaning against a wall… anything, just do it! Right... now which one of those 10 was the most interesting, and how can you develop on that?
-"What would happen if I tried this trick on a roundabout?"
-"How many different ways can I deliberately do this trick wrongly?": You're bound to find that at least one of them will make you think "Ah! But that means that I could…."
-"What skills can I take from skateboarding/hockey/saxophone/dancing/mime/frisbee/hacksack/juggling/cloudspotting/geocaching/etc/etc/etc and how can I apply them to kendama?"
-"How come everyone does this trick like this, and no-one does it like that?"
-Where's Wally?
-What would Charles Dickens think of kendama?
-Have you read this thread? http://www.kendama.co.uk/forum/index.php/topic,52.0.html (http://www.kendama.co.uk/forum/index.php/topic,52.0.html)
-What would an alien think a kendama is for?
-"Where's the weirdest/coolest/ugliest/stupidest place I can play kendama?"
-What does a kendama think?

Yes, yes, some of that lot is quite stupid, but you never know where the next great kendama idea is coming from. It's a whole clicking world, have fun EXPLORING!
 1. I don't mean that as a personal criticism, I just mean that in a way those are "ordinary" questions. (perhaps that makes no sense - sorry!)
Title: Re: Practice Ideas
Post by: Cliffdama on 25 February, 2013, 19:55:21
Ty for the great tips void! I will also try to do those things :D

Wat i do alot to warm up is "jam" al little with some music on. Follow the beat, spike , catch, orbit etc etc and all of that just on the beat. If i do this than i sometimes do a strange move and land it. It makes me feel "good" and harder things seem to be easyer after a jam session ^^. It's a bit hard to explain so i hope you get it haha.
Title: Re: Practice Ideas
Post by: shalafi on 01 March, 2013, 14:31:41
-What does a kendama think?

This is interesting, I think it depends on the Kendama, some are smarter than others, some are old and experinced, some are young and wild.
Title: Re: Practice Ideas
Post by: br4d24 on 01 March, 2013, 22:31:26
Ty for the great tips void! I will also try to do those things :D

Wat i do alot to warm up is "jam" al little with some music on. Follow the beat, spike , catch, orbit etc etc and all of that just on the beat. If i do this than i sometimes do a strange move and land it. It makes me feel "good" and harder things seem to be easyer after a jam session ^^. It's a bit hard to explain so i hope you get it haha.
Agreed! I find I feed off the energy from the tunes when i dama!

But aside from these awesome tips provided by The Void, I would still really like to have a list of tricks that I could use to switch grips yah know. For example:

Big cup fast hand = ken to tama grip
Spacewalk airplane = ken to tama grip
Spacewalk handroll = Ken to tama to ken grip
1/2 kenflip = ken to secret? grip?
You can also do a partial kenflip to candle grip as well.

The only way i have found i can switch from pen to ken grip is after spiking, throwing it in the air and catching it quickly without the tama leaving the spike. I wish there were other ways i could go about doing this, or go from ken to pen grip. I have sat and thought about it but i can seem to find an aesthetically pleasing way to do it yet. Having a good trick/tricks that i can research would help tremendously.

I know other dama players would really appreciate this as well, im pretty sure ive seen other threads on here requesting the same info.
Title: Re: Practice Ideas
Post by: Yoda on 19 March, 2013, 19:54:09
You have to infect your friends with kendama! I brought kendama to school in october and after some time ~10 guys from my class bought kendamas :D Few of them got bored but most of them still play  8) We jam during breaks every day.
Title: Re: Practice Ideas
Post by: kuroo on 20 March, 2013, 07:03:21
Hello everyone! I play kendama a ton and am progressing at an alright pace, but i would like to get some ideas for practicing and possibly helping myself progress at a quicker pace (if possible). This forum is the closest thing i have to actually jamming with other players (for now), so i dont get the opportunity to watch others in person and exchange ideas and tips :(

I made a little video in the park the other day... im no pro (only 1 month of playing so far) but maybe you guys can see if anything im doing could use some tweaking; because im sure there are tons of things i could do better! Also, what kind of tricks could i use to make combos longer? Possibly some grip switching tricks like big cup throw lighthouse. I specifically would like to learn some tricks allowing for a stylish transition from ken to sarah and visa versa.

Kendama Kelowna: A Day in the Park (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bCI2hOBL0y8#ws)
You've made some pretty amazing progress for only having played a month. Very nice job!

I've got one small tip to contribute to this thread for now, and it's for anyone, not just you personally: 
When you're progressing from one trick to a more difficult one, make up an intermediary trick to get down first. 
This would be a more basic trick that is part way there, part of the next one, but not all the way. 
Get part(s) of the trick down first, and this helps you get the whole thing faster. 

For example, when first learning Around Japan, you could split it into a few parts, making up simpler tricks that are portions of the larger one that you can challenge yourself to get down first. With this approach, you can master the more complex trick a lot faster. For one, you may simply try juggling the ball between the small cup and the big cup, back and forth like moshi kame.  That would be one intermediary trick.  Another may be simply catching the ball with the hole facing you, as instructed at Kendama Tutorial - 08 Around Japan - juggling videos hosted @ Juggling.tv (http://juggling.tv/12898#id=http://juggling.tv/nuevo/econfig.php?key=5c6046d12de9cb4033d5) Once you can do this, and you can juggle between the small cup and the big cup, you can practice juggling with the hole in the proper position at the given moment.  Finally, if you can do that you can likely complete the trick and spike it after the big cup.  So, in this example, you would have split Around Japan into 3 simpler tricks, practiced those, then tied them all together. 1) big cup - small cup juggle, 2) controlled catch 3) controlled juggle.  Similarly, for around the world, one intermediary trick you might try is to juggle between the small cup, big cup, and base cup, big cup, and repeat over and over.

This method can also be applied to simpler tricks as well.  As the BKA Tutorial DVD suggests, to practice the Spike, you first need to be able to pull the ball straight up with minimal rotation so that the hole can be straight down in order to spike it.  So, you may first just try to pull it up straight and catch it at the apex to see if the hole is in the right position.  I realize this isn't as exciting as the Spike itself, but it can help you Spike faster.  Another example may be for the Swing-In.  Here, you know when you're supposed to tug when the ball is swinging, and you may decide that for now you'd be happy if the ball just ended up in the right spot.  So, you begin by training yourself to pull in at the elbow of the arc of the trajectory of the ball with just enough force to bring it where it needs to be for you to catch it.  So, you'd do this in such a way that you can at least get the ball to hit the spike in the right place, then worry about catching it later.  (Suprise--you'll probably catch it 'on accident' anyways!) For an Aeroplane, you may start by just getting the spike to come back to the ball in such a way that lets it hit it, and focus on staying calm and controlled.  For a Lighthouse, you might begin by trying to simply pull the kendama straight up the same way that you have to pull the ball straight up when you do a Spike.  Then, you may simply try to get the entire base cup of the kendama to land on the ball at the right height, with the kendama straight.  You could also just put the kendama on the ball, then see how long you can balance it and how much control you can demonstrate.  Then, put it all together.  All you've got left is to absorb the catch.       

br4d24, I realize that personally, you're past the point of the above examples due to your phenomenal rate of progress.  Still, I'm sure you can imagine how you may apply the idea to any trick you're trying to get down.  For any trick you're trying to learn, just

1) Split the trick up into crucial parts,
2) Consider those parts 'tricks' themselves (and practice them like they are), then
3) Combine the parts into the entire trick once you've mastered them.


Split-Practice-Combine. To any more of you kendamaddicts out there, feel free to share any 'intermediary' tricks you've invented for any tricks with all of us.  Your fellow kendama friends will appreciate it and make good use of them :)

Good luck everyone!
Title: Re: Practice Ideas
Post by: BKA on 20 March, 2013, 13:11:20
Good stuff. We'd agree with all of that except
.... catching the ball with the string straight up so that the hole is straight down, as it needs to be when you finally spike it.
That is the position at the moment of the final spike catch, but NOT the position you want on the cup catch before the final spike. See Around Japan video (http://www.kendama.co.uk/forum/index.php/topic,905.msg6394.html#msg6394) tutorial.

Edit: Ah, you've amended your post. Cool.  :)
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