Al's Slide is a three ball
pattern established by
that bares some resemblance to Columns, except that one of the balls in the
synchronous pair is caught at its peak, while the other is allowed to
descend. A third ball is then thrown underneath the synchronous balls in a
Cascade-like manner. When performed properly, Al's Slide is a fairly
graceful pattern, with the midair catch flowing naturally from the throwing
motion preceding it.
To begin learning Al's Slide, start with one ball in each
hand. Position your hands so that your dominant hand is at the outside of
your body, while your non-dominant hand is roughly at the center.
Simultaneously make a throw from each hand such that the balls travel across
your body toward the opposite side. Now comes the tricky part. As you make
the throws, continue the motion of your dominant hand such that it follows
the ball thrown from the center by your non-dominant hand. Once that ball
reaches its peak, catch it (but do not claw catch it), and then
lower your dominant hand and bring it back to the dominant side of your
body. As your dominant hand is being lowered, you are going to catch the
ball originally thrown by your dominant hand with your non-dominant hand.
As shown, practice this on both sides. To add in the third
ball, start with two balls in your non-dominant hand and one ball in your
dominant hand. Make the two simultaneous throws and then use your dominant
hand to catch the outside ball at its peak (this is all from step one). As
the other ball begins to descend toward your non-dominant hand, make a
Cascade throw from the center of your body using your non-dominant hand.
This will clear space for your non-dominant hand to catch the other ball. By
this point your dominant hand should be returning to its original position
along the dominant side of your body, where it will catch the third ball.
As shown, practice this on both sides. You have just
completed one full cycle of Al's Slide. Intuitively, you might be able to
easily figure out how the cycles connect together, in which case you are
finished with this tutorial. If you can't however, here is one more step to
practice. Start by juggling the same throws shown above, but instead of
simply catching the last ball with your dominant hand (which previously had
caught the outside synchronous ball midair), you are going to make a second
set of synchronous throws, with your dominant hand now in the center and
your non-dominant hand on the outside (the opposite configuration from when
they started). Catch the balls with whatever hand feels most comfortable,
since it is only the throws that are significant in this case.
Once again, practice this on both sides as shown in the
animation. Notice that the second pair of synchronous throws sets you up for
a new cycle of the pattern on the opposite side if your body. To run the
full Al's Slide, simply perform a midair catch on the outside ball and then
make another Cascade throw with your other hand. By this point you should
begin recognizing the pattern and be able to continue it from memory. Al's
Slide is a fairly simple pattern, but will take some practice to make smooth
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