Bad habits when you perform...?

Jul 13, 2009
Edmonton, Canada
I was wondering if you guyz have any bad habits that you are not aware of at the time you perform a trick, like, maybe saying a line a lot of times or moving a lot while you perform or whatever ... What are your bad habits ?

Me for example, when i don't want the spec. to look at my deck or any sneaky move, i make eye contact with them and when they look back, i ask "Do you still remember your card ? " , nothing wrong with that but when i think back i realize that i said it over 15 times :eek: ....
May 8, 2008
Cumbria, UK
Ugh, if I have someone name a random card and need to find it or retrieve it subtly, my 'stalling for time' line involves looking at them and saying "So any particular reason why you named that card? Is it just random or..." whilst desperately fumbling with my hands. It usually works, but makes me wince thinking about it.
Apr 25, 2009
Yorktown, VA
I think I talk to much, and lose the effect that silence has on magic. I have noticed that a lot of professionals do this, and it is hard to find that balance between good patter and just too much patter.
Aug 20, 2008
I ay too much 'yea', 'right?' and 'umm' .

I riffle the deck and do too much little flourishes .

May 10, 2010
My body language sometimes gives myself away during tricks. Like how I tend to subconciously position my arm way too far behind when I'm palming a card. My brain probably wants to hide it, but I guess when that happened earlier today my trick didn't go well at all. Looks like people tend to take note of these small stuff.


Elite Member
Sep 13, 2008
Looks like people tend to take note of these small stuff.

Hence why the phrase, "be natural" exists.

My biggest bad habit used to be the sort of bouncing around from foot to foot, swaying back and forth. It's combination of my knees always hurting and my nerves. I've noticed that lately I don't do it, though.

It's hard to explain, but I think my bad habit is the way I talk. I just haven't gotten comfortable with mating the script to the actions, so it feels disjointed to me, like I start at the wrong time or as an afterthought.
Nov 20, 2007
Sydney, Australia
Maybe it's the script? I know that sometimes I come up with scripts that read brilliantly, then I actually go to say it, and it just flails in mediocrity because it's just not something I say and sounds hollow... It's always hard getting used to saying precise things at precise times as well. There's one instance I can think of where I say "Could you please count your cards onto the table" - and it takes a lot of conscious effort to not say "deal out" or "count down" or "count your cards, onto the table"...
Apr 5, 2009
i dribble and spring my cards a lot. i don't really notice it in performance. but in practice or whenever i'm filming something. it goes something like this


EDIT: wait! add in riffle every 3rd verb
Last edited by a moderator:
May 2, 2010
New York, New York
Any overhand shuffle that required a certain run of cards or overhand stacking. I was guilty of moving my lips when counting. still trying to get rid of that.

Also staring at my hands. Very bad
Narrating what I'm doing has always been my weekness I strive to keep it at bay as much as possible but it's definetly not an easy thing to do for me it comes from my need to be in control when I'm performing and sometimes I just need to follow my instinct and let the magic happen. Good question!

Apr 1, 2009
I occasionally miss steps that could potentially make the effect stronger. such as for Out Of This World, I've forgotten to let the spectator shuffle first a few times (Dunn Deal). Or I forget a count. A few times I've forgotten how to do the trick altogether! I get half way through then go "Just kidding!" It's a good opportunity to throw in a gag. Those are the habits... I occasionally drop cards and get sloppy and whatnot, but it's easy to let those things slide in performance. if you laugh, they'll laugh. You're not on trial, have a good time!
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