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Practicing Tricks

Feb 18, 2010
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Whats a good start in practicing my tricks? I'd like to practice daily for a start. Do you guys have a schedule, like which sleights you practice first, then which effects. How long should I practice? Thanks!
 
Jul 18, 2009
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That is acually a really good question and probably a pretty pressing one for a begginer. Well I think I have an answer.

HOW TO PRACTICE IN 3 EASY STEPS!
1. Practice whenever possible. Always carry around a few props and practice whenever you have time. I'm currently in High School and I just practice between classes.

2. Allot 2-3 Hours of "Block Practicing." a day. This means practice for 2 or 3 hours straight. It may seem like a lot but you will get very good very fast.

3. After you have practiced a trick to the point that it is believable through the above two steps, perform it! Remember performance is the ideal form of practice. Only through performing a trick for real people can you truly master it.
 
Sep 1, 2007
22
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Las Vegas
Whats a good start in practicing my tricks? I'd like to practice daily for a start. Do you guys have a schedule, like which sleights you practice first, then which effects. How long should I practice? Thanks!
I've struggled with the same thing...check out this excellent book by John Carney: MAGIC BY DESIGN - Study, Practice & Presentation.

From the back cover:
"We have always been told the secret to good magic is "practice, practice, practice." But how to get the most out of our practice? How to choose what is worth practicing? How do we shape presentations that will reap the most reward in appreciation from our audience? MAGIC BY DESIGN is a workbook that answers these questions and more, all in one place. Here is Carney's method for analyzing everything he considers adding to his repertoire. What is offered is inspiration and encouragement for both beginner and even the advance, who are looking for a fresh perspective.

Check out his website: www.carneymagic.com

It helped me, I hope it can help you.
 
Jul 14, 2008
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These two comments are great and you should use their tips. I am currently in high school, and ever since semester two started, everything got so freaking busy. However, after their tips up above, if you have a video camera, grab it and record yourself. If your hands look fishy for the spectator, locate the error and fix. Or, you can practise in front of your mirror.
 
Feb 5, 2010
157
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this is a good question. but for me I set out different times for me to practice.

since i tend to work a lot and i have rubber bands on my wrist i practice slink, crazy mans cuffs and occasionally raw linkage. i can do slink and crazy mans well but i always like to practice them.

and at home i usually put in some instrumental music like Marty Friedman or Apocalyptica and practice some card manipulation.

and i spend another hour practice on different effects that i feel like practicing on.
 
Feb 18, 2010
37
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Thanks for the tips guys. Hmmm..should I practice all the sleights I know in one practice session even though I won't be using them in my current routine?
 

RickEverhart

forum moderator / t11
Elite Member
Sep 14, 2008
3,638
469
44
Louisville, OH
My schedule is completely different since I have a career, wife and kids, etc. I can only practice at night after 10 pm when everyone has gone to bed or on the weekends. This is when I read, break down videos, spend time on forums or just sit and handle the cards. Lessons from a fellow professional and joining my local ring were probably the most beneficial for myself.

I am not a big one for practicing 2-3 hrs straight but more of a practice a few sleights (2-3) for about a half hour and then put the cards down and walk away.
Later on in that same day I will practice the same 2-3. I do use the mirror from time to time.

Most of the time I utilize family and close friends for my presentation skills to see when and if I flashed, what "lines" / patter sounds best and to improve upon anything else.

If I have a show or gig...two to three days prior I will go through all of the effects numerous times to make sure I have them down flawlessly and to check my props to make sure everything is in working order before I pack.
 
Feb 5, 2010
157
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Thanks for the tips guys. Hmmm..should I practice all the sleights I know in one practice session even though I won't be using them in my current routine?

What i would do is practice the slights you will use the most first. but also set a time aside for the slights you dont use as often so you dont forget them. like set aside a half hour a week or something like that for the slights you wont use as often.
 
Aug 10, 2008
2,023
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In a rock concert
Among other things, I think that a good tip would be to enjoy what you are doing, if you just start scheduling your training session and begin to be like "oh god, it's 5:00, time to practice, again" then you are in the wrong road and most probably you will not advance.

Enjoy it, if you stop enjoying it, stop doing magic for a while, and then come back to it.


Another tip is to use the sleights that you want to practice in the form of a routine, with patter preferably, so that you cannot get bored practicing it, also try to record yourself whenever you can.

That's it from me :).
 

WitchDocIsIn

Elite Member
Sep 13, 2008
5,791
2,891
Yeah, I have a full time job that's exhausting, so I don't practice for hours a day. I usually get at least half an hour in every day, some times a lot more, some times I don't practice at all. This is what works for me. I tried setting down a schedule at one point, when I was reading through RRTCM. I would come home from work, spend an hour or so eating and relaxing, then grab the book and the cards and go over something for an hour or two. I started getting really bored with it.

Now what I do is this: I put on something to watch, something I've already seen and can watch without really having to pay attention to. I practice various sleights for a while. Whatever I'm currently working on. Then I run through and do whatever sleights I can think of, just to keep them fresh in my mind. Then I run through some routines. I've got an ACR that I rather like, another simple three-trick routine, etc. After that I run through various tricks I'm working on, like Diplopia, Revolution No. 9, Search and Destroy, and so on. If I'm in the mood for it, I'll do some coin work as well, and I'll frequently run through some other stuff with rings, watches or whatever.

I may only get to practicing one sleight, or I may run through all of that, depending on the amount of time I have and what I feel like doing. I have, however, started trying to keep a journal about my performances and what I need to work on in practice.

To some people this would be a horribly unorganized way to practice, but I've made a lot of improvement since switching to this freestyle method. I work on what's interesting, which makes me want to keep working on stuff.

So my advice would be to just try different methods and techniques. I do recommend having a good mirror and a video camera whenever possible. Watching yourself from the spectator's point of view will tell you so much more than trying to imagine what it looks like from over there.
 
Sep 3, 2007
1,231
0
Yeah, I have a full time job that's exhausting, so I don't practice for hours a day. I usually get at least half an hour in every day, some times a lot more, some times I don't practice at all. This is what works for me. I tried setting down a schedule at one point, when I was reading through RRTCM. I would come home from work, spend an hour or so eating and relaxing, then grab the book and the cards and go over something for an hour or two. I started getting really bored with it.

Don't get too bored bro. We are counting on you for advice.
 

WitchDocIsIn

Elite Member
Sep 13, 2008
5,791
2,891
Fair enough. With my current practice scheme I don't think I'll get bored any time soon. Also, is your signature quote a parody of The Princess Bride?
 

WitchDocIsIn

Elite Member
Sep 13, 2008
5,791
2,891
I'm not worried, The Princess Bride is one of my all time favorite movies. And books, for that matter.
 
Sep 3, 2007
1,231
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I'm not worried, The Princess Bride is one of my all time favorite movies. And books, for that matter.

Then it is pretty obvious what my signature means no?

(thanks for breaking it down while I held the idea).
 
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