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Correcting two diabolos


This is the single most important thing to learn with two diabolos. You will only be totally in control once you can keep the diabolos in line with each other. If it takes a unit of time to learn to get the shuffle to go round, I believe that it takes another unit to get correction sorted out, and another unit to get some tricks to work, by which time the learning process will speed up. The beginning part of learning two diabolos is slow, but once you get a few tricks under your belt, it gets a lot better- don't give up!

There is a temptation to try to correct two like you correct one. This will get you nowhere because if you move a stick forwards or backwards, the next diabolo will miss the string. The basic idea of correcting two diabolos is that you hit the errant diabolo as it passes the right hand to bring it back into line. You need to pick the one that looks straight and correct the other one, so it is back in line with the first. That's the theory. The difficult part is learning how, where and when to hit the diabolos.

Now is the time to go back to one diabolo again. Use the following method (or improvise your own) to find out what happens when you touch a spinning diabolo in different places.

  • Get a diabolo spinning quickly
  • Place the right hand string over the front of the left handstick and pull the right handstick downwards to pull the diabolo upwards.
  • You can now touch the diabolo with the end of the RH stick and see what effect this has. The way you need to touch or hit the diabolo depends on the type - some makes are more sensitive than others.

By playing with this, you can see what effect touching different parts of the diabolo has. This should help you to understand what you're trying to achieve and to formulate theories. Basically, touching the top or bottom of a cup will turn the diabolo left or right, and touching the sides will make it lean forwards or backwards. Touching opposite parts of the diabolo will have the same effect, so for example, touching the bottom of the near cup has the same effect as touching the top of the far cup.

The next step is to bring this correction into the shuffle. Because the right hand follows each diabolo down the right hand side, it can make corrections when they are needed without too much disruption to the shuffle. As the diabolo to be corrected drops down the right hand side, hit it and see what happens. It can help at this stage to go back to one around the leg, because you can test ideas without having to use too many undeveloped skills at the same time.

It helps to slow things down a little when making corrections by making the other diabolo take longer to come around. You can do this by giving the left handstick a little flick upwards and to the left, so the diabolo goes a little higher than normal and so takes longer to get across to the other side.

When you start to get the idea of hitting one of the two diabolos as it passes the right hand, you can start experimenting and learning what types of correction work best for you. As I said, this will take a long time.

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