Inverted Grip

The following article first appeared in the first-quarter 2007 issue of JUGGLE magazine, the official publication of the International Jugglers' Association. The publisher has kindly given permission to reproduce it here.



Turn the cup upside down, so the mouth is closest to the floor. Shake hands with the cup. Your thumb is near the bottom of the cup while your little finger is near the top of the cup. (see inverted grip 1)


Keep the grip on the cup and turn the cup so the mouth is pointing up. You are now using the Inverted Grip. Some people also refer to this as the Reverse Grip. (see inverted grip 2)


The Inverted Grip is a nice grip to use for catching other cups with Claws or Penguins.

The Penguin Catch


For the Penguin Catch your right hand uses an Inverted Grip to hold the black cup just below your waist on the right side. Think of Penguin catches for ball juggling and you have the idea.


Use your left hand to swing the white cup under the black cup. (see penguin catch 1)


Release the white cup from your left hand when the white cup is outside, to the right of, the black cup. Toss the white cup so it flies up and back towards the black cup. The white cup should make one complete revolution while it is in the air. ((see penguin catch 2 and 3)



Catch the white cup in the black cup. (see penguin catch 4)

The Claw Catch


Instead of passively waiting for one cup to land in another cup, you can aggressively claw a free-flying cup into the cup you are holding. For most people Claw Catches are easiest performed using an Inverted Grip.


Hold the black cup in your right hand with an Inverted Grip, and the white cup in your left hand. (see claw catch 1)


Toss the white cup up with your left hand so the white cup rises up to a spot above and in front of your right shoulder. Imagine the area where a ball thrown by your left hand would peak in a high, three-ball Cascade. Release the white cup so it spins pretty slowly. The white cup only needs to turn 180 degrees before you catch it. (see claw catch 2 )


Bring your right hand and the black cup up to where the white cup is heading, again above and in front of your right shoulder. Claw catch the white cup with the black cup. (see claw catch 3)


Remember to follow through with your right hand so the mouth of the black cup faces up, and the white cup doesn t fall out of the black cup. (see claw catch 4)


Many thanks to David Aiken, The Checkerboard Guy, for modeling the shaker cups moves on this page.


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