Monday, February 24, 2014

The Coin Practice Deck

Nothing is more important to a performer than his practice time. But professional and part-timer alike, having time to practice is a precious commodity. So we need to make the most efficient use of that time. Enter the Coin Practice Deck.

The idea is simple and practical. Take an old deck of cards and a fresh Sharpie and write the name of a different coin effect you know and want to keep in practice with on the face of each card. I also add tips and key words to some of the cards. Sometimes it’s just a few words to remind me of important points in the routine. Sometimes it’s the book and page number, so I can reference the source material if I need to.

Now, shuffle the deck, turn over the top card, and get to practicing. Once I’m done practicing that effect, the card goes to the bottom of the deck and I grab the next top card. This keeps rehearsing fresh and interesting. Much better than working from a hand-written list or an Excel spreadsheet. It’s also very easy to ‘edit’ the deck by removing or adding new effect cards.

The deck is small, easy to carry around, and can be used for practicing your card effects (when your palms are bleeding from too many Mutobe palms and stack transfers).

I’ve mentioned this idea in many of my lectures and the idea always goes over well. I've been carrying around a Practice Deck like this for about 12 years. And yes, I have a Card Practice Deck, too.

But we’re not here to talk about cards.