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Profile of Jem
Sometimes when I practise certain sleights (especially coin sleights), eg. coin rolls, classic palm, finger palm, card pirouette flourish, various coin vanishes, etc. I try to practise with my weaker hand first, then when I try to do it with my master hand, I find that it becomes much easier to execute the sleight.

Also, one added advantage is that it gives me more flexibility by training my ambidexterity (i.e. proficiency with both hands).

Anyone tried this method of practice as well?
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Oxford, England
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Profile of jonesc2ii
I haven't but it sounds like a good idea. When I learnt to do a one handed cut I practiced for weeks with my right hand (I'm right handed). Then when I had mastered it with my right hand I found that I could also do it with the left hand having never practiced with that hand. Smile - for when you fancy a debate or a quiet chat.
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Boston area
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Profile of rgranville
In The Amateur Magician's handbook, Henry Hay strongly recommends learning to do sleights in either hand.
Emily Belleranti
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Tucson, Arizona
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Profile of Emily Belleranti
I usually try to learn every sleight I do with both hands, as it gives me more possibilites with what I can do. I find that even if I only use one hand for a sleight during my performances, knowing the move with the other hand keeps my flexibility at a high pitch.

I ususally begin learning a sleight with my stronger hand, but I like the idea of learning sleights with your weaker hand first. I'll have to try that.
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Profile of carla
The ability to do sleights with both hands is probably more important with coin sleights than with card sleights, although I am sure there are cogent arguments that could be made for both. If you are interested in card manipulation, for example, it would be helpful to be able to do fans, concealments, productions, steals, and so on with either hand. For close-up card magic I think this is less important.

As for practicing (the original poster's question), I am so strongly right-handed that I tend to practice everything with my right hand until I really get down the feel and the look of the move, and only then move on to learning it with my left hand.
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Oregon, USA
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Profile of Halbert
While practicing with one hand, picture doing it with the other hand also.

It have read in other areas (music, in particular) that *thinking* about performing something actually can improve your motor skills almost as well as actually practicing it.

Also becomes a valid way to practice sleights when you have no access to the materials -- at work if magic is a hobby, on a bus, wherever.

That said, I have never tried this for magic, specifically. If someone here finds it helpful, good.
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Profile of pyromagician
Being ambidextrious(spelling?) is verry important in doing sleight of hand magic
especially if you have to do everything in reverse for instance
i have had to do that, it was almost a nightmare but i pulled everything off almost flawlessly.
P.S. this is what part of the alphabet would look like if "Q" and "R" were eleminated
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Profile of mooooomba
The strange thing is
I feel its easier using the left hand to do a Charlier cut even the first time I did it, but I'm right handed.... Hmmmm.
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Genova - Italy
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Profile of gio
I'm RH too, but a lot of card magic happens in left hand anyway. I mean: I think all right-handed guys keep the deck in the left hand (in dealing position), keep the b****s with the left and so on... albeit I'm right-handed I cannot do this stuff with the right hand (and I don't feel the need to learn how to ... coin magic is different though)

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Profile of Michaels
If I understood you correctly, the issue is not whether to learn with both hands but learning with your nondominant hand first.

I would tend to think this is counterproductive. If I'm trying to learn how to write for the first time, the fastest success and positive reinforcement will be accomplished by learning with my dominant hand first. Then I'll work with the other hand. I do feel however, that many sleights should be perfected by both hands.
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Robert P.
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Profile of Robert P.
Gio, good point. I always just learned the charlier cut, one handed shuffle, etc. with the left hand but I never really thought why, even though I'm right handed. But being that cards are held there for dealing position, it just makes it more natural.
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Toronto, Canada
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Profile of Bong780
I'm right handed, most of my coin moves is done in the right hand. But I do charlier cut, one hand shuffle by left hand, my right card can't do a proper and clean charlier cut.

Anyone practicing coin vanishes with both hands? Is there a need of doing so?
Brad Burt
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Inner circle
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Profile of Brad Burt

You have discovered an excellent method of making sure you can execute sleights with both hands. Note that it is extremely important to attain skill on your coin sleights with both hands. That's because coin work tends to transfer between the hands throughout your work. With cards the only slieght that is important to have 'some' two hand proficency is the palm and even then it's not a must.

Card work is 'single sided' if you will because of the fact that you will hold the deck in your dominant hand as the base reference point. If you are Right Handed the deck will be in your L.H. in the same way that that is the hand you Baseball glove would be in, etc.

Thus card sleights essentially refer to the non-dominant hand in an odd way. Coins on the other hand do not show the same dominance of position and thus being able to perform most of the sleights with both hands is a real plus. For all that I generally only practice the Goshman Backclip with my R.H., but I do my multiple palms with my left. That is because my R.H. is very shallow and a natural looking palm of four coins, say, is almost impossible for me, etc.

Brad Burt
Brad Burt
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