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How to Choose Your First Set of Infinities

Vašek Peca
Vašek Peca
November 30, 2021

Have you just discovered the world of juggling and need your first set of juggling balls? Or have you been juggling for some time, but now started thinking about upgrading your juggling equipment?

Either way, Infinities are the juggling balls to go for. They come in bright colors to help you see your pattern clearly, they have a good grip for easier catching and most importantly, they last longer than any beanbag on the market and look like new even after a year of use.

The hard question is, which variant of Infinities is the right one for you. Here is a collection of tips!

Should Zuzka choose red XL or lemon yellow S Infinities?

Stock Infinities vs. Custom Infinities

First, you have to decide whether you want to order stock Infinities or a custom set tailored to your needs. Each option has its advantages!

Stock Infinities were designed to fit the majority of jugglers. On my numerous visits of juggling conventions, I collected juggler's opinions about weight, size and softness and found the intersection that works well for the most. So if you do not have a strong opinion about these parameters, I suggest that you go the safe way with stock Infinities.

Another benefit of stock Infinities is that they are always available. We keep the stock of all sizes full and ship orders within 24 hours. Adding to that the speed of DHL, stock Infinities can be yours quicker than you'd expect!

For the sophisticated and demanding jugglers we have Infinities Custom. This is a gem of our store, since we are the only juggling brand to offer such range of customization possibilities. The coolest fact is that you can choose your preferred weight, size and softness, all independent of the rest – so small and ultra-heavy – or big, light and under-filled – are no problem at all. If you want to understand how on Earth that works, I recommend you to read this article about Infinities Custom.

Customized Infinities may take anywhere between 1 day and 2 weeks to be produced, depending on the current stream of orders. We indicate the current waiting time on the product page so that you know when you can expect them if ordered today.

Choosing the color

Infinities are available in eight color options: white, red, orange, yellow, green, light blue, pink and black. And with Infinities Custom you can mix and match the colors to make your own design!

Color is undoubtedly the attribute that always gets the most attention. If you have a hard time picking the color(s) of your set, I guarantee you that you're not alone.

Single-color set vs. multi-color set

One of the important considerations is, whether to have just one, or more colors of balls in one set. Having more than a decade of experience with teaching juggling to non-jugglers, I found that there is a sharp divide between how beginner jugglers and advanced jugglers solve this dilemma. The finding is simple: beginners prefer sets with each color different, whereas advanced jugglers almost always use single-color sets. Why is that?

For beginners, color serves a special purpose: it helps to learn the basic patterns by identifying individual balls. Take Mills' Mess: there are three different throws, so if you have three different-colored balls, you can match each color to each throw and recreate the pattern much easier. I used to do that, too, when I was learning 3-ball tricks – it is without doubt a great tool for beginners.

Red, orange and yellow are a perfect color combo for beginner jugglers.

Why do the advanced jugglers use single-colored sets though? There are at least two explanations:

1. When juggling 5 or more balls, peripheral vision starts playing a vital role and it is much more important that you see every ball clearly. Single-color sets help that: it is easier for your brain to focus on one color rather than many.

2. It is usually considered slicker to have a unified color of your props (just like matching colors in your clothing is a stylish touch). But aesthetics is, of course, subject to taste – so don't obey that if you don't feel like it!

Five ball juggling works best with a single-color juggling ball set.

Let's sum up my advice in this domain:

If you are a beginner, a multi-color set of juggling balls can be very helpful in learning 3-ball and 4-ball tricks, so if your aesthetic side agrees, it is the best choice.

If you are a beginner but aesthetically you'd prefer a single-color set, it might still be worth it to buy one extra ball of a different color. That way you can have a full set in one color, and also the tool to help you learn difficult tricks in case you needed it.

If you are an advanced juggler (being able to juggle five or more balls), you should probably go for a single-colored set. Even if doing 3-ball tricks is part of your juggling style, you are likely to have a good imagination to know which ball goes where and colors wouldn't help you that much. Still, some advanced jugglers like to have an extra ball in a contrasting color. It may be useful for example to count catches when doing endurances.

Choosing color based on your training spot

As I explained in the previous part, color is not just an aesthetic factor. Colors make a huge difference in the visibility of the ball on different backgrounds and in different light settings. The more advanced tricks you juggle, the more important this is.

Generally, there are four types of backgrounds/environments:

  1. white walls or ceilings,
  2. blue or white sky,
  3. darkness (stage performing, juggling outdoors at night),
  4. noisy backgrounds (gym ceilings, trees, etc.).

The first three environments are generally fine with any color, unless the color of your balls blends with the background. Most often, that happens with white balls and white walls. But certainly not at all times – the key is the light – if the balls appear lighter or darker than the background, you are fine! To test if that is the case, you can use a white table tennis ball, throw it on the spot that you want to test, and see whether you see the ball clearly. If you do, then you will see Infinities as well!

The noisy background is the most challenging situation. Choosing the right color may help a lot! If possible, try to find the color that is most contrasting to the colors of the background. If you want to be extra-prepared for everything, it may even be worth it to invest into more sets in different colors, so that you can always choose the best one on any occasion.

Trees in the background may be a bit challenging, but contrasting red balls will surely help.

Choosing the size

The 3rd generation stock Infinities are available in 3 sizes:

  • S (64 mm, 105 g, 97%)
  • M (67 mm, 115 g, 97%)
  • L (70 mm, 125 g, 97%)

The three numbers in brackets indicate the diameter, the weight and the fill percentage of the ball.

To choose another combination of diameter, weight and fill, or one of the other 4 diameters, you have to order a customized set.

There are multiple criteria based on which jugglers choose the size of their balls. The one that you should always consider first (especially if you are a beginner juggler) is your hand size. Then, there are other criteria (such as your juggling style) that can make you size up or down. We'll go one by one.

Choosing ball size based on hand size

We created a simple guide to estimate the right size of Infinities for you. You only need a ruler and a flat surface (e.g. a table).

Here is how it works:

  1. Place a ruler on top of a flat surface.
  2. Put your hand flat onto it, stretch your fingers as far as possible but do not lift the palm of your hand.
  3. Measure the distance between the tips of your thumb and little finger.
  4. Find your Infinities size best fit for your hand size in the table below.
Hand size 18–20 cm 20–22 cm 22–24 cm
Ball size S M L
My hand measures 22.7 cm. I use size L.

However, if you have the chance to try ball sizes physically (for example in some of our distributor's stores), go for it – it's better of course. There is one thing I recommend paying attention to: when you grab the ball, notice how far your fingers go around the ball and how comfortable the grip is. If they go all the way around the ball or even touch, the ball is too small.

Here you can see how far my fingers go around a size L Infinity.
Here I am holding a size S Infinity. The tips of my fingers almost touch, which is a sign that the ball is too small for me.

Choosing size based on number of balls usually juggled

The second criterion is how many balls you are planning to juggle. Some jugglers are more into lower numbers, some into higher – and that doesn't say how good they are – there are some very good jugglers who specialize in difficult tricks with 3 balls.

There is a straight-forward rule: the more balls you are planning to juggle, the smaller balls you might find useful. Needless to say, it is less strict than the previous "hand size" part (and opinions on this topic vary a lot between jugglers).

The logic behind the rule is that the more balls you want to juggle, the harder the start is. For example, when you start a 7-ball cascade, you hold 4 balls in your dominant hand. Holding 3, 4 or even 5 balls in one hand and being able to throw them one by one is a pretty damn hard thing to do! With smaller balls, the start is easier – so smaller balls might give you an advantage to learn higher numbers.

The other extreme is specializing in low numbers, especially 3 balls. Some jugglers prefer bigger balls for that, since bigger balls may be easier for catching. Also, there are toss juggling styles which incorporate contact juggling or hitting the balls with your body, which may be also easier with bigger sizes.

Contact juggling is easier with large balls (Filip Zahradnicky and his XL Infinity in the picture).

So, if your plan is to juggle big numbers, you may consider sizing down compared to what your hand size suggests. If your plan is to juggle 3 balls creatively, you might go a size or two up.

Other reasons to choose a specific diameter or weight

Not exhausted yet? There are even more reasons why some jugglers choose a specific diameter or weight of a ball. I've collected these during my discussions and informal chats with other jugglers, so feel free to inspire yourself:

Aesthetics – Stage performers often choose bigger balls since they believe that bigger look better on stage.

Throw precision – Some jugglers, including myself, prefer heavier balls than usual so that they have a better throw precision.

Muscle fatique – On the other hand, there are jugglers (for example Jonglissimo) who prefer lighter balls, because with lighter balls they experience less muscle fatique during their long and exhausting training sessions.

Health reasons – Some jugglers choose lighter balls for health reasons – they may be recovering from an arm injury or they may suffer from a chronic illness (e.g. carpal tunnel syndrome).

Workout juggling – Some jugglers have one extra-heavy set of juggling balls to use for a juggling work-out.

Choosing the number of balls in a set

What you're going to be using for your juggling is a set of juggling balls. A set.

You need to figure out how big it should be. That is not an easy question:

  • If your set is too small, you may need more balls than you have in your set. That usually happens when you want to pass-juggle with someone else. Or when you get better than you had expected, and suddenly need that one more ball.
  • If your set is too big, you have to carry around a heavy bag, which is uncomfortable so much that sometimes you resign on taking it with you.

Most jugglers buy a set slightly larger than the number of balls they are able to juggle. For a 4-ball juggler that may be 5 or 6 balls in a set, for a 7-ball juggler that can be 8 or 9. I suggest the same – it's always better to have one more than one less.

You should count with the fact that you probably will get better, so you'll quickly need more balls. That is especially true for beginners – the path from 3 to 5 can be swifter than you'd expect.

And you should also keep in mind that you might lose a ball or it might get destroyed. We can repair it or you can buy a new one, but either way you'll be missing it for a while.

Also, balls do get some beating if you use them ordinarily, and buying a few extra balls to add to a set doesn't work very well – the new ones look and feel different to the used ones. Therefore, I always recommend buying and using a set as a whole, so that all your balls look and feel the same.

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