Astrojax (see www.astrojax.com) is three balls on a string that orbit. It is roughly a combination of the yo-yo, juggling balls, and a lasso. From basic horizontal, vertical, and figure-eight orbits to complicated maneuvers, Astrojax can be played within myriad ways, which is why we call it “The Free-Dimensional Orbiter.” In other words, the play value of the toy is immense! It has won toy awards, been sold around the world, and even been taken into outer space by NASA as part of their science education program.
Our new version of Astrojax (see https://astrojax.com/collections/astrojax-maya-sky) was featured this year in the Trend Gallery of the Nuremberg toy show because it is an innovative combination of high-tech, environmental, and fair trade (… and a whole lot of fun!). We pay three times the market wage per stitch to our artisans in Guatemala who make the crochet. The balls are stuffed with repurposed scrap cork and we have minimum waste (and zero plastic waste) packaging — each set comes in a beautiful hand-woven fabric bag. You can find more lots of information about the product on our website, including information about the science of Astrojax, how to play videos, and our fair trade practices.
Here are a few stepping stones, some tools and learning techniques to help you go from newbie to a real astrojaxer.
-Practice. This is simple. Keep a set in your pocket, and whenever you’re waiting for a ride of between classes, while you’re walking, etc. Just play around. AJ’s are great for boredom, and you’ll eventually get better. Don’t let up, but don’t feel you have to master this trick of getting this orbit perfect. Find what you like to do, and get better at it.
-A fabulous idea of Kinetic’s is to practicing basic orbits and switches in the dark, without light-up Astrojax, so you learn to respond to the feeling of your Astrojax rather than the sight. This lets you not have to wait to see where your Astrojax are, as you can feel where they are going and can think ahead about where you’re hands or feet or whatever need to be next. It also keeps you from having to look at your Astrojax, expanding your moveset to tricks behind you.
-Watch videos. There is a huge amount of Astrojax content on YouTube (believe it or not), and many videos designed to help newer players. ChrisManic, TheFerrell, Kinetics, and many others all have videos up that can teach you new things, even if they’re not intended to. ChrisManic has 3 (I think) Guide to the Cool Tricks up, which can teach you some essential tricks. Cizrek has a huge library of trick vaults, where he shows what he has invented. Even though there is no verbal instruction, these videos have huge potential for inspiration: they can make you think about what you can and can’t do with AJ. my favorite example of this would be the trick I Lick Tissue (Name correct? Find link), that starts off as an unconventional Crown Jewels variant and gets better. Don’t be intimidated by complex tricks, always try. Even if you can’t master it, you’ll learn something, or even come up with a variant of that trick or be inspired to create your own. Don’t hold yourself back.