Pattern Juggling

Dr. Joan Bushwell's Chimpanzee Refuge

Category archives for Pattern Juggling

DIY Neuro-Motor Experiments: Arm Circles

Here’s a fun experiment you can perform to test your coordination and, if you’re like a lot of people, experience the precise moment when your brain and muscles go off to la-la land. First, stand up and extend your arms directly out in front of you. Rotate your right arm clockwise (CW) and your left…

But Can Spock Do This?

Just how well-wired are your brain and muscles? Co-ordination and drummers is a common theme here at the refuge, but it’s time for something you can try at home with just your bare little fingers. We’re in the midst of an ice storm, so what better time to whip out the camera, put on some…

Recite Your ZYXs

As readers of this blog may have noted, I have a thing for patterns and sequences. Maybe it’s my musical training (e.g., inversion, retrograde, and retrograde inversion of a motif) or my love of palindromes, but I have a habit of reading signs and whatnot backwards (right to left). Sometimes funny things pop up. The…

Cross-body Co-ordination

Readers of this blog know that, as a drummer, I am very keen on left-right symmetry of co-ordination. The drummer’s world is often filled with patterns (get the pun?) and being able to execute them equally well from the left versus right side opens creative possibilities. Time to get those mirror neurons up and running!…

Audio Island & Pattern Juggling

I have added two new categories to the refuge, Audio Island and Pattern Juggling, for the convenience of those interested in a couple of my “off the beaten path” jaunts. I have gone back and retagged a bunch of old posts and will use these tags in the future. Audio Island is basically a catch-all…

In previous installments in the DIY NME series, I’ve looked at the application of symmetrical motor patterns using the drum kit. For this entry, the approach is a little different and says something about “handedness” as well. A few months ago I rearranged my semi-symmetrical drum kit into what I call the super symmetrical kit.…

“Visualize! Visualize! Visualize!” is a cry often heard by athletes. The idea is to picture a performance in the mind, and by repeatedly doing so, help insure a successful result when the times comes for the real thing. For example, as a runner I might try to visualize striding smoothly and powerfully mid-race so that…

DIY Neuro-Motor Experiments, Part 2

One thing I want to dispel immediately is that this is about normal “handedness”. Sure, you can pick up a ball and throw it with your non-dominant hand/arm and experience the sensation of a “chicken-arm”, but that’s not the point under investigation. No, this has more to do with skills that are shared unevenly across…

DIY Neuro-Motor Asymmetry Experiments

Owing to an overuse injury that has curtailed my running, I find myself gravitating toward my other main avocation, the drums, in order to maintain my sanity. These two things are at opposite ends of the spectrum: one is all about fitness, the other, skill. In the past couple of weeks I’ve been performing a…