We are back with another edition of the Flow Arts Institute’s tutorial series, Tutsday!!
We were lucky enough to catch up with the Parisian staff superstar, Simon Tortuson, at FireDrums this past year, where he gave us a lesson on Tiptails.
A “Tiptail” is a fishtail on your fingertips. That makes for a pretty slick flourish to an already impressive technique, if you ask me.
Let’s get to it.
The prerequisite for this technique is the basic fishtail on the wrist.
Some tips before you get started:
-Try to maintain one point of contact, in the very center of the staff.
-It is crucial to maintain the balance and stay in the center. Otherwise, you run the risk of losing control and potentially dropping the staff.
To transition to one point of contact, Simon suggests using the back of your thumb instead of your wrist to fishtail.
Once you feel comfortable having only one point of contact, you can work your fishtail up your hand, until you reach the fingertips.
Simon says “You don’t want to start a Tiptail, static on your fingertips, because you won’t have any momentum”
Instead, he suggests grasping the staff with your fingers on the center grip and rolling the staff up onto your fingertips.
From there, practice the motion and get a feel for what it’s like to move both back to front and front to back.
Eventually add the halves together to complete the Tiptail
Simon goes on to mention that Propellers are also a great way to get into Tiptails.
Now that you have this technique, you can add another level of grace and class to your flow.
Keep practicing, we hope to see you back here next week for more fantastic flow arts tutorials.
Matthew Sosticky or Sticky has been performing and instructing for the past 9 years. He is part owner of Resplendent Flames from Virginia Beach, VA. He specializes in double staff but has been known to spin poi, staff, or fans on occasion.