This fidget is a bit more complex. It consists of 4 separate components.
- Pop It Up
- Push to the Center
- Hand Goes Back
Pop it up
This is just a little timer type movement that allows the disc to escape any kind of tight or weird grip you might have on it and to set the hand to the bottom of the disc providing rotation by pushing on this part of the disc.
Push to the Center
After the hand winds up on the bottom portion of the disc, move it towards the center of the chest setting up a butterfly movement across the knuckles.
It is very important to not rotate or Spins and Twists are tricks where the dog spins 360 degrees in a clockwise or counter clockwise fashion. Spin is clockwise and Twist is counter clockwise so it is important to have a cue for each skill. Feel free to call them what you want.... the wrist here. It’s just a push on the bottom of the disc towards the center of your body. Also note that the disc has not left contact with the hand whatsoever. It remains in contact with the hand or knuckles the whole time.
Hand Goes Back
Once the butterfly has been set and it’s rotating around the knuckles, as it’s half way, move your hand back to where the trick started. This accentuates the second half of the butterfly rotation and sets up the catch.
Again, don’t twist or flick the wrist and note that the disc is still touching the knuckles. And don’t be antsy to make a catch. It can’t happen yet.
After the disc has rotated all the way around, and the hand is back where it started, then squeeze to make the catch. As with all fidgets, it really helps to think of allowing the disc to catch itself instead of trying to make the catch happen. Another helpful tip is to close your fingers like an alligator or pincer instead of squeezing like making a fist.
Fidgets catch themselves.
From Catch High, gently flip the disc up and allow it to balance on your fingertips. It’s important to have an understanding of hitting this balance point before trying to do the entire skill.
Most people want to really crank that disc up there, flipping it more like a butterfly, with mutliple rotations, and after the Fonzie has been learned, it may be possible to make it that aggressive, but in learning, and conceptually, this should be more like half of one butterfly rotation. It doesn’t require a bunch of power. Think super soft and gentle.
Once the disc is balancing on the fingers reliably then turn your thumb up,”Cool like Fonzie,” as the hand is being lowered for the catch. It’s super simple and groovy.
This is a really useful fidget. Fidgets are pretty much all show and no go. They are dead end skills — there’s not much to be done with them outside of looking and feeling cool.
The Weightless is different. It replicates a backhand floater nearly perfectly except it’s in a different plane. A Take is a cued Bite that replicates the placement and timing of a throw. Usually used with overs, vaults, and flips, the Take is a powerful teaching tool for creating habitual leaping and commitment to flying targets. Takes allow the handler great latitude in placing discs. Just pop it out there sharply and hold it; it’s easy to place... this skill and change the trajectory from vertical at your side to horizontal towards a target and you’ll realize that they are remarkably similar.
The Weightless fidget allows a thrower to get lots of practice putting heavy-Zs (lots of Spins and Twists are tricks where the dog spins 360 degrees in a clockwise or counter clockwise fashion. Spin is clockwise and Twist is counter clockwise so it is important to have a cue for each skill. Feel free to call them what you want....) on a disc and also provides some experience with precision placement. It’s not easy to get that disc spinning like crazy and keep it in the right Spot is a “go to a place”, or “go to a mat” behavior. This means that the dog seeks out and performs a duration behavior on a spot of the handler’s choosing. A Pedestal is a raised spot. Anything a dog can leap onto and perch upon. Spots and Pedestals are important dog training tools.... so you can let it spin out in the hand.
If the disc perfectly vertical in this fidget, the angle of release is under control. When altering the height of this massively spinning disc from head high to chest high, that is control over distance. This translates directly to throwing floaters with Precision and Accuracy.