How to Masterswipe

May 5, 2014 Training

A masterswipe is a cartwheel launched off the wrong foot.

How to Masterswipe video:

Here is a video I made in 2007 for masterswiping:

A masterswipe is not for masters

You don’t have to be a master of anything to do a masterswipe. It’s really easy! So don’t let the name fool you, it’s not the master of swipes.

Simplifying the masterswipe

  • Imagine doing a sideways cartwheel but instead of lifting up the back leg (the leg you would normally lift up first in a cartwheel), lift up the front leg first.

What happens? Well it gets in the way and you have to clear it to finish the cartwheel. You create a tangle when trying to clear it, and afterward the legs untangle out to create the twisted masterswipe aesthetic.

  • The landing foot in a masterswipe is the same as the landing foot in a cartwheel!

Just roll that thought in your head and it will click immediately.

So a masterswipe is just a cartwheel

So just do a cartwheel… except throw up your front leg first when going down.  Then JUMP and dive backward.

The best tip for the masterswipe is JUMP

Without a JUMP you aren’t going to be masterswiping.  It’s funny though, the masterswipe is deceiving because for some reason it looks like there isn’t a jump in the move.  It just looks like you go down.  It looks like you could learn it slowly without much jumping in the beginning.  WRONG!  You cannot learn this move slowly.  The masterswipe requires a jump.  It requires you to input power.  When you jump off the base foot when masterswiping, you simultaneously dive down.  Since you are going down and jumping at the same time, it doesn’t look much like a jump.  So beginners think they can get away with playing with this trick without putting power into it.  No no no.  You need power in the masterswipe, and power means jumping.

How to masterswipe step by step:

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Begin walking forward.

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I will be doing this going down to my left side.

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One foot forward, same arm back; One foot back, same arm forward. We are merely lengthening the stride and keeping our arms further out. Take as many steps as you please.

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Now we are set to rip! The kick up leg is behind, that same side arm is reaching slightly across the body. Why? This set gives us more traveling distances for those limbs to create momentum. That first leg to swing up has a little more distance to create momentum, and the arm being across the body, has a little more distance to do the same.

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When you do this trick, experiment with the angle your kick up leg foot is pointing and where exactly you bring the leg up. You can create a different look depending on whether you bring that kick up leg out in front or more across in the opposite direction. Your kick up leg’s foot can vary the look of the trick by pointing out externally (consequently, your kick up leg externally rotated outward as well), straight out, or internally rotated. Just play around with the kick up so you understand how your body reacts.

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Aside from the angle your kick up foot is pointing, you can modify this trick by experimenting with the speed of it. If you do less of a jump and more of a gentle dive backward, it may result in a more slow twisted look. EXPERIMENT!

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Please note: NOTHING IS TOUCHING THE GROUND!

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Please note again: STILL, NOTHING IS TOUCHING THE GROUND! You must JUMP in the masterswipe.

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Now our hands are almost planted and our body is going to untangle.

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Keep the foot you jumped off of straight and as it flies over try to bring it back in front of your body. Go ahead and straighten the leg you kicked up to initiate the movement as well.

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Notice how much it’s looking like a normal cartwheel at the moment. Notice? And also, it might be worth the effort to get your knees straightened out during this trick. I find it usually provides for a nicer look.

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Ok as I said, try to bring that base foot (the foot you jumped off and the same foot you are landing on), back around and in front of your body. You can also create a neat little aesthetic by whipping the kick up leg into a hook kick here if you wish.

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Foot comes in contact with ground, other leg comes over pulling you back up into a standing position.

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Combo maybe?

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And now I am pulled back into a standing position. Thus ends the master of swipes.

Notes:

Make sure you can at least do a cartwheel, get used to doing one with a jump. Ensure you warm up your wrists pretty good. I feel the most important key for practicing the masterswipe is to always focus on putting some power into it! If you can’t get yourself to put power into it then step back and think about it some more.

My experiences:

I still remember how I learned this move. It was one of the first few tricks I learned.  I didn’t understand the masterswipe, and after trying a few with the monkey-see-monkey-do learning method I wasn’t so successful. Luckily, one of my tricking buddies kept telling me it was incredibly easy and that there was no reason I shouldn’t be able to do it. Actually he didn’t say it that kindly, he more or less expressed the opinion that I sucked if I couldn’t do the move easily after a few attempts. Anyway, I went back out after my brainwashing and soon (a day or two maybe) I had the move down pretty damn good! I just kept practicing, watching, and believing it was easy (which it totally is!) Go get your masterswipe this afternoon!

6 comments

  1. Juho says:

    This move is golden! I remember how I went to my backyard 4 years ago to try this move after watching that tutorial of yours and being like “Ehm.. What the hell was I supposed to do?” because it felt so strange and impossible. I don’t think you’ve ever done tutorial for grand masterswipe? I’m sure it would help many people.

  2. Alex says:

    Is it a master scoot very different from this? Or is it a different name for basically the same thing?

    • Jon Call says:

      It’s the same thing except you land on the first leg you launch up, instead of the second leg as you do in the masterswipe. Also the master scoot is typically done going to the side more instead of forward. If you can masterswipe, you can masterscoot. I got my masterscoot on my first try because I had been masterswiping for years before someone recommended I give it a try.

  3. kobi says:

    It looks very similar to the Helicoptero.. Is there any relation?

    • Andrea Rodolfo Nadia says:

      @Kobi: indeed, it is the opposite of an Helicoptero, in a way. If you reverse the frames of one of the two, you’ll have a glimpse of the other.

      Basically, a Masterswipe is a cartwheel with an over-rotation on the takeoff, so that you launch from the rear foot and land on that same foot. A Helicoptero is a cartwheel with an over-rotation on the landing, so that your rear foot misses the floor and you land with the one you took off from. (like a Hyper-Cartwheel)

  4. Steffie says:

    Para mí, esto es una nueva modalidad que me amplia el pensamiento sobre otras formas formas de aprender, más efectivas; los docentes hemos hecho muchaas experiencias &#i220;ex8tosas” que si las compartimos almentaríamos el saber colectivo por aportar casos reales (del contexto). Ojala funcione este espacio para compartir y aprender más.

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