THE BOY’S OWN BOOK
Gymnastics, Indian Clubs, Dumbbells, and Juggling with Balls.
|CHAPTER I.—Gymnastics. By a Member of the London Athletic Club.|
|I.—||Preliminary Hints as to Dress, Diet, and Exercises without Apparatus||19|
|II.—||Exercises without Apparatus||20|
|III.—||Exercises with Apparatus||21|
|The Horizontal Bar||22|
|Hanging on the Bar and the Walk||22|
|Breasting the Bar||23|
|The Short Circle||23|
|Getting on to the Bar||24|
|The Leg Swing (Backwards)||24|
|To Sit on the Bar||25|
|Sit Swing (Backward)||26|
|Hanging by the Legs||27|
|The Clear Circle||27|
|The Muscle Grind||28|
|Hanging by the Toes||28|
|The Hock Swing||28|
|The Slow Pull-up||29|
|Horizontal (Back and Front)||30|
|The Long Swing||30|
|The Parallel Bars||31|
|Flying over the Horse||38|
|The Hand-rings or Stirrups||39|
|IV.—||How to make Gymnastic Apparatus. By Charles Spencer, Author of The Modern Gymnast, &c.||42|
|Portable Horizontal Bar||44|
|Portable Frame for Trapeze, Rings, or Swing||46|
|Other Useful Apparatus||48|
|CHAPTER II.—Indian Clubs and How to use them. By a Member of the London Athletic Club||50|
|Weight of the Clubs||51|
|Hints as to Dress, etc.||53|
|Exercises for Light Clubs||54|
|Single or Heavy Club Exercise||58|
|CHAPTER III.—Dumbbells, and How to use them. By W. J. Gordon||60|
|CHAPTER IV.—Juggling with Balls. By a Practical Gymnast||68|
|The Vertical Fall||69|
|The Inside and Outside Falls||70|
|The Parallel Fall||70|
|The Outside and Inside Fall from Right Hand to Left||70|
|The Horizontal Pass||71|
|The Double Vertical Fall||71|
|The Double Inside Fall||71|
|The Triple Pass||72|
|The Triple Over and Under Pass||73|
|The Single Over and Double Under Pass||73|
|The Triple Shower||74|
|The Quadruple Shower||74|
|The Double Fountain||74|
|The Double Fountain Change||75|
Model-making—Moving and Otherwise.
|CHAPTER V.—Some Simple Models for Beginners.|
|I.—||How to Make a Boat with a Screw Propeller. By F. Chasemore||79|
|II.—||How to Make a small Marine Engine for a Boat four or five feet long. By Frank Chasemore||81|
|CHAPTER VI.—The American Dancing Nigger. By C. Stansfeld-Hicks||94|
|CHAPTER VII.—Moving Models, and How to Make Them; or, ‘Drop a Penny in the Box and the Model will Work.’ By Frank Chasemore||97|
|A Model Windmill||97|
|A Model Cutter Yacht||101|
|A Real Water-wheel||106|
|How to make a Cheap Clock||109|
|CHAPTER VIII.—How we Made a Christmas Ship. By C. Stansfeld-Hicks, Author of Yacht and Canoe Building, &c. &c.||111|
|CHAPTER IX.—Model Steam-Engines, and How to Make them. By Paul N. Hasluck, Author of Lathe-work, &c.|
|I.—||Principles of the Steam-Engine||117|
|II.—||A Simple Toy Engine||120|
|III.—||Small Model Engines||123|
|IV.—||The Horizontal Engine||127|
|V.—||The Oscillating Engine||131|
|VI.—||Model Boilers and their Construction||134|
|CHAPTER X.—The Boy’s Own Model Launch Engine. By H. F. Hobden||138|
|CHAPTER XI.—The Boy’s Own Model Locomotive, and How to Build it. By H. F. Hobden||144|
Games of Skill, etc.
|CHAPTER XII.—Chess—Single and Double, etc.|
|I.—||Chess for Beginners.—By Herr Meyer||165|
|The Universal Notation||165|
|II.—||A New Chess Game—‘The Jubilee.’ By Herr Meyer||171|
|III.—||Another Jubilee Game||172|
|IV.—||The Game of Double Chess. By the late Captain Crawley and Herbert Mooney||173|
|CHAPTER XIII.—Draughts. By the late Captain Crawley|
|I.—||All About the Game||181|
|II.—||The Losing Game||190|
|CHAPTER XIV.—Solitaire. By the late Captain Crawley||199|
|CHAPTER XV.—Fox and Geese. By the late Captain Crawley||202|
|CHAPTER XVI.—Go-ban. By Herr Meyer||204|
|CHAPTER XVII.—The Malagasy Game of Fanòrona. By W. Montgomery||208|
|CHAPTER XVIII.—The American Puzzles||212|
|CHAPTER XIX.—Some Minor Games|
|I.—||A New Indoor Game||214|
|II.—||Knuckle Bones. By Captain A. S. Harrison||215|
The Magic-Lantern, and all about it.
|CHAPTER XX.—The Magic Lantern and all about it.|
|I.—||Pleasant Hours with the Magic Lantern. By A. A. Wood, F.C.S.||219|
|1.—||All about Lanterns||219|
|2.—||Various Kinds of Lanterns||219|
|3.—||The Phantasmagoria Lantern||220|
|4.—||The Euphaneron Lantern||221|
|8.—||The Gas and Gas-Bags||227|
|9.—||Oxygen and Hydrogen||228|
|10.—||Slide Painting, etc.||229|
|II.—||How to make a Cheap Magic Lantern. By Frank Chasemore||231|
|III.—||How to make the Slides for a Magic Lantern||240|
|IV.—||Revolving Slides for the Magic Lantern, without Rack-work. By F. Chasemore||245|
|V.—||Screen Frame for the Magic Lantern. By Frank Chasemore||247|
|VI.—||Magic Lantern for Opaque Slides. By W. J. Gordon||250|
|CHAPTER XXI.—How to make an Aphengescope, or Apparatus for exhibiting Photographs, Opaque Pictures, and Living Insects in the Magic Lantern. By Frank Chasemore||252|
|CHAPTER XXII.—Ingenious Adaptations for the Lantern. By W. J. Gordon|
|I.—||Chromatropes and Paper Fireworks||257|
|II.—||The Lantern and the Kaleidoscope||259|
|III.—||The Lantern Praxinoscope||260|
How to Build Boats, Punts, Canoes, etc.
|CHAPTER XXIII.—The Building of the Swallow; or, How to Make a Boat. By E. Henry Davies, C.E.||265|
|CHAPTER XXIV.—How to Make a Canvas Canoe. By E. T. Littlewood, M.A.||273|
|CHAPTER XXV.—Canadian, Indian, Birch-Bark and other Light Canoes. By C. Stansfeld-Hicks.|
|I.—||Canadian and Birch-Bark Canoes||279|
|II.—||Paper and other Typical Canoes||283|
|CHAPTER XXVI.—How to Build a Punt. By the Rev. Harry Jones, M.A.||287|
|CHAPTER XXVII.—Rafts and Catamarans, and How to Make them. By W. J. Gordon and W. W. L. Alden||291|
Pleasant and Profitable Occupations for Spare Hours.
|CHAPTER XXVIII.—Practical Hints on Taxidermy. By Lieut.-Colonel Cuthell|
|I.—||Catching and Setting Butterflies||299|
|II.—||How to Cure and Set up a Bird’s Skin||302|
|III.—||On Preserving the Skins and Heads of Animals||305|
|CHAPTER XXIX.—Hints on Polishing Horn, Bone, Shells, Stones, Etc. By Gordon Stables, C.M., M.D., R.N.||308|
|CHAPTER XXX.—British Pebbles. By the Rev. A. N. Malan, M.A., F.G.S.|
|I.—||The Pebbles and How to Find them||314|
|II.—||The Lapidary’s Bench||320|
|III.—||How to Polish a Pebble||322|
|IV.—||How to Cut a Pebble||325|
|CHAPTER XXXI.—Graphs and Graph-making. By Theodore Wood||330|
|CHAPTER XXXII.—Cryptograph, or Cipher. By a Naval Surgeon||333|
|CHAPTER XXXIII.—Hammock-making and Netting.|
|I.—||Hammocks and Hammock-making||337|
|II.—||Netting, and How to Net||339|
|CHAPTER XXXIV.—A Perpetual Calendar. By Herr H. F. L. Meyer||342|
|CHAPTER XXXV.—How to make a Sundial. By F. Chasemore|
|I.—||The Horizontal Dial||347|
|II.—||The Equatorial Dial||349|
|Table of Minutes||354|
|CHAPTER XXXVI.—The Camera Obscura: How to make and use it. By Gordon Stables, C.M., M.D., R.N.||355|
The Boy’s Own Workshop.
|CHAPTER XXXVII.—Cardboard-Modelling and Wood Modelling.|
|I.—||How the Reedham Boys make their Cardboard Models.—By the Head Master||361|
|II.—||A Home-Made Humming-Top||374|
|CHAPTER XXXVIII.—Artificial Wood: How to Make it and what to make of it. By the late Dr. Scoffern||375|
|CHAPTER XXXIX.—How to Make an Astronomical Telescope. By Frank Chasemore||380|
|CHAPTER XL.—The Kaleidoscope, and How to Make it. By W. J. Gordon||385|
|CHAPTER XLI.—How to Make a Portable Stage and Figures for the Living Marionettes. By F. Chasemore||388|
|CHAPTER XLII.—How to Make a Pantagraph||391|
|CHAPTER XLIII.—My Flagstaff, and How I Rigged it||393|
|CHAPTER XLIV.—How to Make a Pocket Compass and Timepiece. By F. Chasemore||396|
|CHAPTER XLV.—Wood-Working and Carving; or, Walking-Sticks and how to treat them||398|
|CHAPTER XLVI.—Cages and Hutches: and How to Make them. By Gordon Stables, C.M., M.D., R.N.|
|I.—||The Tools and Materials—Useful Hints||403|
|II.—||Canary Breeding-cages, German and English||405|
|III.—||Nests and Nest-Boxes—The German method of Breeding—Hutches for Rabbits, Guinea-Pigs, Rats, and Squirrels||408|
|CHAPTER XLVII.—How to Make a Cage for White Mice. By W. G. Campbell||410|
Music and Musical Instruments and Toys.—How to Make Them and How to Play Them.
|CHAPTER XLVIII.—Musical Glasses and the Wood Harmonicon.|
|I.—||The Glass Harmonicon||417|
|III.—||A Wood Harmonicon||420|
|CHAPTER XLIX.—Æolian Harps, and How to Make Them||422|
|CHAPTER L.—The Penny Whistle, and How to Play it. By W. J. Gordon||425|
Electricity, and How to Use it in Play and Earnest.
|CHAPTER LI.—Curiosities of Electricity. By Dr. Arthur Stradling||431|
|CHAPTER LII.—The Leyden Jar, and How to Make it||434|
|CHAPTER LIII.—The Electrical Machine, and How to Make it||437|
|CHAPTER LIV.—A Storm in a Teacup||443|
Conjurers and Conjuring—Ventriloquism and Spiritualism, etc.
|CHAPTER LV.—Mystery and Mummery; or, Houdin and the Arabs. By John Nevil Maskelyne, of the Egyptian Hall||449|
|CHAPTER LVI.—Ventriloquism, and How to Acquire the Art. By William Crompton||454|
|CHAPTER LVII.—Second Sight||457|
|CHAPTER LVIII.—Spiritualism at Home. By Dr. Stradling||470|
|CHAPTER LIX.—Fire-Balloons and Gas-Balloons: How to Make and Use them. By the late Dr. Scoffern.|
|I.—||The Principle of Ballooning||481|
|II.—||Fire-Balloons and their Construction||483|
|III.—||On Gases and Gas-Balloons||491|
|IV.—||How to prepare Hydrogen Gas||492|
|V.—||The Construction of the Balloon||493|
|CHAPTER LX.—Model Balloons and all about them. By a Professional Aëronaut and Balloon Maker||497|
|How to make a Model Balloon||503|
|CHAPTER LXI.—Smudgeography; or, How to Tell the Character by Handwriting||509|
|CHAPTER LXII.—The Ludion. By the late Dr. Scoffern||512|
|CHAPTER LXIII.—Mechanical and other Puzzles.|
|I.—||Some Mechanical Puzzles. By F. Chasemore||515|
|III.—||An Improved Ring-Puzzle. By Herr Meyer||517|
|CHAPTER LXIV.—Keeping the Balance. By the Rev. T. S. Millington, M.A.||524|
THE BOY’S OWN BOOK
INDOOR GAMES AND RECREATIONS.
That fine old Latin motto, ‘Mens sana in corpore sano’ (‘A vigorous mind in a sound body’), has stood the test of years, and happily its truth is day by day more forcibly asserting itself. The feeling is becoming general that body and mind ought to be developed to the utmost, for they are both gifts to us, divinely bestowed, and for the proper use of them we are responsible.
The benefits of judicious exercise to the human frame cannot be over-estimated. In these days of sedentary occupations, it becomes an absolute necessity, an antidote, in fact, to the labours of the brain. By its use the balance between mind and body is preserved.
Irrespective of the increased health that gymnastics impart, and the spring which they give to the mind, they possess one great advantage, namely, that they endow the gymnast with presence of mind in difficulties. In positions of danger how much better chance of escape those who have trained themselves to use their limbs will have over those who have not!
Foremost as we stand among nations, it is surprising that such indifference should have hitherto prevailed with regard to the development of the body. In many continental countries (Germany and Switzerland more especially) gymnastics form part of a boy’s education; here, at any rate until quite recently, they were indulged in only as an accessory, and often without the aid and direction of an experienced teacher. Boys are allowed to enter the gymnasium, make their own choice of apparatus (and they generally select that which requires the greatest skill), and, in imitation of some expert gymnast whose performances they have witnessed, attempt feats far beyond their strength, which can only be successfully accomplished after a systematic course of practice. The result is often positive injury, and always discouragement.
As in other things, there is no royal road to gymnastics. The learner must begin with simple and gentle exercises if he wishes to acquire a graceful and easy style, increasing them in difficulty in regular degree, according to his strength and progress. The extra time and trouble devoted to the simple exercises, in which lies the groundwork of the most ‘taking’ feats, will be acknowledged to have been well expended, and the acquirement of a cool, easy, and elegant style will prove sufficient recompense for having assiduously practised them.
The best material for dress is undoubtedly white flannel. A pair of trousers made to fit the legs tolerably closely, with plenty of room in the seat (not ‘baggy,’ of course), a close-fitting ordinary under jersey, minus the sleeves (to give freedom to the arms), and a pair of canvas shoes without heels, are all that are necessary for wear during actual practice. Add to these a loose jacket of medium thickness to slip on during intervals of rest, and you have your costume complete.
Upon the question of wearing a belt opinions are divided. Many gymnasts approve of it, and assert that it affords them support; but our view, in which we are confirmed by medical authority, is that artificial support should be avoided. All that is necessary is that the trousers should be made to fit well over the hips, with a waistband about 21⁄2 in. in width, and a strap and buckle behind. Be sure that the flannel is well shrunk (by immersion in water for about thirty-six hours) previous to making up.
Before proceeding to describe the exercises, we have a word to say with regard to the time at which they can be most beneficially practised. Let it be a golden rule never to attempt work directly after a meal. The digestive organs require time to fulfil their functions, and exercise upon a full stomach only impairs and weakens them. Food should not be taken immediately after practice; a short time—say half an hour—should elapse before eating.
It is of importance that these directions should be observed, for with impaired digestion the muscles, instead of being strengthened and developed by exercise, are really weakened and reduced, in consequence of not having received the nourishment which digestion alone can extract from food.
Light practice before breakfast may be taken with advantage, but a dry biscuit or crust of bread should be eaten on rising.
No. 1. Place the heels together, toes pointing outwards, stand perfectly upright, as at attention, chest expanded. Raise the arms, and stretch them out in front, hands open, palms touching. Keeping the hands at the same level, throw them as far behind the back as you can. Do not bend the body. Continue this exercise until you feel you have had enough.
No. 2. Stand as before. Clench the hands and throw them out in front. Bring them back sharply to the sides, throw them out again, and continue.
No. 3. Again same position. Raise the fists to the shoulders, knuckles turned outwards, strike upwards. Bring the fists down again to the shoulders.
No. 4. Extend the arms at full length on each side, hands open, palms upwards. Bend from the elbow, bringing the tips of the fingers to the shoulders, then straighten out again. This is fine exercise for the biceps.
Now combine these four exercises, doing them in succession.
No. 5. Stand with the legs a little apart, toes pointing outwards. Arms straight, and hanging in front. Describe a circle in front of you with each hand, alternately keeping the fist shut and arms perfectly straight. First one way, the hands going outwards, then the other coming inwards. Keep up this ‘windmill’ action for some time.
These extension exercises will give ease and pliancy to the arms and their joints.
No. 1. Place the hands on the hips, and stand upright, heels together. Raise each leg alternatively, as high as possible, straight out in front of you, toes pointed, leg perfectly still.
This should not be done too slowly, but with a slight swing, as in the act of kicking.
No. 2. In addition to the forward movement, swing the leg behind you, do not bend the body over, and mind your balance. Keep up this pendulum movement, first with one leg, then with the other, counting 1, 2, 3, 4. 1, leg out in front; 2, swing behind; 3, in front again; 4, foot to ground to first position; then do the same with the other leg.
No. 3. Stand as in No. 1, and throw each knee up alternately, endeavouring to strike the chest. Do not stoop forward. This exercise loosens the knee joints.
No. 4. When in the position described last, with the knee raised, throw the leg out in front, and straighten it before bringing the foot to the ground. This is part of No. 1.
No. 5. Stand as before. Now sink down slowly, as low as possible, raising the heels from the ground, knees bent at an angle, then rise again. Do this at least twenty times in succession. It will give it to you in the calves and thighs, but it is splendid exercise.
If you practise these exercises for about half an hour every day for a week you will be ready for the more advanced practice which we shall next describe.
The exercises described in the last section do not by any means exhaust the list of extension movements that can be practised. They are sufficient, however, to form a groundwork upon which the reader may begin. Many other exercises will readily suggest themselves to him during practice.
If he has a few friends who will join him in them, it will prove mutually advantageous, the exercises becoming much less monotonous by being performed in company. One should act as director, standing facing the others, and setting the exercises, counting aloud 1, 2, 3, 4, and so on.
This system is practised at all the large gymnasiums, the ‘Mass Exercise,’ as it is called, commencing the evening’s work, and forming a very pretty spectacle. This is notably the case at the German Gymnasium, King’s Cross, where frequently as many as 200 gymnasts, standing at arm’s length from each other and obedient to the word of command from the leader, who occupies a raised platform in front of them, go through the extensions in unison and perfect time. The effect is unique, and must be seen to be appreciated.
After having become accustomed to these movements, they may be practised with light dumb-bells.
The pupil having passed through the preliminaries, and moulded himself a little into shape, we now proceed to describe the exercises with apparatus. Those on the ‘horizontal bar’ being among the most strengthening of gymnastic performances, and perhaps also the most varied and attractive, we shall treat of them first.
Almost every boy is familiar with this apparatus, but for the benefit of the few who may be in ignorance, we give a drawing of it (Fig. 1).
The bar or pole should be of ash, diameter 2 inches, length 6 feet. The more expensive bars have a steel core running through the middle, in which case the diameter can be reduced to 11⁄2 inches, and the length increased to 7 feet. This size is decidedly more pleasant for use, as a firmer grip can be obtained than on the thicker bars. The height of the bar from the ground of course varies according to that of the gymnast, who should be able to touch the lower side with both hands (the tips of the fingers) when standing raised on his toes. When hanging by the hands, the toes will then just clear the ground.
Having adjusted the apparatus to the proper height, begin by
Jump up and seize the bar with both hands, knuckles upwards, the thumbs on the same side as the fingers. Remember (with the exceptions mentioned later on) never to grasp the bar as you would a broomstick, but hook the hand over it. Let the legs hang perfectly straight and together, toes pointed.
Now ‘walk’ with the hands from one end of the bar to the other, and back again. Keep the body steady and avoid swaying (Fig. 2).
Hang on the bar as before, and slowly draw yourself up, keeping the shoulders square, until the chest is level with the bar (Fig. 3).
Then lower the body until the arms are quite straight again, draw up again, and continue to practise until you can accomplish it from eight to a dozen times in succession. When breasting the bar, repeat the walk in that position.
Now try swinging forward and backward, arms straight, increasing the height with each swing until the body assumes an almost horizontal position. When at the extent of the backward swing, the hands should be shifted slightly round the bar to recover the grip which the forward swing has lessened (Fig. 4).
Now in the backward swing release your hold of the bar and launch yourself away from it with a slight push and alight on your feet. This will accustom you to leaving the bar neatly and effectively (Fig. 4A).
Draw the chest up to the bar, throw the head well back, raising the legs at the same time (keep them straight), and get the toes over the front of the bar, pulling hard with the arms (Fig. 5). This will cause you to revolve half round the bar, and will bring you into position as in Fig. 6.