LAS VEGAS—Most of us can appreciate juggling different parts of our lives at the same time. Work, school, family, social life and hobbies make for a versatile living experience, one we’re constantly trying to rotate appropriately and keep in balance.
A repair dispatch specialist for U-Haul Company of Las Vegas West knows this better than most. Like many of his peers, he works full-time while studying for his college degree. Unlike most of us, however, he has managed to develop an off-the-job skill better than anyone in the world.
Meet Doug Sayers, world champion juggler.
A Natural Gift
Sayers has proven to be one of the best performers of his generation, but it would not have happened at all had his parents not taken him to an art show when he was 8 years old. Before the performance, jugglers offered basic juggling lessons.
“Surprisingly, it came fairly naturally,” he recalled. “I didn’t know at the time how fast I progressed, but after teaching people over the years, I realized it was pretty quick. It took me 5-10 minutes to learn how to do a trick.”
“I was doing it every chance I got … at recess, after school, at home or in the neighborhood,” Sayers laughed. “It was something fun that I just enjoyed doing.”
The Next Level
Sayers made it his goal to join the juggling elite. He continued learning more skills. Different objects. Multiple patterns. Juggling while sitting, standing, moving, even riding a unicycle.
“My favorite items to juggle are the juggling clubs,” Sayers admitted. “They’re so versatile. You can roll them on your body. It just has a different effect than most things because they flip and can rotate many different ways.”
Armed with a full arsenal of tricks, Sayers placed first in the intermediate ball category at the 2005 World Juggling Federation.
In all, Sayers boasts five world championship titles, as well as a slew of well-watched YouTube clips of his performances.
As thrilling and rewarding as center stage has been, Sayers found himself wanting to solidify his future.
“I’ve been juggling for so long, I didn’t have much of a résumé for real work,” he admitted. “I wanted to start somewhere and build up my business skills and my résumé.”
Repair Dispatch Manager Mike Hart said Sayers’ intent to solidify his career clinched the decision to give him the job.
“He was committed to a full-time career,” Hart said. “Knowing what he was doing working part-time with customers at a U-Haul Store, it made me feel like this guy was committed. I was astounded when I found out about the juggling!”
For his part, Sayers believes juggling his life is far different than doing the same with lifeless objects. With the latter, he asserts that rhythm and the pattern as a whole are what matter. When it comes to everyday commitments, Sayers prefers to keep his eye on one ball at a time.
“Honestly, I focus on one thing at a time as much as possible even though I’m doing so many things at once,” Sayers explained.
With that approach, it’s a good bet Sayers won’t be dropping the ball anytime soon.
What’s the most amazing thing you’ve seen Doug or anyone else juggle? Tell us about it in the comments section.