Deal/flick Cards From a Deck, With One Hand




This is a method of dealing cards by flicking them off the deck with one hand. The hand position necessary for to perform the flourish is very similar to the natural dealing position, so it's easy to flick off a couple cards in the middle of your deal.

Maybe you only have the one hand. Maybe you want to show off. Maybe you're just too cool to deal cards with both hands. Whatever the reason, this is a skill that will elevate your status from card player to master card manipulator. Okay, maybe not. Still, it's fun to do.

(See the youtube video clip)

Step 1: Mechanic's Grip

Hold the deck of cards in your hand as if to deal. (Note: instructions are left-handed, but if you want to do this with your right hand, just reverse the directions.)

The thumb rests across or near the upper left corner of the deck. The index finger supports the cards by the top edge of the deck, and the remaining three fingers grip the deck on the right edge.

Experiment with the vertical positioning of the deck. Initially, I tried holding the cards closer to the top edge, so that the lower right corner of the deck stuck out of my hand. I later found that I was able to get more leverage on the cards (later steps) when I held it in a normal mechanic's grip (dealing grip).

Step 2: Grip the Card Between Your Fingers.

With your thumb, push off the top card as if to deal, then stick your ring ("fourth") finger under that card. Pull back the thumb, bringing back the card to the squared position.

At the same time, bring the middle finger down on top of the card, pressing down on it next to the ring finger. Lift the thumb off the card, and press down on the card with your middle finger. The top right corner of the card should be pressing against the rest of the deck, causing the card to bend slightly.

Step 3: Flick!

Gently extend the ring finger under the card. The middle finger remains mostly stationary, but bears down slightly to maintain the tension on the card. The top right corner of the card bends under the pressure from the middle finger. As the ring finger extends, the card slides along the top of the deck until it slips off the deck. The card should fly off, spinning as it does so.

Step 4: Final Notes

With practice you can improve your precision, and maybe use this as a way to deal cards at a poker night. Just don't blame me if you get accused of cheating.

I have never seen this sleight anywhere else, so I'm going to claim creatorship of it since I did think it up myself. Please let me know if you know of a previously published version of this.




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    19 Discussions


    1 year ago

    I can flick 2 packs of cards in either hand because I am ambidextrous but still cool though


    2 years ago

    I find it best to hold it between your index and middle fingers, first knuckle and throw it down


    4 years ago

    Actually I think I've seen that before. Still cool!


    Actually, I'm right-handed. From what I understand, most card-folk use their "good" hand to handle/manipulate single cards, and their "off" hand to hold the deck. So most lefties prefer to hold the deck in their right hand for that reason. On the other hand (haha), most card manipulation instructions and videos are made by right-handed folk, so the deck tends to be held in the left hand. But either way works! I'm used to holding the deck in my left hand, so that's the reason for the way it is in the video. Thanks for reading/watching!

    I heard that too. Thanks for this instructable! I showed and wowed my friends with it and can now flick cards up to 15ish feet!


    8 years ago on Introduction

    I might say 'dang, this is tough. are you sure you didn't edit the video with photoshop?', but i saw Adam Savage do it, so i know it's possible :)

    1 reply

    7 years ago on Introduction

    Thanks, Bro! Been wanting to learn how to do this for a while and it is not that hard either! Nice instructable.


    9 years ago on Introduction

    Great way to deal while playing with two decks, one in each hand.


    thanx i dont think your the first to do this cause ive seen criss angel do something simalar


    11 years ago on Introduction

    The video clip does not work :( When i click play nothing happends. when i click on screen and open youtube says This is a private video. If you have been sent this video, please make sure you accept the sender's friend request. and i culnd do the deal actually

    1 reply