Overhead Crack

Do not attempt to crack a whip until you have read the Safety Instructions

Karen Quest Overhead Crack Quicktime movie (298k)of Karen Quest doing an overhead crack.



1) swing the whip in a circle over your head. Don’t swing too fast, just enough so that the whip is airborne and straight. MAJOR WARNING: Have enough clearance on all sides!!!

2) When the tip of the whip is behind you and a little to the right, (assuming you’re right-handed) cease the circular motion, and instead bring you arm forward, as if casting a fishing line. Try to aim off to the right a little.

3) As the whip starts coming forward, make sure you snap that wrist.

This method gives me the loudest pop of all the ones I can do. I’m not sure I’ve explained it well, but without my whip being handy, I can’t analyze it any better. Additional comments: Make sure you throw off to the side somewhat. This will make the whip miss your head, which is important.



To learn the Overhead, you should fully understand how the Forward Cut works and what it looks like. The Overhead is the same thing as the Forward Cut, except that it is in a different plane (over your head). Look at the Forward Cut from the side (as if you are looking at someone else doing it). We will be looking at a right-handed whip artist and we are standing to his right side looking at his shoulder. Now imagine a clock face with his shoulder as the spot where the clock’s hands connect at the center. Let’s review the Forward Cut: His hand is down at 6 with the whip trailing off to our left (behind him). He raises his arm up to 12, pauses a microsecond to let the tip come around behind him to create that all-important loop in the whip, then reverses his arm forward to 3. His arm has traveled in an arc. That arc lies ON a plane that runs from front to back.

Now tilt that plane up over his head and look down from above him (keep your point of reference from his right side). He lifts his arm up and starts spinning the whip around over his head like a cowboy spinning a lariat. His elbow is now at the center of that clock face with the 6 off to his right, 12 off to his left and 3 straight ahead. Now as he swings the whip past 6 (going counterclockwise) over his head, when his arm is pointing to 12 he pauses for a microsecond to let the tip come around behind him to begin to create that all-important loop in the whip, he reverses his arm back along the clock face in a clockwise direction down to the 3. The loop in the whip passes over your head and elbow and pops out to the right. Don’t pull your hand down, follow through out to the right.

You must keep the speed up during the swing or the whip will droop down behind you and when you reverse direction to 3 o’clock, the whip will go forward directly into the back of your neck or arm. Also, if you pull the whip down instead of throwing it out ahead of you it will hit you in the shoulder or head. Aim high.

Now aren’t you anxious to get out there and try this one (heh heh heh)?

2 Responses to Overhead Crack

  1. Ethan says:

    I got a 10ft bull whip last year as a present from my family and i am just starting to use it. i can easily get the foreward crack but the overhead crack i just can get figured out without whiping myself on the top o the head or the shoulder. Do you have any more advice on doing this because i cant figure it out right now. Thank you and have a good day.

    • Andrew says:

      Practice keeping the wip in a horizontal plane above your head, both clockwise and anticlockwise. Now you just have to change from one to the other without bringing your arm down.

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