How to Make Someone Float as a Magic Trick

Written by dan darling
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How to Make Someone Float as a Magic Trick
You can levitate in a magic show without the need for expensive equipment. (Brand X Pictures/Brand X Pictures/Getty Images)

Most illusions to levitate a person require expensive stage equipment that you must buy or build. The self-levitation trick, however, can be done with no equipment at all. Once you master it, you can perform it anywhere at any time.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy


    The Setup

  1. 1

    Gather your audience in a tight cluster about eight feet away from you. Tell them you want to show them something, but don't tell them exactly what. An audience of three or four is ideal. This trick requires you to control the angle from which the audience is viewing you, so make sure you have them right where they should be.

  2. 2

    Turn your back on your audience. Standing with your feet touching each other, angle your stance slightly to the left, so that the audience can see the full profile of your right foot but only the heel of your left. As you are doing this, keep glancing over your shoulder to keep a strong connection with the audience.

  3. 3

    Build suspense through body language and by delaying the trick. Spread your arms straight out to the sides, like a tightrope walker. This will give the audience the sense that you're doing something that involves height and danger. Wobble back and forth a little. This will heighten the sense of instability, while simultaneously drawing the audience's eyes down toward your feet.

    The Trick

  1. 1

    Raise yourself into the air on the toe of your left foot. Keep flat your right foot, the only one the audience can fully see. Your left foot will bend until you're standing tiptoe only on that foot. However, because your heels are firmly together, it will appear to the audience as if both feet are rising. As you stand up on your left toes, simultaneously lift your arms and shoulders. This will heighten the illusion that you're floating.

  2. 2

    Stand on your left toes for only a second or two. Any longer will allow the surprise to wear off, giving audience members time to bend down and look under your feet or otherwise change their vantage point.

  3. 3

    Lower yourself to the ground until both feet are flat. Bend a little at the shoulders and hips, as if to absorb the shock of coming back to the floor. Raise and lower yourself at the same smooth pace, but avoid jerky movements. The trick will take only four or five seconds.

  4. 4

    Turn around and take a bow.

Tips and warnings

  • You must control the position of your audience and make sure that no one will see you from the sides or front. If they do, they may spoil the trick.

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