I've been knitting and crocheting for years and for years I was pestered by a bouncing skein of yarn while I worked. But then a few years ago someone showed me how to roll a ball from the inside-out, creating a beautiful, stable ball to gather yarn from. Now I'm showing you.
Here's what we want...
And here's our skein from the store, label removed.
First, find the end of the yarn, either from the center or around the outside. At this point, do what you're most comfortable with. You can still pull from the center of skein if you can dig in and find the end of the yarn.
You might pull out a bit of a mess, but that's okay. We'll wind it up nice in a minute. Just find the end and straighten it out and get ready to wind.
Now, holding about 6" of a tail in your non-working hand, wrap the working yarn around your thumb clockwise if you're right-handed and counter-clockwise if you're left-handed.
Wind around your thumb loosely a few times when you start so that you don't cut off circulation in your thumb. Then continue to wind around consistently and tighter as you go.
As the ball gets bigger, gently turn it slightly as you go and continue to wind in the same way consistently, letting your turning guide the direction of the yarn as it winds.
When you have just one more round to wind at the end, place your finger on the ball under this last bit of yarn. Then, as you come around, tuck the end of the yarn under this piece and pull it tight to secure.
There you are! Now, pull happily from the center of your new perfect ball.