Isaac Sams & Zach Gormley have had a big year. The two sixteen-year-olds have been blowing minds at contests for a few years, but made waves in 2012 by launching Innovation Movement, a project based on furthering yo-yo tricks through exclusive videos and player spotlights.
Things only went up from there, with Isaac earning top marks at Triple Crown Chicago, his first 1A championship title, and Zach winning the US National Yo-Yo Contest with one of the best freestyles the country’s ever seen.
Besides that, though, America’s favorite young guns are also best buds, great trick theorists, and the nice kind of fellas you wish your little sister would meet. I caught up with the dynamic duo and got them to talk a little bit about favorite players, good tricks, and the future of Innovation Movement. –Drew Tetz
Hey dudes! Thanks so much for being the first Yoyonews interview, I’m psyched.
Zach Gormley: I’m really pumped! Thanks a bunch for thinking about us.
Isaac Sams: WOOP WOOOOP. I’ll try to make my explanations as short as I can, but sometimes I cant help myself I just LOVE YO-YOZ.
Let’s start out with an easy one: Who are some of your favorite players, and why?
Isaac: I have way too many favorite yo-yo people, so here’s my favorite three.
#1: Sid Seed: He’s been my favorite ever since I watched Kaibun for the first time, back in the day. When I think of words like innovation, style, icy, sexy, and perfection, I think of my brotha, $id. No one has tricks like him, and nobody ever will. Rodrigo Sid Seed Pires = KING
#2: Zach Gormley: #2 on my favorites list but #1 in my heart is my dude Zach. This fella won nationals doing the most difficult tricks ever seen on stage. In regards to arm tricks, it comes down to him and Ando. In my honest opinion, Zach is the best all around player at the moment.
#3: Yuuki Spencer: Needs no explanation.
Zach: Anthony – The trick artist; He makes bizarre elements you would never think of, and gets them to look good, too, it’s not just weird nonsense. He’s not just good at body tricks, he’s good at everything. The videos he put up in 2008 are still way better than pretty much anyone who is big right now.
Charles – His flow is unreal and his motions are on top of the worlddd. Plus, his typical “cool guy” stage presence makes his performances very swanky.
Isaac – Best buddy. Swell guy. Tech Master. Straitjacket King. Kendama pro. Super unique player, need I say more? He’s got some baller floral shirts, too, paired with those Escolar shoes… cough Triple Crown Champ cough
Shinnosuke Miyamoto – On Yuuki’s genius tech level with his own unique flow. Show him one of my tricks and he does it from the wrong mount somehow some way. Tell him it’s done from a different mount, and he does it with no explanation needed.
Tatsuya Fujisaka – Just like this guy’s tech as well. Tech is my weak point when it comes to getting me to like people. Handsome fella and nice flow.
No particular order, of course.
What does your trick/combo creation process usually look like?
Zach: Oh man, trick creation is kind of a nightmare, haha.
Isaac: I list segments/elements/concepts that I stumble on, and eventually try to piece together combos with them. I never force myself into creating a new trick, because I feel like my best tricks are made when I’m not trying. One tip I would give to any yo-yoer who’s having trouble making up new tricks is to take a break from learning and start creating.
Zach: Yeah, that all sounds good.
Isaac: I could’ve drawn out my answer lots more but I don’t want people to find out that I’m crazy.
Zach: When I stumble across a good element I typically make 2 or 3 variations of the element itself and pick the best so the element can reach its full potential. From there, I look at starting and ending mounts of different tricks/elements and piece them together like a puzzle – say one of my elements I notice ends in double or nothing, so I look at another trick and if I see it starts with a double or nothing I’ll put them together to make a combo that flows well and is good for comps.
The question is always brought up on how you stumble upon a good element/trick (use stumbleupon, duh.) I think that people that are stuck in a slump just never change what they are doing when they try and come up with something, thus nothing changes. It’s like saying you want to sell more shoes but change nothing about your shoes/marketing to get people excited for it. So what I recommend for coming up with elements is to push yourself out of your comfort zone. Use mounts you normally wouldn’t, and try and mimic a motion you would normally do in a trapeze in a double or nothing instead. Maybe yo-yo outside instead of inside, that tends to help me a lot. Lastly, take a break. I don’t know why it works, but taking a break really helps you come up with new tricks. You start with a kind of fresh mind set, I guess haha.
What do you think makes a good trick?
Isaac: I think a good trick (or even routine) should be in a similar structure as an essay, and I think I learned that from Zach, who learned it from Sebby – shout out to one of my favorite yo-yoers and people in the yo-yo community, btw. An introduction that catches attention, and then leads to the climax of the trick. I’ve learned that it’s very important to end your trick well, instead of just easily dismounting and binding.
Zach: Yeah, the words of Sebby, haha. That’s what I tried working with in my Nats freestyle, so it worked pretty well.
Let’s talk about InnMov: you guys had an amazing first year with a ton of great videos. What were some of your favorite moments from this year, and what are some of your plans for next year?
Isaac: Most of my favorite moments revolve around the beginning of IM, when Zach and I began making an outline of what our project was going to be. Asking you to make the logo, featuring players like Mark Mangarin and Ivan Maslin, creating a Facebook page, and making our first clip videos were important factors of the movement. Seeing Zach win nationals was pretty awesome too, since I’ve known that rascal since ’07, and I watched him go through that routine on Skype at least 1,000 times.
Zach: I don’t know if 1,000 times is quite accurate. More like 15, hahaha. But let’s just keep it at 1,000.
Isaac: Hahaha, whatever Zach, somewhere in-between. As far as future plans go, we’d like to make contest clip videos, spiffy interviews, IM accessories (omg stickers and more), and even apparel. By this coming spring, we’re going to host an online contest, so be sure to watch out for that…
So excited to see the things to come. It’s pretty rad that you two are such good friends, your split video from this summer was easily one of my favorites of the year. How has yo-yoing with each other affected your own personal yo-yoing?
Isaac: Thanks dawg, things only gon’ get betta now. Hopefully next summer’s video will be even better muahaha (#hype.)
Zach: Every time Isaac makes a new video I crap my pants, and he makes a lot of new videos. So I quite frequently have to do the laundry. Isaac is just mind blowing at tech. if you look at some of my newer tech tricks, you can find some Isaac-inspired things in 1 or 2 of ’em.
Isaac: Since Zach’s been doing so well at contests lately, it makes me feel obligated to do the same to stay caught up, haha. Although I don’t think my tricks really look like it, a lot of them, especially bangers/arm tricks, are inspired by him.
In closing, what do you want to see in yo-yoing in 2013?
Isaac: I’d like to see IM grow, Zach win Worlds, and Duncan Crew take over the world!
Zach: Haha, CLYW is gonna take over the community, you can go ahead and take over the world.
Zach is sponsored by CLYW, and his signature yo-yo the Arctic Circle is already on its fourth run. Isaac is a member of Duncan Crew USA. I like to call them “Duke Sams & Count Gormley” but I don’t know if they actually respond to that or not.