Jason Lee and Ann Connolly are two incredible YoYoFactory players that are traveling to far-away places and performing amazing tricks. This video showcases their trip across Cambodia and Thailand at the end of 2012. Although they have since parted ways, we hope that both of them will continue to chronicle their journeys across the world and continue to create new tricks and inspire new players across the globe.
Shu Takada‘s videos always make me pick up a pair of yoyos and start working on 2A looping tricks. And for anyone who has ever seen the damage that I do to me chest, fast, elbows, and collarbone whenever I attempt 2A, you understand just how inspired I must be to attempt what is clearly a lost cause.
This week we’re going to talk about a different sort of stall, a group of tricks I like to call “Tough Love Regens.” They’re still pauses based on catching the yo-yo mid-return and regenerating it, but are distinct from the string stalls that we’ve been talking. Where string stalls primarily involve landing the yo-yo on the string in a sort of frozen mount, tough love regens instead focus on redirecting the yo-yo using your body. Let’s take a look!
The first combo shows off two of the simplest tough love regens, trapeze and 1.5. The first one can be seen at 5 seconds in: throw a breakaway, allow the yo-yo to come back as though you were going for a trapeze stall, and then smack the yo-yo back down to restart the spin. This can be tricky at first, especially if you whack your knuckles a couple of times, but if you throw softly and focus on the yo-yo hitting your palm you should get it. The 1.5 stall can be seen around 13 seconds: it once again starts with a breakaway, but you use your free hand to intersect the string and reach over with your throwhand to slap the yo-yo. This one seems complicated if you’re not used to 1.5 stalls, but if you think about the crossover bit being like a mellower Kwijibo then it starts to come into focus. The look of this trick can really change based on where you place your hands, so make sure to play with that and to try a few different mounts.
The next two tricks are joke-y, but still worth a look. First up we got the Koopa Stomp: you throw the yo-yo, it starts to come back, you push your shoe against it and it shoots back out. Immediately after the Koopa Stomp you get the leveled-up version, Clipper Stalls, which are the same but with the other foot crossed over. Both are excellent tricks to call in Butterfly Horse, because it’s a simple concept that people understand but don’t practice, which means that sometimes they fall over and it’s hilarious. Anyways, tehse tricks are a little silly, but they give you a pretty good idea of how you can bounce the yo-yo off of different parts of your body. Rei Iwakura is a good example of how to use these sorts of moves in “serious” yo-yoing, though he goes even crazier – check out his world-winning 2012 freestyle starting around 1:20 for some wild leg/neck/arm bump action.
Trick number four with the fancy pinwheel intro looks pretty close to the trapeze stall, but has the key distinction of having frontstyle spin. As you may recall, that’s a pretty big deal in fixed axle! That means the yo-yo is winding the opposite direction up the string, so you have to catch it on the other side. Other than that, it’s just a neat little cross-armed combo showing how you can work them into your tricks.
The next trick, Stretchy Tiger, is a bit of a weird one. The “Tough Love” portion of the trick is a throw straight down into the palm, preventing the yo-yo from ever getting to sleep. In addition to being a weird visual joke, this sets up the yo-yo for a quick regen, an off-handed throw, whatever that awesome weird thing Ben Conde did in “Theory” was, or, in this case, a lil’ double rotation to trap stall.
After that, we have one from my part in Ed vs. Drew, the insta wrist wrap offhand throw. The wrist twist that sets up the wrap is usually the focus of this trick, but it serves well to illustrate the way that you can set up interesting formations, catch the yo-yo, and then use an off-hand throw to get right back into the trick. In this case, we finish up with a 2A-style wrap, something that could really make waves in responsive 1A.
The final trick shows how you can take advantage of the stall to change planes, and how horizontals can be worked in to stall tricks, and how scary responsive horizontal broadways are. The trick finishes up with a horizontal version of the back-of-the-hand stall that most people know as the “Yuuki stall”, because Yuuki Spencer famously (and awesomely) used similar stalls in ’06 to extend his combos into the stratosphere. It should be noted that while I’m presenting this as a fixed-specific lesson, there’s evidence of people doing body redirections all over the place – Yuuki’s Stall remains popular, and European players like Vashek have been using similar mid-combo stalls since ’04 or earlier. As mentioned earlier, variations can frequently be found in offstring body tricks, and 2A players do shoulder bumps & elbow stalls all the time.
Give these a try, figure out some other ways to bounce the yo-yo off of yourself, and tell everybody about it in the Facebook group.
Michael Stecz is yet another part of this wave of incredible new talent that we’re seeing take over the yoyo scene. Judging by the quality of the up-and-coming players we’re seeing so far this year, I think we can safely expect the 2013 contest season to have a lot of surprises and upsets.
Michael Stecz is an amazing 1A player from Michigan, 2012 MidEast Regional Champion and Junior Player of the Year voted online and by the National YoYo Association. At 13 he’s already dominating the contest scene, even Worlds. Watch out for more of him.
YoYo: YoYoFactory Supernova
Song: Mike Mictlan – Prizefight
The sheer volume of skill at this event is just staggering. Four diabolos at eye level…I’ll never get used to the idea of that being not only possible, but seen frequently. I don’t have a lot of details on this event in Taiwan, but it looks amazing!
The most amazing thing to me about Innovation Movement is not that two of the best players in the world have an eye for talent…it’s that they’re able to find talent that is so incredibly young with trick construction and execution that rivals far more experienced players and even World Champions. Ayumu takes familiar elements and pushes them to their next logical conclusion…while managing to leave us all in shock that we didn’t think of these conclusions ourselves. Another solid find from Innovation Movement.
Japanese yoyo star Takahiko Hasegawa was the best source of yoyo news and pictures at the 2013 International Toy Fair in New York this year, and he just posted this video tour of the YoYoFactory booth. This is our first really good look at the new Ricochet, a titanium yoyo coming soon from YoYoFactory. Release date and price have not yet been finalized, but we hear it will be available in Spring 2013 in the $200 – $300 range. And from the engraving, it appears that these will be a limited edition of only 500 pieces. Enjoy the video!
Congrats to the winners of the Amateur and Pro Divisions at the 2013 YoYoFactory Cup! Check the videos below for freestyles of 1st – 3rd place.
1st Place – 1A Pro – Igor Galiev
2nd Place – 1A Pro – Vlad Zamahaev
3rd Place – 1A Pro – Petr Aminev
1st Place – 1A Amateur – Oleg Kazanstev
2nd Place – 1A Amateur – Vladimir Lartsev
3rd Place – 1A Amateur – Stepan Koftaenko
This past weekend was the YoYoFactory Cup contest in Russia, and 98yoyo.com just dropped this great video from the event…looks like the contest was plenty of fun, with a ton of serious talent on hand.
From a cinematography point of view this video was really well done!
Starring Steiffan Mang.
Went to Downtown Dallas and filmed this. Came out amazing.
Big shout outs to Tommy for filming and editing:
Also Sammy Rith for being the Behind The Scenes photographer: