The biggest request I’ve had for 5A May thusfar is for some more fixed axle freehand, which is unfortunately really freakin’ hard. Fortunately, I felt so pumped from watching Japan Nationals that I got off my butt and came up with these two tricks. Trick number one is a kickflip suicide juggle, and the second is a kickflip inside of an e-fan caught in a 2or0. Enjoy!
Welcome to Fixed Sunday! Sincerest apologies on the lateness, but we’re back with your weekly dose of fixed axle features. Before we get into the column, I’d like to call a little attention to two great recent entries to the fixie canon, Alex Curfman’s “One-Hand Wonder” clip and Ed Haponik’s “Mystic Dumps” trick. On with the show!
This week has a mix of concepts, but is intended to be a follow-up to my “Mystics” clip for LSFC last week, so you might want to check that out also. Before we get into the tech-y stuff, though… foot start to bucket stall! Preloading a mount and then propelling a dead yo-yo into it with your foot is a fun trick to add to your arsenal, simply because it’s one of the rare moves that’s easier to perform while sitting down.
The second trick in the video is what we’re calling a “mystic”, a gentle cousin to the kickflip transition and the dumptruck. The basic idea behind a mystic is to swing a stalled yo-yo off-plane so that it is turned upside-down and dumped onto another string. It seems like a fairly logical followup to dumptruck dismounts, but planebreaking transitions are still fairly unexplored terrain, so while traces of the trick were floating around there wasn’t really a name for it until Ed put out “Mystic Dumps”. This trick sums up the concept of flipping from one mount to another very succintly while simultaneously paying tribute to Paul Escolar’s classic magic drop trick, and I highly recommend learning it.
Having said that… I personally find mystic dumps a lot harder than the trick in this video, which is a mystic from a double or nothing stall to an inverted trapeze stall, so if you have a hard time sticking the landing on Ed’s try this one out. Throw a double or nothing stall, and then swing the whole formation forward as though you were going to kickflip or dumptruck out of it. As the yo-yo gets to be about horizontal, curl your non-throwhand finger and point both your hands in towards your body to guide the yo-yo onto the back string. This transition takes a little time to get the feeling of, but is a great way to mix up your stall transitions.
If you’ve already advanced past both mystic dumps and 2or0 mystics, trick #3 might amuse you: it uses the same chopsticks truck as my first trick in DCUS Chillin’, but lands on the string instead of dismounting, which somehow sets up a reverse GT stall. Trippy! Ten points to the first person to kickflip a reverse GT…
The trick at 30 seconds is a fun, silly whip. If you’ve been looking to get into stall whips but don’t know where to start, this one features a fairly easy setup and a nice delay before the landing. It opens with a 2or0 stall, followed by a dunk, which sets a ripcord up on the string for the whip. Take your non-throwhand finger out of the loop and whip the string around your throwhand into the gap… which is conveniently held in place with your free hand, because stalls let you do that. I enjoy this trick because it’s based off of the modern 1A grind/whip formula, but the “grind” portion is actually made much easier by stalls.
Next in line is another technical mystic, this time based on an old Jason Lee chopsticks combo (referenced also in Imperialism.) The opening sequence can be a little confusing: mount trapeze stall, and cross the string over your thumb as you dismount, which creates a wrap around your thumb as you mount a trapeze-bro stall. This trick departs from the other combos when you mount back in a stall over your thumb, at which point you swing back to the back string (as in 2or0 mystics) and then perform a second mystic onto the middle string, which puts you in that weird “i’m not actually a bucket” mount. My personal favorite thing to do upon landing a stall in this mount is actually another Jason Lee masterpiece, “wiggly thing”, though my wiggles aren’t as clean as his… but you can also dismount or do whatever.
The final combo is a recent favorite, “Boyfriendcat loves Sea Glass.” It opens with a pinwheel that lets me launch vertically before a 2or0 chopsticks stall, which adds a nice touch of drama. Dismounting to behind the head zines and then cross-armed 1.5 stall is a bread & butter combo for me, but it gets spiced up a bit when it’s swung upwards and pushed out into a horizontal pinwheel, naturally continued into a UFO. The benefit of launching from a 1.5 instead of a trapeze is that the string is naturally set up for a whip, and I put my concentration face on to catch the UFO in a horizontal whip… phew!
Anyways, that’s it for this week. Thanks for letting me be late. Beat’s available to download free on my Soundcloud. Go watch Mystics. Okay.
Werrd Wrecking Crew member Alex Curfman takes a break from 3A to drop this sizzling fixed axle clip. As you might gather from the title, the focus is on one-handed tricks, and there’s a pretty good mix of clever things to try at home (UFO to arm bump!) and terrifyingly technical feats never seen before (horizontal thumb stall recapture, and a one-handed shuvit?!) Check it out!
Drew Tetz throws down a bunch of crazy, plane-bending stall transitions in his newest video clip. Looks like he’s using a Duncan Butterfly and a Duncan Strix.
This Fixed Friday, we’re keeping it short & sweet with a little something for everybody—or, at least, one or two tricks for a very specific type of person. Double regens, double trapeze, and the double scary snapstart to flinch. Let’s take a look!
The opening trick is probably the easiest to learn out of this batch, a simple pinwheel-based repeater to transition between a cross-armed 1.5 stall and a split-bottom stall. One of the first stall combos that most people learn is the trapeze>trapeze brother repeater, and this could be looked at as a continuation on that theme. This trick should be fairly straightforward, provided that you’re comfortable with the mounts, just try and focus on controlling the regeneration through the pinwheel and land on the proper strings. While it’s not that impressive on its own, I have sung and will continue to sing the praises of these particular mounts and highly recommend adding them to your stall mixup combos.
We’ll follow up that stall staple with something a little further outside the box: thumb start to flinch. If you’re not familiar with Flinch, it’s a high risk thumb stall that Ed Haponik likes to do, noteworthy because you gotta catch it directly above your face for it to count. Doing it in one motion from a thumb start is a good way to mix it up, and also a good way to knock your teeth out if you’re using a heavy unresponsive yo-yo. Practice your thumb starts to reverse lunar landings and then move your head in the way when you’re ready. Become the envy of your friends!
Another mount I wanted to explore this week is the inverted undermount stall, seen immediately after the trapeze in the next combo. This mount had an increased burst of popularity with the advent of Ando’s arm tricks, but is somewhat finickier with stalls because of the tendency to turn the yo-yo. One neat thing it sets up, though, is the cross-armed dumptruck seen in slow motion here. This can set up in split bottom, a repeater, or any number of things… but the dumptruck is the cool part, so who cares?
Next up, we have velvet stalls. Now, legit fixed axle 3A tricks are probably still a ways off, but we do have this mount in the meantime. Since velvet rolls is basically double braintwister, it opens with a double throw and the right hand mounting an undermount stall. Your yo-yos should be responsive enough that the mount triggers the other yo-yo’s return, at which point you roll backwards and mount it in an under mount stall on its own string. Seem complicated? Unfortunately, it’s harder than it looks… but once you get the hang of spacing your hands out properly and hit it a few times, it starts to fall into place.
The next trick is kind of a conglomeration of weird orphan elements, so I don’t know how to talk about it too much, but Nate’s pocketwatch element sets up surprisingly well for Sebastian’s “hammer time” element.
Double trapeze stall is actually considerably easier than the velvet stall, but looks really scary because everything happens all at once. Actually, I shouldn’t say “looks”; it IS really scary because everything happens all at once. You’re going to want a solid grip on double trapeze before even attempting it, but if you’re a 3A player, I highly recommend giving it a shot ’cause looping out feels awesome. Though everything still seems just barely out of reach, there’s plenty of theoretical craziness that could come out of this: double trapeze-bro stalls, double dumptrucks, double kickflips?!
I’d like to end this clip with a classic: the super disco regen. This one is a lot of fun, not too difficult, and fits into combos between throws, so I definitely think it’s worth learning. It plays off of the multiple whip concept you see in contest laceration tricks so often where you rotate your hand around the yo-yo extra times for an element, but in this case the element just happens to be a regen. Basically: throw a soft frontstyle throw, tug the yo-yo back, and when it gets near the top of the string circle the yo-yo with your hand. It takes a little bit of practice throwing soft and getting the “hangtime” necessary, but it feels great, so do it! Suckers. Oh yeah, and if that’s a little too easy, you can always go for the triple that I hit at the end… that’s on you!
Welcome to your weekly dose of fixomania! Let’s talk about flippin’ out.
Flip tricks are a fairly new element, borne out of the realization that a stalled yo-yo need not stay in a single plane the way a spinning yo-yo does. They could be seen as cousins to the suicide, because the meat of the trick is throwing and catching a loop of string, with the crucial difference being that the motion of the loop comes from the stalled yo-yo rotating off-axis. The foundational flip tricks were created on fixed axle yo-yos, and the high-walled responsive nature of fixies may make them easier to learn on, but as Ed pointed out last week these concepts can be applied to bearings just as easily. (Speaking of applying responsive concepts to modern play, did everybody catch Alexis JV’s crazy new video? Holy smokes!)
The first trick in the video is the one that started it, the kickflip suicide. Catch the yo-yo in a trapeze stall, swing it forward, and release the string when the yo-yo is roughly horizontal. With practice, you should be able to send the yo-yo into a controlled flip with the string loop following behind so that when the yo-yo comes back around you can catch the loop on your finger. This is probably the easiest flip trick to learn, as the concept is fairly straightforward, but the execution can admittedly be a little tricky at first; make sure your string tension is good, try to get as big a loop as possible, and GO SLOW. I find this trick gets way easier when I try to focus on moving the yo-yo through a long, slow, graceful flip. It helps you build your control, and gives you more time to stick the landing.
Any readers familiar with skateboard tricks should be able to guess the next trick: heelflips. These are basically “reverse kickflips” where you flip the string towards you instead of away from you—a little bit easier said than done, but made simpler if you turn your hand towards yourself for the catch. I showed this trick earlier this month in our Imperialism column where I did the whole thing from an inverted trapeze stall rather than a normal trapeze stall; this makes throwing the loop a lot easier, in my opinion, but the mount may be more difficult, so really just see what works best for you.
The FS (“Frontside”) Flip is a new one, and definitely a little bit more advanced. As the yo-yo moves through a kickflip, bring your throwhand around the yo-yo as though you’re doing a 360. There’s definitely a trick in timing your hand to properly follow the rotation of the yo-yo, but it’s enormously satisfying once you land it. If you get the hang of this one, try rotating the opposite direction for a backside flip, or get even crazier with a frontside heel.
Shuvits are the newest addition to the flip trick family. Where the kickflip flips the yo-yo forward, shuvits push the yo-yo in a flat spin, which is a bit of an exciting mix-up. While it’s possible to throw a shuvit from a straight stall, it’s much more fun to pre-load the spin by swinging the stalled yo-yo to the side and twisting the string up. When the yo-yo starts to untwist, spread the loop with your fingers and throw it around the axis of rotation. It takes a little practice to see where the loop is going to end up, but once you can catch it at the end of a 360 you feel like a genius. I personally think that sticking a clean landing with no extra twists is the most satisfying, but there’s a certain joy in catching it and letting it continue to twist, and Rafael even suggested that you could let it twist back into a reverse shuvit(!) I find it helps a lot to move your throwhand up above the yo-yo so that the loop can move more cleanly.
Okay… those are some of the foundation tricks. Now, we’ll have a short interlude with a stalled magic drop (more on that later!) and get into some new stuff.
First off, the mach-5 whip flip. This was hinted at in the Whips installment of FF but was way too hard at the time for me to actually hit (haha.) Basically, you set up a houdini mount, throw a kickflip suicide, and whip the thumb loop horizontally around your hand to catch the yo-yo as you complete the suicide. Definitely a precision trick, but immensely satisfying when you stick it. One million internet points to the first person who can show me this whip with a shuvit…
Next in the advanced concepts, we got a shuvit 180 drop suicide. This trick is a tribute to the era when Yuuki was doing all these super sick drop suicides and all I could ever learn was the 2or0 to 1.5 drop. Sorry buddy!.. but I digress. The setup is a double or nothing, which is immediately followed by twisting the yo-yo to setup for a shuvit. As soon as the yo-yo launches, you’re going to move your non-throwhand up as though you’re supporting a trapeze-brother and get your throwhand in position to catch the loop as it rotates around. When you catch it, the yo-yo should be stalled on the opposite side, which lends itself to all kinds of tech applications.
Finally, the Kwijibo Flip. This trick was teased in my FACoatW Warmup column, but I think this version (without flipping your hands over) works a little better. Kickflipping from trapeze to 1.5 isn’t too tough… 1.5 to 2or0, well, I encourage you all to try it!
This should keep your hands full for the weekend, but if you want some more flip tricks to practice, you might want to check out these tricks from Alex Curfman, Malcolm Chiu, and of course the Fixed Friday archives. Ed recently responded to the shuvit with a varial flip, something I’ve been totally unable to hit thusfar. Happy throwing, everybody!
Welcome back to Fixed… Saturday? Okay, I’m a little late this week, but I got some tricks to make up for it. Let’s take a look:
We’ve got a bit of hodgepodge this week, trickwise, but hopefully that means there’s something for everybody to learn. I opened up with a recent favorite move, “Pocketwatch with Extra Pocket,” a cheeky hybrid of Nate Sutter’s phenomenal Pocketwatch trick (discussed more in the DCUS FF article) and demonstrator classic Bank Deposit. This is a different entrance to Pocketwatch than what Isaac showed last time: rather than catching in your non-throwhand, you start to throw a 1.5, catch it back in your throw hand, and pull the string tight with your free hand. This cuts down a bit on the finger pain, and is also useful for setting up moves like this simple bouncy combo. The real highlight of the trick, though, is the drop into the pocket (a move accentuated best with a corny joke.) Swing hard to dislodge the snag, loop out, and bust some more sweet dance moves to celebrate.
Next on the chopping block we got another followup to a trick in the DCUS column, this time taking on Hank’s loop to triangle. The offhand loop wrap is a valuable weapon in the 2A arsenal, but not always the easiest first wrap to learn. I’ve been spending a lot more time throwing Duncan Imperials lately and strongly believe in the potential of mixing up looping tricks with string tricks, and this is a fairly easy trick that can really help your offhand regen mix-ups. Start with a frontstyle throw over your finger and then start a planet hop, but when the yo-yo returns twist your finger around the string so as to loop it back out. Use this hand to control the loops, maybe land in a split-bottom stall, boom!
I asked the Fixed Friday Facebook group what people wanted to learn and one of the requests was for wrist mount stalls. Jacob Jensen recently reminded me about Shawn Fumo’s extraordinary Wrist Mount Project video, so in the spirit of Mr. Fumo, here are a few variations on the wrist mount stall for you to learn.
First, the most basic: throw lightly and navigate the strings carefully to get into a wrist mount stall, then dunk the strings and dismount like the end of spirit bomb to dissolve to a trapeze stall. The fact that the yo-yo isn’t spinning can muck things up occasionally, but hopefully muscle memory will guide you through. The next sequence is debatably even simpler, though not necessarily easier: after mounting, open the strings back up and hop the yo-yo up through the gap. While this one takes some practice, it’s very satisfying to use the wind of the stall to continue into a regen. After that, we have a variation on the first exit that minimalizes yo-yo wobbliness and adds in a bit of fancy arm movin’ to boot… but really all you’re doing is using your non-throwhand to mount the yo-yo on the string behind the wrist mount.
The next trick with the black Imperial is actually fairly tech: throw into the wrist mount, but instead of landing on the string, let the yo-yo pass on the outside and mount on your non-throwhand finger. You should be in a variation of the kink mount; don’t drop those throwhand strings unless you want a knot! My favorite exit for this is a little tricky, but very satisfying: dismount from the stall and use the momentum to maneuver the yo-yo up through the gap, undoing the kink and looking like the craziest flyaway ever. If you have a really responsive yo-yo you can loop out at the top, but if not you can try to catch it in a trapeze or whatever.
The move after this is an original one seen briefly in the DCUS video, a variation on dumptrucks through the wristmount; basically, open up the kink with your non-throwhand, turn the whole formation over, and kick the yo-yo out the bottom and back to your hand. Following that, we have an advanced variation on the bounce house trick from our “Huh? Wha?” FF segment: get in the wrist mount, pop the stalled yo-yo up into the top string, and bounce the yo-yo down and out. I end the wrist mount mini-extravaganza with a sketchy attempt at stall spirit bomb, if anybody can do it better go ahead and show me.
The next trick explores one of my recent favorite moves, the frontstyle pinwheel into shoot the moon. Pinwheeling out of a frontstyle throw gets the yo-yo right above your head and slightly in front of you, which lets you power into one of those awesome-feeling shoot the moons that passes right between your arms while barely missing your face, hopefully. It’s a little scary, and even scarier when you connect it to a behind the head stall, but I gotta do what I gotta do. The trick after that takes the danger quotient down a notch with a fairly safe & silly behind the back pocketwatch sequence that more or less speaks for itself.
The next trick in the video is fairly “tech,” in the sense that it may be too subtle to look new, but… heelflip suicides! You’re probably all familiar with kickflip suicides by now, this is their slightly more finicky younger brother, distinguished by the loop rotating the opposite direction. Throwing a loop towards your body is a little more awkward than throwing it away from your body, but I’ve found you can make it a little easier by turning your non-throwhand towards yourself for a gorilla-style stall. It can be frustrating, but really quite rewarding once you hit it.
Speaking of kickflip suicides, somebody else asked for some fixed 5A this week, so I threw in a little tribute to Singapore next: Dice thru triangle kickflips. It definitely looks like a banger, but if you’ve ever hit the original DTT then you probably have the counterweight skills necessary to hit it—just focus on getting a big floaty loop and you’re golden.
After that, a brief return to shoot the moon land: continuing the idea of “broadway shoot the moon”, a terrifying concept that Ed & Bryan got surprisingly comfortable with at Worlds, this trick has you following the yo-yo from a shoot the moon into an undermount stall… except, you have to turn your body 180 to catch it. Yikes! Watch your head, but do give it a try.
The final trick uses the most gratuitous unnecessary slomo yet, but I wanted to get all the way to the end of the song, so WHATEVER. This combo is a tribute to Jason Lee’s first chopsticks combo in Glasslab Experiment 006, one of my favorite combos ever. It opens with a dumptruck-type motion that transitions the yo-yo from the finger to the thumb, stalls over on the other hand like a trapeze-bro, then mounts back on the finger. After the final hop, I like to let the twists naturally unwind themselves, which might be construed as laziness, but hey! That ain’t happening on a spinning yo-yo, so I’ll count it as “using my tools to my advantage.”
Thanks for tuning in to this extra-long installment of Fixed Friday! I used Duncan Butterflies and Imperials. As always, post any questions in the comments, download the song off of my Soundcloud, connect with other afixianados on the FF Facebook and the Yoyoexpert fixie megathread, and have a great weekend.
Greetings, Fixed Axle Fanatics! Welcome to another glorious friday, and another clip from your friends at Yoyonews. As an extra special treat, this week those friends are more than just me! We’ve got some of Duncan Crew USA’s finest throwing down fixed axle knowledge—let’s take a peek, shall we?
First up to the plate, we’ve got Isaac Sams bringing his own unique twist to Nate Sutter’s “Pocketwatch” trick (which you can see in both the FACoatW finals and his alternative freestyle). This unique move captured the attention of plenty of top players at Worlds ’13 with its counterintuitive (yet brilliant!) method of stopping the yo-yo halfway down the string. This is normally considered a snag, but when used intentionally (as Isaac does here for a shortened somersault before entering 2or0) it can really mix up your tricks. What makes pocketwatch even better is how simple it is to learn: catch the yo-yo in your non-throwhand as it’s responding, give it a good hard yank, and then let that baby twirl.
I bump the tech level up for the next combo, which utilizes dump trucks to maneuver between more technical mounts. It opens with one of my favorite chopsticks stalls—I don’t know if it really has a name, as it’s just landing between the non-throwhand thumb/finger after a double or nothing, but I call it “ice cream cone”. I call a lot of tricks that, I guess. The trickiest part of this trick is swinging the yo-yo forward into a chopsticks dump truck, which puts a kink in the string. We get rid of the kink with another dump truck through the bucket before entering a reverse bucket with yet another dump truck. So many trucks!!
World Champion Hank Freeman brings us back to reality and shows that you don’t need string hits for tough tricks with his newest signature move, “The Turbo Rotary Hankinator.” (I name most of Hank’s tricks, btw.) If you wanna try this, just start with a shoot the moon down under, but when you get to the punches turn 180 degrees each rep. You’ll never stop punching! Just like Hank.
Takeshi has something very special this week, showing once again why he’s one of the best modders in the world with a fixed axle Exit 8. He powers through one of his signature 1A combos, a decidedly new school twist on the fixie formula, and proves that wood & metal yo-yos can live in harmony.
Isaac shows us more unconventional uses of the pocketwatch with a trick that could be considered even stall-ier than normal stalls, a pocketwatch to thumb mount. This trick is great because it’s simple, immediately understandable… but still challenging and entertaining. Dig the pacing.
The next trick that I show in the video is actually an ingenious technique for kickflip suicides pioneered by five time national offstring champ, Bryan Figueroa. Before you throw the suicide, if you wrap a bind of string around the axle, the loop will hang on through anything—clearly demonstrated by my even-sloppier-than-usual knee bonk suicide catch. You do have to keep an eye out for the yo-yo twisting around after the wrap, but if you’re the kind of player who likes risky tricks with big rewards and you want to take your kickflips to the next level, it’s definitely worth learning.
Hank takes it back to 2A town with possibly one of the first tricks ever to include both a loop wrap and a green triangle. The loop wrap (using your non-throwhand wrist to control loops) is an invaluable regen tool, but Hank kicks it up a notch by using the wrist twist to create a triangle and catch the yo-yo in a stall. Daaang! Bust this one out on all your friends for butterfly horse, they’ll be salty.
My last trick in the video is another dumptruck-heavy tech trick, titled “Peanut Butter Loves Honey.” This one opens with a wristmount stall, turns it upside-down, and after remounting into a fake bucket goes into some hyperspeed knee bounces.
Finally, Isaac closes out the fixed portion of the clip with a burly variation on his wrist magic drop straight into a thumb stall. Gnarly! Stick around after the credits for some bonus bearing booty from the boys, and don’t forget to comment below about your favorite tricks. Oh, and you can download the song here if you’d like. Until next week, Fixed Axle Aficinados!
Kyle Nations rings in Fixed Friday with yet another crazy Duncan Butterfly edit, totally blowing us away in the process. Kyle packs an impressive amount of content into two minutes, split evenly between wacky head-scratchers (tricks we can only assume are named “too much rock for one hand”, “son of thriller”, and “windmill jam to bowling ball”) and crazy conceptual fixed axle bangers. That sequence at 30 seconds has to be the longest and most technical Butterfly combo ever captured on camera.
As awesome as his bearing-defying slacks & bends are, the real breath of fresh air is how fun the video is. There are plenty of videos that make you want to practice your competition combos, but the real gems are the ones that make you wanna go outside and do loops in the sunshine. I’m gonna go work on my Son of Thriller, see you guys later.
Hello again, fixie faithful, and welcome back to another installment of Fixed Friday. This week we’re taking a look at a hodgepodge of maneuvers with no common thread beyond being bearingless… but isn’t that the joy of the fixed axle community?! We’ll get back to the group hug later, in the meantime let’s check out the tricks.
The first trick is actually maybe the hardest in the video, but also one of the most rewarding due to being a fusion of string trick techiness and responsive stall zippiness. The mount is based heavily on the 2or0 chopsticks stall that you may have learned in our Crisis installment, but keeps the throwhand more involved; basically, you’re going to throw a double or nothing, but spread your finger & thumb the first time the yo-yo comes around your non-throwhand so that the next time it comes around you can land between them. This can be tricky if you’re not experienced with chopsticks! I definitely recommend practicing it with a spinning yo-yo before trying to catch it as a stall. The fun part of the trick, though, is moving your throwhand (which is still holding a string) underneath the yo-yo and pulling down like a pulley trick to launch the yo-yo out of the mount—in this case, launching out initiates a regeneration, which I personally like to send into a Makin’ da Zines and transition right back into the trick. This trick is in the “little kid dropping their ice cream cone” family (along with Ice Cream on the Moon and Kid Cone), so in further tribute to Seth Peterson I like to call this trick “Lactose-Free French Fry Ice Cream.”
Next trick is a bit of a silly one: z-axis rolls to dumptrucks. One of the best parts of stalls is breaking out of the mindset that yo-yos stay stable and only move on one plane… while this trick is kind of silly, it’s also easy and fun, and using the momentum of the swing to continue into an upside-down dismount shows that it could have potential in the middle of “real” stall somersault combos. And who doesn’t like weird spinny things?
The next trick is a simple leg wrap behind the back stall combo. Now, I say “simple”, but as with any behind the back trick it has the potential to be totally obnoxious if you miss. I recommend learning the btb braintwister stall at :38 in “The Butterfly Video” as a primer for this if you’ve never done a btb stall before, but the turn and reset is one of my bread & butter moves to show nonyoyoers so I’ll stand by that, too. Under the moon to spin move out is optional.
Next up is more or less a string trick combo, but it’s good to remember that those can be done on responsive yo-yos, too. The most useful move to pick up out of this is probably the “monster tickler dismount” that happens at 32 seconds: from a trapeze, do that cross-armed dismount Kohta & Yuuki make look so good, but let the yo-yo start responding so you can catch it in a stall when you uncross. This gives you plenty of momentum to go right into a somersault a la zipper stalls.
The next trick is directly inspired by John Ando. While many new kids primarily think of him for his (mindblowing) 1A, never forget that he is also a 2A National Champion and that 2A concepts are ripe for the pickin’ in responsive 1A. This particular trick uses a trapeze dismount to send the yo-yo out behind the throwhand arm before recalling it, and then allows the yo-yo to bump the throwhand bicep on the return. The arm bump is one of the more subtle tough love regens, and (like everything I do) combos nicely into Zines.
At 50 seconds in, we got a “lazy laceration.” We briefly explored grabbing the yo-yo in our Whips column, and here’s another way to set up a string loop with a non-spinning yo-yo. Right after that, we got… I dunno… Horizontal revolutions to trapeze stall? It looks like cheating, but it’s somewhat relieving that horizontal stalls naturally swing right back down to trapeze (thanks, gravity!)
I close out the clip with another exit from the 2or0 chopsticks stall, this time using that z-axis somersault. Twenty points to the first person who can show me this trick in reverse – can you swing from a trapeze into a 2or0 chopsticks? Other possible applications include letting the momentum carry you into a dump truck dismount or a crisis flip into wrist mount. Let your heart be your guide!
What are you throwing this fixed friday? Learn a trick? Got a trick request for next time? Let us know in the comments!
Controlling spin direction and regenerating properly are two of the biggest elements of fixed axle yo-yoing. Having trouble with your loops flipping? Don’t stop, planet hop!
That’s right, kids! This week we’re gonna be taking a deeper look at one of the staples of looping, the planet hop – or, rather, we’re going to explore how this classic regen can be mixed into responsive 1A. If you don’t know planet hop, well, your best bet would be to grab somethin’ responsive and check out the YoYoExpert tutorial for it, but for those of you who just need a quick refresher: a planet hop is just an upside-down shoot the moon. I know that sounds crazy, but because you don’t have to fight with gravity it’s actually one of the most mellow tricks around: throw down, bring the yo-yo back, and throw it back out the other direction without flipping. The fact that the yo-yo doesn’t have to flip (like it does in looping tricks) is especially handy when using butterfly-shaped yo-yos prone to tilting and trying to catch a string hit afterwards.
…of course, this wouldn’t be Fixed Friday if we just stuck to the classic vanilla version of the trick. No! Rather, most of this entry is dedicated to one of my favorite responsive repeaters, curiously named after one of my favorite dudes. More on that later; I just thought I’d mention it ’cause I kind of do it in the opening trick but I don’t want to talk about the opening trick yet (welp!)
So! On to the second trick. This is a fairly basic sequence: trapeze > regenerate into frontstyle spin > undermount > regenerate back to sidestyle spin. Most of the individual moves are probably already in your trick vocabulary, and it loops into itself nicely, which makes it one of my favorite “idling” tricks to practice when I’m not really thinking about anything else. While it looks simple, there is definitely a line between having a controlled punch out of a trapeze hop and just wildin’ out into the open; practice this one, you’ll be surprised how much it benefits your other tricks.
The next trick is that aforementioned star of the show, a lil’ somethin’ I like to call “Sethy P Makin’ Zines in Da Back (For Da Girls)”, or just “zines” for short. Once again, this may not look like much to the uninformed eye, but learning to control the redirect out of a stall back into a breakaway is incredibly valuable… and it just feels awesome, too. For this trick, throw a breakaway and catch the yo-yo in a trapeze stall, and when you dismount twist your finger so that the yo-yo somersaults inside the string. It should be nearing the end of its regeneration towards the end of the somersault circle, at which point you let go of the string and raise your throwhand. This creates a tiny bit of “hangtime”, which you’ll need ’cause you’re throwing the yo-yo immediately back out into a breakaway regeneration. Make sense? Maybe not, but watch the video and practice it and you’ll be makin’ da zines for da girls yourself in no time.
The next trick is a variation on zines, with the critical difference of being performed “Plus Style.” Without getting too deep into trick history, plus style is a way of looking at tricks where you mirror everything and add a string segment – think of it as doing left-handed tricks right-handed. Does that sound weird and crazy? It kind of is, but fortunately you don’t have to understand Spencer & Sonny’s crazy lingo to get this next trick. Basically: a trapeze brother mount can be thought of as a plus style trapeze, so for a plus style zines you get into a trapeze bro stall and then perform zines as though you were looking in a mirror. The one extra wrinkle to this trick is that you have to perform the regeneration portion while holding the string with your non-throwhand, which can be tricky at first, but give it a shot.
Once you master zines & zines+, the next trick is a fun little challenge for you: 2or0 zines. I’m not going to talk much about it because there’s not too much different there conceptually, but definitely worth exploring more. Also, right after that I do a double wrist wrap to thumb stall that I’m not going to talk about either ’cause it’s kind of a silly one-off, but hey! Who doesn’t like wraps?
The next trick is fully Ed’s: Zipper Stalls. Why am I throwing in somebody else’s trick, especially considering that he already wrote it up in his Static 1A Applications post? Probably ’cause it’s one of the best responsive 1A tricks ever, and absolutely the BEST way to practice planet hop regens in a string trick context. If you learn this trick and practice ’til you have straight regenerations and smooth somersaults, you will see the results in every other fixed axle regen you do. I promise.
I was worried that this week might’ve had too much of the “basics”, so I overcompensated and threw in a bunch of horizontal stuff at the end. First, we’ve got a banana turnover into a weird tough love handheld flip thing caught in a thumb mount. Not really sure what to call that, but I’d like to see it done offstring!
Next, we have something actually applicable to the theme: sideways zines. Being point blank honest with you, it’s really really scary getting that somersault and hangtime right in front of your face, so make sure you’re comfortable with both horizontal planet hops and horizontal trapeze stalls before you try this one. I managed not to hit myself in the face when filming, but it wouldn’t have been the first time. This move is really neat for mixing into the types of awesome horizontal responsive madness that Jensen Kimmitt’s been giving us lately... and, of course, sidewinder out of er’rythang.
Lastly, we got a ‘zontal tough love catch to whip and a pinwheel off a throw straight into a thumb mount. Why? Because it’s Friday! If you learned something, tell us ’bout it in the comments, and if you liked the song feel free to download it off of my SoundCloud. Tune in next week for more fixie madness.
This Friday we’re going to take a deeper look at one of the most versatile mounts in modern responsive play, the 1.5 stall. The 1.5 is one of the foundational string trick mounts, so as you can imagine there’s a metric ton of fun stuff to do with it. Here’s a small sampling of that fun stuff transposed with the bearing taken out:
Before we get goin’ on the fancy stuff, let’s take a quick refresher course on what the 1.5 mount is: named because it’s a logical midpoint between a trapeze (“1”) and a double-or-nothing (“2”), the 1.5 is a sidestyle undermount on the throw hand. Another way to look at it is as a sidestyle split-bottom mount – but now we’re getting carried away. As FF devotees should know by now, the main difference when converting a mount to a stall is considering the spin direction, and doing a traditional 1.5 mount in a stall format can be difficult because of the way that undermounts tend to twist up. I dodge this in the first trick by keeping my hands vertically oriented and getting out as soon as possible, but there are more elegant solutions as well.
My favorite 1.5 stall variation is probably the mount shown at the end of the next combo, where you cross your throw hand over top of your free hand and intersect the string with those fingers instead. As a general rule, stalling trapeze-style is always going to be easier than catching an undermount stall, and this little tough love combo is a good way to practice the hand crossing motion. Once you’re comfortable with the cross, it becomes second nature to enter 1.5 this way right out of a breakaway.
The next entrance that I use is debatably the hardest in the video, but also one of my favorite mounts of all time, so whatever you’re getting it! You’re welcome! Basically, after you learn the cross-armed 1.5, you take that and you do a double-or-nothing first, resulting in what looks like an insanely technical mount… that actually just uncrosses to a normal 1.5. This brilliant mount was initially discovered by Chris Neff (presumably back in ’98), but expanded into a repeater by Justin Weber. You can find an excellent breakdown of the repeater (and Zach’s reverse variation) in this Cabin Tutorial from CLYW. Catching it in a stall takes practice, mostly due to having to budget for extra string on the windup, but when you get it it feels awesome. Trust me. You can exit any way that you want, but one of my recent favorites (shown in the video) is to uncross, push out, and then cross over inside your arm for a quick shoot the moon regen out.
Now that we showed a tutorial Charles did of somebody else’s trick I’d like to teach a trick I made based on one of Charles’ moves. Say wha? Anyways… 27 seconds in, we got a move I’m calling “Chuckwagon”. You get that cross-armed 1.5 I’ve been talking about, then you perform a dump truck type motion, flipping the yo-yo back towards you and dismounting between your arms. From there, you continue into Charles’ “Smooth Double or Nothing Move” and catch it in a 2or0 stall. I like to dismount this by dropping the throwhand string, crossing my arms, and pushing the yo-yo down forcefully, which is something Steve Brown used to do with bearing yo-yos all the time around ’05 or so but gets extra points in fixed axle for giving you some hefty spin on the regeneration.
The next trick is a simple one – just a mount, really – but very useful for segueing between sidestyle and frontstyle. It’s like the cross-armed 1.5 mount we’ve been doing, but you point your throwhand towards your body, making it effectively a reverse split bottom mount. Seth Peterson, Yuuki Spencer, and Nate Sutter have all used this movement to great effect in gorilla style tricks, check them out for inspiration.
I figured we’d round out the cross-armed 1.5 section with some behind the back silliness. Catching a stall behind your back requires you to move fast and be a little flexible, but other than that isn’t too different from the normal one. In this trick, I like to follow the dismount by turning my body and catching the yo-yo in my freehand tough love style. If you leave yourself enough room in the string, you can move it over your shoulder and now the trick is no longer behind your back! Magic, or maybe just a goofy looking rotation, but either way a fun move that can’t be performed in a traditional spinning trick. As always, bonus points for ending in a thumb mount.
BRIEF KENDAMA INTERMISSION: Have you ever tried catching a lighthouse on an imperial yo-yo? My favorite modder Takeshi Kamisato chopped up this gorgeous Duncan Tournament and the shape really inspired me.
Okay, back to the yo-yos. The first lesson I’d like to teach you is that you should play off every mistake with a spin move. Trust me! It’ll confuse your enemies and make you feel better. Moving on to the actual trick, though, we have a cousin to the cross-armed 1.5 we were doing earlier, that’s… actually, it’s also a cross-armed 1.5. Huh. The critical difference is that this time you cross your throw hand underneath the free hand, which lets you do this Kwijibo-esque pop to double-or-nothing. I tend to find the other entrance a little easier, but there are distinct uses for each and I encourage playing around with both.
I ended the video with another weird kendama/yo-yo fusion trick. It’s definitely more yo-yo inspired, but it is fun getting to play around with the spike and clicky-clack the yo-yo a bit at the end. Never fear, yo-yo purists! The first step where you hold the yo-yo and rotate your hand around it before the proper throw does not require you to touch our dreaded rival skilltoy… also, kendamas are pretty fun? So, y’know, whatever.
Thanks to Takeshi for the super cool Tournament & ’80s Butterfly, and to CLYW & Yoyonews for the hat. Also, if you like the music, you can download it on my soundcloud. Tell us what tricks you’re working on this Friday in the comments below!
Another glorious Friday! Are you all biting your nails in anticipation of the Duncan announcement tonight? I’m not going to spoil it, but I’m pretty stoked and highly recommend you check back at midnight. In the meantime, though, there are tricks to learn!
This week we’re gonna be tackling whips and a couple other new school slack-y elements. These tricks are usually done on unresponsive yo-yos, but with a little bit of practice and some imagination you can fit them into a stall-heavy diet surprisingly well. I will say that these tricks are particularly susceptible to being knucklebusters, so throw soft and maybe stay away from super heavy razor-edged yo-yos (do you have those?), but whatever, danger is fun! For what it’s worth, I use a Duncan Butterfly.
The first trick in the video is probably the easiest stall whip to learn. It’s based on Spencer Berry’s classic laceration trick, but because it lands in a stall, you have to trigger the response of the yo-yo at the beginning and you have significantly less time to work with. It’s tricky at first, but if you practice throwing soft and launching the yo-yo into the air when you pull back for the return you’ll soon be able to flick the slack out under the yo-yo. It’s worth noting that this probably would not pass Spencer’s test for a “true” laceration, as my finger is in the string loop before the yo-yo hits the string, but frankly this trick is difficult enough that I don’t mind a little bit of chopping.
The next trick is a modified version of the plastic whip, a staple of modern 1A play. It is once again made slightly more complicated by being a stall for two reasons:
- Because it’s a stall, you have to keep spin direction in mind, which means a normal plastic whip can only be done on a frontstyle throw (or regeneration.)
- The yo-yo is coming back right at your face and this is terrifying aaaaaaaah
…to solve that second problem, I set up for the trick by pinching the string with my free hand. This allows me to get into the whipping motion with my throw hand slightly before returning the yo-yo, and the slight change in timing gives the slack more room to catch the yo-yo.
If you’ve been following Fixed Friday, the next trick should look slightly familiar: the mach-5 whip. I taught a basic version of the mount two weeks ago, the whip can be seen in several of Ed’s videos, and also in Kyle Nations’ “Sting like a Butterfly” video at 1:10. This trick is actually fairly similar to its traditional 1A twin, so if you can do it on a Freehand you can probably do it on a Wheel. The tricky part is getting the timing on the whip with the throwhand right as the yo-yo is returning, try doing it a little bit earlier than you think you should.
Trick #4 is heavily influenced by Mr. Steve Brown and his hands-on juggling style tricks. “Tough Love” stalls & regens can actually be very useful in setting up stall whips, because they completely stop the yo-yo spin, which keeps the yo-yo relatively stable and prevents it from whacking your hand. In this case, we simply intercept the breakaway, do a reverse plastic whip over the top of the yo-yo and let the momentum of the whip carry it into a stall suicide.
Tricks #5 & 6 build on the foundation laid down by the stall laceration, and are mostly a matter of muscle memory and string control. To be more specific, five is a reverse double stall laceration mixed into a combo, and six is a triple stall laceration – if you can hit four in a row, find me at a contest and show me and I’ll give you a sticker or something. (also, once again, these aren’t “true” lacerations because I chop into them, but also once again they’re kind of tough so we’ll call it even.)
#7 & 8 are a couple of more advanced moves that are meant more as concepts than as next steps to take, but hey, I’d be stoked if you wanted to learn them. Seven is a play on that old mid-school kamikaze whip, except that you do it from a stall and the yo-yo does a kickflip suicide – yikes! I’d love to catch the yo-yo in the whip, but for now I’m much more consistent just catching it on my thumb, which would theoretically set up some slack-style tricks. Eight shows you one way to mix unresponsive whip tricks with stalls, by using a jade whip to set up a suicide and then letting that suicide bind itself up into a pseudo-tape measure. This takes a lot of control, but it feels awesome and looks neat. I’d love to see more integration of “unresponsive” tricks and stall techniques.
Trick number nine – wow, did I really do nine tricks this week? – is another tribute to Abe Ziaimehr, one of my favorite yoyoers ever. Is it wacky? Yes, but that’s just the way that he’d like it. Go be a little wacky, guys.
Figure something new & cool out? Got a request for a trick tutorial? Let us know in the comments!
Kyle Nations drops another burly fixed axle yoyo trick in this video and we aren’t sure what’s better…the trick, or the name.