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Player in 10 steps

Modern yoyoing may seem as a complicated and confusing sport. We are yoyo players ourselves and we do remember how difficult it was, when we were starting.

There is so many tricks, styles, brands, types of yoyos and so many new things. That is why have created this page, where you can learn how to become a yoyo player, easily and step by step. So welcome to your new journey which will take you all the way from choosing your first yoyo to getting sponsored or competing at a real yoyo contest.

Let’s do it!

You cannot become a yoyo player without having a yoyo. Let’s get you the right starter yoyo. For learning basic yoyo tricks, you need beginner aka responsive yoyo (responsive means easy to get it back to your hand). This yoyo has ball-bearing, it spins but you only need to pull up to get it back.
 
We definitely do not recommend to start with advanced aka unresponsive yoyos (it only comes back to your hand after you do trick called “BIND” – we will get back to this later). You can sure contact us if you need any further help with choosing your yoyo.
 
These are the 4 yoyos we recommend to start with: ONEFAST 201, Velocity and Arrow. Do not forget to also get spare strings and more about yoyo strings in next step.

HOW TO CHOOSE A STRING

Alright so you have a yoyo, before we get to the tricks and to yoyoing you need a string. String always comes with a yoyo but after about 1-5 hours of yoyoing you need to change a string because it wears off. You cannot use any kind of string or rope, you need to make sure to use special yoyo string. Choosing a string is not too complicated as all yoyo strings are universal and each string fits each yoyo. 
 
We recommend to use bright colored strings, these are easier to see while you make strings. For beginners we recommend YYF strings, they have pre-tied loop and universal length that almost everyone can use. 

HOW TO CHANGE A STRING

It is not difficult to change a yoyo string at all. You can tell that your string needs to be changed when it is dirty, sweaty, wore off or it breaks. There is not really a set time when you should change your string, it mostly depends on a player. Once you feel like the string does not play well, change it.
 
It is important to set correct leght of a string. Recommended string lenght for starting player is from the ground to player’s waist. If you feel like shorter or longer string works better for you, do it. Tips on how to take off, put on and shorten your string are in the video.
 
In a next step you can learn how to wind up a yoyo and how to throw it properly

So your yoyo and string are both ready. It is time for your first throw and first tricks. The very first trick that you need to learn is Wind Up. Modern yoyos need to be winded up in a special way because the string is spinning on a ball-bearing when you try to wind it up. Just put your first loop around finger and after that you can wind up as you would wind up classic yoyo, same as we show in the video. 
Your first throw and following trick is called Gravity Pull. This trick is crucial for your every single you are about to learn, so make sure you learn Gravity Pull properly. Make sure you throw yoyo with your palm facing up, make sure you throw straight and strong enough. Do not twist your palm during the throw but after you throw yoyo down, just before it goes back up. Once you master Gravity Pull, you can go for more tricks in next step, in step no. 4 on your way how to become a yoyo player.
If you would have hard time learning Gravity Pull or if you need any help, advice or tip, please let us know, stop by our retail shop in Prague or visit one of our free yoyo classes. We are always happy to help.

All tricks in group “Basic Tricks” are done with responsive yoyos. We definitely recommend to start with these tricks because it will really make all other tricks much easier to learn. Some of these tricks may seem to easy but do not skip them. They will give you important skill and you will learn how to control your yoyo right from the beginning. Also these all tricks formed and influenced modern yoyoing that we know today. That is another reason why each yoyo player should know these tricks.
 
Pay extra attention to Sleeper, make sure you know this one perfectly and practise it over and over. You wont be able to improve without having good spin.    
 

Maybe you think it is too early for a yoyo contest, you have just learned basic tricks and you should already go to a yoyo contest? Yes! That is correct, you do not have to worry at all, most of yoyo contests have Tricklist aka Beginners category which is based on the basic tricks that you already know. 
Apart from having fun on a stage, testing your skills and getting valuable experience for future yoyo contest you will meet lot of other yoyo players, make new friends, learn tricks, get inspired and have fun with people that have same passion as you. Yoyo players are friendly and nice people so do not be afraid to ask anything or ask for help with anything you need, players are always happy to share their tricks or exchange yoyos 🙂 You can check the video from European Yoyo Championship 2018 to get idea how is a yoyo contest like.
More information about yoyo contests and calendar of yoyo events can be found here.

Modern yoyoing is complex sport with many possibilities, apart from responsive and unresponsive yoyoing it also has 5 different styles called 1A, 2A (Looping), 3A (Double Hand), 4A (Offstring) and 5A (Freehand), sometimes we call them together as “alternative styles of yoyoing” or as “X-division” (at competitions). Some of the styles require special yoyos (2A and 4A), others can be done with regular modern yoyo (1A, 3A and 5A). You can watch the video, Peter and Vashek will show you all 5 styles and their tricks.

HOW TO BIND / UNRESPONSIVE YOYOING

If you want to get into advanced tricks you definitely need to have unresponsive/advanced yoyo and learn how to “bind” yoyo. So far all basic tricks were done with responsive yoyos, to be able to learn advanced tricks you need to use unresponsive yoyo. First advanced trick you have to learn is the BIND. Watch the video, it will learn you how to bind properly, how to control your yoyo and how to get it back to your hand.
There is many types and models of advanced yoyos, each player has different style and likes different yoyo (weight, size, material, brand, price etc.). So the choice is up to you, you can check “Recommended” section, we put there products that we think are really the top ones in their categories and our team usually uses these products.  

Once you learn the basics, Bind you can start learning advanced tricks and all different styles of yoyoing. The whole new world of tricks has just opened to you and you are finally in a freestyle phase of modern yoyoing. You can learn any trick you like, you can mix tricks in your own way and create combos, you can make your own tricks and moves, you can get creative, have fun. Because now you already know enough moves, mounts, tricks and you have enough control to combine different tricks and transitions. We still recommend following our Tips & Tricks for more intermediate or expert tricks.
 
“Freestyle” is also name for advanced category at yoyo contest. In tricklist players have to do compulsory tricks, but in freestyle categories player is limited just by time (1-3 minutes, depending on a contest) and chooses own music, tricks and performance. 

One of the best things about yoyoing is its creativity. This sport has infinity of trick possibilities and variations. Lot of these tricks, moves, ideas and has not been discovered yet. Yoyoing is freestyle sport and you can train, create and play in a style or way that you want. Originality, creativity and new ideas are being well respected among yoyo players. Yoyoing is not only about training, being precise and doing one trick over and over.
There is not a manual on how to make a trick, you just have to create, combine, think out of the box or just be lucky and come up with something by accident. If you want to make new trick you can, for example, get inspired by your favorite player, learn part of his trick and finish it in different way, or find a way how to connect two different mounts. Making up a news trick and sharing it with other on social media or at the contest is amazing thing to do, it feels great.

If you want to turn your yoyoing into a professional career, you can try to get sponsored and get one of the official teams. Most of the major yoyo brands and yoyo producers have their own team. The largest and most famous teams are for example YoyoFactory Contest Team, CLYW Team or Duncan Crew. As a sponsored player, you will get free products (yoyos, strings, clothes), some companies cover travel expenses for players to go to yoyo contests all around the world. Some people get payed each month for each sale of a yoyo with their name on it (signature model). As a sponsored player you need to follow contract or a deal with your sponsor – represent the company, use certain yoyos only, wear company t-shirt, film videos, take pictures, etc. 
How to get on a team? Teams do choose players by themselves. Sending requesting emails to companies over and over wont probably help too much. Try to show your skill, practise, work on your name, fame, hype among the yoyo community, go to yoyo contests and compete. film videos, take pictures, build your name and fans on social media, be active. If you do all your activities with products of certain brand, you will make your chances of joining their team much higher.

Modern yoyoing is still quite young and, at least to general public, unknown sport. If you have made it all the way here to final step on our way on How To Become a Yoyo Player you can do one last thing. As you probably know a lot about yoyoing now and you understand this sport, why not to share your passion, skill and knowledge with others? You can still work on your yoyoing, keep getting better, making new harder and more difficult tricks but you can also help others and help spread the passion for yoyos.  
There is many ways how to support yoyoing, such as becoming a judge or contest organizer, run yoyo classes and meetings, film tutorials etc. There is many ways how to support and spread yoyoing but there is no better way than when it is being spread by yoyoers themselves. Do not be afraid to explain yoyoing or teach a basic trick people that seem to be interested.
EUREuro