YoYo tricks aren’t just for schoolyard fun- they’re a great way to pass time and show off to your friends. Good yoyo tricks require a lot of skill and practice, and make for a truly impressive display.
If you’ve found yourself trying to do tricks with your yoyo, only to fail every time, there’s a good chance that it’s the yoyo that deserves the blame, not you. Trying to use cheap drugstore yoyo’s for tricks is always going to be an exercise in frustration.
Instead, it’s probably worth it to seek out higher quality yoyo‘s that are designed with tricks in mind. You’ll find tricks much easier to perform once you’ve switched to a yoyo that’s suited to the task. Here are some of the best yoyo ticks, and yoyos that are suited to performing them.
10 Best Beginner and Advanced Yoyo Tricks:
The Elevator is a simple trick that involves throwing the yoyo, and then making it look as though the yoyo is climbing up the string.
To do this, you throw the yoyo, and then place your opposite hand between your body and the string. Push against the string with this hand, and use it to lift the yoyo until it’s resting against the string just above your yoyo finger. Now, pull your hands apart, and the yoyo will climb the string.
Be sure to keep your yoyo hand slightly in front of the top hand, as this will prevent it from bouncing off the string and ruining the effect. You’ll also want to be sure to keep your hands perfectly vertical while performing the trick. If your hands are not vertical the string will begin to push into the sides of the yoyo, causing it to twist.
One of the best yoyos to use while learning tricks like this is the Yomega Brain YoYo. It’s a professional yoyo, but it’s designed with children and beginners in mind. You’ll find that it operates much more smoothly than drugstore yoyo, without being much more expensive.
Walk the Dog
Walk the dog is one of the most famous YoYo tricks, but it’s surprisingly easy to perform. All it is is using the spinning motion of a yoyo thrown into a sleeper to move it along the ground. A sleeper, for those who don’t know, is the term for a yoyo that’s spinning on the end of the throw before returning up the string.
Still, many people are frustrated when they first try to learn this trick. Often, the yoyo doesn’t move on the ground, and just spins for a bit and then climbs. The key to doing walk the dog well is to impart some forward momentum to the yoyo before it hits the ground. This means that you need to swing it slightly backward when you throw your sleeper, and then bring it forward just before it hits the ground. This way, your yoyo will have forward momentum before it hits the ground, and the trick is guaranteed to work.
Don’t forget to walk behind it for a couple of steps once it’s moving, too. This is what gives the illusion of walking the yoyo. If you remain stationary, the yoyo will simply climb the string. You also want to keep the string as taut as you can. If you let your hand get to close to the yoyo, you’ll introduce slack into the string. Once there’s slack in the string, the yoyo will climb. So, one key to doing this trick right is to keep the string taut and don’t allow any slack in the string.
There are two variations of this trick that you can perform. The first is called “Walk the Cat,” and it involves the same basic steps, except that you flip the yoyo before throwing so that it will “walk” in the opposite direction. The second is called “The Creeper.” For this one, you throw like you normally would, but then kneel down to place your yoyo hand on the ground. Now the yoyo returns to your hand along the ground.
This is another great trick for beginner yoyos like the Yomega brain.
The two tricks we’ve covered so far use responsive yoyos. Responsive yoyos are yoyos that automatically return to your hand. Unresponsive yoyos have become increasingly popular in recent years, but they’re much more difficult to use.
An unresponsive yoyo won’t return automatically, unless you put a bind in the string. The advantage of unresponsive yoyos is that there are tricks you can perform with them that would be impossible with a responsive yoyo.
Man on the Flying Trapeze
One of the most famous tricks for unresponsive yoyos. It’s a relatively simple trick, but it can be a starting place for many other tricks. You start by throwing down the yoyo towards your right and letting it swing towards your free hand.
Let the string hit your index finger, and let the yoyo wrap around the finger. Then, let the yoyo come down and land on the string. Bring your hands slightly closer together as the yoyo lands to cushion the landing. The yoyo will roll towards your throwing hand.
Now, create a little slack in the string and then pull it taught again quickly. This will launch the yoyo back up, unwinding it from your index finger and allowing it to return to your throwing hand.
While this trick is easier with unresponsive yoyos, it can be done with responsive ones, was well. If you’re a beginner, you may want to stick with the responsive yoyo, since unresponsive models are trickier to use.
The Sleeper is less of a trick than a technique, and it’s a basic but important one. If you don’t know how to throw a sleeper, that’s likely the reason that you’ve been struggling with other yoyo tricks.
To start, throw your yoyo as you normally would. As the yoyo nears the end of the string, pull up slightly, just enough to pad the landing a bit, but not enough to actually pull the yoyo up. It might take you a few tries to nail this move, but once you do it’s very easy and repeatable. It will open up a world of tricks for you, too.
If you’ve tried to throw a sleeper several times and it isn’t working, your string may be wound too tight. Unwind the string and remove it, then reattach and rewind it, taking care not to wind it as tight as you did the last time. Now, try to throw a sleeper again.
Once you have successfully thrown a sleeper, keep practicing. Have fun with it, too. See how long you can keep it going. Mastering the Sleeper is a foundational yoyo technique.
This is another beginner trick that’s great to learn, because it’s the first step in a lot of more advanced tricks.
Like other beginner tricks, the forward pass is dead simple, too. Hold the yoyo with the top of your hand facing forward. Now, throw the yoyo, but instead of throwing it down, throw it out in front of you, keeping your palm down (of facing backward) throughout the throwing motion.
As the yoyo extends, raise your hand so that your palm is now toward the yoyo. As it reaches full extension, gently tug on the string to call it back to your hand.
The basic motion is out, over, and back. Very simple. In fact, you’ll probably master this one on the first time.
Around the World
Once you’ve mastered the forward pass, the next logical step is to learn Around the World. Actually, you’ll need to master both the forward pass and the sleeper for this one.
For around the world, you’re going to throw a forward pass and a sleeper at the same time. So, you’re throwing it forward, and then gently padding the “landing” as the yoyo reaches full extension. As soon as the yoyo is fully extended in the forward sleeper, swing it up and around in a full circle before tugging on the string to return it to your hand.
The breakaway is a partial around the world, turned on it’s side. Throw the yoyo out to the side, let it sleep, and then swing it in a semi-circle. The reason you can’t swing a full circle for a breakaway is that your body is in the way- you’d end up just wrapping the yoyo around yourself.
Once the semi-circle has gone as far as you want it too, let it come back to your hand.
Like the sleeper or the around the world, the breakaway is a foundational trick. Once you’ve mastered it, there are lots of tricks you can use that rely on your ability to throw a breakaway.
Rock the Baby
Rock the baby is an old-school trick that’s still popular. It’s so well-known that, once people find out about your yoyo skills, it’s inevitable that they’ll ask you to rock the baby.
You start by throwing a sleeper, then grab the string with your free hand. Then, use your yoyo hand to grab the string about five inches above the yoyo, which will form a triangle in the string. Flip the triangle right side up and use your free hand to push it out and create the base. Swing the yoyo through the triangle a few times, then release into a sleeper and wake the yoyo up.
You can practice making the triangle with a dead yoyo if you’re finding it hard to master. That’s the most challenging part of the trick, so once you have that down you’re good to go.
Once you’ve mastered the breakaway, its fun to try the pinwheel. For the pinwheel, you start by throwing a breakaway, but you use your finger to catch the string as it’s coming up on the end of the semi-circle. Then you’ll use that finger to swing the yoyo in a circle three times, release and return it to your hand.
If you can throw an around the world, you can throw a time warp. It starts with an around the world. Then, you whip your hand back to swing the yoyo in the opposite direction before catching it.
Basically, you’re throwing an around the world, and then a reverse around the world. The only part that might be hard to master is reversing the direction the yoyo is swinging. The trick is to really whip your hand in a quick, sharp motion.
The step in the brain twister is throwing a fast sleeper.
Then, take your free index finger and push it into the string. Then bring your yoyo hand down and bring the string into the notch of the yoyo facing you. Now, move your yoyo finger up and towards your body, while moving your other finger forward and down. This moves the yoyo up and eventually causes it to swing away from you.
Next, move your yoyo finger towards you while pushing your other finger out in front of you. This changes the direction the yoyo is spinning, and it will propel the yoyo over your index finger. Release the yoyo and then wake it back up.
Mastering these yoyo tricks is well worth the time and effort required. Yoyo tricks are a great way to entertain people at parties. It’s not a common skill among adults, so it will make you truly unique and interesting. You’ll be able to do something no one else at the party can do, and you’ll quickly become the most interesting person there.
But yoyo tricks are just for impressing other people. Lots of people are looking for ways to limit their screen time now, and yoyos are a great way to do that. As much fun as it is to watch someone doing tricks with a yoyo, it’s even more fun to be the person doing the tricks. Knowing yoyo tricks is a great way to pass the time without being glued to a screen.