Quite simply a yo-yo is a toy consisting of two equally weighted discs of wood, plastic, or metal, connected by an axle, which is then connected to a string. A loop knot is used to connect the string to the axle allowing the yo-yo to ‘sleep’ when thrown. The other end of the string is connected to the middle finger.
Yo-Yos date back to nearly 400-500 bc where the Greeks used them for the exact same purpose they are used for today, entertainment. In the 1990’s yo-yoing saw a major resurgences of popularity. Now every year in Florida yo-yo contests are held, where the best of the best are pitted against one another. See the video below where Hiroyuki Suzuki gains the title of champion.
Think you have what it takes to take on this yoyo master? If not just pick it up as a hobby. Once you get the hang of it there are several yoyo tricks you can show off with. The best part about a yoyo is they’re cheap and fit right in your pocket. What are you waiting for? Check out our yoyo buying guide below!
When you’re just getting into a new hobby its always best to do your research. The NotSoBoringLife.com YoYo Buyering Guide is your ticket to that research.
YoYos have been an evolving product and now have different shapes and technologies built into them. This buyers guide will discuss the different yo-yo characteristics and then cover some beginner and intermediate yo-yos.
This shaped yo-yo is where it all began. It is also known as the imperial or traditional shape. It is characterized by the narrow string gap and is known to be the best looping yo-yo of all three shapes. It is by far my favorite as they are sleek and fit well in the palm of the hand not to mention your pocket so you can have your yoyo handy at all times.
The butterfly yo-yo is essentially the classic shaped yo-yo but its been inverted. This gives the butterfly a very wide string gap and makes it extremely easy to land back on the string which is essential for doing many yo-yo tricks. It’s not a bad idea to start with the butterfly while you’re learning tricks so the frustration factor doesn’t set it. These types of yoyo’s won’t fit in your pocket as easily as a classic yoyo but is certainly worth considering for a beginner.
The modified yo-yo is also known as the Modern or Proyo shape. Its really a combination of both the classic and butterfly shaped yo-yos. The rounded rims make for a smooth landing back on the string and its slim profile make to a breeze for looping tricks. The best feature of this shape is its additional weight which increases the sleep time up to 8 minutes in some cases!
Yo-Yo Axle Types:
Fixed Axle: Fixed axle yo-yos have absolutely no moving parts. The axle spins on the string. They were traditionally made out of wood or plastic and generally found on only the classic shaped yo-yo.
Transaxle: The transaxle yo-yo has outer and inner parts which move independently from each other. Simply speaking the outer part is the transaxle which spins around the inner fixed axle. The string is then connected to the outer axle. This configuration gives the yo-yo good sleeping characteristics, making tricks easier than the fixed axle yo-yo. Transaxle yo-yos excel at sleeping and string tricks.
Ball Bearing: Ball bearing yo-yos are similar to fixed axle yo-yos but it used ball bearing between the inner and outer axles. This type of yo-yo is more responsive and better for looping tricks.
Clutch Transaxles: These type of yo-yos have a transaxle and a clutch built right into them. This gives them the ability to spin at high speeds, but as it slows down the clutch kicks in and returns the yo-yo back up the string before its out of momentum. The most common clutch transaxle yo-yo is the brain or power brain yo-yo. They essentially do the work for you.
What to Buy:
Duncan Speed Beetle – $9
The new Speed Beetle is the next evolution of the looping yo-yo. Using a high-speed ball-bearing for incredible tricks and Friction Stickers for perfect response, the Speed Beetle comes with two different sets of spacers for maximum versatility. Designed with input from World and National Champions.
Yomega Power Brain – $12
From Yomega’s experimental technology division, comes the next evolution in revolutions. Announcing the gamma edition of the Yomega(R) Brain(TM) series – the PowerBrain(TM). This yo-yo contains a smooth, piston-like 4-way synchronized clutch system that engages simultaneously. This new system delivers prolonged spin time and super smooth automatic returns. It is the most advanced auto return technology ever created. With the PowerBrain(TM), Yomega(R) proves once again that it crushes the learning curve in yo-yo play.
SuperYo Triple Play – $10
Play in the shape you choose: imperial, butterfly, pagoda. Triple wrap string. Brass axle.
Duncan Freehand Zero – $18
The Freehand yo-yo was the first yo-yo created in the world that doesn’t need to be tied to your hand! With its patented counter-weight system, you can let go of the yo-yo in mid-trick, making the impossible look easy.
The Freehand was developed with U.S. National Yo-Yo Master Steve Brown, inventor of Freehand-style play. The Freehand has an extra wide Butterfly shape, and special Friction Stickers for smooth play and perfect response.
Used by more high-level 1A and X Division players than any other yo-yo, the Freehand is the best there is.
Yomega Maverick – $40
The Maverick is the most expensive yoyo featured in the yoyo buyers guide, but its for a reason. This yo yo is the best!
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Yomega Fireball – $9
Thanks to its patented transaxle system, the Yomega Fireball has long been a favorite of aspiring pros from around the world. Its ability to deliver high speed, ultra smooth spins over three times longer than ordinary yo-yos has single-handedly revolutionized the sport of yo. Recommended for intermediate to advanced level players. 100% fun guaranteed!