Health and yoyoing

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How often do you consider how your health affects your yoyoing?

I have been thinking quite a bit on how one’s health and well being can greatly affect one’s yoyoing.

For example, and we will use a fairly simple one to open this topic. Flexibility.
Some might say “oh but I don’t do Marcus Koh behind the back tricks, I don’t need to worry about that.” Take into account that flexibility doesn’t just apply to how far you can bend back or reach your arm’s behind you. Think about where else your body bends when you yoyo Your wrist and elbows are good examples. When you don’t use much flexibility in your arms and wrist, many tricks can often look “robotic and choppy” for the most part. Do you find this to be the case? Try this little experiment. Before yoyoing, try stretching your wrist a bit in all dirrections. Pull back on your hand as far as you can and shake your wrist out to loosen them up (NOT TOO HARD THOUGH! You silly pup, don’t break your wrist! > . < ), bend your elbows around and get some good circulation in the muscles. After doing this for a few minutes, try throwing again. I have helped some individuals with this in the past and they found that it did have a very positive affect on their throwing.

Now moving forward, while you may not do Marcus Koh type body tricks, having the looseness and openness of freedom of body movement makes a huge difference, even if you are focusing your play in the “torso” frame. When you have good circulation and freedom of movement, you feel more relaxed and open to experiment. Things feel more natural, and thus, makes it more enjoyable for the player.

Let’s talk now about a phenomenon I have come to experience in terms of yoyo contest and yoyo performance, and this can apply to yoyo practice sessions as well. Contest day, you decide to get some lunch before you go up on stage. Hey there’s a pizza place! PIZZA MAH FACE! 20 minutes later, its time to go up, you may find that the pizza resulted in you feeling not completely 100%. Even if you didn’t eat that much, the starches and carbs in the pizza can cause a slight feeling of sluggishness. This goes for any food that contains many carbs and especially starches. Instead, try going for something lighter. My favorite “pre performance” food is a small sandwich of light mayo or mustard, lettuce, tomato, and a single slice of thinly cut turkey. Its light, but filling enough, and doesnt leave that “sluggish” feeling that something like a cheeseburger or pizza (Or ramen ya crazy wannabe asian kids! > . < ) would most likely give you. By eating light before your performance, you will feel lighter, more open to move, and much more energized.

Next, skin health.
Think about it, what is the yoyo string constantly touching and rubbing about? Your skin! Wether it be on your fingers and hands, on on your arms, or even your legs. The way the string slides around your skin could be greatly affected by how your skin is in terms of health. Its also a matter of your own well being. If you have dry skin, the string can cause your skin to crack, leaving small cuts that can hurt quite a bit. If your skin is overly oily and/or dirty. Your string can get dirty quite quickly, and have a negative affect on your tricks. Some simple skin care can do wonders for your yoyoing. My routine? I wash my hands each time before I yoyo using some natural soap infused with olive oil and avacado extracts. I then use a bit of moisturizing lotion all around my hands and arms that last for a while. Keeps the skin healthy, and the yoyo string sliding smoothly. (DONT yoyo right after applying the lotion though! It will mess up the string and make it all gunky and weird, wait a few minutes!)

Finally. Mental state. It goes without saying that one’s mental state can have a huge impact on creativity. Being relaxed opens up the mind and allows one’s soul to express itself freely. However, the yoyo can also be a tool to relax one’s self in times of tension. My findings are that one’s style also changes depending on their mental state. I.e, during a time of my life when I was going through deep depression and intense anger, I recorded myself yoyoing a bit. My throwing was fast, aggressive, and violent. Where as a time in my life I had just had a great experience with a friend that had relaxed me and made me feel overjoyed, I had recorded myself yoyoing and found that my style was very fluid and calm. Mental state can indeed have a HUGE affect on what you do.

In conclusion, take time to ponder these conclusions for yourself. And think about how your body and the actions you do to your body can affect your yoyoing life. And think about ways you too can improve how you care for yourself in ways to further your own growth.

Best wishes!

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Wow! Very great words. Kudos!

Haven’t tried stretching my wrist yet, thanks for the advice :slight_smile:

Interesting idea… Thanks!

you should write a philosophy book/Heath book
I mean your words help me with my stage freight

Awww thx hun ^ ^ <3
I know stage fright is tough, Believe me I suffer from it as well > . <
Maybe Ill make a post regarding that as well! owo

Also, Eeeeee your profile pic! Ask Lil Miss Rarity?


I haven’t thought that much about any of this.

First, I’m older, so flexibility can be an issue. However, my reason for not doing body wrap tricks and behind the back stuff is simple: I lack the skills and ability currently to do those kinds of tricks. I know I’m gradually getting better, so who knows if I will be able to do those kind of tricks. My focus is mainly “stuff in front of me”. I mean, I’m not doing great with stuff right in front of me. Last thing I want is to turn myself into a human pretzel and try to play behind my back at this point in time!

Skin health:
My right middle finger and index finger were getting torn up. Nearly 2 years in and still building callus. That’s my throw hand. While I was in Vietnam, I was getting string burn doing 4A because of my hands sweating and the string simply not able to move across my hands smoothly. Yes, I’ve grown to appreciate why some players use gloves. While I was in Hue, I sort of felt like an athlete. I was working on mostly 4A inside because it wasn’t as hot as outside, but the humidity was probably about the same. Throwing and sweating. My shirt sticking to me. Yuck. Throwing until the tips of my fingers were sore and the string burns on my left hand were starting to give that pulsing feeling. I have to stop because of the pain. Try again later or try again the next day.

Mental health:
Having been diagnosed with depression and refusing to play the “bath your brain in chemicals” game, it ain’t easy to handle things sometimes. Sometimes it’s like bi-polar because when I do events, I feel good doing what I love to do and apparently what I was born to do, which is mixing sound for concerts. But, like with using drugs for getting high, after the good feelings of an event, was the deep, DEEP crash that happens after the event. I get the same thing after doing sound for CalStates. I’m happy and satisfied at the event. However, a couple of days later, I’m in the depths of depression again. However, yoyo was never meant to be some sort of method to control or deal with these issues, it just ended up that way. I needed something to do between gigs that wasn’t audio related, and I figured yoyo met my requirements, which it has, mostly. I wanted something portable, lightweight, rather uncomplicated and affordable. All points except the last one are valid!

Like items you’ve pointed out, I have also used yoyo and other skill toys to deal with stress and tension as well. It can me tremendously relaxing The idea is to simply “throw my problems away”.

While I was in Vietnam, skill toys, mostly yoyo, was my only escape from that trip that I didn’t want to be on. For those sessions, I was at least able to for the most part concentrate on something else other than NOT wanting to be there. So, of one can throw while shutting out the rest of the world for a bit, it can also be a coping mechanism as well, which can also be tied to mental health.

The yoyo is merely a tool. What you do with it is entirely up to you. It’s been shown by many people, yourself and myself included, is that this is more than just a toy. It is a toy, but if we want it to be or need it to be, it can be what we need it to be. It can be a device to spark imagination, improve hand-eye coordination, provide an escape or be therapeutic.

Dude when did you reach nirvana? Like you know everything about everyone. Your the smartest person ever. TELL ME HOW TO LIVE. I NEEEEEED YOUR INSIGHT

Dude, that tumblr is wicked. Great art style! And Josh, your posts are just becoming more and more helpful. <3

I’ve been an athlete almost my whole life… flexibility is extremely helpful when it comes to all sports, no matter what you do. They say that stretching before doing any physical activity can improve your performance by up to 10%. But I wont get into that now.

What I’ve found from yoyoing, is that it makes very tight. Both my legs and back get very tight and almost sore, depending on how long I yoyo for. I had severe back problems around this time last year… when outdoor track was starting… and I couldn’t figure out why. I figured out it was from yoyoing. Standing in the same spot, for up to a few hours on end, made my back and legs tight. It was bad enough that I needed to take a week of from yoyoing and track. Also, doing chopsticks makes my wrists very sore…

So other than mental health, yoyoing is probably all around bad for my health :stuck_out_tongue: That doesn’t mean it’s the same for any of you.

I rotated my wrists and they snapped/popped.

Same. But mine are insanely flexible…and hurt a bit…cause of snowboarding injuries.

Sorry but I laughed a little bit. Just something we have in common.

Oh man, you need to get some gloves with wrist guards. Relatively cheap, but worth it. Unless you already have them.

Not trying to be sarcastic at all…

But you should post these in the mornings, so we can read them when we start our days. Some Words of Wisdom before the day lol

I read this and rotated my wrists and they popped… Trippy :o

I feel i play better when i eat as raw and organic as possible with no meat or dairy sludge. I have a more clear headed mind, no brain fog, and can learn quicker and easier as well.

In terms of flexibility, i do yoga often and that helps :wink:

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I think the eating thing is a problem I always have. I’m hypoglycemic so eating is important for me, especially during contests or even regular yoyoing. I get hungry very often, and I try to eat filling meals without eating something too greasy or too light. I honestly do stop for pizza at contests, and that doesn’t always go right. I’m thinking of just packing a bunch of sandwiches with me so I don’t stress about food for the day of the contest. Thanks a bunch for this!

And remember to do some jumping jacks to get the blood flowing before a performance!

I have back problems and yoyoing doesn’t help them, that’s for sure. Since yoyoing isn’t the root cause of those problems, though, I’m already in the habit of doing some pretty good back and hip-opening yoga on a nightly basis. My yoyoing ALWAYS benefits from it!

On the other hand if I’m throwing during a time of day at which I haven’t stretched in a while, my stances and habitual way of distributing my own weight (I tend to lean a little bit and put more weight on the right foot, which is part of the root of my back problems!) make everything all bad.

So yes, stretching! Also focusing on having either a good stance if you’re not somewhere you can move around, or stay mobile while yoyoing. Maybe even dance a little. :wink:

I figured out skin care was important the hard way. I’ve been making it a chore to take care of my hands after recently cutting up my index finger from starting to really get into 5a. I wash my hands before yoyoing and lotion afterwards.