Trick Vs Combo, is there really a difference?

Ok, YYE member ThinkH2O and I have been discussing our yoyo progression off the forums and discussing where we should go next and what we want to do. I randomly said that I’d like to start creating my own trick, with some of the elements I’ve learned so far (granted it would be a bit limited). He the proceeded to ask me “wouldn’t this be a combo?” which made me think about it…What really makes a trick a “trick” rather than being a combo? I’ve always viewed combos as a series of tricks stacked on each other with some kind of flow. But at the same time, many of the tricks I’ve been learning are made up of other tricks, essentially also being a series of tricks stacked on each other with a flow.

So…are tricks and combos really 2 separate things? Or has a combo essentially become synonymous to the term “trick”? Seems like there’s no real clear separation between the two as I start brainstorming and trying my hand piecing a trick/combo together.

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A combo is smoothly bringing together multiple tricks one after the other with pretty transitions in order to provide a much more visually pleasing experience. I have however noticed that many people have created combos and given them names, similar to the naming of individual tricks. It makes for a confusing experience. A large amount of CLYW cabin tutorials are combos rather than tricks, which in turn makes their large and impressionable audience believe that combos are the same as tricks. I still love CLYW though.

ninja vanish, eli hops, mach 5- tricks

skin the gerbil, white buddah- combos

How am I supposed to name a combo if idk if it has even been done before? I’m still a tad bit lost here on this subject
and the more clear information I can get, all the Better. Thank you.

Tricks are things you can put a name on, and nobody can say that it is just a (blank) to a (blank) with a (blank).

zammy mentioned in one of his vids (dont remember which one :P) that…

a trick is a simple action consisting of one main idea

a combo is building a smooth transition between multiple tricks

not quote on quote, but you get the idea :wink:

Then it would considered a combo then right?
Also do we name our own combo? Or just call it a combo?

This has me now wondering… I’m stringing parts of tricks to a longer smoothly connecting combo… Could this be the birth of a new trick? One noted Skin the gerbil is a combo, but it’s listed as a trick in many sites including here. Matrix, McBride Roller Coaster are also made of smaller tricks.

Once I can nail what I have planned out, I’ll share it in the tricks forum.

A combo is something that you can pick out an element or another trick from it.

A trick is its own unique thing.

For example: You can pull a Lindy Loop out of Skin the Gerbil, but you cannot pull a Skin the Gerbil out of a Lindy Loop.

I’m still very much confused about all of this. Nothing has really been cleared up.

Bangers are tricks, right?

Honestly i don’t think there is a definitive answer on this. Lots of people seem to have different opinions of what the difference between a trick and a combo, and i don’t think that anyone is necessarily wrong. I think that It’s just whatever it means to you.

I doesn’t really matter to me if what i made up is a combo or a trick, i just yoyo to yoyo and if someone wants to put a label on what i made, let em. It doesn’t effect me any :slight_smile:

With the way that modern play is so transition based it’s a pretty tough differentiation at this point.

yes. Well according to Werrd in one of their descriptions for their banger contest  as I linked below:

Combo is that is not made like like you do a first part of the black hops and then go straight into trapeze and his brother then do other stuff. So elements from here and there make combos.

^^^ That might be relevant if it made any sense :smiley:


That burn was 3rd degree…

Element - singular idea(s)

Trick - multiple elements

Combo - multiple tricks

Freestyle - multiple combos

Full disclosure, I’m a total greenhorn. Just my perspective/approach.


There’s no black and white answer, so I think you’re stuck, AngryGumball. But as an academic exercise, here’s my take on it:

An element is completely singular. Nothing more can really be subtracted from it.

A compact and unique “combination of elements” is a “trick”. It can be as compact as a Brain Twister, or longer Like the Skin the Gerbil (or Matrix, or any number of other named tricks you could mention). The defining characteristic is that subdividing it only produces elements, not more tricks. If you subdivide a Matrix, for example, you can find a Double-or-Nothing. But you don’t find a White Budda within. :wink:

If you create a unique combination of elements and transitions, you can call it a trick. But if you transition a Kwyjibo into a Spirit Bomb, you’ve just made a combo. As long as you can say with certainty that the combined elements don’t contain a pre-existing trick within… well, it’s a trick. Name it if that’s your thing! I also feel that no matter how unique, if you’re just chaining together elements in a way that drags on too long and doesn’t create anything interesting as a result… well, to me it might still be a “trick”, but it’s boring as heck and you shouldn’t probably want to take ownership of it. Keep working at it!

A combo is a combination of tricks. I think that’s the most “obvious” one. It’s clear in and of itself as a definition. The haze only comes in when you suspect that you’ve chained together some “known/named” sequences and you WANT to call it a trick but you secretly know that it’s not really. :wink:

I also don’t see any real problem with naming a combo. And then in video sections of sites if it ends up in a list of “tricks”, well… there aren’t any combo police trying to ruin your fun, are there?

Perhaps a better and more compact conclusion goes something like this: You get to decide. You do a “series of moves” that you feel is unique and that you’re proud of? Go ahead and call it a trick. And start adding it to your combos. :wink: