What do you know about Yo-Yo? Wikipedia says that “ it is a toy consisting of an axle connected to two disks, and a string looped around the axle, similar to a spool.” Well, for most people it’s just a toy that reminds them of their bright childhood when they were playing with friends in the backyard trying to untie the appeared node.
Shu Takada, for example, takes it as seriously as you can imagine — he is a real yo-yo professional and a six-time world champion.
Back in the ’90s, when yo-yo culture was booming, young Shu’s father really enjoyed playing it too but he couldn’t even imagine that thanks to this game, his son will get world-famous in the future. Shu himself tried Yo-Yo when he was 6 and that’s when it all started: he quickly leveled up his yo-yo skills, surpassed his father, and entered the professional world of Yo-Yo. One competition after another, he reached the World Yo-Yo Contest at 14 years old and won it in 2012. That was the first prize that spurred him to consider Yo-Yo as more than just a game.
“Most people won’t have heard of yo-yo competitions, but a lot of people are trying it”, says the young man. “I get the impression it’s on the rise. I think it will become bigger as a sport and as a culture.” Moreover, it’s not only about winning the title — when you do something that you love with your heart, you reap benefits you could only imagine about. Thanks to the yo-yo competition, Shu Takada overcame his fear of performing in front of the crowd, learned English, visited many countries, developed his creativity, and much much more.
The same year, 2012 a video of Shu performing tricks with Yo-Yo in a spider-man suit went viral on the Internet. It wasn’t only for his crazy tricks and overall Yo-Yo professionalism though, that video was shared and liked by everybody outside of the yo-yo community. People just appreciated the talent Shu has and how dedicated he is.
We can learn the determination from this young guy — he can practice new tricks for 5-6 hours a day to perform them flawlessly. Shu is still an active yo-yo professional, still competing, and still pushing the envelope of yo-yo by adding aerobatics to his everyday performances. His Instagram page counts over 20 K of dedicated followers with whom Shu shares the secrets of his tricks.