World Yo-Yo Contest
|World Yo-Yo Contest|
|Venue||Belle Salle Akihabara|
|Dates||August 13–17, 2015|
The World Yo-Yo Contest is the culminating yo-yo competition of the worldwide competitive circuit and is considered the most prestigious competition in the world. The winner of this competition in any of the six championship divisions is deemed the World Yo-Yo Champion—the only event to award such a title. The contest attracts competitors from all over the world, and an increasingly large number of spectators. The competition is currently run by the International Yo-Yo Federation (IYYF) and the respective host nation's national organization. As of 2015, 33 countries have fed into the World Yo-Yo Contest from their respective national yo-yo contests. The 2015 contest is set to be held August 13–17 in the city of Tokyo.
- 1 History
- 2 Location
- 3 Current Champions
- 4 Winners by Country & Players
- 5 Championship Divisions
- 6 Defunct Championship Divisions
- 7 Non-Championship Divisions
- 8 Participating Nations
- 9 References
- 10 External links
The first World Yo-Yo Contest was held in London, England, in 1932. The winner was Harvey Lowe. However, the contest was not held annually until 1992, when Dale Oliver started one in Montreal, Canada during that year's annual International Jugglers' Association's (IJA) convention. The contest was held during this convention until 1999, when it was held in Hawaii. The 2000 contest was held at Universal Studios in Orlando, but in 2001, the event moved to the Rosen Plaza Hotel, where it was held annually until 2013 by Gregory Cohen, owner and operator of YoYoGuy and Infinite Illusions. After the 2013 contest, an international coalition (the IYYF) was formed to organize a new, rotating contest which will be held in a different venue/country every year.
Following the creation of the IYYF in 2013, The World Yo-Yo Contest now cycles between America, Europe, and Asia. This cycling is scheduled through 2018, but the host cities have not been chosen past Tokyo. The bidding process involves the IYYF and the interested National Organization.
- 2014 Czech Republic (Prague)
- 2015 Japan (Tokyo)
- 2016 United States of America
- 2017 Europe
- 2018 Asia
|1A||Gentry Stein ( USA)||Takeshi Matsuura ( Japan)||Iori Yamaki ( Japan)|
|2A||Takuma Yamamoto ( Japan)||Yasushi Furukawa ( Japan)||Hiraku Fujii ( Japan)|
|3A||Hajime Miura ( Japan)||Hank Freeman ( USA)||Minato Furuta ( Japan)|
|4A||Rei Iwakura ( Japan)||Michael Nakamura ( USA)||Naoto Okada ( Japan)|
|5A||Takeshi Matsuura ( Japan)||Jake Elliott ( USA)||Sora Ishikawa ( Japan)|
|AP||SPIN NAT!ON ( Japan)|
List of past World Yo-Yo Champions
Winners by Country & Players
The World Yo-Yo Contest has historically been dominated by the Japanese-taking home 68 World Titles in the past 22 years. The United States has also had a lesser dominance, taking home 24 World Titles.
Shinji Saito remains the most decorated yo-yoer of all-time with 12 World Titles. Takeshi Matsuura is second with 6.
In 2003, Brazil's Rafael Matsunaga became the first player outside of Japan or the United States to win a World Title, doing so in 5A (Counterweight). In 2004, Hiroyuki Suzuki won his first World Title. Both Daisuke Shimada and Shinji Saito won their third World Title in as many years. Hiroyuki Suzuki became the first player to ever win back-to-back titles in the 1A division in 2005. Shinji Saito continued his dominance, winning his fourth World Title in the 2A division. Kentaro Kimura won the 3A division with what is considered the greatest 3A routine of all time in 2009. In 2010, Canada's Jensen Kimmitt became the first player outside of Japan or the United States to win a World Title in 1A. Without Shinji Saito entering the 2A division, Yashushi Furakawa won the World Title. Singapore's Marcus Koh became the second player outside of the United States or Japan to win in the 1A division. Shinji Saito also returned from a year competition hiatus to win the 2A division for a record eighth time. In 2012, Switzerland's inMot!on became the first team outside of Japan or the United States to win the Artistic Performance (AP) division. In 2013, Hungary's Janos Karancz became the first European to win the 1A division at the World Yo-Yo Contest. 2013 was also the first, and only, year to feature a top-3 in 1A with no players from Japan or the United States. In 2014, Rei Iwakura completed a flawless routine in the 4A division en route to his third World Title.
The World Yo-Yo Contest has 6 championship divisions that award the title of 'World Yo-Yo Champion'
|Division Name||Other Name||Explanation|
|1A||Single Hand String Trick||The player uses a long spinning yo-yo to perform tricks that typically require manipulation of the string.|
|2A||Two Hands Looping Trick||The player uses two yo-yos simultaneously to perform reciprocating or looping maneuvers.|
|3A||Two Hands String Trick||The player uses two long spinning yo-yos and performs tricks with both simultaneously.|
|4A||Offstring||The player uses an offstring yo-yo, often releasing the yo-yo into the air and attempting to catch it on the string.|
|5A||Counterweight||The player uses a yo-yo with a counterweight on the other end of the string rather than having it attached to a finger.|
|AP||Artistic Performance||The performer uses any type of yo-yo or other prop for an open-ended performance which emphasizes choreography and stage presence.|
Championship Division Structure
There are a series of preliminary rounds before the final round at the World Yo-Yo Contest. In the past, anyone could enter the World Yo-Yo Contest. Competitors were allowed a one-minute routine, and a set number of players would make the finals. The preliminary rounds have been evolving over the years to accommodate the growing popularity of competitive yo-yos around the world.
In the 1A division, there are currently four rounds of competition. In 2A-5A, there is currently only the Preliminary (1 minute) and the Final (3 minute).
- Wild-Card (30 seconds)
Any player can enter the Wild-Card round
- Preliminary (1 minute)
Top-10 at a sanctioned National Competition/Multi-National Competition seeded directly to Preliminary Top performing competitors from Wild-Card
- Semi-Final (1:30 minutes)
Top-3 at sanctioned Multi-National Competition & sanctioned National Champions seeded directly to Semi-Final Top performing competitors from Preliminary
- Final (3 minutes)
Previous Year's World Champion seeded directly to Final Top performing competitors from Semi-Final
Sanctioned Seeding Competitions
Players can earn a seed to various rounds of the preliminaries through Multi-National Competitions, National Competitions, and the previous year's World Yo-Yo Contest.
- European Yo-Yo Championship (Kraków, Poland)
- Las Vegas Yo-Yo Championship (Las Vegas, United States)
- Asia Pacific Yo-Yo Championship (Singapore, Singapore)
- Latin American Yo-Yo Championship (Mexico City, Mexico)
- Previous year's World Yo-Yo Contest (Prague, Czech Republic)
- One of 33 IYYF approved National Competitions
Defunct Championship Divisions
The World Yo-Yo Contest has also held other championship divisions that are now defunct either because it was replaced or had judging standardization issues.
|Division Name||Other Name||Explanation|
|CH||Championship||1992 - 1994.|
|GC||Grand Championship||1995 - 1997.|
|M||Master||1992 - 1997.|
|X||Extreme||2000 - 2002. The combined division of current 3A, 4A, 5A because there were not those divisions excluding 1A and 2A.|
|CB||Combined||2006 - 2009. This is the Combined Division, where players have to compete and demonstrate skill in multiple styles. Due to difficulties with judging, this division was removed in 2010. Shinji Saito remained the only person to ever win this division (winning all three years it was held) .|
In addition to these World Divisions, the World Yo-Yo Contest also hosts several non-championship divisions such as the 'Women's Freestyle' and, in 2015, the 'Over 40 Freestyle. There are also numerous yo-yo modifying and design contests, known in the field as modding. These non-championships divisions do not award the title of 'World Yo-Yo Champion'.
|Division Name||Other Name||Explanation|
|WF||Women's Freestyle||Women freestyle for 3-minutes. They can enter both Women's and Open.|
|Over 40||Over 40 Freestyle||Men and Women over 40 freestyle for 3-minutes. They can enter both 'Over 40' and Open.|
|SF||Spintop Freestyle||This is a World Title as certified by ITSA but not a yo-yo division title.|
|MD||Mod||The player produces and designs a self-made yoyo.|
There are 33 countries currently registered  with the IYYF that have the right to seed a National Champion into the semi-final round at the World Yo-Yo Contest. IYYF is also in communication with several other countries  (denoted by *), but, currently, these countries do not have the right to seed a National Champion to the semi-finals.
- http://iyyf.org/member-organizations/. Retrieved 2015-03-13. Missing or empty
- http://www.tokyo15.com/. Retrieved 2015-03-13. Missing or empty
- Hopkins, Michelle (2009-04-19). "'Great ambassador' passes away". Richmond News. Retrieved 2009-04-12.
- Branch, John (2008-08-18). "Competitors Go To Extremes in World Yo-yo Contest". NY Times. Retrieved 2010-07-14.
- World Yo-Yo Contest The World Yo-Yo Contest Web Site