The student news site of Bullitt East High School.


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The Unrespected Art of Yo-Yoing

Viet Ho
Jonas Greenhalgh does a “1.5 direct” yo-yo trick in a forest behind his house as he practices yo-yoing.

Yo-yos have found themselves in children’s toy boxes and have bounced around throughout history, with the first documented yo-yo being dated back to 400 B.C. While the yo-yo fad of the 90s has long been over, Bullitt East student Jonas Greenhalgh has made it clear his yo-yoing efforts are here to stay.

Greenhalgh’s story starts in fourth grade.

“I got a yo-yo when I was like seven but never really took off with it. I found that yo-yo that I had in a toy box three years later when I was ten and finally tried learning tricks with the yo-yo,” Greenhalgh said. That faithful day marked the beginning of a seven-year-long (and counting) journey to try and learn as many tricks as he could and build beautiful performances combining all these tricks. “I started playing with yo-yos because I wanted to get really good at it, and after the first couple days of starting I knew I was gonna have a long attachment to this toy,” Greenhalgh said.

In the years he has been yo-yoing he has progressed into more complex tricks in more recent times as he spends over 30 minutes every day learning more and more tricks. “There will never be a day where I run out of tricks. Yo-yoing is incredibly vast.” Greenhalgh said. From yo-yoing around his neighborhood or listening to a new album in his room, he finds some way to incorporate yo-yoing into his life.

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His chance to show everything he has learned since he was ten years old came when the talent show auditions in the 2022 Bullitt East talent show commenced, consisting of multiple acts by multiple people, one of them being Greenhalgh. “A lot of the reason I did the talent show was to inspire others to start the hobby like me,” Greenhalgh said. The audience of the talent show grew their applause the more and more left-field impressive tricks he did, and Greenhalgh became the star of the school after the show. “Jonas was the most memorable part of the talent show honestly, his whole act was really cool,” Max Patterson said.

“The recognition for my performance was awesome, but, the whole reason I did that was to inspire others to start yo-yoing… People were remembering my part of the show, and not the yo-yoing.” Greenhalgh stated. He never wanted popularity from doing the show, he wanted to spread the beautiful art of yo-yo-ing and show how glamorous the art can be, not how talented and hard-working he is. “A lot of people only associate me with yo-yos, which annoyed me a bit.” Greenhalgh said. He still wants to spread the hobby he loves to this day, and plans to do the talent show this year too.

Greenhalgh’s humble take on his hobby of yo-yoing and love for spreading the word about his hobby has started to affect people around Bullitt East. “He’d encourage me about the things I did right and tell me what I need to do on the things I did wrong and has helped me a lot as I begin to yo-yo.” Yo-yo beginner Charles Tompkins said.

Despite the unwanted spotlight that had been cast upon Greenhalgh and not his yo-yo, he wants to look past that and spread the word on how fun and exciting it can be to start to yo-yo and get to where he is today. “There’s plenty of good cheap yo-yos on Amazon and various cheap yo-yo stores with tutorials online you can watch to get better,” Greenhalgh said. The accessibility of yo-yos and things to read or watch to learn new tricks with yo-yoing is very high, and it can be very easy to get into this hobby that Greenhalgh so passionately wants everyone to get in on.

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