Loco For YoYo: Interview with YoYo Performer Patrick Canny


By Georgia Hickam

yoyo patrick canny

Did you know that you can pursue yoyo as a professional, competitive hobby?  I didn’t either until I met Patrick Canny.  I first saw him perform at this year’s KU’s Got Talent, a student-run talent show full of gifted singers, dancers, and performers.  Patrick is a professional yoyo performer ranked No. 8 in the nation and No. 27 in the entire world.  He has won countless yoyo competitions and can now add KU’s Got Talent to his growing list of successes.  I sat down with Patrick to ask a few questions about his unique hobby and his personal style.

What originally inspired you to pursue yoyo?

“My dad really inspired me to get into yoyo when he showed me the basics on an old wooden yoyo. I was instantly hooked! I started taking yoyo more seriously when I learned that there were competitions around the world and people who were way better than me. Ever since I’ve been trying to constantly improve my routines, and I think 2016 will be a good year ;)”

yoyo2 patrick canny

How would you describe your personal style?

“My personal style is almost 100% based on comfort. Some people think it’s super lame, which I don’t really understand, because if you’re not totally comfortable, you’ll never be able to fully focus on what you’re doing. In fact, a few of my friends are always calling me out, telling me to wear “nicer clothes” but I don’t really get it. I guess my philosophy is that I should be ready to take a nap at any time, since you never know when you’ll have the opportunity to just chill out.”

What’s your favorite thing to wear right now?

“I’m really into tailored sweatpants (read: joggers) because they show off the kicks as well. Shoes are pretty much always the highlight of my outfit. Lately I’ve been wearing Vans Sk8 Highs and TNT SG, but I’ve got Jordan IIIs and Saucony Trainers in the mix as well. My favorite things to wear lately have been Nike Tech Fleece products. I have a pair of pants and a jacket, and they’re both really comfortable and functional pieces. The nice thing about Tech Fleece is that it’s double lined, doing a better job at insulating heat than other, comparable products. This has definitely been useful in the cold weather we’ve been having!!”

Describe your style in three words.

“Cozy Or Die!”

What role do you see yoyo playing in your future?

“I’m pretty positive that I want to actively pursue yoyo as a career…I’m practicing really hard this year but I’m not sure how much longer I’ll be in the competitive scene. I hope to stay connected to all the awesome friends I’ve made in the community, and I’ll probably try to stick around as a judge/contest organizer. I’m also working on a design for a yoyo right now, which is cool because it ties directly into my coursework as a mechanical engineer. Hopefully one day people will be able to use a yoyo that I designed!”

yoyo3 patrick canny

Photography by Luke Finnell