This trick is one of a kind. Never before have I seen anything that connects everything in such an amazing way. It's impossible to describe in words, yet when you learn the trick and understand the concepts, it is really very simple. Shepherd has taken every significant yo-yo element ever created, and tied them all together. It may not look like much, but it is perhaps the greatest trick ever invented. I would highly recommend that everyone at least attempt to learn it. Even if you can't do the entire thing, the elements are interchangeable and will open up whole new doors to realms of mounts you've been toying with for ages. Anyway, lets begin.
I would suggest that you learn Shepherd on a semi-responsive yo-yo. DO NOT learn the entire trick on an unresponsive yo-yo. You will never be able to fully understand the trick that way. If you prefer unresponsive play, the best way is to learn the parts on a semi-responsive yo-yo, and piece them all together on an unresponsive yo-yo.
1. Throw a breakaway.
2. Hold your non-throwhand so your palm is facing upwards. Close up your pinky and ring fingers with your thumb, and keep the middle and pointer fingers held out. As the yo-yo moves in front of your body, slide these two fingers below the string moving away from your throwhand.
3. Mount the yo-yo up and into the string that you just slid your fingers below.
4. Gripping the loop of string that the yo-yo is mounted into, bring the entire mount around the front and in front of your throwhand.
5. Swing the yo-yo forward, without moving either of your hands. As the yo-yo moves forward, the loop of string that it is mounted inside of will shoot backwards due to friction with the sides of the yo-yo. This is called a string rejection.
6.Catch this loop on your throwhand pointer finger.
7. Begin to swing the yo-yo back around the front.
8. At this time, transfer the string you ran your fingers below in step 2 onto your non-throwhand thumb.
9. Mount the yo-yo onto the string around your non-throwhand pointer finger. You are now in a Houdini Drop mount.
10. Locate the loop of string held by your non-throwhand pointer finger. Maneuver it above the yo-yo.
11. Pop the yo-yo into this loop.
12. Immediately release the loop from your thumb.
13. Let the yo-yo (inside this loop) travel above and around your throwhand pointer finger.
14. Continue the motion around the bottom and bring it up and around the non-throwhand pointer finger.
15. Mount the yo-yo onto the string that is closest to your body.
16. Continue the swing around your non-throwhand pointer finger.
17. This will create a twist of string around your non-throwhand pointer finger. It should be the farthest piece of string on the finger from your body. Quickly slide this frontmost twist off your finger.
18. Continue the yo-yo's motion, and land it on the string furthest from your body.
19. Drop frontmost string off of your throwhand pointer finger.
20. We are now going to perform another rejection. Keep your hands in the same place, and swing the yo-yo directly forward. It helps on this one to tilt your non-throwhand pointer finger towards the ceiling. That helps to get a nice and clean rejection.
21. Once the string rejects from the gap of the yo-yo, catch it on your throwhand pointer finger.
22. Now bring the yo-yo up, straight between your hands, and over the top of your non-throwhand.
23. Land it directly into the bottom of the frontmost string of the loop that was rejected.
24. Bring your throwhand pointer finger up, and push against the loop between the yo-yo and your non-throwhand pointer finger.
25. Push hard and pop the yo-yo off the string on the side closer to you.
26. Keep the yo-yo moving around along the same path you took in step 7.
27. Drop everything off of your throwhand pointer finger. The string coming from the yo-yo should be on top of your throwhand pointer finger.
28. Bring it around to the non-throwhand pointer finger and land into a double or nothing.
29. Before the yo-yo's weight is completely centered, drop the string off of your throwhand pointer finger.
30. Now we are going to put the yo-yo back around along the path it just came from.
31. As it is going over the non-throwhand, place your non-throwhand thumb under the loop of string connected to your throwhand.
32. As the yo-yo continues its motion, this loop will rotate and end up around the non-throwhand thumb.
33. Insert the throwhand pointer finger into the loop between the yo-yo and the non-throwhand pointer finger.
34. You are going to land the yo-yo in the bottom piece of this loop.
35. As the yo-yo is at about a 150 degree angle to the string you are going to land it in, drop the string off of your non-throwhand thumb.
36. Land the yo-yo in the string specified in step 34. You will be in a pseudo-mach 5.
37. This is (in my opinion) the most difficult rejection to do correctly. I didn't even hit it perfectly in the video. It is a very simple concept, but terribly difficult to do right. You are going to reject the back loop out of the pseudo-mach 5, and catch it on your non-throwhand thumb. Sounds easy enough right? Wrong. The yo-yo must only travel forwards, away from your body. It can not pop up. I can not imagine how long it will take me to get this part perfectly.
38. Try your best to do the rejection by only moving the yo-yo forward. As I mentioned, the loop should land over the non-throwhand thumb. This will put you in a Houdini-Drop mount, similar to the one in step 9.
39. We are going to do the same general sort of thing as in steps 10-11, putting the yo-yo into the loop around the thumb, and then dropping the loop off of the thumb.
40. Instead of sending the yo-yo over the throwhand, we are going to send it in the opposite direction, over the non-throwhand.
41. Keep the yo-yo going around the non-throwhand pointer finger until it hits into the frontmost string.
42. Bounce the yo-yo back the way it came from, only now all the way around and over the throwhand pointer finger.
43. Keep the yo-yo going around, and mount it up and into the string that is coming off of the top of the non-throwhand.
44. Continue it moving away from the non-throwhand and over top of the throwhand.
45. You will be in a one and a half mount, with an extra twist on your throwhand pointer finger.
46. Now we are going to take everything and swing it counterclockwise over the throwhand.
47. Pluck the string off of the top of the throwhand pointer finger with your non-throwhand pointer finger.
48. Welcome to a one and a half mount!
49. It is time for the final rejection. This one isn't terribly hard, but kind of confusing to understand. Swing the yo-yo forward and tilt your throwhand pointer finger towards the ceiling.
50. As this is happening, stick your nonthrowhand pointer finger through the loop that it is holding.
51. Land the rejection onto the nonthrowhand pointer finger.
52. Pull the loop from the rejection through the loop that the non-throwhand pointer finger pulled through.
53. You should now have a "Y" shaped string formation. The top part is formed with the string that your non-throwhand went through. The bottom part is formed by the string that you just pulled through.
54. Mount the yo-yo into the bottom part of the "Y."
55. Bring your nonthrowhand through the center and push it against the back of the "Y" (push away from your throwhand).
56. Using this push, pop the yo-yo out of the front of the formation.
57. Drop the entire formation.
58. Land the yo-yo on the string connected to your throwhand, which should be closest to your body. You will land in a man on the flying trapeeze.
59. Return the yo-yo to your hand.
60. Inhale deeply. God has touched you.
- As I mentioned, rejections are a lot easier when you tilt the rejecting finger upwards. It makes a nicer, cleaner rejection.
- According to Spencer Berry, all of the rejections should do all of the work. "In a perfect world, both your hands would be nearly still the entire trick." Do not go for the rejections. If you are doing them right, they will reject right into your fingers for you.
- Shepherd is very odd in the way it defies the general plane that most yo-yo tricks are bounded by. By the end, the yo-yo will never be parallel to how it began. I don't understand why, and it makes no logical sense, but this trick distorts the reality of every yo-yo trick you have ever done before.
Learn it, learn parts of it, play with it. Spencer has given the community this trick, it would be a waste if we did not use it to its full potential. Enjoy!
Indescribable-in-Words thanks to Spencer Berry, for creating Shepherd, and helping me to make sure I knew what I was doing.