Kendama USA

Posts Tagged ‘Turner Thorne’

Van Jam 2 Recap

At the end of the summer, the Terra Kendama workshop celebrated one year of being open in Vancouver, after moving to the coast from Edmonton last spring. The ‘Van Jam 2′ is an event that celebrates the core of what kendama is: having fun while hanging out with friends, learning some new tricks, and maybe a little bit of competition on the side.

This year’s event brought players from across Canada, the US, and Japan to the Terra workshop. Turner Thorne, Haley Bishoff, and I were the repping Kendama USA, and it was awesome having teammates in town! We spent a lot of time seeing sights, eating good food, and jamming kendama around the city.

Last year KendamaUSA’s own Colin Sander won the game of DAMA tournament at the Van Jam, but this year it was Brandon Meyer that took home the first place prize. Good times were had by all, this certainly won’t be the last of the Van Jams!

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KWC Setup Recap

KWC 2015 Setups Banner
Over the past two weeks we’ve shared what each Kendama USA team member used in the KWC qualifiers and finals.
We wanted to recap it all into one area and offer a limited 15% discount on these items with code: KUSAWorldCup15

1. Zack Yourd – Zebrano Ken x Tribute Half Split Red/White Tama

Zack Yourd KWC Setup



1 Zebrano Kendama

1 Tribute Half Split (Red/White)

“It’s a mash-up of some of my favorite kendama parts, and I like when the tama is a couple of grams heavier than the ken. Half splilts also help for tracking which is nice for more stressful/competition play.” – Zack Yourd.

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2. Wyatt Bray – TK16 Master Ken x Turner Thorne v4 Pro Model Tama

Wyatt KWC Setup



1 TK 16 Red

1 Turner Thorne v4 Pro Model

“I wanted a freshy, competing with a fresh is the best. TK 16 are one of my most memorable damas because they were the first I played when I  first started.”  - Wyatt Bray

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3. Turner Thorne – Kaizen Zebrano Ken x Turner Thorne v4 Pro Model Tama.

Turner KWC Setup



1 Kaizen Zebrano Kendama

1 Turner Thorne v4 Pro Model

“Strictly for the balance ratio between the ken and tama. It was also the one that was most broken in around the bevel which helped with bird  tricks” – Turner Thorne

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4. TJ Kolesnik – Colin Sander v4 Pro Ken x Tribute Red/White Half Split Tama


TJ KWC Setup



1 Colin Sander v4 Pro Model

1 Tribute Half Split (Red/White)

“The v4 ken matched super well weight-wise with the tama, and the half split is a reallygood visual. The bottom white half makes the tama hole  pop. Once playing a few days the silk paint on he tama breaks in really nicely.” – TJ Kolesnik

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5. Keith Matsumura – Colin Sander v4 Pro Model


Keith KWC Setup'




1 Colin Sander v4 Pro Model

“I like the 3-tone tama, it’s easy to track for spike tricks. Also in the past I’ve gotten good vibes from playing Colin’s pro models.”
- Keith Matsumura

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7. Haley Bishoff – Kaizen Zebrano Ken x Kaizen Silk Turquoise Tama


Haley KWC Setup




1 Kaizen Zebrano

1 Kaizen Turquoise

“I like the look of it, the color-way was nice. Matching is key. It played well for me too, I landed all of my tricks in my 2 runs. When choosing a  Kendama, 60% is based of looks, the other on playability.” – Haley Bishoff

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8. Dave Mateo – Kaizen Zebrano Ken x Kaizen Translucent Wine Tama


Dave KWC Setup




1 Kaizen Zebrano

1 Kaizen Red Wine Translucent

“I’ve lately found that I’ve been able to lace nutty multiple J-Sticks/UFO’s with the grip from the translucent paint. Also this tama is a bird machine. Once beating it in, the bevel allows the tama to just sit n grip.” – Dave Mateo

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9. Bryan Scagline – Kaizen Birch Ken x Tribute Black / Yellow Half Split

KWC 2015 Setup - Bryan Scagline



1 Kaizen Translucent

1 Tribute Half Split (Yellow / Black )

“I wanted to rep the hometown colors, and the half split is good for tracking. I found this useful when performing up on stage and during on-the-spot play.” – Bryan Scagline

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10. Alex Smith – Kaizen Birch Spike x Maple Cups x Alex Smith v4 Pro Mod.


KWC 2015 Setup - Alex Smith



1 Kaizen Translucent

1 Alex Smith v4 Pro Model

“Can I get a glass of water?… The tama was nice and solid and the tama’s weight matched well with the ken. The hybrid Ken was not planned and was pieced together after some Kendama mishaps, but it played really well.” – Alex Smith

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KWC Set Ups: Turner Thorne

“This project highlights each of Kendama USA’s players and the specific kendama set ups they chose to use for the KWC while also adding my own style into the mix. Every photo was taken with instant-print cameras (Polaroid OneStep SX-70 and Fujifilm Instax 210) and every word written by hand. I like taking the foreign route in todays technology era and crafting things by hand. Having a limited amount of film for the cameras also added a surprise/suspense element to it all because each shot was a make-or-break on whether or not it would come out in focus or not. I really want to thank Jero, Cecilia Chow, Luke Evans, and the K-USA team for their contributions on making this come together.”

For the next 10 days straight we will release one of the players pages so be on the look out so you can see what set ups some of your favorite pro players are choosing to jam these days.

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VOTE NOW! Team Wiens vs. Team Fuegz

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Kendama World Cup 2015 – Mini Recap

“This year’s trip to Japan was one for the books. Every time we trek on a new adventure, more and more memories are made. We made our way abroad with two new additions, Tribe Team members Wyatt Bray and Bryan Scagline. It was both their first time out of the country and a great time to experience Japan. I was in the same position exactly 1 year ago and for all the trips I’ve been on, this has been one of the most memorable and fun for me.



The 2015 Kendama World Cup started off with a bang. Zack Yourd, Bryan Scagline, Dave Mateo, Turner Thorne, Jason Morrison, and I all met up at the San Francisco International Airport to hop on a plane to Japan. It was 13 hours of pure fun, rowdiness on the plane, and teaching passengers and flight attendants how to play Kendama. We managed to film an entire edit that features the new Mugen Musou… #TEAMFUEGZ! Coming shortly.

Yes, finally touched down in Japan. Let the adventures begin.


10 long, sleepless, adventure filled days were about to go down. The best and most talented Kendama players all under one roof, competing against each other for the top prize. Luckily, the entire World Cup (2 days) was on a live stream so those who weren’t there were able to catch the live footage and see the craziness go down. For me, the last 10 days blurred together because there was so much going on all at once. So many exciting things happened every day and the level of skill in Kendama has risen to new heights. I’m happy and proud to congratulate my own teammate Wyatt Bray for taking it home for Kendama USA! GO WYATT! WE LOVE YOU!

To check out Wyatt’s winning run click HERE

Let’s just give a quick recap of events. Plane rides, no sleep, Japanese beer tasting, long nights, down pours, early mornings, scaling roof tops, amazing sushi, walking, LOTS OF WALKING, onsens, vending machines, 7/11, alpaca, Japanese style housing, hostels, dama village, polaroid sessions Osaka, Hiroshima, Kendama Street, okonomiyaki, subways, laughing, friends, family, team, Kendama. I hope everyone reading this gets to experience Japan and the Kendama World Cup at least once. For those who did go this year, I hope you read this and smile and think back to all the great memories.



A big thank you to Tamotsu Kubota, Yuka Hyuga, Hajime Ishibashi, Kota Kagoshima, the rest of the Gloken Crew, Kendama USA, and of course, Jeremy Stephenson. Cheers to the future of Kendama! See you all next year.” -Tj Kolesnik

check out more from the trip:


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Behind the Scenes @ NKR 2015

Enjoy an inside-look at the National Kendama Retreat weekend, held at camp Wasewagan in Angelus Oaks, CA. During the fun-filled weekend of contests, video-shoots, instruction, exploration, and team bonding… there was still time to get some extra trick footage with the Kendama USA crew as well as plenty of friends. See you all next year!

A word from Dave Mateo:
“National Kendama Retreat would have not been at all possible with out all of you who believed in it. Spike Hard Catch Low in Collaboration with Kids Ken would like to personally thank all of you who have attended, sponsored and spilled all of your time and energy into the retreat. This is only the beginning of something we hope to make bigger and better every year as NKR begins to grow.”

Special Thanks to all Sponsors:

Terra Kendama
Lion Head
Kendama Syndicate

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Salt Lake Sessions With Turner Thorne & Friends

Salt Lake Sessions will be a monthly video showcasing how I incorporate Kendama into my everyday life. No matter where I go or what I do, I always have a kendama with me. This Month follow me as I do my morning routine of biking, climbing, and kendama at the park for our Tuesday meet ups! enjoy.

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East Coast – Beach Kendama Tour ft. Turner Thorne & TJ Kolesnik Recap

This past week TJ Kolesnik and Turner Thorne went on a 5 day Kendama tour all around North Carolina with Kitty Hawk Kites to teach and spread Kendama in a whole new area.

The tour Kicked off in Corolla with a quick in shop demo, from there we moved on to Nags Head for Kids day which was a huge success! The next morning we made our way further south to the Avon store where we met a ton of first time players and witnessed a lot of first spikes. The final stop of the tour was the Waves shop in Rodanthe for the Summeritaville festival!

In between the events we had a chance to film some tricks on the beach and even learned how to Hang Glide!

We want to give a HUGE thank you to Kitty Hawk Kits for this amazing opportunity, we had an amazing time teaching kendama all week and cant wait to make it back out to NC.





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Freestyle 15 Winners Announced!

Thank you to everyone who participated in the Freestyle 15 Video Contest!
We had a lot of submissions and it took the judges quite a while to go through them all and pick winners.
Be sure to check out the winning submissions as well as honorable mentions below.

Alex Smith Winner: Walter Cummings

Got this one for the @kendamausa #kusafreestyle15 contest @htimsxela @turner_thorne @t_starnes hope you all enjoy cheee!!!

A video posted by Walter A Cummings III (@waltaboi808) on

Turner Thorne Winner: Rolf Vigganer

Nailing some flowy flow with some slowy slow. My entry for the #kusafreestyle15. Heavily inspired by the man who has influenced my style the most, my employer and my friend @thorkildmay. I hope you enjoy @htimsxela, @t_starnes and @turner_thorne. #kendama #noia2 #krom #kromhq #kromnoia2 #kromkendama @kromkendama @kendamausa

A video posted by Rolf S. Ganer (@rolfsandvigganer) on

Trevor Starnes Winner: Dylan Westmoreland

Entry for #KUSAFreeStyle15 #HellaKendama #Kendama @teejkolesnik @htimsxela @turner_thorne @kendamausa

A video posted by Dylan Westmoreland (Dwesty) (@kdama_dyl) on

Honorable Mentions:
Tony – @Bonesicle
Daunye Synigal – @daun_yon
David Mock – @mocklemore

Don’t fret if you didn’t win take 15% off your next purchase with code KUSAFF15, grab a fresh dama and practice to win our next contest!

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East Coast – Beach Kendama Tour ft. Turner Thorne & TJ Kolesnik

East Coast Beach Kendama Tour\

We’ve touched down and are going to be visiting a few Kitty Hawk stores in the North Carolina area!
We’re going to be here all week and here are the dates and locations of where we are going to be.

Tuesday 6/23: Corolla – Kitty Hawk – Monterey Plaza – 819 Ocean Trail, Corolla, NC 27957
2-4PM – Jams, Demos & More | 7-9PM – Workshop

Wednesday 6/24: Kitty Hawk | 3295 S. Croatan Hwy., Nags Head, NC 27959
10AM – 2PM Jams & 7PM – 9PM – Contest

Thursday 6/25 – We’ll be in Avon for a couple of hours then going to Rodanthe.
10AM – 12PM – Jams & Demos | Kitty Hawk | 39432 North Carolina 12, Avon, NC 27915
7 – 9PM – Demos | Waves – Kitty Hawk Kites Kiteboarding Resort | 24502 Hwy 12, Rodanthe, NC 27968

Friday 6/26 – Waves – Kitty Hawk Kites Kiteboarding Resort – Summeritaville
6 – 10PM – Come find us at Summeritaville!

Tour Schedule

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Kendama USA Releases NEW Trick Tutorials

We are excited to bring you the Kendama USA Tutorial Series. We’ve released over 40 Kendama Tutorial Videos to help you and your friends learn all sorts of tricks. From core basics to high level advanced we’ve got them all.
If there are any tricks that you want to see as a part of our tutorials submit them to

We’ve put together a playlist that you can play through with all of our tricks organized by difficulty as well as skill level playlists. Check them out below or visit our tricks & tutorials page here.

Click to watch: Beginner Level Trick Tutorials
Click to watch: Intermediate Level Trick Tutorials
Click to watch: Advanced Level Trick Tutorials

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Freestyle 15 Instagram Video Contest

All right, here’s the deal. We’re holding an Instagram contest and we want to see your most creative 15 Second Freestyle with only one rule…No spacewalks! Judges Alex Smith, Turner Thorne & Trevor Starnes will be looking for creativity, style & flow. Grab your gear and enter to win!

Deeply rooted in the Kendama community, judges Alex, Turner, & Trevor are always trying to improve and help others improve on their skills in freestyle sports. We’ve thrown together a prize pack that represents their love of not only Kendama but also Skateboarding for this contest.

All submissions must be tagged with hashtag #kusafreestyle15 and received by Sunday night, June 14th, 2015. Only 1 submission per person.

  • #kusafreestyle15


  • Alex Smith
  • Turner Thorne
  • Trevor Starnes

  • No Spacewalks.


Alex Smith Winner:

    • New Bamboo Pill
    • Alex Smith v4 Pro Model
    • Denim Blue Jumbo Pill
    • Autographed Natty Beech Pill
    • Kendama USA Logo Skateboard

Turner Thorne Winner:

    • New Wenge Pill
    • Turner Thorne v4 Pro Model
    • Sienna Red Jumbo Pill
    • Autographed Cherry Pill
    • Kendama USA Seal Skateboard

Trevor Starnes Winner:

  • New Padauk Pill 
  • Kaizen Select – Natural Beech
  • 2013 A.Smith Trad’l Cherry Pro
  • Autographed Purple Pill
  • Kendama USA Kaizen Skateboard


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