GG Collective Co represents growth and learning. It’s about progress.
You wouldn’t think something like a wooden Japanese skill toy would inspire the development of what we are now and becoming, but it has!
The kendama primarily taught me one thing, enthusiasm, effort and persistence brings about positive development in all facets in life. Now it’s a little dramatic to say that this one thing could spark such inspiration, but it is a symbol and reminder of what is possible.
I consider myself as a fairly motivated person. I realised later on in my youth that with positive momentum seeking good health in following a workout program, that it really does help to have structure. This reflected in my professional life too. I learned that progress can be measured like the increasing of weights each week. Anything is possible if you are conscious of progress and strive for the better each time you aim for a challenge.
I stumbled upon YouTube videos of people playing Kendamas and I was fascinated. What were these interesting wooden toys that they were playing with, doing incredible tricks. I was hooked and wanted to get one.
So I looked online and found a source. Bought one and a week later I was trying my luck at this new thing. I was hooked and couldn’t put it down. At first I was very very hesitant at using it, almost hitting myself each time and not really landing the ball (tama) on the cups of the main wooden piece (ken). I looked online and searched for all the tricks and continued playing throughout the weeks. Each day I wanted to land a new trick and systematically made a plan to learn something new every week and do drills to hone each trick until perfected. Realising from lessons I have learnt in life, the best way to get good at something is to persevere, experiment, learn from your mistakes and seek new challenges. Which is exactly what I did.
Over time I started collecting more and more Kendamas and I felt like I was getting better. Yet I see people online whom just surpass my skills completely. I realised that this community would have matured about 5-7 years ago so they’re skills are leading towards mastery! This hasn’t deterred me. We are on our own personal journeys, if we compare ourselves to others we will discourage ourselves and in the end give up. However I believe in grit. And I too want to pursue mastery in this, why? For one, I enjoy kendama a lot. And each day, getting better and better provides positivity in my everyday life. I believe in the little achievements that add up to something big. It may not matter to anyone else, however if it matters to you, then you’ve won. Just know that there are people out there whom don’t have ambitions, whom think too small. Trust me when I say that kendama provides positive mentality, and this will resonate with you in life.
Back to the story, I was seeking new Kendamas while watching professional kendama players and I realized they were refining the shapes of the cups, making them slightly bigger and making the ball (tama) slightly more grippy with unique paint. I thought this was a cool idea so I purchased one, a Krom POP. I was hooked even more! My skills increased and my trick ambition increased! I found the new age kendama and I wanted more.
I saw the potential for Kendamas in Australia. There hadn’t really been much hype going around on them and that’s when I thought, this is it! This could be a great opportunity to introduce a new community in Australia in a big way. Me being the ambitious business minded person that I am, seeked out to find ways to manufacture a product for Australia, my own kendama brand. Which brings us GG Kendama.
I wanted to create GG Kendama to be a contributor to the community and bring new life and fun to everyone who got hooked the first time they saw a kendama being played, just like me. I was previously based in the farthest northern region of Australia on an island called Thursday island which is part of the Torres Strait. I had the ability here to sell my own branded kendama and build a name for myself. I was able to sell out my initial run of stock and was amazed at the interest up there. I thought it was then that I was on to something. It was a great journey of learning how to market my products and build packaging and considering the fact that my company had just started, I was doing all the labour. From sourcing to packaging to marketing to selling. It’s all too much to write here but maybe down the line I will let you know all the nitty gritty details of how I progressed. Just know it didn’t come easy and plenty, and I mean PLENTY of mistakes had been made that could have discouraged me to continue, however I knew my reasons why I wanted to do this and that’s what kept me going. All the lessons learnt has gotten me to this point and I wouldn’t have it any other way. You’ll learn great things from your mistakes. Stay positive, you’re alive to fight another day. Remember to note, know your reasons why.
The Kendamas I had sold were the very traditional Japanese kendama shape and although fun, I noticed the competitors had more refined models and cooler colour ways and in all facets, were better. I knew I had to step up my game if I ever wanted to be at that level. So that’s what I did. I studied the Kendamas of other brands and seeked out what I could improve on. Which has led us to where we are now.
I noticed the premium kendama area is something that has not been explored at great length and I wanted to have GG Kendama placed in this field . We refined the shape with bigger cups, an extremely ergonomic handle shape, the highest quality sourced wood, and unique colour ways that will be iconic to the brand. To define the premium quality we wanted to paint the ring handle red. If any of you out there are photography enthusiasts, you would know the company Canon have a premium line of camera lenses called the L-series and they denote this with a red ring. I wanted to pay homage to this ideology by adapting this to my Kendamas. Being a photography graduate, I found this rather fitting and I aim to have the same belief in premium quality adapted to my Kendamas.
An ideology around Kendamas is the pursuit of excellence and perfection. We want to be the best that we can be and we will continue to seek it. Which is something I want for GG Collective Co and GG Kendama. Thus, we will continue refining our product, experimenting, seeking the latest innovation and releasing to the world.
A new chapter of my life has started by moving back to mainland Australia and this means a new community to spread the kendama lifestyle and love. I can’t wait. New challenges are born but GG Collective Co and I embrace them fully. The KIN Premium Series for GG Kendama are about to release. Keep up to date via our instagram:
@giddik and @ggcollective.co
I’ll leave you with a few ideas:
- Structure can be a very great thing to seeing progress - this can be related to anything in life
- Always seek to improve and challenge yourself in doing so
- Don’t hold back, be brave. Fear can hold us back from doing great things
- Be curious! Great ideas come from learning something
- Make mistakes and make them early. You’ll learn a lot from them and with experience delivers more outcomes
- Refine and hone - seek mastery
You’ll be hearing more from me and the team at GG Collective Co.
Watch this space!
Learn. Grow. Inspire. - The core values of GG Collective Co.