“The Flybar 1200 was built to support the weight, strength and demands of a world-class athlete” reads the blurb. You’d be forgiven for thinking this was a marketing piece for a hang glider, a BMX or a piece of snow sport equipment. Hell no, the Flybar 1200 is a pogo stick, and a very posh one at that.
Quite when the pogo stick launched its return to popularity I’m not entirely sure, but it has bounced well and truly back into our lives and looks set to stay for a good while to come. Er… or until the PI claims start rolling in for head injuries, broken limbs and irreparable damage to pogoists’ private parts.
The latest pogo sticks can get nearly eight feet of air beneath them, transforming them from innocuous toys, through the realms of exercise equipment, to potentially lethal weapons. Extreme pogo is now a competitive sport, with tournaments and records galore to celebrate height, distance and acrobatic wizardry.
But let’s face it, there is a reason that pogo sticks went out of fashion – like missing the foot rest and gouging a hulking great hole out of your inner ankle or bouncing clean off the stick and planting yourself face first in a flurry of tarmac and dog poo. Multiple mid-air somersaults can only end in disaster, and for this reason the pogo’s days are surely numbered.
My children will not be getting a pogo stick for Christmas. Nor birthday. But nor do they need one for pogo enjoyment. For the countless hours of spectacular pogo-fail footage my little ones are set to enjoy on You Tube and Saturday night TV, and on behalf of chiropractors and trauma surgeons everywhere who will be rubbing their hands in glee, I hereby consign the pogo stick to Room 102 for posterity, with an ambulance and a packet of Band Aid for company.