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Pogo - Redesigning the Science of Bounce

You've had an amazing life as a pro skateboarder and you're looking for new horizons and challenges. Where do you go? What do you do? If you're Andy Macdonald, you reinvent the pogo stick.

Andy Macdonalds Flybar 1200 pgpg stick

If you've seen what Andy has done on a skateboard, you'll have no problem believing he would be able to reinvent a staple of every kid's toy box - the pogo stick. Patented in 1919, you wouldn't think there'd be to much more you could do to a pogo stick, but as I said... take a look at what he did on a sk8, then check out the Flybar.

Of course the truth of the matter is that the flybar was a collaboration between the originator of the pogo stick (SBI Enterprises in NY) and an MIT physicist who had a passion for pogo. Andy got wind of the project and jumped on board to help out and promote the product. You couldn't ask for a better promoter for a turbo pogo stick than a professional skateboarder with a long history in extreme sports. At the same time Andy has gotten a lot of crap for "going pogo" after an amazing career as a skater. BTW - he's still a sponsored pro skater.

I recently tried to re-live a piece of childhood and bought a pogo stick to fool around with in the driveway. After a few minutes I was bouncing up and down like an eight-year-old... much to the dismay of my wife who finds such endeavors rather childish. Apparently, she hasn't seen the video of guys doing back-flips on the Flybar.

wooden pogo stick

The pogo story:

As legend has it, an American traveler named George Hansburg was making his way through Burma when he made the acquaintance of a poor farmer. The farmer's daughter was named Pogo, and Pogo - devout little girl that she was - wanted to go to temple every day to pray, but couldn't because she had no shoes to wear for the long walk through the mud and rocks. So the poor farmer built a jumping stick for her, and Pogo's daily temple bounce-trips through the mud and over the rocks ensued. When the impressed traveler returned home, he made a jumping stick of his own, attaching a spring to the wooden stick contraption that the farmer had introduced him to.

Sure it's far-fetched, but it's nice, isn't it? Wherever the idea for the jumping stick really came from, Hansburg patented his "Pogo Stick" in 1919. The Gimble Brothers Department Store in the U.S. imported a boatload of them, but unfortunately, the sticks rotted on the wet ship ride over. The folks at Gimble asked Hansburg to produce something more resilient, and Hansburg eventually did just that - from his own factory called SBI Enterprises. And those sticks, called "Master Pogos," were the bouncing wonders that we know and love today.

Flybar pogo stick

Even if you're the hardest of hardcore skaters, jumping on a pogo stick won't soften you, it'll give you something else to go wild on. Stop by a toy store and surprise yourself and find the inner-child who's dying to be released.

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