You’ve heard of skateboarding, wakeboarding, cliff diving, paragliding and a lot more, but are you ready for this new(ish) extreme sport -Xpogo? We’ll even if you aren’t, buckle up: you are living during the rise of a new extreme sport—Extreme Pogo, as athletes and enthusiasts call it.
If you don’t already know, a Pogo stick is a toy for kids that rose to popularity in the 1970s/80s. It is a spring-loaded pole with handles at the top to hold onto, and two spaces at the bottom to rest your feet. With the spring-loaded aspect, you can bounce several feet into the air, and today, it’s turned into a literal sport.
Most sports happen on wheels or boards. Skateboarding, BMX, and snowboarding, surfing and waterskiing. Most of these sports include “big air” movements—jumps, flips and other acrobatic—like stunts that stun viewers with their “antigravity” movies. The seemingly simple, “that’s just for kids” Pogo stick many not give you extreme sports vibes, but that’s just because you are thinking of just regular o’l Pogo, not XPogo.
XPogo is a growing niche sport, but who knows…maybe we’ll look back at this time as the dawn of Pogoing, before it was launched into a worldwide phenomenon, Olympic sport, international Pogo league and world championships. And considering that there already is a World Championships of Pogo…this looks like it’s going to be just the beginning of XPogo.
What is XPogo?
As we said before, there is a difference between every day Pogo and XPogo – mainly, the latter is more extreme.
Normal Pogo? A few inches to a foot or two off the ground is the hight you’ll normally jump on a Pogo stick.
XPogo? Try anywhere from 6 to 10 feet. Yeah, we didn’t think that was possible either. But if there anything we should know by now, it’s that nothing is impossible when it comes to extreme sports.
There is not a 100% certainty on the origins of Xpogo, but nearly everyone in the Xpogo community agrees that Dave Armstrong from Provo, Utah is the founder of the early beginnings of Xpogo. Starting in 1999, he was the first to fool around with using a normal Pogo stick and performing various jumps and tricks. Armstrong bought the Xpogo.com domain and started sharing photos and videos of himself and others doing extreme Pogo soon after, and around that time period, other people had started their own versions of extreme Pogo, and since everyone wasn’t as “connected” via the internet, each thought they had solely created the sport…until they eventually stumbled across the xpogo.com website. Deciding to loosely join forces, they shared all things Pogo and started to build the foundation of the sport as it started to grow in popularity.
The First Extreme Pogo Stick
Although the sport started off on basic, every day Pogo sticks, the first extreme Pogo stick came out in 2004. This type of Pogo stick is able to carry an adult while being able to jump around 6 feet or more. During this time, Xpogo started to grow nationally as well as internationally, with different groups starting to create their own websites to help define their own ideals of the sport and what it could be.
With the growth and diversification within the Pogo world, more and more people started to join and experience the extreme sport of Pogo, and tricks and jumps started to be invented. Some were borrowed from other sports like skateboarding, but made to fit the unique sport of Pogo.
Pogo Tricks & the Sport’s Evolution
The basics of nearly all Pogo tricks include a series of jumps, spins, grabs, wraps and using the frame and handle bars as a way to flip around the stick while midair. Using simple names that described the movements that formed the tricks, as the interment grew, so did the sport of Xpogo. While xpogo.com had been the hub for everything Xpogo, when the original social media sites like Youtube and Facebook started to rise, and a lot of users started to share their Xpogo skills.
2004 was definitely the year of Xpogo. Not only was the first Xpogo stick create, but the year the very first Pogopalooza was held. If you don’t know what a Pogopalooza is, then where have you been?
Created by Xpogo enthusiast Dan Brown, he was inspired by the growing online community and wanted to host a real-life event to meet and connect with other Xpogo enthusiasts while showing ff their tricks and skills. What started as a humble event in a church parking lot in Nebraska with seven fellow Xpogo members, ended up turning into a national tour of competitions and the World Championships of Pogo.
World Championships of Pogo
Each year since 2004, the Pogopalooza has been growing steadily, but hit a high point in 2013. The Pogopalooza 10 was held in New York City and was widely attended with lots of media coverage. The success of the Pogopalooza 10 set the stage for the evolution of the event and sport: in 2014, the Pogopalooza competition hosted a multi-city tour, and morphed into the Pogopalooza: The Xpogo World Championship Series that it is known as today. It’s held in various cities across the US, and just this past June it was held in Pittsburgh, PA. now run by Will Weiner (CEO), Nick McClintock and Nick Ryan, both Co-Founders. Producing hundreds of events each year along with an array of videos and films created across the world, you can bet that XPogo will only be growing from here.
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