The history of pogo sticks is long. In 1891, George H. Herrington of Wichita, Kansas launched an ancestor of the pogo stick. It was a patented spring-loaded stilt. Not surprisingly, he named it the Spring Stilt. It had the dual nature of stilts having a spring under each foot.
In 1920, Germans Ernst Gottschall and Max Pohlig introduced a device called a “spring end hopping stilt”. This was the first commercial pogo stick. The name “pogo” probably came from the first two letters of the inventors’ last names.
Pogo sticks first appeared in the United States in the early 1920s. They were initially popular with both adults and children. In 1955, George Hansburg came up with a pogo stick with a two-handled frame. This design made the pogo stick safer and more stable.
Pogo sticks reached their peak of popularity in the 1960s and 1970s. They appeared in movies and television shows. However, in the 1980s, pogo sticks began to fall out of favor. They now seemed too dangerous for children, and they lagged behind newer toys, such as the skateboard and the BMX bike.
Injury and Decline in Demand
In the 1980s, a number of high-profile pogo stick accidents took place. One resulted in a child’s death. This led to concerns about the safety of pogo sticks, and sales of the toy declined. Many of the risk-takers opted for skateboarding over pogo sticks. Despite possible greater risk of injury, they chose the more intense and extended adrenaline rush of BMX bikes and skateboarding over that of the pogo stick.
According to a study by the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), an average of 10,000 pogo stick-related injuries treated in emergency rooms took place each year between 1990 and 2000. The most common injuries were head injuries, followed by fractures and cuts.
Skateboards and Pogo Safety
In comparison, an average of 23,000 skateboarding-related injuries treated in emergency rooms each year happened between 1990 and 2000. The most common skateboarding injuries were fractures, followed by head injuries and cuts.
So, while pogo sticks are not as dangerous as skateboarding, they do pose a risk of injury. However, with proper safety precautions, such as wearing a helmet and knee pads, the risk of injury can be greatly reduced.
Here are some safety tips for using a pogo stick:
Always wear a helmet.
Wear knee pads and elbow pads.
Use a pogo stick that is the right size for you.
Start slowly and gradually increase your speed and skill level.
Be aware of your surroundings and avoid obstacles.
Pogo sticks have had some commercial uses. For example, they work well in:
Military training: Pogo sticks can improve balance, coordination, and strength. The military uses them to train soldiers for tasks such as jumping over obstacles and landing safely.
Entertainment: Pogo sticks appear in circuses, amusement parks, and other entertainment venues.
Exercise: Pogo sticks can be used as a form of exercise, providing a low-impact workout that can help to improve cardiovascular health and coordination.
Therapy: Pogo sticks are good for physical therapy to help people with balance and coordination problems.
Here is a list of the number of pogo stick sales in the United States by decade:
Decade Number of Sales
Here are some interesting facts about pogo sticks:
The world record for the highest pogo stick jump is 33 feet 7 inches.
The world’s longest pogo stick is 32 feet long.
There is a pogo stick club called the Pogo Stick Federation.
Pogo Stick Manufacturing
The American company that produces the most pogo sticks is Flybar. They are located in Secaucus, New Jersey. Flybar has been making pogo sticks since 1918, and they are the world’s largest pogo stick manufacturer. They produce a wide variety of pogo sticks, from basic models to more advanced models. Flybar pogo sticks represent quality and durability.
Here are some other American companies that produce pogo sticks:
Hopscotch (Santa Fe Springs, California)
Vurtego (San Diego, California)
Airwalk (Carlsbad, California)
- Year Started: 1920
- Year Ended: 2099
- Origin Of Name: Names of Inventors
- Location Sales: Worldwide
- Brand Name Predecessor: N/A
- Brand Name Successor: N/A
- Owner Original: Generic
- Owner While In Use: Generic
- Owner Successor: Generic
- Year Resurrected: N/A
- What’s Popular Today: Pogo Sticks
- Naics Code: 339930
- Location Headquarters: N/A