Powerbocking or Powerskip

Some gadgets are good for you. Take the example of Powerbocking, the act of jumping and running with elastic-like spring-loaded stilts. For some it is an extreme sport, for others it is a form of exercise or even a means of artistic expression.

The use of the stilts to perform extreme jumping, running and acrobatics is known as 'Bocking' or 'PowerBocking' after the inventor. Powerisers are occasionally known as Kangaroo Boots because of their resemblance to the legs of the animal.

Each boot consists of a foot-plate with snowboard type bindings, rubber foot pad which is also commonly called a hoof, and a fibreglass leaf spring. Using only their weight, and few movements, the user is generally able to jump 3–5 ft (1–1.5 meters) off the ground and run up to 20 mph (32 km/h). They also give the ability to take up to 9-foot (2.7 meters) strides.

They were originally patented by Alexander Böck, from Germany (European Patent EP 1 196 220 B1 on July 2, 2003, US Patent No. 6,719,671 B1 on April 13, 2004, both with a priority date of July 20, 1999), as Powerskips. The name of "PowerBocks" is derived from Mr. Böck's name.

The original Powerskips are considered a brand for professional and serious enthusiast use, costing in excess of US$1000. The other professional brand is Velocity Stilts. Velocity Stilts are Powerskips that have been modified with different bindings and stripped down to minimize weight, and resold by Stiltwerks, inc. Velocity Stilts occasionally retain the Powerskip logo on some parts.

There are 4 main companies producing lower cost powerbocks for hobbyists. Fly Jumpers, PoweriZers (now also called PowerStriders) and Pro Jumps are some of the numerous different vendors of identical models produced by one company in China called Flying Locust. Poweriser brand powerbocks were produced by Korean Company but actually manufactured in Philippines. 7 League Boots are produced by an Austrian company and are the most expensive of the non-pro brands. The fourth is called Skyrunner, which does not pay royalties to Alexander Böck and is illegal in copyright-protected countries.

Video of Powerbocking


Jumping Stilts said...

Powerskips are such sweet bocks! It's too bad they cost so darn much!