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Pushing Boundaries

Up, Down, Repeat

Standard XR series unisex Kangoo model with lime Green T-spring
Standard XR series unisex model From Kangoo Jumps Website

Remember the days of jump rope and the trampoline? Though each had their merits and I had fun with both for varying reasons, if forced to choose, the trampoline would win hands down.

The weightless feeling I got when I bounced on a trampoline made me feel so giddy it was like being on a swing. It was such a good feeling all I wanted to do was go higher and higher.

Well last year for the first time I heard about a cardiovascular workout that’s apparently been around for a few years called Kangoo. Then about a couple of weeks ago I saw a segment on Good Morning America promoting the benefits of Kangoo exercise.

If you’re at all like me and you haven’t heard, or know what Kangoo is all about, allow me to get you up to speed:

  • The footwear used for the workouts are rebound shoes/boots called Kangoo Jumps.
  • The boots are atop two arcs that connect to form a hollow lengthwise football shape.
  • The arcs are connected at their ends with a tension band referred to as a T-spring.
  • The bottom arcs are rugged non-slip treads.
  • The top arcs are smooth with a support plate that connects to the boot.

When I initially saw videos of Kangoo workouts the first thought that popped into my mind was “wow, looks like fun I want to do that” immediately followed by “I’d probably break my neck.” But honestly the bounce provided by the T-spring looks like it would make you feel like you’re walking or bouncing on air.

Shock Absorbing Shoes

Even though Kangoo Jumps and similar footwear has been around for some time more research has to be done to determine the long-term health benefits of this form of exercise. However current data supports the low impact bounce is good for the joints, the heart rate increases faster leading to burning more calories quicker than standard fitness footwear. And, based on the fun quotient they look like an extremely good time on springs.

Thinking that I would like to give Kangoo a try, aside from falling and the cost (the boots are not cheap), I was initially concerned about being a tad too “seasoned” to partake of this fitness fad. Then I read an article in AARP about people over 50 doing some of the most amazing things that I’m now giving it some serious consideration.

The following hazard legend was used as a measurement for each category:

  1. Physically Dangerous
  2. Incredibly Expensive
  3. Potentially Embarrassing
  4. Utterly Improbable

Have Worldly Experience, Will Travel

So what are people over 50 doing to redefine themselves? I’m glad you asked, following is just a snapshot of some of the interesting accomplishments.

  • Space Travel – John Glenn went back into space at 77
  • Drag Racing – Bunny Burkett is still drag racing 70
  • Boxing – Bernard Hopkins, 50 is a light heavyweight boxer
  • Fashion Model – Jacky O’Shaughnessy began her modeling career at age 60
  • Backpacking Across Europe – Barbara Weibel, 63 is living the dream of adventure
  • Bodybuilding – Ernestine Shepherd, 78 began lifting weights when she was in her 50s

There were other mentions like stunt work, aircraft piloting, becoming a doctor, or even getting a tattoo but the one that stuck out for me was Ernestine the bodybuilder. This woman is amazingly ripped!!

I wish someone would have told me that the resolve that I used to possess would go AWOL when I got older because I can’t seem to push through things that were once a cinch. Losing weight is one of those things that’s gotten to the point where I say to myself “just who am I trying to impress, I’d rather eat whatever, whenever I want and live with the consequences.” Problem is I’m not liking the consequences and so it goes on and on.

After reading the AARP article I was encouraged to not let my age prevent me from doing things of interest and if I decide to go Kangoo I won’t let anything stop me. Oh there’s that not being able to see thing, but here’s the thing about being stubborn: Nothing Stands In Your Way and if it does then You Mow it Down!

So what do you think? Do you think that once people get to be a certain age they should curtail their activities?

“Age does not diminish the extreme disappointment of having a scoop of ice cream fall from the cone.” ~Jim Fiebig

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