If you’re not afraid to shell out some serious money to get the very best pogo stick available on the market, then the Vurtego V4 Pro Pogo Stick might just be the thing for you. The V4 is hailed as the most advance pogo stick out there, and it’s not difficult to see why.
Why Get a Pogo Stick?
Before moving to the review itself, let’s briefly touch upon the good sides of owning/using a pogo stick, for the sake of those out of the loop. Shortly after its inception by Flybar in 1918, the humble pogo stick became one of the most popular toys in the States, standing shoulder to shoulder with Radio Flyer’s Red Wagon. Of course, the popularity of pogo sticks has fluctuated greatly over the years, going from extremely high in the 1920s and 1970s to virtually nonexistent during the intervening decades. Interestingly enough, the apparent revival in the 1970s was the result of a marketing scheme which caused folks to look at pogo sticks from an entirely different angle, and people have set world records (Guinness and otherwise) hopping on pogo sticks, competed professionally, even gotten married. It fell away a bit in the 1980s, then came back to a degree in the 1990s thanks to Commander Keen, a Game Boy gaming franchise. In recent years it seems to have somewhat gained in popularity, especially among teens and young adults. This is, most likely, due to the advent of the so-called “extreme pogo sticks” and the related sport – Xpogo (in this sense, the pogo simply follows the evolution of skateboards and rollerblades – anything to keep the adrenaline pumping).
Whether it’s for a child or an adult, the humble pogo stick comes with one obvious benefit – it stimulates physical activity and promotes a healthier lifestyle. For a start, it helps you (or your kid) improve your balance. Not only that, but hopping on a pogo stick also activates several groups of muscles. For a start, you’ll be working your back muscles, which work together with your core muscles to keep your balance. This leads to a nice, upright posture and a taut tummy, almost guaranteed. Moreover, pogoing also requires your legs to work out, particularly your calves and buttocks. In other words, if you wish to shave a couple of years off certain parts of your anatomy, this is the way to go. The activity takes a decent amount of strength and endurance, but the end results make it more than worth it.
All of the points above apply to kids – exercising the back, abdominal and leg muscles, enhancing the balance, the whole shebang. However, talking about kids specifically, pogoing has one other major advantage, and that’s the fact it promotes emotional and social development. It makes the bane of every modern household – getting the kids outside to play, almost a non-issue, and allows the kids develop social skills as they wait their turn on the stick or compete with each other on their respective toys. Plus, it goes a long way to boosting self-confidence and self-esteem as the little tyke boasts his or her skills (though, be careful on this one, as it’s a two-way street; don’t let your child take the game too seriously). Granted, landing hard does take some toll on your knees and ankles, but if you start off slowly and build up the momentum gradually (giving your joints the chance to warm up in the meantime), it’s no more strenuous than running.
What makes the Vurtego V4 unique among all other pogo sticks is its spring system, or rather, the lack of one. Vurtego has long ago disposed of steel springs and adopted air pistons which have several distinctive advantages over the traditional steel spring systems. For one, the rides are much smoother, incomparably so. Every touchdown is soft and forgiving on your joints. You can think of this as riding a bike with fully inflated tires, and then riding one with fully deflated tires – worlds apart. The fully deflated here would, of course, be he V4. On a similar note, the rides are much quitter, barring the sound of the base coming in contact with the ground.
Secondly, you get so much more power than with a steel spring. At this point, it’s important to note that the V4 is the younger brother of the V3, the major difference being the somewhat increased capacity of the air piston (14ci). Translated into plain English, this means you just get more bounce with less air pressure (and also a bit more cushion). What does this mean for the jumper? Well, to put it this way – with the traditional spring system, even with the best steel spring that can be found, you would be lucky if you got more than two feet. On the flipside, with the V4, you can easily clear ten feet, which opens up the possibility for some sweet Xpogo tricks. The durable aluminium frame construction enables it to withstand inordinate amounts of punishment, which are further mitigated by the air cushion.
Thirdly, and arguably most importantly, the air piston system allows for maximum versatility due to its incredible adjustability. In other words, it doesn’t matter if you’re a 12-year old girl weighing 90 pounds or an adult male weighing in at 300 pounds. All it takes is a bit of adjustment, and you’re good to go. On this note, height does play some part in using the V4, so the manufacturer decided to make it in three sizes – Small, Medium and Large. The first is recommended for users measuring 5’5″ and under, the second for jumpers ranging from 5’6″ to 5’11”, while the third is for those with the height of 6′ and over. While we’re on the subject of numbers, the V4 has a recommended weight limit ranging from 75 pounds in the lower extreme to the 400 pounds in the upper – age is of no importance here, which is certain to make plenty of “inner kids” happy.
- Packs a lot of punch, you can fly up to 10 feet in the air.
- Adjustable air pressure enables you to fine-tune the “springiness” to suit either a 60-pound kid or a 300-pound adult.
- Quality build, plenty of durability.
- 1-year warranty, coupled with excellent customer service.
- To say it costs a pretty penny would be somewhat of an understatement.
- It’s a high-maintenance product (particularly compared to other pogo sticks).
All things considered, the Vurtego V4 has definitely earned the right to be touted as the most advanced pogo stick on the market, and one of the most versatile such products. On the flip side, it does come with a matching, fairly prohibitive price tag, so keep that in mind.