Synopsis of Toy
Trickier than a Hoppity Hop, wilder than an ordinary pogo stick, the Pogo Ball was built for one thing only: fancy hopping. Well, fancy hopping and knocking you flat on your keister, but that kind of went with the territory.
Pogo sticks had been around for decades by the time Pogo Ball rolled off the Hasbro assembly line in 1987, but this was a whole new experience. Instead of the piston-like hopping of the traditional pogo stick, Pogo Ball had kids bounding around on an inflatable ball divided in the middle by a circular platform. Planting their sneakered feet solidly on the platform, young Pogo Ballers hopped about on the lower ball-bulb, with nothing to guide them but a good sense of balance.
TV commercials showed little Pogo Ball experts pulling off amazing tricks—flipping the ball over in mid-hop and bouncing on the top, bouncing down stairs, etc.—but the ball’s popularity peaked too soon to join the wave of “extreme sports” in the 1990’s. Hasbro expanded the line into smaller Pogo Mini-Balls (including ones featuring licensed characters like Superman), but to no avail. Unlike their stick kin, Pogo Balls all but disappeared by the end of the 80’s.
Not that Pogo Balls didn’t have a lot going for them. The hopping itself was fun, of course, but it didn’t hurt that the toy’s Saturn-like shape kind of made you feel like a god (“Watch me bounce on your puny planet, mortals! HA HA HA!!!”). Pogo Ball also happened to be a good balance builder for elementary school P.E. classes, and that little feature has kept the spirit of Pogo Ball alive in offshoots like Moon Ball. And who knows, there may just be an X-Game in that Saturn-looking ball after all.