Updated: May 29, 2015
Stilt Reviews:I got my first set of stilts when I was about 10 years old. They were the cheap, metal type with adjustable footrests. I had tried to learn how to walk on stilts with an old wooden pair we had, but they were clumsy and cracked. My parents bought me the metal stilts from Toys R Us and I used them most of the summer and actually got good at walking long distances on them. The hardest part of being up on stilts is keeping your balance while walking on uneven surfaces - such as going up or down stairs. We had a huge acre of grass and dirt so I had plenty of space to practice my skills. I'm not sure what I was hoping for, but after mastering the stilts I put them down and never touched them again. Fast forward to the present and suddenly they are selling the jumping stilts that are totally radical. Poweriser and Air-Trekker make the advanced jumping stilts. The drawback to these are price - you are looking at spending $200 to $350 for a pair.
Choosing a set of Stilts - If you are considering purchasing stilts for your child, then go with a product like the Geospace Walkaroo Stilts by Air Kicks. They are under $40 and fit kids to adults that are 4 feet 6 inches to 6 feet 6 inches. We read reviews online from parents saying their 7 or 8 year olds enjoyed the stilts eventhough they weren't 4' 6" tall. The wooden stilts that we saw listed online were almost twice the price as the steel option and they didn't seem to offer any advantages. The height adjustable stilts are preferred so that they can be adjusted as your child grows taller. Look for those with non marking feet so that if they are used indoors, they won't scuff up your floors. The foot platforms are critical for beginners in being able to get up or down without falling all the time. The Walkaroos are less than 1 foot off the ground to reach the foot platform so starting up is easy. Balance is ultimately what allows you to stay up on stilts and the Walkaroos are great training stilts. As you get more control, then moving on to the jumping stilts is a great way to go. The Poweriser Jumping Stilt ($360) are designed based on the users weight. The 'spring' within the stilt needs to be broken in 'much like a baseball glove' says one owner. Online reviews from consumers also note that you should go with the stilt made for your weight. If you are too heavy, then the spring will get crushed and if you are too light for the model, the spring will never react like it should. Poweriser and Air-Trekker stilts are seen on YouTube videos with people showing off the tricks that can be performed using these. All owners agree that you need to get used to the jumping stilts first before trying anything crazy. Several noted that they fell flat on their face because they weren't used to the stilts before trying advanced maneuvers. REVIEWS - We found a decent amount of customer feedback on Amazon.com for regular stilts, but the Extremeforum.net and YouTube were your best sources for comments about the jumping stilts. If you watch some of the crazy stunts performed while using the jumping stilts from Air-Trekker you may want to buy them right now. You can browse the best selling walking stilts online here.