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Flipping Out

Posted December 3, 2012



If you take something you’re good at and do it a zillion times, chances are you could make or break a new record.  Like Army Lieutenant Jalyessa Walker this past week, when she did an incredible 49 backflips in a row down the length of a football field.  That was way more than she needed to do – the previous record was just 35 back handsprings – but apparently when you get on a roll with these things, it’s hard to stop.  Next time you do somersaults, cartwheels, or your own backflips, you can track how many you did and how far you traveled…although it’s probably easier to get places by walking there.

Wee ones

If the previous record was 35 backflips, and Jalyessa needed to do just one more to break the record, how few flips did she need to do

Little kids

If when you do a cartwheel you travel 4 feet, how far do you travel when you do 4 cartwheels in a row? (Hint: to multiply by 4, you double the number, then double again.) Bonus: She stopped at 49 flips because she was about to go off the grass, and the concrete could have hurt her hands and wrists.  If Jalyessa had fit 50 backflips onto the field, and a football field is 100 yards, how far would she have traveled on each backflip on average?

Big kids

Jalyessa says she trained for a month to prepare for this stunt. If she did 50 backflips each day as part of her workout, how many did she do this past month? (Assume 30 days, since we just finished November.)  Bonus: What if she had done 200 per day?