‘Member that one part in the original Power Rangers movie where the rangers are fighting Ivan Ooze’s minions and they’re flipping around all over the place? Front flips, back flips, big spins, all for pretty much no reason other than looking cool? Most of the stunts in that movie were done with wires, but it’s actually quite possible to do crazy flips with nothing but some skill and flexibility.
Andrew Friedman, who operates under the Instagram handle @poplikecorn, bills himself as an “extreme flipper.” What’s extreme flipping? It’s kind of like acrobatics, but with less swings and elephants and more straight-up skill. With a little warm up, Friedman can send himself twisting and spinning in rapid chains, careening across a mat like a wheel of doom. With the aid of a trampoline, he can do multi-count cannonball flips in the air. Even from a complete standstill on a solid surface, he can always pull off at least one clean flip (though it doesn’t hurt to have a soft surface or water waiting for him just in case). The sheer control Friedman has over his body, especially his legs, makes me think he’d be really good at capoeira.
Friedman is also a member of Gravitated Equations (Grav for short), a team of like-minded flipping enthusiasts who travel around the country in search of new and interesting places to flip and spin. They also love to use their flipping as a tool for creating fun and entertaining videos, all of which is posted to the Grav Instagram. Friedman’s own Instagram has no shortage of his flips, and he’s also got a YouTube channel showcasing his and his group’s various adventures. His most recent journey was to the Tempest Freerunning Academy in North County, San Diego. I’d say “you’ll flip for it,” but then I’d have to smack myself.