Happy World Juggling Day on June 17, 2016. I went out to the park and broke the unofficial juggling record for fewest juggling catches in 1 minute with clubs. It was a way too windy day to be trying this (clubs are particularly sensitive to the wind since they are much much lighter than bowling pins). A couple hours and dozens of nasty bruises on my hands, chest, head, and feet later, I have a new world record.
The previous mark was 33 catches in 1 minute. I got 28… and just barely kept that last club off the ground before the minute expired (if a club touches the ground within the minute, the entire attempt is not valid. The 1-minute clock starts when the first club leaves the hand).
Here’s one more example of growth mindset, grit, and hard work leading to another success (note, I probably made about 75 attempts since it was windy and I don’t practice this much…)
The MIT 10 year reunion this weekend was phenomenal. I got to catch up with so many talented, inspired, hard-working people who are making the world a better place. The best thing about MIT is the other people.
During the weekend, I attempted 2 Guinness World Records (both successfully), 1 other world record and ended up with 4 total world records broken this weekend.
It started off with the 4 ball speed juggling record on MIT commencement day with 498 catches in one minute surpassing the previous record of 466 (not Guinness recognized). Later that day at the Boston Museum of Science the Guinness World Record for “Most juggling catches in 3 minutes (3 balls)” was broken with a run of 1288 passing the previous mark of 1200. Image Gallery Here. While setting that one, the previous record of most catches in one minute of 428 was eclipsed in the first minute with 470 catches.
Then at the annual “MIT TIM Talks” 8 former students consisting of 7 distinguished alumni and a guy who juggles gave talks about what they’ve been up to in the last 10 years. At the end we attempted to break the Guinness World Records for “Most Selfies in 3 Minutes” The previous record was 134. The MIT Class of 2007 got 166!
I’m still not sure I believe this is possible, but the video evidence tells me it is. I set the Guinness World Record for most juggling catches in 1 minute while blindfolded (3 balls) at 428 catches. Over 7 per second is pretty insane – even more so when you consider the previous record was 364 catches in 1 minute – and absolutely insane most so when I realize the Guinness World Record for most juggling catches in 1 minute (3 balls), using the eyes, is also 428 catches in 1 minute.
I hope the students at the FIRST Robotics nationals competition were as excited about this as I was. What a phenomenal program to get students excited about STEM.
At the FIRST Robotics St. Louis Championships in 2017, I gave an hour-long talk inspiring students and educators with my STEM story. I then attempted to break the blindfolded speed juggling record: the Guinness World Record for “Most juggling catches in 1 minute blindfolded (3 balls)”. I was successful on my 2nd try but still had 4 seconds left on the clock. So I tried again, and again and again until I finished a full minute and by the time I was done, I had also tied the record for “Most juggling catches in 1 minute (3 balls)”. Period. WHILE BLINDFOLDED!
This week tens of thousands of students, family members, mentors, and spectators will descend on the St. Louis America center for FIRST Robots East nationals – the premier youth robotics program national championship.
Guinness World Record #14 is for the books. In front of hundreds of Cradlepoint’s Partners at our Global Partner Summit in Boise, Idaho at the new JUMP center, I set a new mark for “Longest Duration Balancing a Lawnmower on the Chin (non powered)”. The time to beat was 5 minutes 1 second. My neck is sore and my back will hurt tomorrow but those 5 minutes and 31 seconds were totally worth.
Cradlepoint is powered by continuing advances in science, technology, engineering, and math and we need more students to pursue STEM, more to understand it, and especially more to believe they can succeed. I set Guinness World Records to inspire students to believe they can do amazing things if they set their mind to it and work hard.
My neck and back have recovered just enough after a week and a half to attempt the next lawnmower balancing Guinness World Record. Instead of distance walked (200 meters), the record is for longest duration balancing a lawnmower on the chin (non-powered). The current record is 5 minutes 1 second. The one time I actually tried to practice that long in the living room, I almost passed out. I’m really hoping that doesn’t happen in front of hundreds of people.
The record attempt will be on Wednesday night in downtown Boise at the brand new JUMP (Jack’s Urban Meeting Place) facilities in front of hundreds of Cradlepoint’s valued channel partners. We’re bringing them in for a 2-day conference to show them all the cool stuff we’re up to and to get their feedback. This is part of the festivities.
P.S. I’m really hoping this goes down because my wife really wants the lawnmower out of our living room… and she has a point, it’s been there for months. I love my wife.
I wanted to show these students that if they believe they can get better at anything (growth mindset) and put in the hard work to get better, they can accomplish anything. 200 meters later (covered in 3 minutes 39 seconds), I gave them a proof-point. I broke the Guinness World Record for “Farthest distance walked balancing a lawnmower on the chin (not powered)” by 78 meters. The previous record was 122 meters. The lawnmower was not on, as per the rules, but it still weighed 22 lbs.
Guinness World Record attempt #13 is scheduled for 3:30 PM on Friday, April 7th at the Boise High School track for the track and field team at the start of practice. I’m planning to give a short talk on having a growth mindset and how it can help students academically and with sports. Then I’ll attempt to break the Guinness World Record for longest distance walked balancing a lawnmower on my chin. The current record is 122 meters.
My biggest worry right now is rain… if I can’t beat this record now and get the lawnmower out of my living room soon, then Jennifer might make me practice outside.
The lawnmower I’ll actually be balancing looks more like this…
10 meters for 12 Guinness World Records. It only took 2.51 seconds and it was over. The months of practice all lead to this, and in a blink of an eye, it was over. I didn’t even have to try it a second time. The fastest 10 meters covered with a pool cue balanced on the chin.
It was a great day at the Boise State Science and Engineering Festival. Thousands of students came out to learn more about STEM and I’m honored that several hundred came to listen to me talk about the importance of having a growth mindset and working hard.