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    Rippin' Rider Preview: Huckdoll

    Rippin' Rider Tyler loves his Huckdoll! It used to be that perfecting a Rodeo Flip or a Backside 540 required a day in the terrain park gathering bruises and repeatedly shaking out the cobwebs. As traditional Helicopters and methods have come to be seen as elementary and thoroughly unimpressive- both young "jibbers" and veterans looking to evolve are hard pressed to keep up with the new school of skiing and snowboarding.

    Now however, instead of bowing their heads and heading back to the groomers or the lodge, aspiring aerialists can instead return to the drawing board. The HuckdollTM , a five-inch tall bendable figurine launched last winter, is, in short, Shane McKonkey meets Gumby. Both versions- skier and snowboarder- which feature removable equipment and fully pose able limbs, were originally designed "for the purpose of visualizing aerial maneuvers," states Jay Peters, inventor and co-founder of the Huckdoll.

    In certain respects, these dolls can be compared with the numerous miniature finger-sized plastic skateboard and snowboards originally marketed in the late nineties as a toy for youngsters but adopted by pro riders as a means of envisioning and demonstrating their aerial maneuvers. As opposed to the fingerboard products, however, which was initially geared toward a younger buying bracket and quickly found it's way into the hands of professional riders, the huckdoll might actually migrate in the other direction. For $12.98 what parent could refuse his or her child the one action figure on the rack without fangs or a grenade launcher. Furthermore, with the recent rebirth of extreme skiing and the steady rise in popularity of extreme sports with a younger crowd, heroes have gone from Michael Jordan to Johnny Moseley. Huckdoll has already signed numerous big-name professional skier and snowboarders to its "team", and will soon be manufacturing Signature Series, as well as expanding into the realms of skateboarding and wakeboarding. In this light, it is conceivable that Huckdolls may become to extreme sports what Starting Lineups were to Major League Baseball and professional basketball: collectors items. That is, once people are through playing with them.

    The Huckdoll went on sale online, and at a handful of ski/board shops and independent toy retailers across the U.S., and has thus far not been able to keep itself from hucking off the shelf and into waiting hands- demand for the toys, says Murdock, is overwhelming. So while you might be having trouble throwing an Underloop or a Lincoln Flip, the Huckdoll will be there to show you how it's done.

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