Livingston Parish superintendent warns principals of viral challenge after student breaks arm

Updated: Feb. 19, 2020 at 11:35 AM CST
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LIVINGSTON PARISH, La. (WAFB) - It’s called the Tripping Jump Challenge and it’s on TikTok. It’s where three people first jump up in unison, then on the second jump, when the person in the middle is jumping, the two people on the outside of that person kick their feet, causing them to fall backwards.

The grandmother of the boy who broke his humerus now wants other parents to beware, and the school board in Livingston Parish is taking action.

“To warn them [their children], this is not a joke. This is not a game, this is serious, and this could happen to you,” said Tammy Hamilton.

She's the grandmother of a student at North Corbin Jr. High School in Walker.

At recess on Monday, Feb. 17, she says her grandson was approached by two other students asking to see who could jump the highest.

“The child on the right jumped, the child on the left jumped and then we he jumped, they kicked his feet out from under him, knocking him back onto the ground on the concrete,” said Hamilton.

The 7th grader was taken to the hospital, where doctors revealed he had a fracture of his upper humerus, located at the top of his left arm.

X-rays show the damage near his shoulder, and the boy’s arm is in a sling for now.

This young boy's arm is in a sling after he broke it during the Tripping Jump Challenge that's...
This young boy's arm is in a sling after he broke it during the Tripping Jump Challenge that's going viral on TikTok.(Family)

"He's in serious pain. I don't know what the outcome is. He's probably going to need surgery to repair it," said Hamilton.

The student’s family blames this all on a new viral trend called the Tripping Jump Challenge going around on the video app, TikTok.

It works like this: Three people line up, and when the person in the middle jumps, the other two kick the person's legs from under him or her.

“So they’re [children] looking at how often something’s shared or something’s liked, and if they see something that is being shared a bunch, why not participate in that?” said Dr. Lance Porter.

Porter is a professor of mass communication at LSU who teaches social media classes. He believes it’s best for parents to really monitor their children’s social media pages.

“They have this media thing they can pay attention to and be exposed to on a constant basis, and so it allows these things [viral challenges] to become larger trends and become more widespread more quickly, than what is the case even ten years ago,” said Porter.

As for Hamilton, she wants all parents to talk to their children before someone else gets hurt.

“It’s something everyone should be aware of. They need to teach their kids, talk to them, that it’s a serious issue. It [viral challenge] could have broke his neck, broke his back, cracked his skull, could’ve been a deadly thing,” said Hamilton.

Superintendent of Livingston Parish Schools Joe Murphy says the principal of North Corbin Jr. High took immediate action Monday after the incident happened, letting her colleagues know about this new challenge.

Murphy says the students involved have been disciplined. He also sent out a statement Wednesday morning warning principals at schools within the parish.

Your immediate attention to this matter is requested. It's called the Tripping Jump Challenge and it started from the...

Posted by Livingston Parish Public Schools on Wednesday, February 19, 2020

“Your immediate attention to this matter is requested. It’s called the Tripping Jump Challenge and it started from the video app, Tik Tok. It works like this: Three people line up, and when the person in the middle jumps, the other two kick the person’s legs from under him or her. This can cause serious injuries to the target middle jumper such as broken bones, concussions and worse. We ask that you notify your staff about this challenge and have your PE coaches educate each class on the dangers of this activity and that participation in this behavior will not be tolerated and will result in disciplinary action,” the statement read.

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