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'FLIPPING CRAZY': Hopkins native sets world backflip record at 62-inches

Trey Collins started doing backflips when he was 7-years-old. 13 years later, he's in the Guinness Book of World Records for his aerial acrobatics.

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — Do you think you have what it takes to pull off an amazing human achievement and make it into the Guinness Book of World Records?

It's truly the ultimate test to prove that of the 7.753 billion people who currently exist on the planet, you're better than all of them at something.

A 2020 graduate of Hopkins High School recently put his name in Guinness' pantheon of greatness, and what he did to do it was flipping crazy!

"I started doing backflips when I was 7-years-old," said Trey Collins, who is currently a sophomore at Belmont University on Nashville, Tenn., majoring in exercise science. "I just became obsessed with doing backflips."

Collins says he never was a member of any gymnastics teams growing up but certainly could've been.

"You need to learn your body to be able to do backflips," he said. "It's about controlling your body well."

In fall 2020, Collins started considering a quest to beat the backflip world record. After gaining traction on social media for his amazing skills getting vertical and dunking a basketball, he decided to go for it in the summer of 2021.

"Olympic gymnast Tyson Edwards set the record in 2014 at 58-inches," Collins said. "With practice, I knew I could break that."

Collins says practicing involved putting up a bungee cord in his yard, then taking little posts his mom had for riding horses, hanging them up and slowly raising the height of the bungee each time he successfully backflipped over it.

On Saturday, Oct. 23, Collins decided to try for the record.

"Guinness offered to send officials to watch my flip but I would have had to pay for their travel and hotel," added Collins. "I couldn't afford that so I just followed all the guidelines they sent me."

A critical element of the guidelines was having five different camera angles of Collins' backflip attempt.

"Another guideline was that I couldn't wear shoes," said Collins. "I had to do the backflip barefoot."

Standing still, with his back to the bar, Collins squatted down, pushed himself off the ground, defied gravity for a few seconds, clearing the bar which was set at 62".

He became the new backflip world record holder, beating the previous record by 4 inches.

"It was definitely a cool feeling," Collins said. "I didn't really know how to react at first; I was just kind of shocked."

Collins says he's sent Guinness the videos required paperwork, which included signatures from two witnesses. He says he was told by Guinness that it would be up to 12 weeks before his record became official.

"They will send me a copy of the [Guinness Book of World Records] and a plaque," Collins said.

The video clip of his record-setting backflip has been shared more than 5 million times on social media. Collins says he's certain he can break his own record.

"I think with more practice, I can clear between 66 and 68 inches," added Collins.

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