"Bottle-flip" craze has parents flipping out

The best viral fads

From Planking to Pokemon Go, people continue to go crazy for whatever is the latest popular sensation sweeping the globe.

Step aside Pokemon Go – there’s a new craze in town. And it doesn’t involve a single screen.

If your kids are suddenly flipping half-filled water bottles all over the place, in an attempt to land them upright, then you’re not alone. It’s everywhere - and parents are divided.

On the one hand, this “bottle flipping” trend is cheap, relatively safe and non-digital. On the other hand, however, as one mum told me, the "thud thud thud” is more than a tad annoying. So where did it come from?

A 5-year-old boy nails the 'bottle flip' challenge.
A 5-year-old boy nails the 'bottle flip' challenge. Photo: Kelly Fry/Twitter (@Kel5777)

Earlier this year, 18-year-old Michael Senatore of Charlotte, North Caroline, whom The Boston Globe dubs “the Godfather of bottle flipping”, found himself without a “talent” for his high school talent show. When the day arrived, the teen strutted on stage, turned on some music and landed a half-filled plastic bottle upright on a table. And the audience loved it.

The short clip of Senatore’s talent show entry has been viewed almost 6 million times.


The teen even appeared on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert.

And that’s why kids around the globe are now busily perfecting the art of the bottle toss.


Sydney Mother-of-three, Dee, saw the trend in action at a six-year-old birthday party over the weekend.

“The children had played pass the parcel and were then on a treasure hunt but got distracted by their water bottles,” she said.

"They were all over the place, some trying to land them on the ground, some trying to land them on the top of the electrical box, others on the basketball hoop."

“It was nice that all the kids were cheering each other on, the older ones were trying to help the younger ones and they all cheered whenever anyone got it to stand upright.”

Earlier this week, popular author and Blogger, Mrs Woog, posted about the craze on her Facebook page. “Deep breaths…” she wrote. And, as the comments reveal, she’s not the only parent who’s over the bottle flip.

“My two are doing it as well,” one commenter wrote. “I've banned it from being done in my house already. This arvo they were banned from doing it on the verandah. Soon it will be banned from this planet. Thunk. Thunk. Thunk. Thunk YEAH! Thunk. Thunk.”

One mum, however, chose to adopt the approach, “can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em”.

She wrote, “ I am feeling your pain…but am a brilliant flipper.”

Another parent shared a horror story of the craze gone wrong. “I could tolerate it on occasion,” she wrote, “but we are away this weekend for an ice hockey tournament, and I packed 1/3 bottle of BioZet washing detergent which was flipped multiple times prior to packing, resulting in a hidden crack and leaking in the boot throughout the 4 hour trip. Water bottle game over.”

And it’s not just parents banning the game. Some schools in the US have also prohibited the craze from school grounds – due to injury.

According to The Boston Globe, high school teachers have even contacted Senatore, the Bottle Flipping Godfather, asking him to please tell students to stop flipping. But the college student can’t bring himself to help end the craze.

“Whenever I see a kid flipping a bottle, I know somehow I managed to influence that kid,” he said. “I get a little smile every time I see it.” For now then, it looks like the bottle flip is here to stay. At least until the next craze comes along.

Are your kids flipping bottles? What do you think of this latest craze?

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