Archaeologists and paleontologists debate a lot of points regarding the ways that our ancient ancestors lived, but they’re in a agreement about several things. They are reasonably sure that the rate of autism was far lower for babies born thousands of years ago, for instance, and skeletal remains indicate that obesity was not the epidemic 12,000 years ago that it is today (ever seen an obese skeleton? Neither have we! “Big bones” are a myth).
We also know that our ancient ancestors jumped off many more cliffs than we do.
We know what you’re thinking: “Why would they have had to jump off of cliffs?” Well, it’s obvious if you think about it. For one thing, some times jumping off a cliff was the only way to get away from a woolly mammoth. For another, elevators hadn’t been invented yet. Even stairs were in their infancy, and our ancestors were wise enough to know that escalators are actually really problematic. Even when they weren't being chased, the best way for them to get from high ground to sea level, where much of their food was found, was by jumping off a cliff. They lived the benefits of cliff jumping every day, and so can you!
Here are five reasons to go jump off a cliff right now:
1. Vertical Thrust
The sudden movement of the particles in your body - known as the vertical thrust - that comes from jumping off of a cliff accelerates your atoms, energizing your skin at a tremendous rate.
2. Endorphins - without the smell!
The energy burst you get from a cliff jump is incredible - each 10 feet you jump is equal to one cup of coffee, without the afternoon slump. There’s no chemical substitute for releasing endorphins and getting your adrenaline pumping the way jumping off a cliff does. You can get a similar "high" by running, but think of the smell! By the time you’ve run enough to equal the rush of a 20 foot cliff jump, you’d be stinking something fierce.
3. Well, maybe SOME smell...
Did you know that people who were being hanged often evacuated their bowels in the process? It’s true! And it was partly because of the downward jolt, which you can recreate by (you guessed it) jumping off a cliff! A cliff jump dump (known as "C.J.D." on message boards for cliff jump practitioners) is not only deeply cleansing, but many report that it feels “more natural” than modern toilets, and many report that jumping off a cliff with a baby leads to earlier potty-training, among other benefits.
Note: this is also why jumping off a cliff naked is usually better than just plain jumping off a cliff. For one thing, you don't mess up your pants. For another, it's probably how our paleo-ancestors did it!
4. Collective Consciousness
Following the crowd (or, as our paleo-ancestors called it, “Running with the Herd” (RHD on the boards)), makes you feel connected. Get into jumping off a cliff every morning, and you’ll find a whole new family of die-hards ready to support you online! Also, the more people get involved in this exciting trend, the more mental energy will collect at popular cliff-jumping spots, leaving positive vibes for everyone. Standing with your friends and knowing you’ve all just jumped off a cliff makes you feel far closer, far more like “chosen family,” than standing around knowing you’re all on the same social media sites (again, especially if you're all butt naked). Turn off the screens, strip down, and get jumping!
5. Jump Away from Modern Problems!
Autism and obesity are only a couple of the issues that earlier people - people from the age of the cliff jump - didn’t deal with as much as we do. Hardening of the arteries, graying of the hair, liver spots, varicose veins… none of these things have ever been found in fossilized remains or early humans. It may just be because everyone died in their 20s back then, but couldn’t it also be because they all used to jump off a cliff? Forget the skeptics and so-called “experts.” Jumping off a cliff has benefits we're only beginning to understand.
So, get started! One of the best things about cliff jumping is that you don’t need a lot of fancy equipment - just a cliff and your (preferably nude, see #3) body. Get up a good run, then JUMP at the last second. For added fun, shout out "YAAA hoo hoo hoo hooie," like Goofy, or hold up a sign that says "Uh oh" right before you begin your descent, like Wile E. Coyote. Be warned, the landing at the end can be very painful, but the pain just shows you that it’s working!
note: this is just because I posted a thing saying I was drinking a cup of coffee out of a bell pepper because the internet told me to, and someone asked if I'd jump off a cliff if the internet told me to. Don't jump off a cliff for real. (also, I'm not making fun of autism, just the tendency of articles to link autism to gluten, carbs, lack of acai, or whatever it is this week).