COLUMBUS (WCMH) — A professional skater whose tricks made him famous on social media said the Milk Crate Challenge banned by TikTok can be used to improve balance — but only if it’s done safely.

Matt Lyon, who goes by Hood Panda, is a professional stunt skater with fifteen years of experience. Over his career he’s broken both bones in his forearm, fractured his left pelvis, dislocated his right, and suffered a major concussion.

Lyon also knows how to fall, and when to exit a move.

Hood Panda’s videos are fun to watch, but he doesn’t want people to imitate him.

He said that people wearing street shoes — and not skates! like he does in the above video — can start low, focus on balance, get spotted by their friends, and stay within a safe height.

This uses the challenge to improve balance and create a sense of accomplishment.

“Start low,” Lyon said. “There’s no need to stack it up 17 high and fall off, and somebody get hurt. You can still have fun and get the feeling of accomplishment at … a low level.”

Some safety tips on doing the challenge safely:

  • Have your best friends around to support you, and to catch you if you fall off to the side.
  • Always start low — start with one crate low, and one in the middle.
  • Crates interlock, so make sure the crate that is put on top is locked and secure.
  • Don’t take it over three crates high. The challenge is about balance and pushing yourself, but not to the point where it might hurt you or be dangerous.
  • Definitely don’t try the challenge while you are wearing skates!

If you want to see Hood Panda in person, he’s at Caddy’s Delight Virtual Golf Lounge in Grandview on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

You might catch him skating tricks on the putt-putt course, or serving your drinks wearing his roller blades.