|Jose Castillo is a formidable young man who enjoys boxing to keep himself in-shape. In his own words “Whenever I get a chance I like to land a few punches on a punching bag or hit the speed bag or jump rope.” Yet, despite his love of boxing, he is a gentle, family man.|
I recently met Jose through my Facebook group Independent Inventors – Help Has Arrived! where he told me about his new sports invention called the ‘knuckle racquet’. Well, needless to say, I was intrigued and had to find out more about Jose and his invention.
Jose was born in Managua Nicaragua in 1979 and came to the United States with his family in 1980 as an infant. He has loved and played sports including weight lifting and boxing all of his life. Additionally, he is a ‘born inventor’. As Jose put it “I have always had ideas in my head and I am truly an innovator of everything.” He now has his own family including a wife and three children.
The knuckle racquet was ‘conceived’ about two years ago, when Jose wanted to try a new sport, so he started playing handball at a local racquetball court. There he came up with the idea of combining boxing with racquetball. “I like to try new things but never really tried to go forward with them because of fear [but] since the economy got bad I started trying some ideas out.” He made two knuckle racquets at that time and the rest is history.
Each knuckle racquet is basically a round frame about 18 inches in diameter across which strings are threaded in a cross-hatched pattern similarly to a tennis or racquetball racquet. A U-shaped handle is centrally attached to the frame behind the strings.
A pair of the knuckle racquets are held by each player, one in each hand in front of the respective knuckles. You basically ‘fight’ with the ball by punching it against a single wall or in a racquetball court. Alternatively, you can play against an opponent using the same rules as in racquetball. Either creates an intense workout
The game can be played using various sized balls to create different workout routines. For example a bigger, heavier ball is used for strength training. A smaller, faster ball is used to increase hand speed and coordination.
As for the future, Jose would like to license his knuckle racquet to a company involved in the fitness industry. But Jose says that it tough to get a company interested since he feels most are skeptical of inventions from new inventors.
Still, Jose is optimistic and very persistent. As he puts it “us Nicaraguans are hard workers” He wants the knuckle racquet to be used by athletes or a training method for boxers. “I know this product is going to be a big hit, possibly creating a new sport.”
Jose also has several other inventions, most having to do with sports. In fact, he has formed his own company New Skool Sports, Inc. to promote and market his inventions.
And I love his attitude towards exercising. As his website states “We aim to bring the fun in training.” I wish him luck in accomplishing that… it is just what today’s sedentary, overweight society needs. Imagine more people ‘getting healthy’ because they enjoy exercising.
While talking to Jose, I wanted to get a ‘Hispanic perspective’ on his experiences inventing in the hope of helping other inventors of Hispanic heritage with any unique problems they might encounter. Therefore, I asked Jose that question.
Jose’s reply was somewhat surprising to me, “But none of my family members believe I can make this happen. Most of them say, ‘That if you are a white American you can do things like that. But since you are not just settle for any job and take care of your family. You are dreaming.’ I know they mean well but I refuse to settle for that. I will make it and I am not afraid to dream big. This is America land of the immigrants. I being Nicaraguan might be an advantage in the end.”
I like his optimism. Let’s help him prove that ethnicity has no place in the success or failure of inventors in profiting from their inventions!
Finally, I asked Jose if he has any advice for new inventors to avoid some of the problems he encountered. He replied “Donâ€™t stop dreaming, keep believing and never give up. Have faith in your decisions so that you donâ€™t hesitate on taking the next steps. Inventors are hard headed people and that is what makes us brilliant.”
Well, I can’t argue with that… and I thank Jose for sharing his story.
Brian R. Rayve
P.S. Here is the latest video showing Jose’s knuckle racquet in use.
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