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After 50 Headstands in 50 States, 71-Year-Old Hits Goal

Yoga enthusiast says she did it just for fun

People gathered around taking photos of a woman doing a headstand.

Zachary Halaschak, Ketchikan Daily News

Anne Bruinooge does a headstand in her 50th state, Alaska, on May 24.

Some people retire and take up hobbies. Some people set goals for themselves and go after them. Anne Bruinooge, 71, has managed to do both, which is why she was outside of an Alaska newspaper office last week — standing on her head.

Bruinooge told the Ketchikan (Alaska) Daily News that she’s completed her goal of performing a headstand in every state. It took nearly a decade, but when Bruinooge arrived in Ketchikan on a cruise, she crossed the last state off her list.

“I started in Michigan where I live in 2009, and we’ve been retired and traveling, and so I’ve hit the corner of all kinds of states,” Bruinooge told the newspaper.

Bruinooge was joined by family members — including her husband, who she said had witnessed every headstand — and others as she performed the headstand. They cheered her on and took photos. 

She said she is a yoga enthusiast but chose the physically challenging stunt just for “the fun of doing headstands.”

“I’m 71 years old. I did my first one in my 60s, and I think maybe I’m done now,” she told the Daily News. Bruinooge said she was unsure if anyone else had ever attempted the same act.

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