Don’t you love when you get an amazing opportunity? An opportunity to do something you never, ever, ever thought you would or could actually do in your life? I sure do. And I hope when you get that opportunity, you say yes, without hesitation. You’ll be happy you did.
Last weekend, the awesome Kory Aversa set me up with one of these opportunities. A chance for me to do something I’ve wanted to do ever since I saw Carrie Bradshaw do it (no, not that) . . . fly!
In case you haven’t heard, our city is getting its culture on all this month with the arrival of PIFA, or the Philadelphia International Festival of the Arts. And, lucky for me, one of the Festival’s events is a Daringly High Trapeze Class, taught by Fly School Circus Arts. Now, if we have similar brains, I know you may have some doubts as to if a class like this is feasible/possible/safe/sane for you to take. But hang on ladies, because I’m about to tell you how you can conquer your fears & walk away feeling empowered & just plain awesome.
My trapeze lesson took place last Saturday morning at 9am. My class had about 10 students in it, from kids under 10 to grown adults. I went by myself, so while chatting with some of my classmates, they started rattling off the activities they’ve done – rock climbing, gymnastics, sky diving. Had I done anything like that? No. But I stayed calm. 🙂
The staff started with their lesson and we were brought to a practice trapeze bar near the ground to try an upside down hang by hooking our legs on the bar. I hesitated – there was just no way I would be able to do it. But with the instructor’s help, I somehow got my legs hooked. It was a struggle, and then the nerves started setting in. What in the world did I get myself into?
After our lesson, we were ready to fly. The entire process from climbing the ladder to landing in the net is relayed by instructions from the staff, so you do what & go where they say. When you are told to climb, you start up the ladder attached to the platform, which is attached to a belt around your waist. Even though you may feel uneasy climbing this tall, tall ladder, it’s not going to go anywhere, and believe me, you can do it! When you get to the top of the platform, you hold on to a rope and get your hands chalked up. The instructor at the top of the platform buckles you in and starts prompting you to get a hold of the trapeze.
Now, this is the stage where I thought I was not going to be able to jump. My palms are actually sweating right now as I type. Getting your right hand on the trapeze is OK. But when you have to remove your left hand from the rope to grab this floating bar, and the only thing keeping you on the platform is the instructor holding your belt, it’s scary. And it definitely took me about a minute to get up the nerve to do it . . .
But after some major trust building by the instructor up on that platform, I did it. And I will tell you honestly, the first time you do that, the hardest part of the entire lesson is over. Now, it’s time to fly. On the instructor’s call – you jump. Once you’re up there & the bar is in your hands, this is not so bad. So, here we gooooo!
This is the most amazing feeling ever. I shrieked, of course, but it literally feels incredible. I’d say it’s a combination of conquering a fear, doing something you didn’t think your body could do, and not giving a care in the world as to what the people strolling by on Broad Street are thinking of you.
On your first swing out into the air, you are supposed to try and hook your legs. However I was still getting over the fact that I just jumped off a platform and was flying through the air, so I missed my opportunity. No sweat though, I still had two more tries.
On my second turn, the ladder climb got easier. I felt less scared up on the platform. And I was determined to hook my legs!
And what do you know . . . I did it! I also shrieked again.
After you hook your legs, at the instructor’s command, you lift your body up and grab onto the bar. This is also not as hard as it looks with all of that adrenaline pumping and the momentum of your swing.
To get “down,” you let go at the instructor’s command to land into the net. Check me out in action. Hey, I didn’t claim to be graceful.
On your third turn, the staff assess if you’re ready to be caught by another instructor. I was not, but I was totally content with that. And I hooked my legs AGAIN!
However Lindsey & Natalie, two of my classmates, were naturals and got caught! They also took all of these great pictures & videos for me, so thank you girls! Check them out:
Overall, the experience was incredible. The staff members I worked with from Fly School Circus Arts were really fantastic. They made you feel completely comfortable & safe, which is important when you’re not fearless like the 6 year old children in my class. 🙂
If you read this post and say, hey that looks like fun, but I could never do it . . . I urge you to reconsider. Remember my little speech about saying yes without hesitation? Here is your opportunity! The Trapeze Class is $55 a person for a two hour class (read all of their policies here). AKA that new spring dress you were looking at? Pass. This will be an experience you remember for a lifetime and you can do it!
Thanks to Kory at Aversa PR & Events for setting me up on this amazing opportunity! There are tons of PIFA events taking place now through April 27th, so I encourage you to check it out. I know I’ll definitely be hitting up the Street Fair!
Do you have any fears you’ve overcome or things you’ve done that you didn’t think were possible? I’d love to hear about them. Thanks for reading! xx