Bounce around from spot-to-spot or try to make a slam dunk, all at the trampoline park
How hard can it be to jump on a trampoline? I mean, I am not aiming to be the next Dipa Karmakar; but I am just looking at bouncing around for a while at Sky Zone trampoline park in Whitefield.
As I look around, I make a note of all the options — freestyle jump, warrior course, sky slam, ultimate dodgeball, drop zone, warped wall, toddler court and toddler foam pit (the last two, fortunately or unfortunately, are not applicable to me).
Team member Netaji Pavan Kumar tells me to first warm up in the dodgeball zone. Before that, I am given a pair of anti-slip socks and am made to sign a waiver claiming that they will not be held responsible for my injuries, if any. It is a large area, divided into trampoline squares, bordered by thick orange rectangles. I walk across them gingerly, as if a wrong step will send me tumbling into the deep water. Children there and seem to be having a ball, bouncing from square to the other like kangaroos.
“Let us start slowly. Don’t bend your knees when you jump and land. Distribute your body weight,” instructs Pavan. It is not so bad, I think and seem to be going up (not high enough to boast about) but still airborne. He tells me to jump forwards, backwards and side to side. He then proceeds to demonstrate a jump and landing in a sitting position, and then immediately becoming upright. “Try it,” he says. That is when I realise this is more complicated that I thought. Plus, my legs are starting to hurt. “Is that usual?” I ask and Pavan replies, “People who are used to running or some exercise usually don’t feel any pain.” Right!
He suggests I try jumping from square to square. It does not go as seamlessly as I hoped, but hey, a victory is a victory.
On to the sky slam. I have never actually played basketball but slam dunks do look amazing. Maybe this is my chance! There are two separate sections with basketball nets in each and the net is placed lower in one section than in the other. To the lower section it is then. Alas, all dreams of dunking fly away. But, I do get several baskets. It is a score!
I then turn to the warrior course, an obstacle course in American Ninja style. This looks like serious work and certainly requires balance and upper body strength. The first part involves balancing on something that looks similar to a bolster and moving on to the next one. As I stand on it, I cheat a little by telling the team member present there to keep the next one steady. After that, it is time to grab on to a rope that has a large ball to balance on. “Hold on the ring on top!” he says. Unfortunately, I am unable to hold on, and so, I let go. The next step involves moving from bar to bar using my arms. A child does it easily. Never mind!
The most “non-exercise” option is the drop zone. People can do flips and land on an air bag. “Children are able to distribute their body weight better,” explains Pavan as a child effortlessly does a flip. I can’t do a flip but manage free falling into the air bag. It feels pretty good; relaxing, in fact.
The last option, placed near the entrance is the warped wall. It involves running fast and using the momentum to get up the wall. I manage somehow to go up a short distance. Not bad at all.
“Most people spend around an hour. Those who are practising parkour spend around four hours here,” says Pavan. But 45 minutes into it seems like a lot for me. I feel tired but satisfied.
In this column, we hunt for adrenaline-filled activities in and around Bengaluru
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