It wasn’t too long ago, after all, that the best indoor skydivers were grown-up skydivers who were engaged in the serious business of training for grown-up skydiving competitions. Now, the face of a serious wind tunnel athlete is likely to have a bit of baby fat around the cheeks.
For a long list of compelling reasons, the sport of indoor skydiving has exploded. Now, you just have to take a peek at competition footage to see that the best flyers in the world are the plucky teenagers. Once those kids come of age and put on a parachute, the entire sport is going to undergo a very fast, elemental evolution.
Not convinced? Take Maja Kuczynska, on Poland’s team Flyspot. At the time of publication, she’s just 16 years old, and being hailed as the “Misty Copeland of falling.” Although she has never piloted a parachute, she’s a Red Bull athlete in indoor skydiving, and one of the most unquestionably talented players on the field. Maja hails from Poland (by way of Kiev). She spent six years of her early childhood flipping, flopping and gyrating around gymnastic mats, but she’s been flying seriously in the wind tunnel since the age of 11.
From that first fateful introduction to the airflow, she has been taking the very sport of indoor skydiving to new heights. Maja participated in her first international competition when she was just 13 years old–going up against a leaderboard full of experienced athletes when most of us were busy trying to figure out how the heck to use mascara. It wasn’t long before the medals started pouring in. Check out what she’s bagged so far:
Maja isn’t the only one, of course. She’s one of an army of fresh-faced athletes taking the wind tunnel by storm. Kids are flying naturals–and you can see why. There’s a whole world waiting for them in there–and it teaches them everything from physical proprioception to perseverance to teamwork to listening. There’s really nothing in the world like it.
Want to introduce your family to the world of wind? Maybe your kid will be smiling down at you from an FAI podium someday! We’d love to help them get there.
Tags: wind tunnel