There’s no question that skydiving is scary. (There’s also no question that skydiving is the kind of scary that helps you live a better, happier, more extraordinary life.) But indoor skydiving? When you first make that reservation, you might think that skydiving is no big deal in the absence of a plane, a parachute and 13,500 feet between you and the cold, hard ground.
If you’re one of the big-deal deniers, we’re here to encourage you to rethink that a little bit. And–if you’re already a little anxious–we’re here to validate that anxiousness, and to give you some context to move forward with more grace and confidence. Let’s frame out the ways that indoor skydiving is scary–and how it isn’t scary–and how you can use your feelings to motivate global positive change in your life outside the windytube.
Indoor skydiving will be more or less scary, depending on the kind of stimulation you tend to experience in your everyday life.
If you’re a desk-job-to-TV kinda person, the environment will likely be very stimulating. We’d suggest showing up an hour early for your reservation and chilling in the observation area, watching other people fly and taking note of their experiences. Calm your nerves by watching the joy in those faces, especially when the flyer chooses to relax and have fun; that will soon be you.
If you’re an adventure-sports person, the environment will be very different. You may try to use the tools you’ve picked up in your other pursuits–bendiness from yoga; rapid corrections from motorsports; muscling-through from strength training–and notice that the stuff that works there doesn’t really work well here. If that might describe you, do yourself a favor and enter with a beginner’s mind. Listen to your instructor.
Humans have trouble trying new things. That’s evolution at work, folks! Resisting new situations, especially very stimulating ones, is part of why your bloodline has survived to the point where you’re standing in front of a loud tube of air.
The key here is acceptance. Accept that you’re trying something new, and there’s going to be a learning curve. Accept that you’ll feel awkward at first. Accept that you’ll need the help of your professional instructor to feel supported and safe (and that that’s what they’re there for). Learning to fly is like learning to swim or drive the first time; while they’re not scary inherently and always, they’re reliably scary for first-timers.
The wind tunnel is gentler than you might think. There’s no big leap required (or advised) to get in there; there’s no heavy equipment to wear. It’s not a totally risk-free, harmless environment. There’s a little potential for injury–mostly bumps and scrapes, if anything–which is what your stalwart instructor is there to prevent. Your instructor will be hands-on through the whole experience to make sure you stay stable and safe in the airflow. You may rest assured that whatever you throw at them, they’ve seen before.
That’s first-timer tunnel anxiety covered, then. After that’s done, get ready: With your first flights behind you, you can start sport flying–and start getting performance anxiety! We’re kidding–for us sport flyers, there’s nothing more satisfying than dropping into that beautiful space in our hearts and bodies that’s reserved for flying in the airflow with our friends.
We can’t wait to share these high-fives with you when you come and join us!