If you’re looking for a way to celebrate a special occasion, or to occupy yourself over the long summer holidays, you need look no further than iFly, writes Emily Calder
As part of the Snozone in Central Milton Keynes, iFly could not be more conveniently located, and I was delighted when they invited me to try out what they have to offer.
My friend Georgina and I turned up on a Tuesday lunch time in our comfortable clothes and lace up shoes, and were greeted by absolutely lovely staff members who sorted out lockers for our valuables kitted us out in flying suits.
As soon as I stepped into my suit, I felt as if I was going on a space expedition – and they definitely fit into this summer’s ‘boiler suit’ fashion trend! After being handed an even more flattering combination of a helmet, ear plugs and googles, we watched a quick safety video and were set to fly.
At iFly you are assigned an instructor for the slot – we had Sean, who was amazing. He completely filled us in on the flight, gave us a ton of tips and made us feel calm and informed the entire time. Sean has been flying both indoors and outdoors for years, and flies for Great Britain, so we knew that we were in very capable hands. Before we flew, we were taken up to the wind tunnel to watch the group before us.
The wind tunnel was an impressive sight – noisy, hence the earplugs, and very tall. The air vents replicate the 100mph speed that you would experience in a real outdoor sky dive, giving you the same thrill and sensation without actually having to face the daunting aspect of jumping out of a plane.
Sean had taught us the key flying position before we went into the tunnel, which was surprisingly easy to get the hang of, and reminded me of the ‘superman’ movement that I had encountered in a few PE lessons over the years. It’s all about arching your back and pushing your hips forwards! Your instructor takes you into the tunnel and handles you carefully the whole time, helping you perfect your position with a few simple hand signals that you are taught beforehand.
The one-to-one time with Sean in the wind tunnel worked incredibly well; not only does your instructor look after you while you fly, he helps you to fly confidently and gives you tips in between flights as to how you can make your next session in the tunnel even more enjoyable. Both Georgina and I were surprised by how quickly we got the hang of flying! We were also treated to a ‘High Flight’ once we had the hang of things. This is when the speed picks up and the instructor takes you further up the tunnel and spins you around – it was such an adrenaline rush and really put the icing on the cake of a great flying session.
Georgina and I left iFly full of adrenaline, inspired by watching the instructors perform some cool tricks for us, and with some amazing photos and videos of our experience. We were also given certificates which meant that we could undertake discounted flights in the future and build on our skills. I would completely recommend a visit to iFly to anyone who fancies a fun day out!
Although I’m not a huge fan of heights, the flight really wasn’t daunting at all. By the end of the session I was running and diving into the wind tunnel, and felt completely safe and confident with Sean as my instructor.
iFly is also a completely different experience to simply taking your friends bowling or to the cinema. Not only is it a really cool thing to do, but it’s also so much easier than you would think – and who wouldn’t want to brag that they’d spent their morning doing a sky dive?
What I also think is amazing is the accessibility that iFly offers: they fly anyone between the ages of 3 and 103 (iFly Milton Keynes has flown people as old as 100), as well as amputees and individuals who might be physically unable to undertake a real outdoor skydive.
Even if you would initially assume that indoor skydiving is not your cup of tea, I would fully encourage you to look into a visit to iFly – you would be surprised by how easy and fun it can be. I will definitely be back at iFly over the summer to give my friends a taste of the freedom I experienced!
For further information or to book your skydive, visit iflyworld.co.kuk/locations/milton-keynes