I see that a lot of people have rated this experience as a 4 or 5 and I am happy that they had an amazing experience. My husband and I expected to have a similar experience, but it did not go that way at all.
It started off with an instructor that was to show us how to do the first stunt. In this first stunt we were told that we would swing, pull our knees over the bar and release our hands. Is this an appropriate first stunt activity for an "all levels" class? Surely it would have made sense to have people overcome the first boundary of just stepping off the ledge and swing back and forth a few times.
When I cautiously asked the instructor if it was "okay" to just swing in the first stunt his reply was "You can do what you want, but this is Trapeze School....".Not very motivating nor empowering considering one is about to step off a ledge with a stranger holding you back.
Well for me and for one other participant, we very anxious. I eventually went up the ladder and stepped off the ledge and decided to not do the "proper" first stunt but just swing back and forth. When I was then told to let go off the bar, the timing was so off that I landed on my legs, was swung backwards in a somersault where I landed badly on my neck. My upper back/neck was so sore after that jump that I told the instructors that I would not go back up for the next stunt.
The other participant who was as stunned about the level of ambition of the instructors, went back up for a second stunt (this, by the way, was meant to be done as the first stunt + a triple backflip...(!) ). On the ledge, she became so nervous and was only worsened by the instructor who did nothing else but freak her out even more (he thought he was "coaching") to the point where another instructor was about to go up the ladder to calm down the situation. What eventually happened was that the participant jumped off the ledge after all, but only swinged back and forth and was clearly upset by the whole situation (she cried and did not want to address the instructor on the ground).
This situation was my dealbreaker, and we decided to tell the instructors that we did not have confidence in their abilities, and we would therefore leave now. The reply was "well, you have paid, right? So you're free to go". Instead he could have asked why we felt we had to leave/how they could improve etc.
This just confirmed to me that these people should not be instructing people on an "all-levels" class with such level of ambition. This was supposed to be a fun event where we could build up our self-esteem by doing something as simple as jumping off a 5 metre high ledge and just swing or do whatever we felt like. But instead you felt like a failure for not doing triple backflips/hanging stunts etc.
They could have improved this experience so much more by doing simple things:
1. Asking the participants what their expectations of today's class was/ambitions for today
2. Adjust the communication to the participants according to their ambitions (if you want to swing, you're a star! If you want to do triple flips, you're a star!)
3. Re-think their staff
4. DO WARMUPS! Because we did not do a warm-up, I strained a muscle in my upper back and my husband tore a ligament in his stomach that required 2 weeks of recovery because of no warm-up.
The audience for this class should be prepared to do actual stunts and not just simple exercises, and be warned that this exercise can strain your body if you're not a natural gymnast.
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