Monday, 31 March 2014

Berkshire Fitness Scene : Trampolining

My local area is proving to be full of surprises as I discover there’s a dedicated trampoline centre in Bracknell hidden away a bit behind a school, albeit signposted from the main road. It’s the kind of place you only find out about via word of mouth, a google search or eyes that aren’t focused on the daily commute. There is nothing quite like jumping to make you feel childish and giggly.
There’s a whole host of kids classes but plenty of adult sessions too such as rebounding, and they even offer stunt development classes. I’ve never been in a dedicated trampoline centre before, and not been near a trampoline since school unless you count the time at Run To The Sun festival when someone in the party produced a massive trampoline from the back of a van and we all camped around it. It’s clearly a facility in short supply as one guy admitted to travelling from Basingstoke twice a week to attend sessions.
OH and I dropped in to a PAYG adults class which only had 8 of us in total, with abilities ranging from “here for a laugh” and “here for fitness” to “learning complicated somersaults”. Half of the warehouse type room was taken up with large free standing trampolines where young girls in leotards were putting on amazing acrobatic displays and the other half featured three floor-level beds and a foam pit which we used. Our lovely Danish instructor, Pernille, who had once been pro for her country, was really encouraging and made sure everyone got some coaching.
Spot the girl doing it properly in the background
We spilt ourselves amongst the beds and took it in turns to play. I say play because it was immense amounts of fun. I started off with some simple bouncing, twists, tucks and pikes that I remembered from school and was then encouraged to try seat drops, swivel hips, front drops and back drops. I was given some proper pointers on technique and encouraged to try things like front drops on a mat on the trampoline first to build my confidence. Failed attempts were met with Pernille’s catchphrase “I like the idea…” and gentle corrections. OH had bags more confidence than me and was doing front somersaults by the end of the 90 minutes. The last 20 minutes or so were spent playing in the foam pit or with skipping ropes. Having spent the whole session concentrating on staying in one spot, bouncing forwards proved surprisingly challenging and there is no way to exit a foam pit gracefully.
I was surprised by how puffed out I got and while I didn’t work up a sweat it's very testing. My shoulders, the heels of my hands and, oddly, my elbows got pretty sore and most of me ached for a good three days afterwards. At only £6 it’s a brilliant way to spend an evening, even on an ad hoc basis. You can use the session as you want and I found it to be a really friendly and supportive environment. As we left OH declared that he would definitely like to do that again… a resounding endorsement indeed!
If you fancy giving trampolining a go but don’t have a centre near you then see if your local sports hall hosts something similar; quite often they do.

1 comment:

  1. I used to do trampolining classes at a local leisure centre- it was really fun and surprisingly how much hard work it was! I never attempted a somersault even after 6 months of classes as I was too scared I would land awkwardly and hurt myself! Glad you enjoyed it!