If your family outings are getting a little stale, we have the solution for you. Sign up for a class at Trapeze School New York, a Chicago branch of the New York-based company, and learn to fly. TSNY Chicago challenges you and your kids to leap into the unknown and test your untapped skills as circus performers, awakening a sense of fun and adventure that might otherwise go into hibernation during the brutal Chicago winter. For the cost of a beginner’s lesson, your family will have a chance to conquer their fears, improve their confidence, and have a blast together, which is about as much as you can hope to get out of a weekend afternoon that might otherwise be spent on the couch.
The indoor rig, which sits in the Armory at Broadway Armory Park, has platforms set 23 feet above the ground and a springy net stretched comfortingly below. Never done this type of thing before? Not a problem. First, you’ll get to bounce around for a bit in a trampoline class to get your “air legs.” Then, warm up as you engage your kids in a series of jumping jacks, sit-ups, push-ups, and shoulder rolls to get your bodies ready to the serious work of swinging. Though the kids may be eager to just get up there and go – the intricate rope lines look very inviting – your muscles will thank you later. The instructors at Trapeze School New York are strongly committed to safety, even down to making sure you’re properly limbered up beforehand.
Despite their eagerness, your kids generously nominate you to go first, and there’s no turning back now. As you climb the ladder to the platform, feel your heart pound as you dare to look down at the net below. You hear the encouraging cheers of your family from below. Take a deep breath, grasp the bar with both hands, and jump.
As the air rushes past, the noise fades – and you feel an unparalleled, exhilarating freedom. Chance a glance at your family before you tuck your knees to your chest and complete a backflip. Tumble into the soft rope net below to the sound of impressed whistles from the sidelines and proudly wear the triumphant smile spreading across your face.
Spectating is an entirely different challenge, but feel your heart swell with pride as your kids practice their aerial feats time and time again. When it’s once again your turn, scramble up the ladder, free your mind, face your fear, and leap — you know you’re in good hands.
As you and the kids triumphantly exit the class, you find yourself musing: TSNY Chicago has an outdoor rig set up during warmer months. It’s right by the lakeside, in view of the sailboats on Lake Michigan. Maybe, you reflect, your summer months will need some trapeze fun, too.