The Griff

Date night: Trade in your routine for a trampoline

Events

Date night: Trade in your routine for a trampoline

Launchpad trampoline park offers students a fun and exciting alternative to tired activities

LaunchPad Trampoline Park has everything I look for when I want to try something exciting and new with friends or a date. Trampolining is fun, affordable, active, and provides a welcome change from the tired combo of dinner and a movie. Don’t get me wrong, dinner and a movie or coffee at your favourite café are always great, but sometimes you want to spice things up. If you are looking to jump out of your regular routine, I highly recommend trampolining.

Looking for adventure and armed with workout gear, three friends and I decided that we were going to give it a go. I have to say, it was everything I hoped it would be. LaunchPad has trampolines on the floor and on the walls, a trampoline dodgeball and basketball court, trampolines beside a giant foam pit, and even a bouldering climbing wall above the foam pit. As if this weren’t enough, Friday and Saturday nights are also “neon nights,” which add black lights, neon dodgeballs, and a DJ to the mix.

As soon as we walked into the trampolining area, the foam pit called my name. It was a throwback to all of the best birthday parties I had attended as a child. After a couple of quick bounces that gave me back the sea legs of my youth, I cannon-balled in. It was glorious. What I had forgotten, though, was how hard it is to get out of foam pits. Those things are like quicksand. A dozen or so impatient children stood watching my pitiful attempts at self rescue until one girl asked — albeit quite nicely — if I was alright and if I could please get out of the way. Nonetheless, my friends quickly followed suit and we monopolized this part of the park for a solid 20 minutes. It was so much fun!

We also sampled the trampoline basketball courts and the dodgeball area, and failed miserably at the climbing wall. We even got to try out these snowboard-like foam boards that you can do jumps and tricks with.

I would like to stress that trampolining is a very solid workout. For this reason I recommend doing it with people who you are comfortable with or at least don’t mind being sweaty around. It reminded me of when I was a kid and having so much fun running around and playing that I didn’t stop to think or care about how tired I was or how I looked while I was doing it. My friends and I were out of breath within the first half hour. However, after a drink of water and a five-minute break, we were ready to get back out there and continued to jump for about an hour and a half in total.

Alaina Brosseau, a manager at LaunchPad and a MacEwan University student herself, recognizes that “as a student, you don’t have a lot of time to exercise,” and thinks that trampolining offers students “a different option to get out and be active.”

Darren Balderson, co-owner and general manager of LaunchPad, thinks that trampolining is a great way for students to get out of the “trap of study, eat, sleep, repeat,” and instead “be active, be social, and have fun.”

If you decide to go on a Friday or Saturday night, I recommend arriving around 9:30 p.m. The neon nights start at 8 p.m. and the first hour or so is exceptionally busy and popular among kids under 12. However, after this the place clears out quite a bit and the floor opens up for an older crowd. The DJ was better than many of the DJs I’ve encountered in clubs, and the upbeat music definitely contributed to the electric atmosphere.

Neon nights are just one of the themed nights LaunchPad runs. The centre also hosts a trampoline dodgeball league, is available for corporate events and parties, and offers workout classes in collaboration with 504 Fitness. It also offers 20 per cent off on Tuesday evenings. The general admission price for one hour of jumping is $15.50 and additional hours are $8 each.

My friends and I all agreed that it was something we would enjoy doing again. One of my comrades said, “It was dope! I learned how to do backflips on one of those foam snowboards!”

All in all it was a great way to spend my Friday and a nice change from the same old boring activities. Trampolining is a great thing to do if you are looking to swap your regular routine with something that gets you and your friends up and moving. I’d recommend it 10 out of 10.