Kids got too much energy they need to burn off? Suggesting going for a bracing coastal walk, or visiting one of Cornwall’s award-winning museums, just not cutting it? Fear not, there’s a fun and healthy, vaguely educational (well it’s a steep learning curve if you’re new to it, or returning to the ‘art of bounce’ after many, many years) activity everyone will love. Suitable for all ages, shapes, sizes, whatever the weather, Jump 4 based in Pool is guaranteed to put a smile on your face, and an ache in those bits you never even knew existed.
Cornwall’s first indoor trampoline park, it’s not just a sports hall with a dozen trampolines set out in rows, it’s an attractive purpose-built complex, filled with state-of-the-art equipment, designed to maximise your enjoyment and challenge your skills. Be warned, it is physical. You will be jumping, and one of the first things you’ll be asked to do, is to fill in a disclaimer form for any accidental injury, and buy a pair of their special grippy socks to prevent slips and falls. After that, just follow the bright pink and orange neon strip lighting around to the changing area, where you’ll find lockers for your belongings, and then head to the de-briefing zone to watch an instructional video about some do’s and don’ts, and top trampoline technique tips.
Once you’re up to speed, you’re free to be let loose on the chaos that is Jump 4. I started off on the interconnected small trampolines, separated by soft vinyl mat buffers, the idea being to jump between them, but only one person per tramp allowed, so no double-bouncing. Harder than it sounds as you may be eyeing up your next move, when someone else will come out of nowhere to gazump your spot! The next step up, is to try the side wall tramps, attempt a superhero flying kick and rebound, to land back on your feet. No chance, I landed on anything but, in an inglorious crumpled heap. However, I did nail a forward somersault on the bigger trampolines, so feel pretty chuffed with that.
When you’ve had enough of boinging all over the main floor space, it’s time to climb the steps and take a big leap of faith onto the giant airbag. The only way I could summon up the courage to give it a go, was by imagining it was water – that and not wanting to be outdone by the fearless four year olds hurling themselves into the abyss. I only let out a stifled squeal, so didn’t disgrace myself too much, and am happy to say that it doesn’t hurt. And I almost mastered the drop-backs, almost, but not quite. They’re where you fall onto your back and bounce from a horizontal position to a crouched sitting one, pushing off the wall with your feet to gain your momentum. Or not, as in my case, but it was still a lot of (exhausting) fun trying.
Also fun, was joining in with a game of dodge ball with some show-no-mercy lads; splatting the coloured lights on a reflex reaction game; being buffeted into the foam pit by take-no-prisoners Louise, Queen of the bridge crossing; and re-living my glamorous gran Total Wipeout days, conquering the Ninja warrior obstacle course. My forearms were screaming, it’s much harder than it looks!
Sixty action packed minutes of high-energy bouncing fun for a tenner – can’t say fairer than that. And afterwards you can kick back with a refreshing cold drink in the cafe, while the little ones discover the soft play area.
For bookings and all other information, visit www.jump4.co.uk