Research shows that the average American spends around 5% of their life learning in a traditional classroom environment and 95% in non-traditional settings like zoos, museums and aquariums, scouting and community events, national parks and their own backyard, and the list goes on and on. These “learning landscapes” are critical for academic achievement, help to develop 21st Century Skills (critical thinking, collaboration, communication and creativity), and support mental, physical, emotional and spiritual health and well being. Promoting growth for the whole child means thinking outside of the box.
Or perhaps reinventing the box completely, as in the case of indoor skydiving. Yep. Welcome to new-school thinking where parents and teachers alike see the value in wind tunnel experiences for children ages 3 and up. Here are five ways kids benefit from an early-age airborne experience:
1. THEY PRACTICE A SUPER SENSE
Proprioception refers to our ability to sense where we are in relation to our surroundings. Exercising our proprioceptive system is critical for development, which is why schoolyard games like hopscotch and pogo sticks have such staying power and fads like Twister and Dance, Dance Revolution gain popularity. Providing a novel and empowering way to dial in body position, wind tunnel experiences are excellent for promoting proprioception and stimulating the brain.
2. THEY GAIN PERSEVERANCE & GRIT
Wind tunnel flying looks easy peasy, and while we see our fair share of first-time naturals it typically takes work. In an age where kids get instant answers from the internet instead of poring over library books, students are getting by in school and life without having to develop perseverance, test their grit or harness their resolve. To have a near-perfect flight or to pull off mid-air antics is likely to require indoor skydivers to try, try and try again.
3. THEY ENGAGE
Kids are oversaturated and overstimulated to the point that they typically don’t stop and smell the roses like their grandparents did … unless they are wonder-filled and gobsmacked. Indoor skydiving is like nothing else on the planet, and kids engage. Chin up, eyes agog: enraptured.
4. THEY COMMIT
Sky-high skydiving and indoor skydiving have a lot in common, including its addictive qualities. Kids who fall head-over-heels for wind tunnel flight are dedicated to their craft and relish in the opportunity to compete. Anything but typical, this highly individual sport requires intense focus while inviting friends and family of all ages to cheer you on.
5. THEY SOAR
As is true of skydiving out of a plane, indoor skydiving is enriching, inspiring, exciting and hyper empowering. Kids who have consistent wind tunnel experiences gain a tremendous sense of poise and confidence, garner an unparalleled level of discipline and tend to demonstrate maturity and responsibility beyond their years. And amazingly what else? They’re calm, focused and alert … and even sleep better. Talk about setting your kid up for success.
Now to address the question on every parent’s mind: BUT IS IT SAFE? Boy-howdy, it’s a whole lot safer than most other outdoor sports. Football? Yikes. Dirt biking? Nope. Skateboarding? How did that come back? (Oh yeah, proprioception. LOL.) Safety is a priority for every type of skydiving. Wind tunnel flyers wear helmets as well as knee and elbow pads, and control room operators are equipped with shutoff switches and fail-safes.
Talk to your kids … find out if indoor skydiving appeals to them … and when their eyes grow to the size of saucers in disbelief that you’re the coolest parent in the world, get in touch. (You don’t have to tell them it’s good for them.)
Categorised in: Indoor Skydiving
This post was written by Skydive Perris