After much anticipation and a couple of delays, iFLY Indoor Skydiving has finally arrived in London Town at none other than Greenwich’s legendary O2 Arena. Myself and our Video Producer Phoebe were lucky enough to be invited down to try it out – and it’s safe to say we had an absolute bloody blast.
But first, before we go into our actual experience, here’s a bit of background info from the iFLY guys themselves:
“Replicating the exact experience of freefall, budding daredevils can experience the joy of human flight without so much as a parachute. Guided by experienced instructors, each session lasts up to 60 minutes, including a pre-flight briefing, instructor training and of course the flights themselves – followed by an awesome flight demo from the instructor.
For those who prefer to spectate, a 360-degree free viewing platform is available for visitors to observe the flyers, whilst high-definition cameras capture your whole flight, making it easy to share your experience with mates and loved ones too.
Pioneering the indoor skydiving experience – and the evolving sport – iFLY is the world leader in vertical wind tunnel technology. Founded in the USA back in 1998, iFLY now operates in more than 45 locations across the globe, including three existing locations in Milton Keynes, Manchester and Basingstoke”
And now they’ve added our beloved capital onto the roster…
The Actual Experience:
After a full safety briefing and a chance to view a video explaining all the hand signals and body positions we’d need to use during our flight, we headed up to the wind tunnel area, where we were met by the lovely Hannah.
She gave us all the background info we needed pre-flight, and then it was off to get suited and booted in some quite frankly fetching skydiving gear. Think helmet, full-body flying suit, ear plugs and some fairly gorgeyyyy goggles – one for the old Hinge profile maybe…
Post getting dressed, we then made our way into the flying zone, where we were met by our friendly instructors Brooke and Steve. After a quick chat on how we should enter the actual wind tunnel – basically leaning forward with hands above our heads – it was time to fly a la Superman.
Now as someone who has been lucky enough to throw myself out of a plane twice, I can honestly say that the whole experience was exactly the same. Only you’re in a tunnel and not at 15,000 feet in the air.
It was a complete adrenaline rush, and because the instructors are with you every step of the way, giving you tips on how to improve your position using hand signals, you never feel out of control and are therefore completely at ease.
Our group was lucky enough to have two flights throughout the experience. The first of these was a chance to get our bearings, get our positions correct and feel the rush of flight at eye level. The second saw us fly up to a height of around ten metres in the air – guided the whole way by the instructors of course – in what was an absolutely exhilarating and fun-as-hell experience.
Of course, if you’re feeling slightly intimidated and don’t want to fly up high, then you don’t have to. It’s absolutely up to you and up to how comfortable you’re feeling.
To get more of an insight into the whole experience, have a gander at our Insta video below:
Post-flight, we then were able to watch the instructors do their thang, which as you can see from the video above, was absolutely mindblowing. Seeing them in action has seriously made me question getting an actual skydiving licence and try and emulate the pro-fliers themselves. Though knowing my luck I’d probably look a bit more like Bridget Jones in The Edge of Reason…
Overall I couldn’t recommend iFLY highly enough. The flight itself was great fun, the instructors and staff are all lovely and it’s very reasonably priced, we think at just £69.99 per person.
So, if you’ve ever wanted to dip your toe into the thrilling world of skydiving and don’t want to leave the big smoke, then you know exactly where to head! See if you can fly like a bird…