In December, I received a media invitation to try out the iFly at Sentosa. However as we couldn’t make it then, they re-scheduled a session for us in January. As we couldn’t leave our kids unattended, I arranged only for my hubby to experience the flying while we gawked at the sight. 🙂 After all, he’s the adventurous one so it made more sense for him to fly.
And so this is the first time my hubby will be writing a post on my blog – and all because I gave him ‘wings’ and let him fly! Here’s sharing his iFly Singapore review!
I’ve always loved thrills and skydiving is definitely one of those exciting activities that I would like to try. But I’m also the average Singaporean who wouldn’t have the time and money to try skydiving. So I thought iFly would be just about the right appetizer for me so I excitedly took up my wife’s offer!
Once I entered the area for “flyers” with the others in my group, we came to a room that was designed to look like the interior of a passenger plane, the ones that you would take for skydiving where you sit facing one another in two opposite rows. A rather cute and entertaining video was looping on the screen while we waited in this room, explaining to us the origins of this facility and what we would expect during the iFly experience.
Soon after, the following door opened automatically and we all walked into the next room. The second room was brightly-lit with a much larger screen and two massage-bed-looking things lying in it. There were rows of seats as well and the few of us simply sat down on them. A video started playing on the big screen and I was thinking to myself, “this place is really great, it’s fully automated!” I was really expecting a REAL instructor who’s going to teach us how to fly, actually.
After the video ended, the next door opened and as we were about to get up from our seats to enter that door, an instructor popped in! He quickly briefed us on the body position that we should adopt while flying and subsequently asked us to get into the flying position on the massage-bed looking things. He also explained a couple of hand signs that he will be using later while guiding us to fly, together with the method to enter and exit the wind tunnel later on. I felt a little uneasy about how easy he made it sound by just keeping in that flying position. Well, let’s just wait and see when we really fly!
Attire:- I was informed through the iFly website to wear proper shoes with shorts, jeans or pants. Hence I was considered as properly attired. A family of Chinese tourists were totally inappropriately attired but it was rather convenient and affordable to buy a pair of socks for $1 and rent a pair of shoes for $4 (if I remembered correctly). We were then guided upstairs to the iFly wind tunnel entrance level to suit up! It was easy enough to get a suit of the right size, together with ear plugs, goggles and helmet. You wouldn’t feel uneasy wearing the loaned equipment as all of them are well maintained.
All set! And off we go to get orderly seated in the waiting area of the wind tunnel. I was about the fifth in the queue. Watching the fellow flyers in front of me fly with ease gave me mixed feelings of confidence and anxiety of screwing up. Every time the door to the wind tunnel opened for the current flyer to exit and the next flyer to enter the wind tunnel, the strong air currents would without fail give me the chills. Very soon it was my turn and off I plunged into the wind tunnel!
Once in, I remembered to get into that one and only flying position that the instructor taught us earlier and so I could lift off immediately! He communicated to me through hand signs to bend my leg a bit more and to bend my head to look up a bit more. He then allowed me to “float” around at low altitudes, giving me time to fine-tune my posture and to learn how to “catch the air”.
Quite helplessly I would fly towards the wind tunnel’s side walls every now and then, like all the other flyers. But that was quite easy to deal with as I just had to push myself off the walls with my hands. I soon realized that no matter how I altered my posture I couldn’t fly beyond 2 to 3 metres high. But before I could make any progress in flying higher, the instructor signaled and then guided me out of the wind tunnel. That was REALLY FAST! Oh yes, I remembered watching in one of the earlier videos that each skydive lasts only 45 seconds, it is actually equal to the real time taken to skydive from 12000 to 3000 feet altitude!!!
But each flying package comes with TWO skydives so I was busy thinking about what I would want to try out in my second skydive. While waiting, I watched the two kids from that Chinese family execute their first skydives. Although they didn’t really have enough strength to hold up their arms against the strong air current (the instructor helped to hold their arms in position), they both flew well enough with the instructor’s assistance. Enough to make them smile like any excited child (you know what I mean right?). Only then I remembered that the instructor mentioned briefly earlier that no matter how tensed we are, we should smile for the camera. Ok, I forgot to smile during the first skydive so I’d better remember to do so for the second one.
Soon it was my turn for my second dive! This time round, the instructor held on to our bodies more often to give us a boost upwards. Somehow when he grabbed our bodies and “flew with us”, we could fly much higher (about almost halfway up the tunnel). This dive was much more fun as I managed to go up and down, round and round more frequently and with more ease. I actually remembered to smile when I flew past my family but the face would distort due to the strong air current and I’m quite sure I didn’t look like I was smiling to my family.
Another “9000 feet” went by and my turn was over soon. After we all finished our second dives, the instructor then plunged into the wind tunnel alone to demonstrate several stunts while the audience cheered. This seemed like a standard routine after each group of flyers finished flying. After that we exited the waiting area and happily took some photos before we took off our gear.
Here’s a video of the later part of my second flight:
After the flying experience, I had one big regret that I didn’t learn how to change my body posture in order to control how high I flew. I tried to figure that out myself but to no avail. But well, this session was meant for first-timers anyway so I guess I would have to come back for my second time to learn more tricks. The “flying certificate” awarded to me after the session also had a few other points unchecked, and these points were the very skills that I thought I would learn today. As we left the place, I excitedly urged my wife to give it a shot some other time, secretly hoping that I could get a chance to fly again!
About iFly Singapore
iFly Singapore is located at Siloso beach at Sentosa. A first-of-its-kind for Singapore, the state-of-the-art wind tunnel and allows anyone from first time flyers, to professional skydivers, the opportunity to fly in an easily accessible, realistic, safe and affordable setting. iFly Singapore was recently accredited with the ISO 9001 and OHSAS 18001 standards. These are globally recognised accreditations for quality management systems and occupational health and safety management systems respectively. At a height of 56.5ft with a diameter of 16.5ft, iFly Singapore can accommodate up to 20 professional flyers at any one time. iFly Singapore was spearheaded by founder and managing director, Mr Lawrence Koh and was designed and built in conjunction with SkyVenture USA. iFly Singapore is the current holder of four Guinness World Records.
For more information on iFly Singapore, please log on to www.iflysingapore.com
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