Great Escape, Flying High Edition: Learning to Fly at iFLY Seattle

Ever wonder what indoor skydiving is like? Here's your chance to learn all about...

We ventured to iFLY Seattle (which is actually in Tukwila) to celebrate Scott's birthday with a friend of ours. Well, let us tell you there is nothing like flying and it is completely worth going indoor skydiving!

When we arrived, we got all checked in for our first flight and went upstairs to watch the flyers in action. Our excitement level grew with each new flyer that entered the tunnel.

Before we entered, we watched a short instructional movie with our group of 10 flyers on how to fly and what various hand signals meant. The whole experience felt a little like stepping into Hogwarts in Harry Potter, since were being told we could fly. The woman on the video said, "To assume proper flying position, have your legs slightly bent with your arms stretched out in front of you." It all seems so contrary to how we spend every other waking moment of our lives.

Suit Up

We were given jumpsuits, goggles, ear plugs, helmets, and shoes. Our instructor, Chris, rallied the troops in our group again and said, "You may have already forgotten everything about positioning and hand signals, but who cares--you're about to fly--let's go have some fun out there!"

The Chamber

We entered the airtight chamber and sat down. Everyone was going to get a chance to fly twice, for one minute at a time. It was warm in there, or maybe it was just me--I'd never done anything like this before. There we three kids in our group and they all went first. As soon as they stepped into the tunnel, you could tell by their faces that they were loving it. Chris did a great job of making everyone feel safe, but gave people enough room that they were able to fly a bit on their own.

The Tunnel

Then, it was my turn. I approached the door, gave a nervous smile to Chris who gave a high-five. I put my hands in two fists against my chest, the way I had just been taught and stepped through the doorway. I spread my arms out in front of me and the rest of my torso, legs, and feet followed.

My body was stiff; I was aware of the air rushing past me. I could tell that I wasn't touching anything, but my mind wasn't quite sure what to make of it all...

Am I flying? No, that's impossible. Am I dreaming? Maybe, but isn't flying impossible. Despite my confusion I kept going.

I tried to follow Chris' hand signals...Stretch your legs out more, arms closer together, back less arched... as I did, I flew better and higher as well.

At one point I flew so high that I began to worry about how I'd get back down. That was the moment that everything clicked for me--I'm flying. I'm really flying...like up in the air kind of flying! I couldn't stop smiling.


On my second flight Chris started to challenge me a little by motioning to me to tilt my hands from side to side. As I experimented with tilting my hands, I began to twirl. I'm controlling my flight! By the time I thought the thought, my flying time had come to an end.

We all had the feeling like we were just starting to get the hang of this flying stuff. iFLY offered that we could buy another minute of time for $20.00, but we said no thanks, we'll just have to come back another time.

This was one of the most incredible experiences of our lives. And yes, we definitely had an adrenaline rush, before, during, and after flying. We're still running on the flying high...



Things To Know:

  • After the fact: It feels kind of like a dream that we were actually flying; we'll have to go back again to know for sure
  • This is an opportunity that we believe everyone should experience at some point in their lives--it's amazingly safe and there is absolutely nothing else like it
  • Check out the website to learn more about iFLY Seattle

Maresa and Scott Gochanour write the blog, Around Puget Sound and Beyond

About this column: Maresa and Scott Gochanour write about adventures big and small in the Puget Sound area.


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