Now in Manila: Flying Trapeze School

No, we didn’t run away and join the circus. But this made us want to.


( There’s a new, alternative way to get fit in Manila and it’s...flying? Flying trapeze, to be exact! No, Cirque du Soleil is not in town, but Flying Trapeze Philippines (FTP) is. The first and only flying trapeze school open to the public in Metro Manila is now part of Ayala’s new Active Zone in Bonifacio Global City.


You get to soar through the air at FTP, but you also get to stay fit. Just ask Hugh Jackman and Pink, who find trapeze flying to be nice change to lifting weights. If Wolverine’s stamp of approval hasn’t convinced you, the man behind FTP, Will Hsu should. He’s been flying since he was eight years old.



Will shows us how to do flying trapeze tricks on the practice bar.



"Look down! Point your fingers to the ground!"


Before launching into the air, here are a few things to remember:

  • There’s a practice bar on the ground for you to figure out how to flip over as well as get back to holding the bar with your hands.
  • You’ll be flying 32 feet in the air, but don’t worry, there’s a harness, a safety net, and professionals to help you out. Still, bring plenty of courage and adrenaline. You’re not just expected to leap off the platform while holding onto the trapeze bar; FTP will teach you how to hang and fly while gripping with your thighs and calves. It’s tricky, but it’s fun.
  • Will and the rest of the FTP staff will also teach you the right way to launch, swing, and land.
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Will’s a pro, so he doesn’t need the safety harness.



Perfect form!


When you’ve covered the basics of flying trapeze, shake away the nerves and get ready to fly. There’s no time to waste wondering, "Am I ready?" You’re about to fly weightless through the air! Heck yeah, you’re ready. Atop the flying trapeze structure, it can seem intimidating. Thirty-two feet doesn’t seem so high until you’re up there, the wind blowing against you, the sun beating down.


And once you’ve taken that heart-stopping leap, remember:

  • Don’t forget to breathe.
  • Also, don’t forget that you’re in good hands. You’ve got a harness on and there’s a safety net.
  • If you lose your swing, the FTP guys on the ground have a special rig to keep you moving.


So, now you’re in the air. Great! The next trick is, well, doing the actual flying trapeze trick of hanging upside-down. Not a lot of people can manage it on their first try, but if you’re one of the lucky ones who get to swing with their hands in the air, we salute you.



But for beginners, there are enough ropes and netting to make flying a worry-free activity.


So flying trapeze is a  ridiculous amount of fun, but you can get a great work out from it too. "[Flying trapeze] is just another form of calisthenics," says Will Hsu. "So the entire time that your’e up there, you’re supporting your own body weight. You’re using your own body weight to generate your swing and generate the flips." It’s a great form of exercise for those who find the treadmill and the jogging route a little too dull. Also, it would be pretty cool to tell people, "I stay fit by flying. Flying trapeze."


Flying Trapeze Philippines is at 34th Street and 9th Avenue, Bonifacio Global City. FTP is open from 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays; 3:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. on Fridays; 9:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. on Saturdays; and 1:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. on Sundays. Rates are P1,000 to P1,250 per class. For more details, contact Flying Trapeze Philippines at 0917-242-0331 or visit their website.

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