We try out our trampolining skills at the city’s new urban playground, Bounce Dubai.
In a warehouse in Al Quoz, nestled in between a row of industrial compounds something of a revolution is taking place. Tucked inside are a deluge of brightly coloured trampolines – this is Bounce Dubai. The facility is the first of its kind in the UAE.
The concept originated in Australia, where founders Doran Davies and Ross Milton have already successfully opened four sites. It worked so well in Australia that the pair decided to bring it to our shores.
Greg Campbell, experience manager here in Dubai, has been involved in Bounce Australia and is excited about the start of something new in the emirate. ‘As a company, we are really different,’ he says. ‘We’re relaxed and fun. Some companies don’t put an emphasis on their staff, but we do. Our staff really are our energy,’ he adds.
It’s certainly easy to see that energy in action at Bounce Dubai. On the day we visited, staff were demonstrating what goes down when on one of the venue’s trampolines: somersaults into giant stunt bags and slam dunks into basketball hoops.
While Bounce’s staff might look like they have just run away from the circus, Campbell assures us the art of mastering a trampoline is something everyone can enjoy. ‘Safety is paramount here, and everyone can join in, you really don’t need to be a gymnast to get on and bounce, or play dodgeball here, and we push people beyond their skill level.’
Visitors to Bounce are welcomed by the super-friendly team, then it’s upstairs to don a pair of stripy socks with non-slip wax on the sole to give you more grip on the trampolines.
The trampolining hub itself is 25,000 square feet and there are 80 trampolines in the centre, with the space divided into five activity areas. The first area is the free-jumping zone grid of 49 trampolines, with circus-grade padding in between each for safety. This area is great for trying out tricks such as seat drops, tucks and flips. Then there’s the dodgeball pit, which is ideal for groups and brings a competitive edge to the bouncing.
Around the corner is the big bag area long tramps with stunt airbag at the end to jump onto. At this point, Greg demonstrates some of the fab tricks you can do as he jumps, somersaults and lands on the bag. ‘My favourite trick is the black out,’ he says excitedly. ‘There’s something about the feeling of flight you get that is just awesome.’
The slam dunk has two basketball hoops at the end of the trampoline where you can throw shapes like Michael Jordan and dunk the bright yellow balls into the nets. Finally there’s the performance zone where those with the skills can try wall-running tricks.
Greg is confident that the centre in Al Quoz will be as successful as Australia. Bounce Fit workout sessions have already been launched, with a dodgeball tournament, a league and even performance coaching on the horizon.
While the team at Bounce make the tricks and flips look oh-so easy, it’s anything but. However, as Greg says, it’s about having a go and having fun. ‘When you go to work you can get so uptight. When you come here, you can’t help but let go.’
From Dhs80 per hour. Sat-Wed 10am-10pm, Thu 10am-midnight, Fri 9am-midnight. Bounce Dubai, Al Quoz, www.bounce.ae (04 3211 400).