Wednesday 12 August 2015

Scaling The Heights At Aerial Extreme, Manchester

Many of you will know that I'm lucky enough to be off of work for the summer at the moment - the very massive, very brilliant upside to working in a secondary school.

However, part of my all-important job each and every holiday is to make sure I have enough exciting, fun, adventurous and get-out-of-the-house things planned to keep my nine year old son as occupied and as happy as possible.

To be fair to him, he's happy enough with a scooter ride to the park (just to clarify, I walk there - I don't "scoot") but sometimes he just wants that little bit more.

So I do try to make this happen...throw in that added bit extra where I can.

~ He likes fun

~ He likes thrills

~ He likes (loves!) adventure

~ He likes "something totally different"


~ He (much to my dismay) likes a little bit of danger

So where did we go to get all of this?

Well, we headed over to Manchester to the Aerial Extreme High Ropes course located at the intu Trafford Centre, and wow, did he have a ball...

Now we've never visited anywhere like this before, but doing my research, I noticed that Aerial Extreme actually have five courses located around the country - Staffordshire, North Yorkshire, Manchester, Liverpool and Milton Keynes - and with Manchester being fairly easy for us to get to, that's where we decided we would go.

Upon arrival we were met by some very friendly reception staff who quickly and expertly briefed us with all of the safety stuff we could possibly need, before the boys were whisked behind a safety barrier and were all harnessed up...

Naturally myself and Baby Baker were spectators for the day - miss out on all the fun don't we... be honest I'm not sure I would have been all too brilliant taking part actually - some of those obstacles were very high up in the trees and some looked very difficult...

...I think my feet are much safer on the ground, pregnant or not...

With me worrying (as usual!) my son and Hubby ran around and couldn't wait to take to the smaller of the two courses.

I think it's a brilliant idea having the two separate level sections - it really helps to build confidence levels having the easier one first acting as a practise run as it gives everyone (and not just the kiddies) a taste of what's to come next...

Something that I have to point out, which I was so impressed with, was the sheer professionalism of the staff working the course.

At all times whilst people were on the ropes staff members were visible on the ground, encouraging and giving advice every step of the way.  Everyone was wearing an ear-piece and had constant communication with reception, asking for assistance immediately if it was required.

One little girl in front of my son really wasn't feeling the course at all and after trying her best she simply broke down and wanted to give up.

Staff members swarmed to the area at once, one climbing up immediately in a bid to push her confidence levels back up and keep her going.

However when this failed, another member of staff donned his safety gear, climbed the course and helped the little girl to abseil down to the ground below.

But what I really liked was that at all times during this mini-rescue mission there was another lady constantly talking to and reassuring the child, making her feel better about not being able to complete the course and getting her to a level where she had obviously relaxed and calmed down massively.

It was very nice to see.

Once the dilemma had been averted, off the boys went again... son is such a little daredevil - nothing seemed to faze him at all - particularly not the mega fun zip wire descent at the end of the course...

~ He loved it ~ did the Husband...

And then they ran around and began the longer, much higher, much trickier, much more advanced second course, beaming smiles all round.

Actually, looking back, I think my son only really faltered twice at the very end of the trail when, if I'm honest, I think I would have started crying and asked to be abseiled down to the ground...

...but not him - he took a deep breath, focused his attention and off he went.

~ Superstar ~

The trail lasted approximately two hours, but the time frame is flexible and depends on own personal ability really, and because the weather was so nice and dry, the course was just perfect.

A really fun, enjoyable, action-packed day out - we will certainly be back

*Tickets provided free of charge. Thoughts, opinions & images all my own

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