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Sky School Reaches New Heights

Molly McLaughlin

Most people don’t get the chance to be taught trampolining alongside an Olympic champion and Cirque du Soleil coach, but that’s just what’s on offer at Belconnen’s Sky Zone next month.

Former Olympian Ji Wallace is the new head coach of Sky School, a trampoline program with term one running from 1 February at Sky Zone Trampoline Park.

In the classes, students from the ages of 4 to 40 can learn tricks such as rebounds, rollovers, crash dives, back overs, log rolls, front and back somersaults, as well as how to fall safely and what to expect when trampolining. The once a week, hour-long classes cater to every level, with beginner, intermediate and advanced courses available.

Sky School coach Ji Wallace.

Sky School coach Ji Wallace.

Ji has had a successful competitive career in gymnastics and trampoline, winning gold at the 1996 Trampoline World Championships and a silver medal at the 2000 Olympics.

After retiring from competitive trampolining in 2007, he took a position coaching at Cirque du Soleil in Montreal and has now returned to Australia with the aim of giving back to the sport at a grass roots level by encouraging a new generation of tramp champs.

“I’ve been involved in trampolining for nearly thirty years, and it’s so refreshing to hear how well the sport has been received by the community,” he says.

“I want to focus on the thousands of people who enjoy trampolining on a social level. Its not all about the Olympics, trampolining is about having lots of fun and keeping the kids safe.”

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While many children grow up with a trampoline in the backyard, they often don’t learn the skills that they need to stay safe while participating in the sport.

With benefits including improved motor neuron development, increased blood flow and hand eye coordination for toddlers all the way through to adults, Ji wants to get everyone involved in the sport that he loves.

“I’ve been running a summer camp over the holidays and I’ve had a 38-year-old who enjoyed Sky School so much that she has come to camp every day instead of going to work,” he says.

“I have kids who talk about Sky School when they get home, they wake up talking about Sky School, all they want to do is come to Sky School!”

Because Sky School is a social trampolining club rather than a competitive club, the classes are accessible and flexible, with the focus on learning and having fun while also participating in incidental exercise.

“When I see a kid or an adult actually achieve something that they didn’t think they would be able to achieve, their face just lights up and it’s magic,” Ji says.

“And of course for the kids in particular, they’ll be in the classes for an hour and then they fall asleep in the car on the way home so the parents love it too.”

You can sign up for Sky School Term 1 on the website or by calling Sky Zone Belconnen.

The essentials

What: Sky School

Where: Sky Zone, Westfield Belconnen, Lathlain St. (near the Bus Interchange)

When: Term one starts Monday 1 February – Friday 8 April with sign ups available now. Term two begins 26 April with signs ups available from 28 March.

How much: $200 per person, per term



Molly McLaughlin

Molly McLaughlin is new to Canberra and is attempting to prove to her friends that the capital city can be cool. This mostly involves frequently going out for brunch and then posting about it on social media, along with trekking up hills and around art galleries. She is half way through her uni degree but spends most of her time reading, writing and planning her next adventure. More about the Author

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