A Day at Trapeze School: A Circus-Style Aerial Class

Okay, picture this: you’re swinging through the air, legs wrapped around a bar, heart pounding like a drum solo. Your grip is tight, your smile wider (or not), and suddenly, the world shrinks to the distance between your palms and the next trapeze. That, my friends, is just a taste of your average Tuesday at a Flying Trapeze School.

Trapeze Pinterest

What is Flying Trapeze?


Think Tarzan swinging through the jungle, but with more glitter and significantly fewer bugs. Picture launching yourself from a platform, suspended by your grip on a trapeze bar, then swinging through the air before catching another bar – or, if you’re feeling extra daring, the hands of your instructor. It’s a thrilling blend of acrobatics, adrenaline, and pure, unadulterated fun.

Flying Trapeze

History of Flying Trapeze


Believe it or not, this gravity-defying feat can be traced back to the 19th century, when a daring French acrobat named Jules Léotard decided to turn his father’s swimming pool into a training ground for airborne acrobatics. He rigged up some ropes and a bar, and voila, the flying trapeze was born!

Léotard’s daring act soon took the circus world by storm, inspiring generations of aerialists to take flight. Today, thanks to dedicated flying trapeze schools all over the world, this once-exclusive circus spectacle is available to anyone with a thirst for bucket list adventure!


What is Flying Trapeze School?


Imagine a cool school where you learn to swing through the air like a circus pro—that’s a Flying Trapeze School! Dip your toes in with a 1.5 to 2 hour introductory workshop (like I did!), perfect for a thrilling weekend activity. Or, dive deeper with long-term weekly classes, where you’ll build your skills step-by-step and conquer advanced tricks under the watchful eyes of experienced instructors.

They teach everyone, whether you’re just curious or a trapeze pro-in-the-making. Safety is a big deal, so you get to soar high with proper gear and nets. It’s not just about learning; it’s a mix of fun and excitement, turning each class into a flying adventure!

Flying Trapeze

What to Expect from Taking a Class in the Flying Trapeze


A Flying Trapeze School class usually starts with some basic preparation and safety rules before going to “Ground School,” mastering grips and momentum on a stationary bar. Then, conquer the ladder and take the leap! 

You’ll learn the knee hang, feel the wind in your hair, and eventually, the heart-stopping catch (with a trusty instructor, of course!). Each class progresses at your pace, and soon, you might be hanging upside down with a triumphant grin!


Is the Flying Trapeze Hard?


Flying trapeze isn’t exactly a breeze, but it’s also not impossible! Think of it like a challenging game where you get to be Superman (or Superwoman) for a day. It takes some serious muscle power, especially in your tummy and arms, to hold on and swing.

And let’s be honest, heights can be a bit scary at first (even with proper gear and safety nets.) But guess what? Every time you stick a move or catch the trapeze bar, it feels like the coolest high five ever. Plus, the more you practice, the easier it gets, and one day, you’ll be swinging through the air like a pro.

Flying Trapeze

How to Find a Flying Trapeze School or Class?


Ready to channel your inner circus star? Finding a Flying Trapeze School is easier than catching a runaway juggling ball (okay, maybe not that easy). The best thing to do is look online, you can start by checking The Trapeze Net who has a list of them in every US state. Most schools offer introductory classes, so you can test the trapeze waters before committing to a full-blown aerial adventure.

Flying Trapeze School

What are the Benefits of Flying Trapeze?


The benefits of flying trapeze aren’t just about bragging rights (although, those are pretty awesome too!). Think of it as a full-body makeover disguised as an aerial adventure. Every swing sculpts your core and upper body, turning your arms into steel cables and your abs into a rock-solid foundation.

The constant shifting and hanging builds incredible coordination, making you a master of balance even on solid ground. Plus, the mental workout is no joke! Focusing on each grip, timing your swing, and conquering your fear of heights sharpens your focus and boosts your confidence.


Is it Safe to Attend a Flying Trapeze School?


Trapezing might sound daring, but safety is always the main act! Certified instructors guide your journey, top-notch gear becomes your wings, and a giant net catches any wobbly landings (I may have spoken from experience here!). You progress at your own pace, mastering control before defying gravity. So, relax, trust the experts, and let your inner daredevil take flight, one safe swing at a time.

Flying Trapeze School

My Experience with a One-Day Trapeze Class


Have you ever thought of joining the circus to become a trapeze artist? When I discovered that a local circus and trapeze school offered a 1 1/2 hour beginning trapeze class, I thought it’d be perfect for my birthday bucket list and I began fantasizing about flying with the greatest of ease. Turns out…not so great…not so easy.

I suckered my mom into coming with me to be the designated photographer and drove to the Trapeze Arts School in Oakland, about an hour away. We arrived at the trapeze school just as the last class was finishing and had the opportunity to see beginners and intermediate students attempting their tricks. I was thoroughly relieved to see the large safety net, but still hoped the 10 foot drop didn’t sting.

Most of the students seemed to be having fun, except the one young newbie so terrified for her life that she couldn’t let go of the bar. My only hope was that that wouldn’t be me.

There were only two beginners in the trapeze school class, me and an ex-gymnast…no fair! We were given about a 5 minute instruction on terminology and other random technical information; for example, when they say Ready…Hep! This means lean forward, bend your knees and take a small jump off the board and Listo will signify to the catcher that the flyer is ready to go.

Ok, got it!

We were lead to start the steep climb up the 20-rung ladder. This was the most frightening part of the lesson considering this area lacked the comfort of the safety net. With the 3 of us standing on the 6′ x 4′ platform, I tightly held on to the rail until I was securely latched on. We started by just hanging onto the bar, swinging and letting go (or in my world a face plant). Next, we hooked our legs on the bar, hung upside down and then unhooked our legs to let go…face plant again…damn!

Lastly and in essence the trapeze school “graduation” trick of the class, we hung upside down and the instructor on a different trapeze caught our hands and we released from our bar to be suspended.

I prayed for success on the first attempt because my arms felt like jelly and I was sure they wouldn’t have allowed me to try again. I was amazed when I executed this trick “almost” flawlessly! Thank goodness! Done…I called it quits and considered my experience a huge triumph and check off my bucket list.

As fun as the experience was, don’t be fooled, trapezing is flippin’ hard. I wasn’t able to stretch out my arms or laugh for over a week without severe muscle pain! My best advice is to start working out with heavy concentration on your abs, at least a month before you go to the lesson!


Ready to take flight? Flying Trapeze isn’t just a class; it’s a ticket to airborne awesomeness! Embrace your inner acrobat, conquer challenges, and let each swing propel you to new heights of adventure. Trapeze School isn’t about learning; it’s a magical journey where gravity takes a backseat, and unforgettable memories soar. 


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Hey Bucket Listers!
I'm Annette.

I’m a goal obsessed mid-lifer, traveler, experience collector, fear crusher, digital marketer and author with big bucket list dreams. Let's Connect!

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