Sky Zone Toronto
Sky Zone Toronto is the second location of this trampoline park franchise opened by owner, Caroline Irving, in the GTA. Following on the heels of her popular outpost in Mississauga, Irving tells me she opened the new Leaside location because patrons were demanding a location closer to downtown. Irving first discovered the concept when she visited her sister-in-law's Sky Zone franchise in Boston.
The new 28,000 square foot facility boasts activities guaranteed to entice adults, teens and children alike. There are several courts dedicated to trampoline dodge ball, which is an activity Irving admits, that has found its biggest fan base among adults looking for a new past-time. There's a large, recreational bouncing space and basketball courts that allow even the most vertically-challenged individuals the opportunity to slam-dunk a few balls. There's also a foam pit, which is just pure, squishy fun.
This is truly a venue that has something for everyone. Saturday nights are reserved for individuals aged 16 and older, and Tuesdays and Thursdays there is Toddler Time, reserved for children aged 6 and under, accompanied by a care-giver. For those serious about getting fit, Sky Zone offers SkyRobics, group fitness classes, several times a week. At $11.50 a class, this is a fun, fair-priced alternative to what's offered at most fitness clubs. Sky Zone also hosts birthday parties, which start at $20/per child, including food. This is extremely reasonable compared with most other privately-owned party venues in the GTA.
When I arrive with my family on a blistery Saturday afternoon, we are immediately welcomed by Manager, Dominic. He gives us each a waiver to fill out, provides us with special shoes to wear during our jumping experience, and goes through the list of rules to be followed while we use the facilities.
As promised by Irving, bouncing on the trampolines provides a challenging workout and my calves are quickly burning. My kids' cheeks flush with pleasure and exertion after only a few minutes. While I knew our school-ager would enjoy it, as she does trampoline during her gymnastics classes each week, I was not sure what our temperamental preschooler would think. Ironically, it was she who we had to drag out of the place, kicking and screaming. As we piled into the car to leave, both children immediately asked how soon we could return for another visit.
But we all truly enjoyed the experience, and within just a few minutes of bouncing, the skills I learned in my 3 years of trampoline lessons as a kid quickly came back and I was doing seat drops, knee drops and tuck jumps. Seeing the smile on my face, Dominic confirmed that it is often the adults who express the most joy from the feeling of freedom and lightness you get when you bounce. Indeed, it is definitely one of the most pleasurable ways to get fit I can think of. Just note that there are no change rooms at Sky Zone, nor showers, so if you plan to go for a SkyRobics class or dodge ball game, allow yourself extra time to go home and clean up.
Helicopter parents need not fear as the facility is clean, spacious, and equipped with Sky Zone's patented 3-D trampoline-walled playing courts, which provide a safe experience for jumpers of all ages. There are no exposed springs or holes like there were in the trampolines of my youth. In addition, the facility is well-staffed with court monitors who are responsible and attentive and make sure the court rules are being followed at all times.
Photos by Kat Rizza