CUMBERLAND — After watching baseballs fly around the new SunTrust Park, fans will soon have the opportunity to fly themselves after a new indoor skydiving facility opens across the street from the Atlanta Braves’ new stadium.
iFly is an indoor skydiving company that offers participants the chance to spread their “wings” and fly in a safe and reliable environment. The company’s new location, on the corner of Interstate 285 West and Cobb Parkway, is expected to open at the end of the year.
Chris Miller, head of marketing for iFly, said the company’s mission statement is “to deliver the dream of flight to everyone,” adding that the experience is perfect for those afraid of heights or skydiving.
“It’s free-fall simulation without the risk of jumping out of a perfectly good plane. You don’t jump or fall when you’re in the building, you just lean in to a smooth cushion of wind,” he said.
Originally created for experienced skydivers to practice their flight skills, Miller said iFly soon realized others would be interested in the experience of flying.
“Who hasn’t looked up at the sky and saw a bird and thought ‘Man, I wish I could fly,’” he asked.
Anyone from the ages of 3 to 103 with that dream is able to fly at the new facility with trained and certified instructors there to guide them through the wind tunnel.
The flight chamber, where the flying experience takes place, is formed by patented technology by iFly that uses the entire building to create a powerful wind tunnel.
Four fans are placed at the top of the building that is shaped like a figure eight turned on its side. The fans send powerful streams of air down the sides of the facility. The two streams meet in the middle and are pushed up through to the flight chamber. An air compression mechanism just before the flight chamber speeds up the air to allow for a smooth column of air.
Before flying, guests go through a training session with an International Bodyflight Association-certified instructor who explains the techniques of bodyflight, a new sport created with the invention of indoor wind tunnels. After training, guests suit up in a flight suit, helmet and goggles — all included with their flight — and then take turns flying in the tunnel with the instructor.
“You don’t lose your stomach when you’re flying,” Miller said. “It’s not like a roller coaster; there are no up and down movements. It’s very smooth.”
In addition to the flight chamber, the iFly facility will include a party room and conference room for birthday parties, team outings and corporate events.
The new iFly location will be the first in Georgia, and Miller said the company is glad to be in Atlanta near SunTrust Park.
“With the new Braves Stadium coming nearby, we’re excited not only to open at the end of this year but to watch the other developments happen around us, which I think is going to be great for the customers and Atlanta to come and have a multitude of great experiences right in one area,” he said. “November or December can’t get here early enough so we can open up and give the dream of flight to everyone in Atlanta.”
According to the company’s website, the price for two flights on iFlights’ other locations averages around $60 to $70 and includes instruction time and all the necessary gear. For more information, go to www.iflyworld.com.