A Complete Guide To Bungee Jumping
As far as adventure sports go, bungee jumping is undoubtedly one to try. The thrill of free-falling from heights gives an adrenaline kick that’s full of fun and excitement.
If you’re thinking about experiencing the thrill for yourself, we’ve prepared a comprehensive guide to all things bungee jumping.
Bungee jumping explained
Bungee jumping is all about leaping from a very high position. You can jump off a tall cliff, tower, crane, or bridge.
You can even jump from a moving object like a hot air balloon if you are out for a thrill.
You’ll have a thick elastic cord tied to your feet or ankles, which recoils almost as instantly as you start your freefall.
As you hurtle from the height, the cord tied to your feet will stretch, then rebound, taking you upwards as it recoils.
After which, you will begin to fall back down.
Picture it like an air trampoline— you’ll bounce up and down a couple of times until the cord loses momentum. How’s that for exhilaration?
Where did it all come from?
There are quite a few tales told about how it all started. Some say a woman tied her feet with a rope in a domestic dispute and jumped off a cliff.
Others say men jumped off cliffs to show off their bravado.
Notwithstanding the stories told, records show that the first known modern encounters with bungee jumping were in the 1970s from Bristol’s Clifton’s bridge.
Eventually, it made its way into the mainstream, with the first bungee jumping location operating commercially in New Zealand in 1989.
Is bungee jumping safe?
While falling so far down with nothing but a rope to hold your legs may seem scary, bungee jumping is known to be quite safe.
Establishments are required to stick to a code of safety. You can get a license for it if you don’t meet the standards.
Plus, all the equipment used has to comply with safety standards.
Statistics also show that the risk of dying in a bungee jumping accident is 1 in 500 000.
This means jumps are accident-free most of the time.
Who can bungee jump?
There are usually no limits to bungee jumping; people of all ages can do it.
However, some places will put certain age limits.
But, if you have pre-existing injuries, then you aren’t allowed to jump.
Also, people with conditions like heart problems, high blood pressure, and being overweight can’t jump.
If you’re pregnant, you’re also not allowed to take the leap.
The great feelings from bungee jumping come from the burst of adrenaline release in your body.
That adrenaline released courses through your whole body.
As it makes its way through the body, your heart rate shoots through the roof.
Plus, your metabolic rate and the sugar level in your blood both go sky-high.
So if you have conditions like heart problems or high blood pressure, it would be unsafe for you to try bungee jumping.
That said, if you have a perfect bill of health, there’s nothing to stop you from doing it.
Why do you need to bungee jump?
Agreed, bungee jumping is not for the faint-hearted. It’s an extreme sport.
However, life is all about experiences, and what better way to enjoy a well-lived life than by experiencing something as exhilarating as a bungee jump?
For the thrill-seekers, you simply must take a jump in your lifetime.
Consider adding this adventure activity to your bucket list.
If you want to conquer your fears, especially if you’re afraid of heights, going for a bungee jump will be a great way to conquer your fears.
You can do it gradually, start with heights that are not too daunting for you, and eventually work your way up to taking more tremendous leaps.
Another reason that should stir you to attempt a jump is that it’s an easygoing sport that requires minimum fitness or effort from you.
With your clean bill of health, correct footwear, and an ear attentive to instructions, you are good to bungee.
Essential equipment for a bungee jump
All you need is a bungee cord and sometimes a harness, depending on the setup of your chosen bungee site.
You may also require a helmet if those are the requirements of the location you are taking your leap.
The cord is a specially designed shock cord usually made of natural rubber for elasticity. Bungee cords vary in strength and thickness.
There are two types of harnesses used in bungee jumping; you will have strapped on either a leg harness or a body harness.
The leg harness is strapped to your ankles and attached to the rope.
A body harness will be attached to your thighs, waist, chest, shoulders, and the cord attached.
What to wear
Keep it simple. Wear the most comfortable clothes that will not distract you during your jump.
Suggested options include shorts, t-shirts, pants, or bodysuits.
You can wear a comfortable pair of shoes, but remember to tie your laces.
Remember your clothes should neither be too tight nor too loose.
Tight-fitting clothes will limit your movements, especially since you will be in an unusual upside-down position.
Loose-fitting clothes are also not ideal because they will fly over your head and may become a hazard.
Can I eat before taking the plunge?
Bungee jumping will take its toll on your body. You will be in an unusual head-down position, being jerked about for a bit as your body bounces from the recoil.
In light of this, you are advised not to eat just before you jump, let alone take a heavy meal.
After all, you wouldn’t want to throw up all over the gorge below and ruin your bungee experience.
Essential tips for your first bungee excursion
Bungee jumping is not just about taking the plunge; it’s about the entire experience.
You want to look back and reminisce on what an enriching experience it was.
- For bungee rookies, the most important tip is to pay as much attention to your instructor as possible. Most of all, trust your instructor. Your instructor has been through this enough times to know how it’s supposed to go, not to mention being certified to do this.
- If you’re going as a group, take the lead. Watching others jump before you may only heighten your nerves instead of getting you psyched up about the jump. The earlier you take to jump, the higher your chances of backing out of the enthralling experience.
- Don’t look back, literally and metaphorically. You have come this far already.
- Don’t wait for the countdown to end before taking your leap of faith if you’re doing a countdown. If you do, chances are you won’t jump, and there will be more countdowns before you jump.
- Try not to look down; look straight ahead. Looking down makes the jump scarier than it is. Even the bravest of hearts will become nervous by staring down the expanse of the gorge. You are better off keeping your eyes closed before you jump.
- Remember to smile. You want to look back at the pictures of this memorable moment and be proud of how brave you were, not cringe at how afraid you looked.
- Above all, just have fun. These are the moments worth cherishing.
What will the jump entail?
Here is a basic rundown of what to expect when you go for your leap of faith:
Bungee jumping excursions are pre-booked appointments, so you need to arrive well on time to familiarise yourself with your surroundings.
Arriving early will help calm your nerves and prepare you for your leap.
Before the jump, you should get a safety briefing.
The briefing should include a lesson on inspection, testing, and maintenance of the harness and tips on safely executing your jump.
They will take your weight to ensure you use the appropriate cord to carry your weight suitably.
Next, your cable and harness will be strapped on and checked to ensure everything is sound and in good working condition.
Having gone through these checks, you are ready to take your leap.
During the jump
Relax. With your arms stretched wide, your knees bent, and your eyes focused ahead or shut (whichever you prefer), steadily take that jump into the open air below. Enjoy the moment and savor your free fall.
Once the cord has been fully stretched out, it will recoil and bring you back slightly up, and you get to enjoy swinging like a pendulum from the end of the cord.
- There will be a prepared airbag to land on
- A boat will be waiting for you below
- You will be rewound up to where you jumped from.
After the leap
The instructor will detach the cord and remove the harness.
You can proudly stand tall and look back at the thrilling experience you have just had.
Where can I go bungee jumping in the US?
Across the United States, there are countless bridges, canyons, cliff tops, and buildings where you can get your dose of heart-pumping adrenaline experience.
And that’s it; now you know what to expect and where to go for a jump.
Go ahead and book that all-important first bungee jump experience, and enjoy an unforgettable free-falling experience to brag about for a lifetime.
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What Does Bungee Jumping Feel Like? Personal Story & Experience
Bungee jumping feels like nothing else you will ever experience. As a seasoned bungee jumper, I wanted to share with you my experience stories plus those of others. In this article you can read how I describe bungee jumping, what happens to your body, and then input from other people who have done it – enjoy the ride!
What does bungee jumping feel like? Bungee jumping feels like nothing I can compare it to. You step off into the air, which is a surreal experience, then fall with the wind rushing past you. The jerk back up and couple of bounces are usually very smooth.
That’s my short answer, but I wanted to go more in-depth as last week my friend asked me “how do you describe bungee jumping”… it was tough to answer in just a few moment so I decided to write the entire experience down in one go. And here it is!
How I would describe bungee jumping in detail
I remember my first ever bungee jump in very clear detail. I looked up at the platform in Thailand and honestly didn’t think it was that high… until I got up there. As someone who tends to over think things, I was lucky enough to be jumping with my wife, so there was no backing out.
As we were taken up to the jump platform, my nerves were starting to get the better of me. With my wife behind me though, there was no going back down. As I stood up on the platform, I had a minor panic attack, but steadied myself with calm breathing exercises.
Handy Hint: I’ve developed a guide for beginners to help them mentally prepare for their first ever bungee jump. Take a look at that if you are scared.
I inched my way towards the end of the jump platform, and did the wrong thing… I looked down. Never do this! I couldn’t believe how high I was, it was so much more of a drop compared to what it looked like from down below.
But it was too late now. I was committed.
As well as my wife, there were also spectators down below so there was no way my pride was going to let me stop now.
I took a couple of steps to the end of the platform and then was then give the signal to go. Using some kind of Jedi mind trick I managed to convince myself that bungee jumping would feel fine and stepped off with my eyes closed.
You fall through the air in free fall, and I had to open my eyes at this point. I was falling like a star fish which probably didn’t look that elegant! I could feel the wind rushing past me and into my eyes, and the adrenalin was insane.
Here’s my wife who jumped just after me in Thailand!
I literally could not breathe for the few seconds that it took for the bungee cord to extend and then bounce. Yes, I did scream.
And here’s the thing; I was expecting the tension and bounce to be painful or a very hard jerk, but it wasn’t at all.
As I shot back up, the entire movement was very smooth, and on the second downwards fall I was so much calmer. I was actually laughing like a maniac at this point.
I bounced for a few times and was left hanging in the air. It’s almost like time stands still at this point, and I felt a huge feeling of calm.
The operators lowered me down onto a little boat over the water where the rest of the team un-clipped me.
I just wanted to get back up there and do it all over again. I was absolutely buzzing!
What bungee jumping feels like from start to end
From start to finish, this is what bungee jumping feels like and how I would describe it.
- Nerves and possible panic before you step off.
- Massive euphoria and adrenaline powered fear as you fall with possible screaming.
- Smooth jerk back up and maniacal laughing.
- Few bounces and then hanging where you feel calm but buzzing at the same time.
- You probably will then want to do it again!
- A feeling of an insane natural high for the rest of the day (possibly even days).
This is my personal bungee jumping experience story. It might be different for you, but most people you talk to with give you a similar description of what bungee jumping feels like.
You can read more experiences lower down the page, but first let me answer some more specific questions about what bungee jumping feels like, what to expect, what happens to your body, and whether your stomach drops (a common question).
Handy Hint: Did you know that bungee jumping is said to originate thousands of years ago? Check out the history of bungee up to the modern day.
What happens to your body when bungee jumping?
I don’t want to panic you, but bungee jumping can be dangerous. Whilst fatalities are quite rare (see bungee death statistics), it can do things to your body that in normal circumstances you would not subject it to.
Some bad things can happen to your body when bungee jumping (it’s relatively safe though)
The falling part isn’t the issue. It’s the point at which the bungee cord stretches to the full length and tension. At this point, it can pull you back with a lot of force, and suddenly too. Whilst my experience was a good one, other people have said the tug back was very painful.
The types of injuries that can happen include:
- Eye injuries: blood pressure in your eye’s blood vessels can suddenly increase, and some people have reported temporary vision loss, spots, and retinal haemorrhaging.
- Spinal injury: the force of the bungee cord being pulled back can lead to spinal fractures and herniated discs. There is a small risk of paralysis and quadriplegia.
- Neck injury: your neck muscles can strain leading to temporary discomfort. In more serious cases a neck and spinal injury can occur, or even possible strangulation from the bungee cord.
Scary stuff isn’t it?
Thankfully it is rare, but they are still risks you need to weigh up. There are some seriously frightening things that can happen to your body when bungee jumping.
Handy Hint: I also asked 13 paragliders what it feels like to paraglide. You can see what they said in this other blog post.
Does your stomach drop when bungee jumping?
Your stomach does drop during a bungee jump. It feels like your stomach is either sinking or going right up. You know that horrible stomach drop you feel to a lesser extent when on a rollercoaster – well, magnify that one hundred times.
The stomach drop feeling only last for a few seconds as you fall, but it is definitely part of the experience and most people will feel it until they start dangling.
Does bungee jumping feel like a rollercoaster?
Bungee jumping does sort of feel like the feeling you get on a rollercoaster, but it’s a lot more intense. It’s the whole stomach drop feeling I described in the previous question.
How fast do you fall when bungee jumping?
How fast you fall when bungee jumping will depend on the height of the jump. The higher the bungee jump, the more time you have to accelerate to a top speed.
As an example, the Macau Tower bungee jump is said to offer a top falling speed of 124 miles per hour (200 km/h). The falls take 4 to 5 seconds to complete, as you jump from a height of 223 meters.
Other people’s bungee jumping experience stories
I didn’t want you to just rely on my experiences, so here are a few stories from other first-time bungee jumpers.
“Nothing beats jumping off a bridge from 120 meters. If you’re scared of heights like me, it’s an even bigger achievement. I felt like I was flying and once I got back down to the ground honestly felt like I could put my mind to anything. That’s what bungee jumping feels like; it makes you feel invincible and motivated!”
“Even after two of three jumps you will still feel scared, but that’s what makes it. Bungee making makes you confront your fears head-on. Once you leap it feels like you are completely alone. Your brain takes over, and you think you’re going to die… but of course, you aren’t. It’s a massive thrill.”
“I can honestly say that I felt nothing. I think my mind went completely blank! I jumped in tandem with my boyfriend and he said I was screaming all the way down, but I have no recollection of this happening. All I remember feeling is the bouncing back up!”
“You feel the adrenalin pumping. Then you step off and what seems like a second just hang there before the fall. As you fall you feel like you are completely free. After a few seconds the feeling is over. It’s over in a blink of an eye. Amazing experience.”
Yes, there are risks involved with bungee jumping, but statistically the chance of injury is quite slim. If you can face your fears and make the leap, I guarantee you that you will want to do it again… you will want a repeat you got of that feeling from bungee jumping.
You might also like…
If you’re going to try this extreme sport out for the first time, you might want to read the micro-guides below.
Over the last month, my 7 year old son and I have started geocaching as our new hobby. Despite what you might have heard, you don’t need a load of expensive gear as beginner. In fact, most people.
For those new to geocaching there can some weird and wonderful terminology and phrasing at play. Most acronyms and sayings are easy enough to get the hang of and will make complete sense once they.
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Bungee Jumping in Thailand – Best Places To Try Out the ‘Leap of Faith’
Need an adrenaline hit? Looking for something exciting to do? You don’t need to look any further; Bungee Jumping is the perfect answer. Jumping from a high point with a belt tied around your waist to pull you back will give you a rush like nothing else. Even though the whole thing lasts for just a few minutes, it leaves you with memories worth regaling for a lifetime. Thailand has some excellent spots to have this exhilarating experience. The nation has it all, vibrant culture, breathtaking landscapes and now, adventure with bungee jumping in Thailand!
Read on to find out about the best operators for bungee jumping in Thailand.
1. Xbungy, Pattaya
Source A city on the eastern Gulf coast of Thailand, this is the highest bungee jumping spot in Thailand at the height of 60 metres. The view from the top is just amazing as one can see the whole city. Located only 150 km from Bangkok, one can easily reach Pattaya through well-connected highways.
Xbungy has been an operator for bungee jumping in Thailand since 1989 and are renowned for their safety processes. They are certified by SANZ ( Standards Association of New Zealand). You get a certificate of courage and photos and videos of the jump taken on a Go-Pro camera which can be purchased after the jump. Located on Threppasitt road in between Pattaya and Jomtien centre, they provide pick up and drop off services from your hotel in Pattaya.
Price: The cost for bungee jumping is THB 2500, this includes a free t-shirt as well, and one can pay on reaching the place. Visit their official website pattayabungy.com for more information and to book tickets.
Cancellation: No charges if you cancel a week before your scheduled jump. If closer than a week, you will have to pay a small cancellation fee.
Address: 248/10, 9 Bang Lamung District, Chon Buri
Timings: 10 AM – 7 PM
Things to keep in mind: They ensure your safety by not allowing you to jump if you have a medical condition, more than 150 kgs of weight or less than 35 kg.
2. Phuket Jungle Bungy Jump, Phuket
Source Located on Phuket island, the closest Airport to this bungee jumping spot is Phuket International Airport. One can also reach here by road as there are regular buses from Bangkok. It has the second-highest bungee jumping point in Thailand at a height of 50m above the ground.
This operator for bungee jumping in Thailand is in Kathu village which is only 5km away from Patong city centre, this operator is very accessible to those who want a quick dose of adrenaline. One can make a booking with them online or on call. The price will increase if you want videos or photos as well. The serene lake below the bungee jumping spot adds to its picturesque beauty as well as the thrill of the jump. Run by professionals from the land of bungee jumping, i.e. New Zealand. It certified by the SANZ (Standards Association of New Zealand). They also provide pick up and drop off services as well.
Price: The price starts at THB 2200 = USD 71
Address: Kathu, Kathu District, Phuket
Timings: 9 AM – 6 PM, but they do not conduct jumps after 5:30 PM.
3. Samui Bungy Jump, Koh Samui
Source Located off the coast of the mainland in the Gulf of Thailand. You can either fly directly to Koh Samui or go via Surat Thani and then take a ferry to Koh Samui, the second option being cheaper but is more time-consuming. Chaweng, a beach on the east coast of Koh Samui is another spot to try bungee jumping in Thailand.
This place has been around since 2001 and run by people of English origin. Located minutes away from Chaweng beach, it is nestled between the Reggae Pub and EasyKart on Soi Reggae road. A t-shirt and beer are complimentary. One can request their pickup and return services while booking. Their lingua franca is English, and they also hold a 100% safety record. They also provide an option between a dip in their swimming pool below or a dry jump without immersion in the pool.
Price: The price for a jump is THB 1,500 per person which has to be paid in advance through online payment methods.
Address: 3/130 Moo 2. Soi Reggae, Chaweng, Surat Thani 84320, Thailand.
Things to keep in mind: They have a weight limit of more than 100kg and less than 42kg. In case one has a problem in conversing in English, they can book with the help of their hotel or third-party websites such as activityfan.com.
4. Chiang Mai X Centre, Chiang Mai
Source A favourite place among tourists, this place has many attractions such as Wat Chedi Luang having its international airport Chiang Mai is easy to reach. Another thing which you can add to your itinerary for Chiang Mai is bungee jumping.
Chiang Mi X Centre is a sports activity centre offers exciting activities such as motorcycling, paintballing and rolling downhill in Zorb balls. It has yet another bungee jump at the height of 50 m in Thailand and has SANZ certified instructors. Located in the forest setting of Mai Rim valley it is only 25 minutes ride from Chiang Mai city centre. They are open from 9 AM to 6 PM. The sight of Chiang Mai from the top is beautiful enough to have this experience added to your Thailand itinerary, add to that the thrill and exhilaration of bungee jumping and you will have some fantastic memories to look back on. They also provide you with certificate, insurance and also pick up and return services from your hotel. They also have a bar and restaurant in their centre where you can relax with your friends.
Price: The price for a jump ranges between THB 2000 and THB 3000 based on whether you wish to take photographs and videos or not.
Address: 816, 1 Rim Tai, Amphoe Mae Rim, Chang Wat Chiang Mai.
Timings: 9:00 AM – 6:00 PM
Tips to Remember While Bungee Jumping
1. Insurance: Make sure that the services you are registering with provides you with insurance.
2. Medical Conditions: There are some medical conditions which do not allow you to Bungee Jump. If you are pregnant or have suffered from some neck, back or spinal injuries, then you will not be able to jump. Heart patients will not be allowed to jump. In case you have issues such as high blood pressure, epilepsy, asthma or eye injury, it is advised to consult a doctor before jumping. Furthermore, if you have consumed drugs or alcohol, you will not be allowed to take the jump.
Moreover, your weight should be more than 35kgs and less than 150kgs.
3. Know Before You Go: In case you are not sure whether you want to jump or not, it is suggested to go to the centre and see the process for yourself before booking as they will not refund you if you back out at the last moment. Moreover, it so happens that they are usually able to accommodate you for a jump on the same day, but you might have to wait.
4. Equipment Ready: The centre will provide all the required equipment you are going to and do make sure that it is in excellent condition as it is a matter of life and death.
Bungee jumping in Thailand can be an exhilarating experience which you can take back along with the other amazing memories from this place. Just take a deep breath and a leap of faith!