All it takes is just one jump and that’s it, your life will be changed forever!
Just ask anyone who has bungee jumped before and you will always get the same kind of response:
“You have to try bungee jumping, seriously; it’s incredible!”
But that’s not why you clicked this link is it? You probably already know it’s gonna be one of the most amazing things you will ever do. What you really want to know is, “Will it be scary?”
"What you really want to know is, “Will it be scary?”"
In general, people always like to find-out how scary some adventure activities are before they book them. This is because one of the scariest things for most people isn’t failure itself, but the fear of being embarrassed from failure. This is why ‘Public Speaking’ is often cited as one of the scariest things in the world for anyone to do, because it’s so closely associated with embarrassment (and embarrassed is how you will feel if you have to walk away from a bungee jump after booking it).
So dear readers asking “if bungee jumping is scary?” I’m going to give you an honest answer here: It’s a combination of ‘yes and no’.
Yes, bungee jumping will be exceptionally scary for the first timer...but after you’ve done it once you will never be scared of doing it ever again. Okay, so that’s a bit of a ‘mixed message’ but honestly, it’s the truth. Please allow me to explain why and hopefully we can make some sense of this question.
So, for a proper bungee jumping experience you are going to be jumping-off of something really, REALLY high. And, you’re not just going to be “jumping-off” something really high, but you are actually going to be diving-off headfirst.
That’s right, I said “diving-off headfirst”.
Safe bungee jumping needs to be performed in exactly the same way as when you dive into a swimming pool...except that it’s probably over 50 meters higher than any swimming pool diving board you’ve ever dived-off before (that is unless your name is Rick Charls -- Click here to watch his dive on YouTube).
The ‘diving headfirst’ part is actually a really crucial aspect of bungee jumping, because if you don’t commit to diving headfirst properly, then you are going to be in trouble once the bungee cord attached to your ankles runs out of slack and you begin to rebound. Basically, if you don’t dive headfirst properly off of the bungee jump platform...then you’ve probably just bought yourself a one-way ticket to whiplash city.
This is why some people (including myself) would say that bungee jumping is in fact much scarier than skydiving! Because despite the distances involved being vastly different, bungee jumping still requires much more of a personal commitment than a tandem skydiving ever does.
"...you’re not just going to be “jumping-off” something really high, but you are actually going to be diving-off headfirst…”
For first time skydivers, you will always be attached to a professional instructor. An instructor who probably jumps out of planes every single day of the week and could most-likely do it blindfolded.
For skydiving instructors, they are just ‘going through the motions’, performing an extremely familiar routine exercise. The responsibility is not in your hands, it’s in the instructors, and you can always trust them with your life because they don’t want to fail either!
Also, they will always have a reserve chute in case the main one fails to deploy (in fact the reserve chute is usually considered ‘the safer chute’ because it is spring-loaded and has to be packed in a far more meticulous fashion than the main chute does).
For first time bungee jumpers, the responsibility to jump is all on you!
Once you are attached to the bungee cord and standing on the jump platform, with the wind blowing on your face and an amazing view in front of you, it’s up to you to jump!
No one is going to touch you or force you to jump. The decision to jump, to dive headfirst off of that platform, is yours alone to make.
As Yoda says, “Do or do not, there is no try.”
So you have to decide your fate and choose whether to dive-off and experience something amazing...or to climb back down and hope that your friends don’t laugh at you too much.
If you do decide to take the plunge then don’t worry! That stretchy, industrial-strength bungee cord is going to save you from hitting terra firma and very soon you are going to find out exactly why bungee jumping isn’t scary at all. This is because in just a few seconds after diving you are going to experience what is known as “the rebound”.
The rebound is when the bungee cord reaches its maximum length and then begins to pull you back upwards towards the heavens. For most first time bungee jumpers this is the moment that they realise that bungee jumping isn’t scary at all and is in fact really fun!
The feeling of the rebound could be compared to being on a giant trampoline, a giant trampoline that sends you really high-up into the sky. It is in this moment of elation where you succumb to the fact that everything is going to be fine and that may begin to laugh at yourself for worrying about nothing.
A relatively modern adventure activity, the first real bungee jumps were completed on 1st April, 1979. The location was the 76 metre high (250 ft) Clifton Suspension Bridge in Bristol (pictured below). The bungee jumpers were David Kirke and Simon Keeling, who were both members of the ‘Oxford University Dangerous Sports Club’.
The choice to dive is entirely yours to make of course, but hopefully this article has given you some inspiration and encouragement to take the plunge. Trust us, it’s so worth it!