I’m not sure if I’m writing this to recommend Air Riderz for kids or for the grownups. While my kids and their friends had a blast here, so did my husband and I. How could you not be entertained when the gym is filled with trampolines, climbing walls, a nerve-wracking pole walk, a ninja obstacle course and a giant stunt bag?
The Climbing Options
We arrived early, which seems to be the key to all these indoor play places. To make sure everyone gets a turn at trying all the vertical challenges (the Rubix Cube wall, Face-Off climbing wall and their pole walk), Air Riderz has a policy that states you only have one chance to climb to your heart’s content. They’re big on safety here, so you do have to wait for a staff member to assist you in clipping in and out of each place you want to climb.
The Rubik’s Cube was harder than it looked, but doable. It was the pole walk that gave me a run for my money. It’s basically like climbing a set of progressively higher stools with no hand rail. I stood on the sidelines, pushing my kids to go further than they thought they could go. None of them made it to the top. And neither did I. It looks MUCH easier to do when you’re standing on the ground. The hardest part was actually getting down. You just have to step off into nothing and pray that the harness will lower you down. It was a thrill, but once was enough for me!
The trampoline zone spans across the entire upper deck of the gym. I love how I can see the entire area from almost any place so I could scan and spot my older kids every so often while I played with my younger ones. The trampoline area has wall-to-wall trampolines consisting of two long tumble tracks, a variety of 45-degree trampolines as well as the traditional ones. There’s also a Cardio Zone for a fun and challenging workout (geared more for adults as the buttons were quite high), two basketball slam-dunk zones, a Dodgeball court and a toddler zone with a rule that it’s for ages 4 and under, which the staff stringently adhered to. The kids literally bounced back and forth from one activity to another and back again.
The Highlight: The Ninja Warrior Course
The Ninja Warrior course was what we came for. My kids are hooked on trying these obstacle courses. This one was challenging for both the children and the adults. I’m by no means athletic, but I thought I could at least do the monkey bars (they tilted midway through your climb). Nope. I was wrong.
There were parts of it the kids couldn’t reach but they felt entertained enough by the few parts of the course that they could do. Sadly, there was no warp wall, so if you’re looking for that, this isn’t the gym to come to.
There were several other areas which we were pleasantly surprised with once we got there: the Battle Beam (a balance beam that is suspended over foam blocks where you battle each other with padded battering rams), a trapeze, and a stunt bag (you could choose to fall backwards off a high platform onto it, or jump off trampolines into it).
It seemed like two hours wouldn’t be enough time, and it honestly wasn’t. But everyone was thoroughly exhausted by the end of it, so someone knew what they were doing when the max time limit is that! It’s not only a ton of fun, but it’s a great workout for kids and adults alike. I certainly felt more ninja-like after my time there!
All the Details
Location: 570 Applewood Crescent, Unit #3 (with two other locations, one in Aurora and one in Mississauga)
Phone: 905-695-7011 (Vaughan location)
Hours: Tuesday – Thursday: 4 pm-9 pm, Friday: 12 pm-9 pm, Saturday: 10 am – 10 pm, Sunday: 10 am-8 pm. CLOSED MONDAYS
Cost: Varies, depending on the length of jump times. These are the costs for the 60-minute time slots only:
Trampolines & Ninja Warrior Course: $18
Trampolines, Ninja Warrior Course & Climbing Walls: $21
Toddler time (under 5 years old): $10 ($6/siblings)
Air Riderz socks: $3.50 + tax
Tips & Tricks
- Bring your own food or purchase snacks at the snack bar. There are a handful of tables for eating.
- Keep your valuables in your car (there are open cubbies for storing shoes & coats).
- This place is stroller-friendly!
- Go early to avoid the crowds – we got there at 11 am and it didn’t start filling up until after noon.
- Bring jump/grip socks you have from other play places. They insist that everyone has to buy their Air Riderz socks, but they will give you a discount if you trade in your old socks for theirs.
- There’s a special toddler time on Saturdays & Sundays from 10 am-11 am. (The website states that their staff will spend time with your toddler while you relax on the couch… where was this when I need that?)
- Host a birthday party here. I have honestly not seen such clean, well-lit large party rooms before in similar-type entertainment places.
- Check out all of their locations as each one as something unique. Vaughan has the Ninja Warrior Course, Aurora has the Leap of Faith (a huge tower you climb and jump off of with nothing but a harness holding onto you), and Mississauga has the Giant Slide. Both of the latter locations also have a Dark Tower (a climbing wall inside a dark vertical tunnel).
*DISCLAIMER: My family and I were given passes to try out Air Riderz, but all opinions are my own.