Here are some essential packing tips and tricks for your week-long trapeze retreat.
You’ve just decided to book a week-long flying trapeze retreat at the Extreme Hotel in Cabarete, Dominican Republic and you’re going to train on the flying trapeze every day! That’s your goal and plan. You’re so excited that you’re going to get to fly daily, train and perfect your swing, learn new tricks, and make awesome catches. All this, while minutes away from the beach and an amazing view of the beautiful mountains of the Dominican Republic. Sounds perfect!
Okay, but wait! Have you thought about what to bring? Bikinis, work-out clothes and sunscreen, of course. Yes, all valid and important items but from my experience running multiple retreats, I know everything that people wish they had brought. So we’re going to go over some things you may not have thought about. Or maybe you have, but I want to make sure you are best prepared for your Trapeze retreat so you can get the most out of your experience here by perfecting your swing, learning tricks, and making some awesome catches.
Do you normally wear grips at your local rig? Do you have wrist wraps you like to wear for catches? If “yes” to any of these, bring them all. None of it will be too much for your suitcase, and even if you don’t want to use them here, it’s better to have the option than not. It’s very warm here, therefore, your hands will be a lot softer than usual. Swimming a lot can also cause your calluses to become soft, which can lead to rips happening sooner than expected. If you don’t use grips at your home rig, this might be the time to invest in a pair. Talk with your local trapeze experts and ask them where you can get a pair and what dowel size they think you’re ready for. If you really don’t want to start wearing grips, you definitely do not have to, but they may help extend the life of your palms during your trapeze week, which means more flying for you.
Band-Aids and Medication
That is, hopefully, to avoid rips, but unfortunately, as we all know, rips are a way of life for a flying trapeze artist. So let’s be prepared for them. Bring Band-Aids. You can never have too many because they will never expire. Also, bring gauze and tape to make your own bigger Band-Aids. You probably already use tape for grips, wrists, etc., so bring enough. In trapeze, you’ll always find a use for tape. At night, while trying to heal rips, I’ve heard many different things. Some people say let the air at them so they can dry up, but in my experience and research, I think the opposite is best. If they dry up too much, they crack, which hurts more. Keeping them bandaged keeps them clean and damp, which actually aids in healing. In Canada, we have a brand of ointment called Polysporin, and one of their products has a pain reliever in it. It is by far my most favourite thing. In the States, I believe Neosporin is the equivalent. See if they have one with pain relief in it, and you’ll thank me. I also recommend bringing nail cutters (for calluses and extra skin), a pummel stone to keep your calluses at bay, and more tape.
Bag balm is a type of moisturizer that I’ve heard a lot about. I couldn’t find any in Canada, but I hear it’s great for keeping your calluses and rips soft so they don’t dry up too much. There is a happy medium for how soft or hard we want our hands. Also, pack Advil and/or some type of painkiller. Not that we expect you to get hurt, but if you’re not already used to flying every day, this could be a bit of a shock to your system. Did you think to bring tea bags? If you’re a tea lover than maybe, but probably not, right? Apparently the tannic acid in tea can help relieve pain and encourage the growth of new skin. If you do end up with rips, a soaked tea bag (black tea, not green) can be applied to your hands when you’re not on the trapeze. Can’t hurt to try, right?
Clothing wise, it gets hot in the Dominican Republic, so pack lots of sports tops, sports bras, and shorts. If you don’t like to fly in shorts, tights work, too. If you plan on doing any aerials, like the aerial hoop or silks, I recommend wearing tights. You won’t need shoes for the trapeze, but I have seen some people wear socks or special shoes/socks to save their toes from the net. Definitely bring this if it’s what you’re used to wearing on the trapeze. Basically, if you wear it or use it at your home rig, take it with you.
Lastly, some suggestions you can take or leave.
Yoga Mat or a Towel
Some people have brought their own yoga mat. It’s nice to be able to sit on something that is yours. But it’s also a big item for travel, so think about it and see how you feel. How about an extra towel instead? Whether it’s a small towel for when you’re at the trapeze and sweaty, or a bigger towel, you can use it instead of a yoga mat.
Bring a metal or reusable water bottle. It will save you money and help save the environment from plastic waste. Every room has a jug of clean drinking water so you can stay hydrated.
I hope that these tips and tricks will help you to get the most out of your flying trapeze retreat at the Extreme Hotel. If you have any other questions on what to bring, feel free to reach out to us on social media via our Facebook or Instagram account. See you soon at the Extreme Circus!