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A Letter to Future Thrill Riders

November 4, 2021
Jurassic World

To My Fellow Future Thrill Riders,

Hi! I’m Jenna, and I never thought I would be able to conquer a roller coaster. After almost 8 years of being aUniversal Orlando Annual Passholder(UOAP), I didn’t think any convincing would get me on one. But, I eventually did, and It. Was. Awesome. I’m here to share my story and try to ease any nerves you may be having before tackling a roller coaster atUniversal Orlando Resort.

For as long as I can remember, I was terrified of the big coasters. I was always the designated bag holder when my friends would tackle the intense gamma rays ofThe Incredible Hulk CoasterUniversal’s Islands of Adventure. Even looking up at the intimidating 0-40 mph launch immediately turning into a zero-g inversion was enough to make the butterflies in my stomach feel like they also were fluttering at 40 mph.

The Incredible Hulk Coaster at Universal's Islands of Adventure

I truly never thought I would be brave enough to get on one of the mammoth coasters offered at our theme parks.

The “best” I could do wasThe Revenge of the MummyUniversal Studios Florida, which Idefinitelycount as a roller coaster, but my friends tend to disagree, saying that I still hadn’t gotten thefullcoaster experience.

Truly no amount of external convincing could persuade my stubborn self to get on a coaster. The only person who would be able to was, well, me. I’m not sure what clicked inside my head, but it eventually did — and I finally told myself for the first time ever that I was going to conquer The Incredible Hulk Coaster.

Once I mentally committed, there was no going back and I instantly started my research. I spent hours scouring forums and the UOAP Facebook Group, trying to find accurate comparisons to what I have experienced with my own thrill ride resume. I had never gone upside down on a ride, and was desperate for some kind of specific explanation on what the sensation felt like. I would stay up all night watching videos of The Incredible Hulk Coaster over and over, trying to memorize each twist and turn to hopefully relieve some of the anxiety of the unknown.

Then, the big day finally came. I felt fine all morning… and pulling up to the parking lot… and going through security… and walking throughUniversal CityWalk




But I did, and here is my advice on how to handle the terrifying moments before the big event:

  • Before the big day, try out a smaller coaster.This will help prepare you mentally for the basic movements of a coaster. It’s all about baby steps here, and be proud of yourself for every ride that you accomplish, no matter how big or small. My go-to was Flight of the Hippogriff to help warm me up!
  • Make it the first ride of your trip.If you don’t, it is almostcertain你不会这么做的。你要么一整天都很紧张,要么想办法说服自己,“嗯,也许下次吧。”这样,当它结束时,它会让你剩下的一天更加特别!
  • DON’T THINK.I know it’s easier said than done, but this was the best thing that could have happened to me. Once I calmed down a bit after the initial panic (with the patient support of a loved one), and had the smallest voice in my head tell me I was OK, and everything was going to be OK, I instantly acted without thinking.
  • Try to get on when there’s a short wait time.This goes hand-in-hand with don’t think, since there’s no time to even let the doubt or fear creep in if you keep on moving. Luckily for me, it was only a five-minute wait, so I walked through the queue and strapped myself in before I could even process what was going on.
  • Ask for the front row.Yes, I know it can be scary to have nothing else in front of you, but typically the front row is the tamest with the forces of the ride. Not only that, but once you do start to enjoy yourself, you get the best view!
  • Close your eyes.For my first time, I closed my eyes for a majority of the ride. Personally, it helped me get used to these new sensations (and those butterflies were non-existent!)



When the breaks finally struck and I had my first moment of tranquility, the only thing flooding my thoughts was pride. I finally did it. Something I truly thought I’d never do. And I loved it.

Now, I can proudly say that I have ALSO conqueredHagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike AdventureandThe Jurassic World VelociCoaster他们真是不可思议!它们现在很容易成为我最喜欢的游乐项目之一。基本上,我用我寻求刺激的冒险弥补了很多失去的时间,我喜欢它的每一刻!


Well, I hope sharing my story helps inspire some of you to take that leap, when you’re ready. I promise, it’s worth it. And truly, if I can do it, so can you!

Sending you all the love and encouragement,

P.S. For all you folks who are trying to figure out what it feels like to go upside down, here is the best comparison I could think of: it’s just like doing a somersault. You’re welcome!

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  • Reply Kim Richards November 4, 2021 at 10:07 am

    Oh my goodness I love this…..I’m terrified to ride but my daughter got me on Revenge of the Mummy several times and it’s great…I’ve rode flight of the hippogriff eyes closed of course many times ….I do want to ride a roller coaster I walked all the way up to loading on the velocicoater and chickened out but with this article of
    encouragement I hope to conquer my fear……it’s just a somersault!

  • Reply Melanie November 4, 2021 at 11:04 am

    哇!我觉得是我在写这个故事。我从来都不喜欢坐过山车。我通常只玩模拟游戏,然后等着其他人玩过山车。上个月,我去了环球影城,下定决心要直面恐惧,乘坐过山车。我花了几个月的时间在YouTube上观看这次旅行的视频。这一天终于来了,我吓得要死。我真的不想去。但我们决定先骑海格的,我好紧张。这真的很有趣,我完成了这次旅程,也没那么害怕了。 We finally went to Velocicoaster but the wait started making me nervous again. But I DID it! I screamed my head off and prob closed my eyes most of the time but I did it. Don’t be afraid to try it once! You will be happy you did.

  • Reply Teresa Elbin November 4, 2021 at 5:23 pm

    All recommendations are great except for closing your eyes. This is the worst thing you can do on any coaster. Increases the queasiness and vertigo A LOT! Keep your eyes open.

  • Reply Stephen Henken November 5, 2021 at 4:37 am

    This was exactly me when I rode for the hulk for the first time years ago. The hulk was my very first big coaster ever. Now it’s my favorite ride. Everyone should read this before they conquer this amazing ride for the first time. Everything you said help me too. Everything you did to conquer your fear I did too. Everyone should see this because it help all. Well done Jenna. I
    absolutely loved what you wrote

  • Reply Shara November 5, 2021 at 11:07 am

    Ohhh you don’t know how much this has encouraged me! My daughter and I are visiting Universal Studios Tuesday and I’m terrified to ride any of the coasters. Like you, I watch the Hulk and VelociCoaster videos to get familiar with the ride to try and calm the anxiety I get when thinking about riding for my first time.
    I appreciate you taking the time to share this article. It’s definitely gives me a boost of courage..I can do this.. I will do this!!

    • Reply Social Media Team November 5, 2021 at 11:16 am

      Yes, you can do this Shara! Hope to have you back soon!

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