Altar Call – Opelika-Auburn News

Walter Albritton

April 7, 2019


Rage rooms increasingly popular                        


            Anger is a common human emotion. It is perfectly normal to become angry when other people, or we ourselves, do something wrong or stupid.  We learn, however, usually as children, that our anger must be controlled or it will get us in trouble. Such trouble has led many in our time to be sentenced to attend anger management classes.

            When anger is not managed, it can become fury or rage.  Rage can lead to great misfortune, broken relationships, even death. Rage can create stress that can kill you. But take heart, my friends. Wise people across the world are looking out for us. They are opening up “Rage Rooms” in cities around the world! Yes, rage rooms, or smash rooms, or anger rooms, which you can rent and in those rooms vent your anger to your heart’s content.

            Japan has the honor of having opened the first rage room in 2008. The idea caught on and soon spread to countries from Serbia to Great Britain and Argentina. Well, you ask, what about America? You guessed it. Hundreds of rage rooms are now available in the United States and new ones recently opened in Charlotte, North Carolina; Tucson, Arizona; American Fork, Utah; Milwaukee; Rochester, New York; and Hampton, Virginia.

            The rage rooms offer a safe place for people to smash away their anger. You can shatter an old computer with a sledgehammer or throw dishes against a wall across the room. Rage rooms are different. Some will sell you stuff which you can destroy; others will allow to bring your own stuff such as perhaps a picture of your wife who just ran off with another man.  

            Prices vary, I am told, but rage rooms are generally affordable. If you are on a tight budget, you can pay as little as $15 for a BYOB package (Bring Your Own Breakable) In Glen Burnie, Maryland. Then there is a rage house in New York City that offers a “Couples Therapy” package for $95, which includes two electronic items (an old laptop or a printer) and two buckets of dishes. If money is no problem, you can pay up to $300 in Los Angeles for an “Overkill” package which provides 100 items such as printers, wine bottles and old televisions.

            Owners of rage rooms advertise them as a means of stress relief, not anger management. Throwing an adult temper tantrum in a rage room is a unique way, they want us to believe, to “make a memory” as you obtain relief from the headaches of daily life. Owners of a Smash Room in Daytona Beach say they have customers flocking there to let off steam, find relief from stress and have fun doing it.

            The owner of the House of Purge in Charlotte said, "I feel like there’s a lot of people who need an outlet from family stress or just the stress of life. There’s a lot of people who work out every day or pray or meditate, but you might like to break stuff. That first time you smash a bottle, you’ll just get it." 

            Are rage rooms in demand? Oh yes! The House of Purge has had hundreds of customers of all ages and a number of groups such as bachelorette parties and company team-building experiences. The owner said his most surprising clients were a 73-year-old couple who wanted to spend date night smashing a car. "They were out there breaking stuff to opera music," he said. "He was wearing a tux." 

            Surprisingly, rage room owners report that the majority of their customers are women. They had expected most of their visitors to be men. One owner said, "It's funny how many women come in who never thought they would do it, but they want to relieve some stress, and they think that's a good way to do it." 

            Some clients are regular customers who visit the rage rooms much like some people work out at a gym every week. And, believe it or not, some therapists are recommending rage rooms as therapy for anxiety. On the other hand, some mental health professionals say that rage rooms are not an effective way to find relief from anger.

            I am not aware of any rage rooms available in my neck of the woods but I don’t plan to go even if one pops up around here with bargain prices. I am going to keep on finding stress relief by visiting the praise rooms provided by our churches. In those praise rooms I can get in touch with Someone who dissolves my anger like butter on a hot skillet and fills my soul with the peace I need to handle the headaches of daily life. And the way I figure it, if I visit that praise room often enough, Dean and I won’t ever need to buy one of those “Couples Therapy” packages.

            I reckon, like everything else, it comes down to choices: a rage room or a praise room. You have a choice.  + + +