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Rage room lets customers work up a sweat while tearing things up

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — How man times have you put money in a vending machine and wanted to give it a big kick when you didn't get what you want? Or have you wanted to choke the computer when you lost a document, or a co-worker who made you upset?

Well, now there's a place where you can let out your frustrations and not worry about the consequences.

Sledgehammers, bats and table legs are all of the weapons of destruction at Craze. Sierra Miller opened the rage room in the summer of 2018.

"This is a way people can come in and have fun at the same time and relieve some stress," Miller said.

Rage rooms are all the rage around the country. They're places people can go to destroy stuff, let off some steam and leave the mess for someone else to clean up.

In recent months, Craze hosted Mid-South teachers, bonding exercises for corporate groups and even a divorce party.

"It was a group of women, around 15 to 20, and they came in with pictures, a wedding picture, gifts and some of his things. If he liked motorcycles, they came in with some motorcycle things that he liked," Miller said.

When we visited the rage room, Jeremy and Susan McCullough were there for a date night.

"You're going to break a plate. That's freaking awesome," Jeremy said.

He took his rage out on the TV until it was time to switch his weapon of choice.

"That's how you do it. That's how you get this room going. Break the walls down," Jeremy said. "I kind of liken it to you're starting the Superbowl or it's the end of the fourth quarter, and it's your time to make the last shot."

Everyone in the room feeds off his energy, including me. So I suit up in the required protective gear and prepare to let go of any inner rage I can find.

Psychologists across the country are weighting in on rage rooms.

Dr. Charlotte Freeman says rage rooms should be used as entertainment, not as a way to truly manage anger.

"Whatever you were very angry about, whatever you were frustrated about, whatever got on your nerves, that problem is still there. You didn't solve it by knocking something over in a rage room," Dr. Freeman said.

She admits there may be something therapeutic about going to blow off steam, if you go with someone. "Go with a small group of friends where you can talk as your're knocking something over."

"Maybe I've had some bottled up frustration I had to get out. It's kind of therapeutic if you stop to think about it now," Jeremy said. "There's a part of me that's kind of demented that wants to, like, break things."

Most of his wife's enjoyment comes from watching him.

"I'm very neat and meticulous, and I don't break things. So it was very different but kind of exhilarating,"

The cost of a visit to Craze ranges from $10 to $85, depending on the length of the session. The sessions last anywhere from 10 minutes to one hour.

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