So you’re willing to jump from a perfectly good plane thousands of feet off the ground? Awesome! Skydiving is among the most famous extreme sports on the planet, combining the adrenaline rush of flying at high altitudes with breathtaking views of nature and cities. Coming down from thousands of feet, reaching incredible speeds, and parachuting back to earth – it all sounds like a fantasy. While the thought of free-falling from the sky may seem terrifying initially, skydiving is an enjoyable and secure activity for adventurers of all ages. However, it can be a bit unsettling and baffling for first-timers. After all, it isn’t something you do daily.
But don’t you fret, we have got it all covered for you, here’s everything you need to know about Skydiving – from types of jumps to the best places to skydive in the world to requirements and risks.
Types of Skydiving Jump
There are seven types of skydiving jumps, let’s discuss them below:
1. Tandem skydiving
Tandem skydiving is by far the most common first-time skydiving option. You will be tied to a trained tandem skydiving instructor as a tandem skydiving student. It is their responsibility to manage the gear and ensure that you have a good time.
2. AFF, or accelerated freefall
Accelerated Freefall (AFF) is the way to go if you want to become a skydiver quickly. AFF training is intense, but on your very first jump, you will enjoy a 50-second free fall! On your first AFF jump, you will be escorted from the plane by two AFF instructors. If you want to have a great time, try an Accelerated Freefall.
3. Formation skydiving
The type of skydiving you’re more likely to see is formation skydiving. People get in a belly-to-land position (like in a tandem skydive) and make shapes, or formations, by clutching each other’s arms and feet.
4. Wingsuit flying
Wingsuit flying is also another type of skydiving that you might have already seen. A wingsuit, often known as a “squirrel suit,” gives humans the appearance of flying squirrels. The wingsuit is just what it sounds like: an all-in-one suit with wings that the skydiver controls to manage their descent pace and direction.
5. Free flying
Free flying is a sport in which participants learn to fly their bodies in all directions and on all axes, not simply belly to the ground. This implies that free flyers will be flying with their heads up, seated, or standing. They may be seen flying with their heads down (just upside down). They frequently mix all of this into spectacular performances, or they simply fly around in these poses with one another.
CRW (which stands for “canopy relative work” and is frequently pronounced “crew”) is mostly about flying your parachute. The freefall component of a CRW skydiving is frequently skipped entirely. Rather, as soon as they exit the plane, they deploy their parachutes.
7. Swooping and canopy piloting
Swooping is the technique of initiating turns to speed up the parachute’s descent rate. Because of the enhanced speed, the swooping pilot can move further across the earth. Canopy piloting entails mixing your knowledge of parachute flight with activities such as competing to land the most accurately, for instance.
Best places for skydiving across the world
Although there are tons of places where you can skydive, choosing the right location can change the overall experience for you. If the location is perfect, it will give you a memory of a lifetime. The best places where you can go skydiving are – Palm Jumeirah (Dubai), North Wollongong Beach (Australia), Mount Everest (Nepal), Pattaya (Thailand) and Moab, Utah (USA).
Requirements for skydiving
⮚ Age: Skydiving requires a minimum of 16 years of age. Anyone under the age of 18 must have the signed approval of a parent or legal guardian. Tandem skydiving has no upper age limit as long as the person is in good health.
⮚ Weight limit: The weight limit is 95 kilograms, and you must not be obese for your height.
⮚ Physical requirements: A decent level of physical fitness is required of skydivers. All individuals must be physically fit, have a complete scope of mobility, and be able to lift their knees to their chest without assistance. Overall, you’ll need to be in your prime physical state for the greatest experience.
⮚ Other health conditions: You will not be able to jump if you have a condition or impairment that limits your mobility. In the sky, poor cardiovascular or pulmonary functions, disorders that cause loss of consciousness, and breathing problems are major concerns.
Risks involved in skydiving
In 2015, the USPA (United States Parachute Association) logged 3.5 million jumps in the United States. This comprises both skilled solo skydivers and first-time tandem skydivers. Skydiving incidents claimed the lives of 21 people. This translates to 0.006 deaths per 1,000 jumps, a very low risk.
Tandem skydiving, in which you are tethered to a trained skydiving instructor for the duration of your jump, has an even higher safety rate, with an average of 0.002 deaths per 1,000 jumps over the last ten years. You’re more likely to die from a lightning strike or a bee sting, according to statistics.
The following are the most significant skydiving risks:
- Parachute malfunctions: approximately one out of every 1,000 parachute openings does not go as planned, with a variety of documented flaws.
- Injury on touchdown: if tandem students, for instance, fail to raise their legs for landing, they may suffer an ankle injury.
- Injury during freefall: it commonly occurs when jumping with others at high speeds and getting a blow.
Because of the large number of skydives that take place around the world, there are a lot of data to show that, while this activity has its risks, it can also be done safely and responsibly.