Winter is Coming

Winter is Coming

Winter comes for all of us, whether you’re of the Great House of Chicagoland or the Great House of Perris. While the season’s arrival clearly hits the Lords of the North hardest, every skydiver in the 50 Kingdoms needs to maintain at least some awareness of cold-season strategy. more »

Canopy Collision Decisions

Canopy Collision Decisions

All skydivers—no matter what discipline they pursue—learn how to avoid canopy collisions. Yet collisions remain one of the most likely ways to die in the sport. Part of the problem is that not everybody knows how to correctly perform emergency procedures after a collision, and the procedures are not common sense. You can only learn them on the ground. more »

A Look at USPA Finances

A Look at USPA Finances

The annual audit of USPA for 2016 completed in August 2017 reported sound fiscal management and accountability measures. more »

The Brave New World of Parachute R&D—How Computer-Aided Design Drives Innovation

The Brave New World of Parachute R&D—How Computer-Aided Design Drives Innovation

The story of a canopy is never as simple as scratching down some math and heading over to a cutting table. more »

Gearing Up - June 2011


The “Safety Check” column on page 62 of this issue reiterates the points contained in the “Action Call” that USPA e-mailed to all members for whom we have an e-mail address—28,000 of them—and every Group Member DZ. The Action Call arose from a conference call between USPA and a number of DZOs and canopy experts that took place after this year’s third fatal canopy collision in the U.S. (and 30 fatal U.S. canopy collisions that resulted in 37 fatalities in the previous five-year period). more »

Landing Off the Map—Jumping Into Exotic Locales

Photos courtesy of Donald Schultz

Born in South Africa, 31-year-old Donald Schultz, star of Animal Planet’s “Wild Recon,” is an internationally known expert on snake venom. He started with an internship at the world-famous Fitzsimons Snake Park in Durban, South Africa, and found work in the United States at the Veterinary Specialty Hospital in San Diego, California. But beyond his work with snakes, Schultz also had aspirations of bringing his adventures to the public with a TV show. Since harvesting venom from the fangs of deadly snakes and swimming in shark-infested waters wasn’t spectacular enough for the TV show Schultz envisioned, for extra effect he decided to skydive into his remote locales. more »

Don’t be a Victim: Protecting Yourself from Gear Theft

Gear theft is not uncommon, and though you may be unable to prevent it completely, you can take significant steps to protect yourself. However, some thieves will be determined, and whatever steps you take to guard your possessions may not be enough. In that case, there are still a few things you can do to have the best chance of recovering your gear, making a successful insurance claim or getting satisfaction when the thief is caught. more »

Foundations of Flight—The Side Slide

Axis Flight LogoBrought to you by Axis Flight School at Skydive Arizona in Eloy. Photos by Brianne Thompson. more »

Inspecting Your Gear



How often should I inspect my gear? more »

Tandem Commandments

Last February at the Parachute Industry Association Symposium, representatives from all three U.S. tandem manufacturers (Nancy LaRiviere of Jump Shack, Bill Morrissey of Strong Enterprises and Mark Procos from United Parachute Technologies) and Frank Carreras from Germany (a tandem examiner who is rated for all U.S. and European tandem systems) joined together to give a presentation entitled, “The 19 Commandments of Tandem Parachute Operations.” The group had developed a common list of rules and presented them to a crowd of nearly 200 tandem instructors, instructor examiners and drop zone owners at the Symposium. Previously, each of the three manufacturers differed in some of their recommended altitudes and procedures, and they wanted to decide on a common set of rules and then bring USPA into the mix. more »


All of the electronic gizmos available to skydivers—audible altimeters, LEDs that blink in your eye at breakoff time, automatic activation devices (AADs), etc.—are great back-up devices. Unfortunately, some of us are depending way too much on these little wonders of modern technology and on other people at the drop zone and don’t understand enough about basic equipment and emergency procedures ourselves. If the recent reports that follow are any indication, some of us need better training and a change in mindset regarding gear: more »

How Skydiving Changed My Life - Hugh Roderick


by Hugh Roderick | USPA #149698 | Quincy, Illinois

I’ve always loved everything to do with aviation and have always wanted to be around flying ever since my dad first took me up as a toddler. As a 15-year-old working part-time at a grocery store in South Africa, I started taking flying lessons hoping to follow my dreams of a career in aviation. Shortly after starting lessons, the United States put an oil embargo on South Africa, and flying lessons went from 12 bucks an hour to $48. This put lessons out of reach for me, since I was still going to high school and working a few hours a week. I later saw a film clip on parachuting and thought, “If I can’t fly planes, I could jump out of them and would at least be around aircraft and the smell of avgas.” more »

Profile - Marcus Laser | D-19362

by Brian Giboney

PROFILE20115Marcus Laser started jumping in 1991 as a paratrooper and made his first sport skydive, an AFF jump, in 1995. In 1999, he left his job as a hydraulic technician to become a full-time skydiving instructor. Ten years later, he founded the Instructors Academy, which offers training for skydivers and skydiving instructors throughout Europe. more »

Gearing Up - May 2011


From now until July 7, USPA members have an opportunity to modernize the association’s by-laws. The board of directors has authorized a proxy effort to give members the chance to change the by-laws to 1) lengthen the term for all board members from two years to three years and 2) eliminate the requirement for a non-incumbent regional director candidate to provide a petition signed by at least 10 percent of the members in that region. If approved, the three-year term would take effect after the next board election, scheduled for fall 2012. The elimination of the petition requirement, if approved, would apply to the next election, so that no petitions would be required for the fall 2012 election. more »

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Ed Scott

Elijah Florio
Editor in Chief, Advertising Manager

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Managing Editor

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Graphic Designer

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