99 Problems, But The Wind Ain’t One

99 Problems, But The Wind Ain’t One

Given that wind conditions change constantly, being able to properly read and compensate for them is an important skill set for students and competition pilots alike.  more »

Finding the FLOW

Finding the FLOW

What Four High-Profile Accidents Can Teach Us About Finding the Ideal Mental State for Survival more »

Practical Tips for Cloud Clearance

Practical Tips for Cloud Clearance

Most jumpers have a difficult time remembering the cloud clearance regulations, but understanding the reasons for the different altitude requirements can help you remember the necessary information. more »

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 »

In the Right Spot

As skydiving equipment, training and drop zone operations have changed over the past 20 years, so has the act of spotting. The widespread use of larger aircraft and GPS technology has caused the true art of spotting to slowly disappear. Although technology now helps jumpers accurately exit over the airport, we shouldn’t simply rely on a green light to tell us when to leave the plane. more »

Last-Minute Adjustments

This jumper performed her regular gear checks—one before boarding the aircraft, again while the aircraft was climbing and one just prior to arriving at exit altitude—in preparation for a freefly jump. However, after the final check, she removed her helmet in order to put on her goggles and forgot to re-buckle the strap. Soon after exiting, as she transitioned from a head-down position to a sit, the helmet flew off her head. The jumper caught the moment on her chest-mounted camera. No one was struck by the departing helmet, so it was a harmless (but expensive) oversight. Jumpers who make last-minute adjustments should perform an additional gear check just to make sure nothing has been overlooked. more »

Preventing Tandem Fatalities

A look at USPA’s fatality statistics shows an alarming trend: While overall skydiving fatalities decreased during the past 10 years compared to the two previous decades, student fatalities increased. With better training programs and equipment than ever before, the number of student fatalities should have declined just as the total numbers have. The reasons for student fatalities vary, but many could have had different outcomes had the instructors stuck with standard procedures for working with students and supervised them more closely. more »

The Safest Year—The 2009 Fatality Summary

To find a year in which there were fewer U.S. skydiving deaths than 2009, we have to go back to 1961, when there were 14. Considering that USPA membership is more than nine times what it was in 1961 (and that 2009’s members almost certainly made more than nine times the number of jumps), the 16 skydiving deaths that occurred in 2009 indicate that our sport has made real advances in safety. However, anyone who has been touched by the death of a jumper knows that a single fatality is one too many. When we consider the loss that these deaths represent—and the fact that most could have been easily prevented in ways identified years ago—it is clear that we still have a lot of room for improvement. more »

Getting Down to Work—The USPA Board of Directors 2010 Winter Meeting

The USPA Board of Directors gathered for its winter meeting February 19-21 in Phoenix. In a departure from Arizona’s usual sunny skies and arid climate, a cool rain fell outside while the directors got down to business inside, working smoothly and efficiently to complete a full agenda in near-record time. more »

Profile - Kevin Anfinson | D-29701

by Brian Giboney

PROFILE20104Kevin Anfinson started skydiving in 1999, earned a degree in photography at California State University, then proceeded to take the degree to the sky. He’s even had a chance to provide footage for the television show “Mythbusters.” Kevin’s great attitude makes him a pleasure to be around, and his enjoyment of skydiving is contagious. more »

How Skydiving Changed My Life - Kathy Stringer


by Kathy Stringer | C-36393 | Hendersonville, North Carolina

Skydiving has changed my life in so many ways. First, skydiving brought Larry and me together. Although we met in college and had been good friends for almost three years, we never dated—that is, until Larry and his twin brother, Gary, became skydivers. One day, I asked Larry to take me with him. So, for our first date, on July 22, 1979, he took me skydiving in Liberty, North Carolina. I did a static-line jump, and Larry did a solo jump. I fell in love—with jumping and with Larry! We had a whirlwind courtship and married three months later. Like most newlyweds, we were very poor. So, since Larry was an experienced jumper, he continued to jump, and I put my skydiving on hold. more »

The President's Report - April 2010


All associations struggle to have their members more deeply involved in the governance process. With USPA, the problem isn’t apathy so much as acceptance. As long as members can skydive when they want and where they want at a reasonable cost—and as long as they receive their monthly Parachutist on time—most are content to leave the “business” of USPA to others. However, the scope of the association’s issues demands that as many members as possible get involved in elections and stay informed. more »

Repacking the Reserve

What’s involved in a reserve repack, and why do repacks vary in price? more »

Good News-Bad News

2009 ended with just 16 civilian skydiving fatalities in the United States, a modern-day record low. We have to go all the way back to 1961 to find a year with fewer fatalities (14). On one hand, this is a phenomenal achievement considering that the number of jumps made in 2009 by 32,000-plus USPA members is considerably higher than in 1961, when 3,353 members made a much smaller (but unknown total) number of jumps. In regard to safety, our sport has certainly come a long way. On the other hand, we had many near misses, serious injuries and have seen many mistakes repeated from past years. more »

On the Web


Facebook Twitter
Youtube RSS


Ed Scott

Elijah Florio
Editor in Chief, Advertising Manager

Laura Sharp
Managing Editor

Colby Walls
Graphic Designer

Contact Us