April 2015

April 2015

April 2015

photo by Craig O'Brien

Jumpers at Skydive Perris in California build a "human planet" formation, bringing to life Paul Bond's painting that appeared on the February 1980 cover of Parachutist portraying a then-imaginary 3-D skydive.

April 2015 | Volume 56, Number 4 | Issue 666 more »

Freeflying: Where to Start?

What do you think of when you think of freeflying? Freedom in the sky? No rules? No judgments? This concept of freeflying entices many skydivers to the discipline. more »

Basics - The 2014 Fatality Summary

Don’t run into anyone in freefall or under canopy, quickly release an uncontrollable spinning main parachute, wear a functioning automatic activation device and reserve static line, and make your final turn under canopy with plenty of altitude to complete it. If 20 of the 24 people who died skydiving in the U.S. in 2014 had done so, they would still be alive today. Compared to past years, 2014 could have been worse, but it’s still a pity for our sport and our friends that so many of the deaths were so easily preventable. more »

Back-Fly Floater Exit

Axis Flight Logo Skydive Arizona Logo

Brought to you by AXIS Flight School Instructor Niklas Daniel at Skydive Arizona in Eloy. Photos by Brianne Thompson. For more information visit axisflightschool.com. more »

Excess Leg Strap

The excess leg strap on this jumper’s rig came unstowed during exit and immediately stretched out to its full length. Not only can this create a distraction, it can also impede main canopy deployment if the strap interferes with the main-pilot-chute handle. Jumpers should store excess leg strap securely and perform a gear check just prior to exit to help ensure that the rig’s components are stowed correctly. more »


When a reporter recently asked me, “Is swooping more dangerous than other types of skydiving?” I was stumped for the right answer. I thought of saying, “Well, it can be,” or, “Sometimes it is,” or, “Depends on who’s doing it,” but none of those were good responses. more »

Interviewing Jumpers After an Accident

When a skydiving accident, fatal or non-fatal, occurs at a DZ, the USPA Safety and Training Advisor (or a USPA Instructor appointed by the S&TA) will need to find out what happened to help prevent a similar incident from occurring in the future. In most cases, many people witnessed some part of the accident, and the DZ staff member will have to interview them all. How the S&TA or instructor conducts the investigation will have a large bearing on the accuracy and usefulness of the information gleaned. more »

Profile - Roberta Mancino | D-29203

by Brian Giboney

PROFILE20154Professional model and skydiver Roberta Mancino, D-29203, is one of the most beautiful people in the world, but she is also an amazing, world-class athlete. Thankfully, the world is taking notice of her skill at jumping from planes and fixed objects, flying in wind tunnels and diving with undersea creatures. She has appeared on the TBS talk show “Conan,” and Men's Fitness magazine named her the World's Sexiest Female Athlete. As a skydiver, Mancino first focused on freestyle and then dedicated herself to wingsuiting. Through it all, she’s had a dramatic positive influence on the sport and proved that skydivers are not just crazy people, they’re beautiful people, too. more »

Tales from the Bonfire - An All-Time Low

by Doug Moore | C-41678 | San Diego, California

A few months ago, I signed up for a beginner’s angle-flying and tracking camp conducted by a very experienced team. I made certain that no freeflying experience was required, paid my money and spent months waiting excitedly for my first experience getting fast and steep. I thought I was ready. Boy, was I wrong! more »

How Skydiving Changed My Life - Dara Shapiro


by Dara Shapiro | C-42751 | Plantation, Florida

2014: What a crazy year! I experienced the highest of the highs and the lowest of the lows. more »