January 2017

January 2017

January 2017
photo by Laszlo Andacs | D-22468
Jumpers set the 40-way Fédération Aéronautique Internationale World Record for Largest Night Formation Skydive at Skydive Arizona in Eloy.

Features

Making A Safer Sport: Safety Day is March 11 a Parachutist Special Section
60 Cycles: A Life-Celebration Event by Marian Sparks
Officially Dark by Jim McCormick more »

I've Just Learned to Freefly... Now What?

Jumping out of a plane in any form is pretty good, but for many, it is freefly that really rustles their jimmies. Even after you’ve made your first successful freefly jumps, it takes no small effort—bashing away at complex body positions and safety procedures to reprogram how your brain understands movement—to continue learning. Whether you are approaching freefly as a brand-new skydiver or after years of experience falling on your belly, the important thing is that you are about to access a bonanza of challenges and rewards. Here are some of the key lessons that will help as you progress onward from your first successful freefly jumps. more »

MFS Block 1 - Double 69

 

Axis Flight Logo Skydive Arizona Logo

Brought to you by Niklas Daniel and Brianne Thompson of AXIS Flight School at Skydive Arizona in Eloy. Photos by David Cherry. Information about AXIS' coaching and instructional services is available at axisflightschool.com. more »

Misassembled Reserve Soft Links

During a routine reserve canopy and container inspection and repack, a Federal Aviation Administration Master Rigger discovered that all of the soft links used to attach the reserve canopy’s suspension lines to the four risers were assembled incorrectly. The looped end of the soft link was slipped over the metal loop but had not first passed through the other end of the soft link and formed a lark’s head locking loop around the metal ring. Without the security of the lark’s head locking the assembly together, a soft link can come apart because the metal ring can easily slip through the loop. more »

Spotting

For many jumpers, spotting means looking to make sure the green light is on before tossing themselves from the door without so much as a look down to see where they are above the planet. Many seem so trusting of the green light that even if a pilot were to fly five miles out to sea and turn it on, it’s likely they would just blindly bail out and go for a swim. Thankfully, our jump pilots are not that cruel. more »

2017 Instructor Examiner Standardization Meetings

In 2015, USPA conducted four AFF Standardization Meetings at various locations across the United States, plus a fifth meeting in Poland. USPA requires all AFF Instructor Examiners to attend one of these meetings every two years. That same year, USPA also participated in five Tandem Instructor Examiner Standardization Meetings organized by United Parachute Technologies, and all UPT Tandem Instructor Examiners were required to attend one of the meetings. Both the AFF and tandem meetings were well received and successful, so USPA elected to make the tandem meeting a requirement for all USPA Tandem IEs in 2017. more »

Profile - Jessie Farrington | D-6853

by Brian Giboney

Jessie Farrington, D-6853, served on the USPA Board as a regional director for many years and has a long history in the sport. She is part of a large family of skydivers. Her father, Lenny Aikins, got her started in 1964. She has owned Kapowsin Air Sports in Shelton, Washington, with her husband, Geoff, for decades. Her children, Andy Farrington and Keri Bell, are extremely talented skydivers who made many jumps while still in the womb. And her brother, nieces and nephews are all skydivers, and a fourth generation is on the way. more »

How Skydiving Changed My Life - Linda Kretzler

I grew up a skinny little girl who was afraid of everything. My father, who had been an aerial photographer in World War II, encouraged me to try whatever I set my mind to. On the other hand, my mother kept telling me I was too small and a girl and couldn’t do anything.

In spite of this paradox in upbringing, I must have been born with the taste of pixie dust in my mouth, because all I wanted to do was fly. I watched the TV show “Ripcord” as a child and thought I could do it, like the little engine that could. After all, my heroes Mighty Mouse, Peter Pan and Superman could fly. more »

Just a Fun Story About My 1,000th Skydive

Back in 2013, I got my skydiving license through the U.S. Army Golden Knights and then attended the Golden Knight Assessment and Selection Program, where I hit 100 jumps. I didn't make it that year. For crying out loud, I had only 35 jumps when I went! I nearly killed myself and never had a clue. Good on them for cutting me! more »

Gearing Up - January 2017

EdScott

In 1984, the IRS classified USPA as a 501(c)4 non-profit association. That was based on its finding that USPA’s main purposes “promote the common good and social welfare.” Importantly, 501(c)4 organizations can lobby government officials as long as they meet all lobby registration and lobby reporting rules. And USPA does lobby on behalf of skydiving. What does that mean? Primarily, USPA’s executive director and director of government relations engage in efforts to build relationships with various officials, usually those in the Federal Aviation Administration and the Transportation Security Administration but sometimes other federal and state agencies. more »