2-way MFS Block 7: Periscope-Periscope
Brought to you by Niklas Daniel and Brianne Thompson of AXIS Flight School at Skydive Arizona in Eloy. Photos by Kevin Mitchell. Information about AXIS' coaching and instructional services is available at axisflightschool.com.
Two-way mixed formation skydiving block 7 (periscope-periscope) requires both performers to fly with their bellies to the relative wind in a compressed accordion. The jumpers each take a grip anywhere on the other jumper’s leg below the leg strap (either right hand on right leg or left hand on left leg). Once they’ve built this formation (the top of the block), the flyers perform the inter (the move between points) by releasing their grips and turning 360 degrees (in either direction) and returning to the original formation.
For judging purposes, it is the team’s responsibility to clearly present the correct formations and inter in the video, as well as show complete separation between the points. The formations do not need to be perfectly symmetrical, but the team must perform them in a controlled manner and close them with stationary contact. (For more information, see Chapter 9: Formation Skydiving in the USPA Skydiver’s Competition Manual.)
The most efficient way to execute the inter of this block is for the performers to cog (turn like cogging wheels) by rotating in opposite directions. Staging the turns helps the flyers target specific sight pictures so the block closes successfully. To accomplish this, the flyers line up their bodies' longitudinal axes so that they are perpendicular during the turn (achieving a sidebody picture). This means that both performers will turn toward the same heading but each flyer will turn in a different direction in such a way that their bodies line up in a specific sight-picture order. Cogging allows the centerpoint of each flyer to stay as close as possible to the center of the formation.
In the example, the two flyers build a right compressed accordion. Therefore, Flyer A turns left, and Flyer B turns right. To execute the move most efficiently, Flyer A initiates the left turn first. Once Flyer B sees the reverse sidebody picture, he begins his turn to the right. Both flyers should attempt to keep their centerpoints in place and as close to the center of the formation as possible. Cogging the piece should help the flyers stay on level. Both flyers need to maintain good eye contact through the move to ensure communication and proximity, and both should head switch at their respective 180-degree points.
As the team becomes more proficient with its timing and distance, one performer can hook the leg of the other on the close. The flyer places his hand in between the legs of the flyer who is finishing the last 90 degrees of the turn, aiming for where the knee meets the calf.
Video of the move is available on AXIS Flight School’s YouTube channel at youtube.com/watch?v=ydVPkDUET8M.
The authors intend this article to be an educational guideline. It is not a substitute for professional instruction.