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 »

Forward Drive on the Belly

 

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

Worn 3-Ring Locking Loop

An instructor found this damaged locking loop while inspecting the gear of a licensed jumper who was participating in a canopy course. When looking at the front of the riser and 3-ring assembly, the damaged loop was obscured from view. The instructor found it while looking more carefully at the back of the riser during a gear check. The damage likely occurred when the locking loop came into contact with a rough surface during a landing or during packing. Jumpers should check both the fronts and backs of their risers when inspecting their gear.

Rigging Knowledge for Instructors

Should USPA require instructional rating holders to also hold a Federal Aviation Administration Rigger Certificate? Jumpers have bounced this question around at lots of bonfires and argued both sides at various skydiving industry meetings through the years. Currently, no USPA rating holder needs to hold a rigger certificate, but under the old version of the USPA Instructor Examiner rating (retired in 2005) it was a requirement. more »

Specialty Jumps

Specialty jumps—whether from a helicopter or balloon or with a raft or other inflatable toy—are skydiver favorites. And while these jumps are always good for excitement and giggles, they also require a little extra vigilance to keep the level of safety where it needs to be. more »

2-way MFS Block 7: Periscope-Periscope

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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. more »

Logging Jumps

If you make a skydive and don’t make a note of it in a logbook, did the jump really take place? Sure it did, but how do you prove it years from now when you need to show proof of your jump numbers for a license or rating? more »

Personal Boundaries

Working with students is challenging in many ways. Instructors have a lot of responsibility to ensure that they thoroughly train and properly supervise each student on every skydive. To do this, instructors must also interact with students on a somewhat personal level. Training and harnessing students—especially tandem students—often requires instructors to get very close to them. more »