Tandem Students With Special Needs

As the saying goes in the tandem industry, “A tandem is not just another skydive.” For those in the tandem field, this familiar statement serves as a reminder that tandem skydiving is a technical and specialized type of jump. When you add a student with special needs into the mix, the technical and specialized aspects of tandem skydiving go through the roof. While it is rewarding for both the student and the instructor to make these types of jumps, it is critical that the instructor individually assess each student and determine realistically whether the jump can be completed safely. more »

Forward Movement in a Sit

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

Equipment

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By Taya Weiss of the Lightning Flight wingsuit, freefly and angle-flight school at Skydive Perris in California. more »

Turbulence

Impossible to see and difficult to predict, air turbulence is a real hazard for skydivers of any experience level. Thankfully, most encounters with turbulence under canopy occur high enough above the ground that they result in nothing more than a light bump. But occasionally turbulence close to the ground can lead to a scare or even injuries from a hard landing. more »

3-Ring Flip-Through

During a tandem skydive, this instructor deployed his main canopy and the 3-ring locking loop on the left riser broke because the two smaller rings on the system had flipped through the large ring and placed excess force on the loop. Fortunately, the riser held until the tandem pair landed, and the jump was otherwise uneventful. The instructor did not realize the riser had broken until after he landed and a packer discovered the problem. more »

Defining Goals

After each training jump, a coach or instructor has to determine whether a student succeeded and is ready to advance to the next stage of training or must repeat the jump. Some student programs incorporate a complex series of maneuvers into each jump in an effort to offer a shorter training progression. This is attractive to prospective students, since they put a lot of time, money and effort into learning to skydive. However, students can easily become overloaded when they have too many objectives to accomplish on each jump, which sets them up for failure and costs them more money in the long run. more »

Aircraft Etiquette

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Brought to you by Taya Weiss of the Lightning Flight wingsuit, freefly and angle-flight school at Skydive Perris in California. more »

Backward Movement in a Sit

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

Do Your Homework

It’s safe to say that it’s extremely important for aircraft pilots to have a thorough understanding of all of the systems on their airplanes that affect the safety of their flights. After all, if a pilot is unfamiliar with his equipment and takes the wrong action in an emergency, it could be fatal. The same is true of skydivers and their equipment, but you would never know it judging from the approach some jumpers take toward their gear. more »

A Different Kind of Mae West Malfunction

After landing uneventfully under her main parachute following a clear-and-pull skydive, this jumper discovered her reserve ripcord handle wedged into the side of her bra outside of her shirt. If the jumper had needed to perform emergency procedures on the jump, the wedged handle would have prevented or delayed her from pulling her reserve ripcord. The jumper had performed a handle check before exiting and speculates that the problem occurred on opening. She was wearing a soft, stretchy T-shirt and had tucked her cell phone into her bra, which may have created a gap that allowed the handle to get lodged. Jumpers should ensure that the clothing they wear while skydiving does not prevent operation of their parachute system’s handles. more »