Photo by Bruno Brokken |USPA #96017

At Skydive Sebastian in Florida, the CF World Team sets the 36-way Féderátion Aéronautique Internationale World Record for Largest Canopy Formation Skydive at Night.

Features

Thin Air—Busting Lingering Myths about Hypoxia
Features | May 2019

Thin Air—Busting Lingering Myths about Hypoxia

By Annette O’Neil

Hey, skydiver: What’s your mental image of hypoxia? Do you immediately picture a plane full of sport jumpers laughing like drunks and falling all over each other? If so, you’re not alone, and there’s also a good chance that you think a) you’ve never been hypoxic; b) hypoxia is just something that happens on high-altitude jumps when the oxygen system is on the fritz; and c) you know what to look for.

The thing is: You’re not actually right about any of that.

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The Earth is My Drop Zone—Handling Off-Landings Safely
Features | May 2019

The Earth is My Drop Zone—Handling Off-Landings Safely

By Paul Sitter

We live in the age of GPS spots, turbine aircraft and high-performance ram-air main and reserve parachutes that have lots of forward speed. So, we’re finished landing off the drop zone, right? Unfortunately, not! Murphy’s law—the foundational rule of skydiving—says, “If it can go wrong, it will.”

Maybe you are on a big-way dive or in a tracking contest or really finding out what your wingsuit can do. Maybe the weather is tricky or your exit delayed. No matter the situation, when you open your canopy and find the drop zone is w-a-a-a-y farther away than you wanted, your plan went wrong. So, how can you avoid this situation? And what can you do when it inevitably does come up?

Author: Paul Sitter
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Sunny with a Chance of Beach Landings—The 2019 Costa Rica Boogie
Features | May 2019

Sunny with a Chance of Beach Landings—The 2019 Costa Rica Boogie

A Parachutist Pictorial

Sunny with a Chance of Beach Landings—The 2019 Costa Rica Boogie

Hosted By: Tsunami Skydivers Exotic Boogies

Tambor Bay, Costa Rica | February 9-18

A Parachutist Pictorial

Author: USPA Staff
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The Indelible Nature of Friendship:  The 2019 Pioneers of Sport Parachuting Reunion
Features | May 2019

The Indelible Nature of Friendship: The 2019 Pioneers of Sport Parachuting Reunion

By Bob Lewis

On St. Valentine’s Day weekend, February 14-17, many of our sport’s founding members and innovators reconnected with lifelong friends in Felicity, California—the Official Center of the World (as declared by France’s Institut Géographique National in 1985)—during the Pioneers of Sport Parachuting Reunion. The event also included a celebration of USPA President Emeritus Jacques-André Istel’s 90th birthday (or, as Istel referred to it, his “100th birthday rehearsal”).

Author: Bob Lewis
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Spring Fling 2019
Features | May 2019

Spring Fling 2019

By Brian Pangburn

More than 150 jumpers from 17 countries and six continents traveled to Skydive Sebastian in Florida for the Spring Fling canopy formation skydiving (aka canopy relative work or CRW) event March 9-17. The nine-day event—now in its 15th year—has continued to grow. Organizers Chris Bohn, Chris Gay, Eric Gallan, Francois Huot and Brian Pangburn kept up with the surge in participation by adding Andrew Draminski, Gerben Frankvoort, Sean Jones and Scott Lazarus to the organizing team. The team’s goal was to keep everyone challenged, from the 12 jumpers who had never tried CF before to the most experienced participants.

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Safety is No Accident
Features | May 2019

Safety is No Accident

A Parachutist Special Report

To open Safety Day 2019 at Skydive Cross Keys in Williamstown, New Jersey, DZO and pilot Pico Mazure remarked, “Safety is no accident. Safety is an attitude and a core value of our community. We are happy to see not only students but also highly experienced jumpers attend Safety Day and help us instill that value in all generations of jumpers.”To open Safety Day 2019 at Skydive Cross Keys in Williamstown, New Jersey, DZO and pilot Pico Mazure remarked, “Safety is no accident. Safety is an attitude and a core value of our community. We are happy to see not only students but also highly experienced jumpers attend Safety Day and help us instill that value in all generations of jumpers.”

Author: USPA Staff
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Gearing Up

May 2019
Part 16

You’ve often read in these pages that one of USPA’s main roles is to safeguard skydiving’s rightful place in airspace and on airports. Federal Aviation Administration policy has long recognized skydiving as a regulated aeronautical activity within the nation’s airspace and on the 3,000-plus U.S. airports that have accepted FAA funds for improvements. Those federal airport dollars come with the stipulation that the airport must fairly accommodate all types of aeronautical activity, including skydiving.

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Photo Spread

Photo by David Wybenga | D-31862

At Skydive Arizona in Eloy during the Arizona Challenge, a formation skydiving event organized by former and current members of champion 4-way FS team Arizona Airspeed, participants build the event’s grand-finale formation, a representation of the team’s triangular logo.

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Featured Art

“100 Years of Freefall”

Colored pencil

Stayesh Moghaddami Zamani | Age 15
Tehran, Iran

In Your Words

Parachutist Around the World

Parachutist Around the World

May 2019

Author: USPA Staff
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“100 Years of Freefall”

“100 Years of Freefall”

By Stayesh Moghaddami Zamani

“100 Years of Freefall”

Colored pencil

Stayesh Moghaddami Zamani | Age 15
Tehran, Iran

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How Skydiving Changed My Life

How Skydiving Changed My Life

By Will Ghormley

There’s nothing like the bonds soldiers forge during their service to our nation. Perhaps the hardest thing in civilian life is separation from that brotherhood. It leaves a hole. I think every veteran feels that. But when a veteran battles post-traumatic stress disorder, the feeling is even stronger. It’s like nobody but your buddies understand, and they ain’t there.

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Jim McCormick | D-12379

Jim McCormick | D-12379

By Brian Giboney

Jim McCormick, D-12379, is a big-way and demo skydiver who has earned 15 world records (including the 400-way Fédération Aéronautique Internationale World Record for Largest Formation Skydive) and jumped over the North Pole.

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Safety & Training Featured Photo

Instructors Anastasis Sideris and Dimitris Sourlis exit with a Category C AFF student at Skydive Athens in Kopaida, Greece.

Safety & Training Articles

Keep an Eye Out

Keep an Eye Out

Difficulty Cutting Away from Spinning Malfunctions

Recently, USPA has received several reports of jumpers who experienced a difficult time shearing the Velcro of their cutaway handles during spinning, high-speed, line-twist malfunctions. During these types of malfunctions, the risers are crossed and the main lift web is forced tightly against the torso, making it more critical than ever to perform the proper cutaway technique.

Author: USPA Staff
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Article rating: 3.6
Rating Corner | What is Designated AFF Evaluator? A True-or-False Quiz

Rating Corner | What is Designated AFF Evaluator? A True-or-False Quiz

There are plenty of misconceptions about designated evaluators, those jumpers who assist AFF instructor examiners by performing currency and course evaluation jumps. Quiz yourself to see how your understanding stacks up to reality.

Author: Jen Sharp
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Safety Check | Cognitive Tunneling

Safety Check | Cognitive Tunneling

By Ron Bell

Cognitive tunneling, which often manifests itself as target fixation in skydiving, is one of the principal causes of accidents that involve human error. Cognitive tunneling is the mental state in which your brain focuses on one thing and, as a result, does not see other relevant data. This perceptual blindness causes our attention to overlook even the most obvious clues to problems that are right in front of us. Metaphorically, a mind’s focus can be either like a floodlight that dimly illuminates a large area or like a spotlight that provides intense clarity on a single subject.

Author: Ron Bell
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Ask a Rigger

Ask a Rigger

What is the Difference Between a Senior and a Master Rigger, and What’s a DPRE?

The term “rigger” comes from sailing. According to the Federal Aviation Administration Parachute Rigger Handbook, the only place clean enough and big enough for riggers to work on parachutes in the early days was upstairs in an aircraft hangar, hence the term “rigging loft.”

Author: Kevin Gibson
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Foundations of Flight | Vertical Compressed Exit (Mixed Formation Skydiving Random C)

Foundations of Flight | Vertical Compressed Exit (Mixed Formation Skydiving Random C)

By Axis Flight School

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.

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Featured Event

Jumpers exit at Skydive Elsinore in California on their way to setting a 27-way Korean Record for Largest Formation Skydive.

Featured DZ

From left, Vicky Benzing, Matt Beaubien and Terry Burch make a balloon jump at Skydive Arizona.

Closing In

Thodoris Douzenis lands after a day of jumping at Skydive Athens in Kopaida, Greece.

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