Skydiving is a pleasurable sport once you have overcome your initial fears of it. If you are planning your first jump, you have three varieties to choose from: tandem skydiving, static line and accelerated free fall.
Tandem skydiving is most popular for beginners. Tandem skydiving refers to a type of skydiving where a beginner or student is connected via a harness to an experienced skydiver. The experienced skydiver or tandem instructor controls the whole jump. The student needs only minimal instruction before making a tandem jump.
The first time skydivers gets exposed to the skydiving routine in tandem skydiving. Some training programs, still gives instruction on how and when to deploy the main canopy themselves. But the tandem instructor remains primarily responsible for safe and timely parachute deployment.
The tandem skydiving equipment is relatively different from the normal skydiving gears. Tandem skydivers use the drogue parachute. The drogue parachute is immediately deployed after leaving the plane in order to slow the free fall speed of two people. This would lengthen the duration of the jump. Tandem skydivers also use larger main parachutes so that the weight of two people can be supported.
A tandem instructor is not just an experienced skydiver you know. There are rules and regulations that limits who may skydive with a student. In the United States, the Federal Aviation Administration or FFA requires a skydiver to have more than five hundred dives and three years of skydiving experience before becoming a tandem instructor.
Tandem instructors who have passed the requirements demanded by their laws are required to pass an instructor certification course before they start jumping with their students of the plane.
Static line skydiving is said to be the oldest method of learning how to skydive. This is similar to the way parachuting for military airborne soldiers. They have to jump 3,000 feet high with a cord hooked on a plane that pulls your parachute open.
Students would have to undergo the Static Line First Jump Course, which take 4 to 6 hours. After taking the course, the student could immediately to the static line jump under the direct supervision of a USPA certified jumpmaster or instructor.
A static line parachute jump involves no freefall. As the student exit the aircraft, the parachute is opened by a static line attached to the aircraft. Unlike tandem skydiving, this requires the student to land on his own. But his descent to the ground is done with the guidance of radio communications.
Static line skydiving can bee similar to the technique, Instructor- Assisted Deployment or IAD. The IAD is when the instructor initiates the deployment of the student’s parachute when the student jumps off the plane.
The last skydiving variety that beginners could try would be the accelerated free fall. Accelerated free fall is commonly called AFF, with this training discipline, there are two certified instructors that jump off the aircraft with the students. They would accompany the students while in free fall and will hold onto the student’s harness. That is why it can also be called Harness Hold Training.
The students have their own parachute with AFF. As part of the AFF training, the students are trained to handle emergency procedures. Since the students will also direct their landing, their training also includes proper landing procedures.
Since instructors would also be free falling side by side with students, they would be able to correct the student’s body positions and other problems encountered during the free fall. The students may also radio ground personnel to direct the student to the landing spot, but the student must develop the skills for solo landing.
There are many skydiving methods and varieties to choose from. Are you ready to take the jump?