Entering the new world of first time skydiving can be just as overwhelming as it is captivating. Where can you turn for valid first time skydiving tips? What do you need to know before making your first skydive? The answer to the first query is quite reassuring: you’re already here! As a full-service skydiving facility and training center, we know a thing or two when it comes to the first time skydiving experience. With our combined knowledge and know-how, we could probably write a book covering various skydiving tips, but we’ve found it’s best to keep things short and sweet. Here are 5 things you should know before skydiving.
Mother Nature is a fickle force to face. If there are grey skies or a gusty gale, you’ll probably be sitting it out on the ground until it passes. In skydiving, our playground is the sky, and we are subject to the unpredictability of the weather. Weather delays will occur if conditions are anything less than ideal for skydiving. While increased wait times can be frustrating, we have your safety in mind. We even have a saying in skydiving: “It’s better to be on the ground wishing you were in the air than up in the air praying you were down on the ground.”
Skydiving is undeniably thrilling and way better than any carnival ride out there, but we want to stress this point: skydiving is not just a thrill ride. At the fair or amusement park, you can pop on and off as many rides as you like, without much instruction or responsibility. Skydiving is a sport that requires your attention and your participation. Even on a tandem skydive, you will have a job to do. Yes, you will be attached to a licensed skydiving professional, and yes, they will take the lead. However, you won’t simply hang from the harness like a limp noodle tossed out of a car window; no, you’ll have a job to do. During your tandem skydive brief, you will learn the proper body position for a safe, stable exit and subsequent freefall. You’ll also have a chance to practice lifting your legs for landing. Take these jobs seriously. Playing your part can help ensure the safety of both you and your tandem instructor.
After landing from a skydive, many people say that they were unable to breathe during freefall. This, dear friends, maybe true, but it is not because they were physically unable to, it’s because they “forgot” to. Your first time skydiving can be overwhelming. After all, you are leaping from an aircraft two miles above the earth. Many people get mentally hung up on the feeling of freefall, psych themselves out, and end up holding their breath! While you are plummeting through the air at 120 mph, the wind feels like a big fan in your face. If you’re afraid you’ll forget, try letting out a big yell as you exit the plane. If you can yell, you can breathe!
Look, skydiving is special. Your first time skydiving feels like time has slowed down and sped up simultaneously. During freefall, it almost feels as if you’ve somehow entered another dimension. This altered passage of time is quite normal. On a skydive, your brain enters fight or flight mode. During this time, the brain goes into overdrive, taking in every piece of external stimuli that it can. As your cognitive processes speed up, it will feel as if time is slowing down. Truly, it’s an incredible sensation, but it is one that is short-lived. Once the parachute opens, the spell is broken, and the temporal property of time will return to normal.
Despite the altered passage of time mentioned above, the freefall portion of your skydive passes by in less than a minute. It can feel like you’ve barely blinked and just like that you’re back on the ground. The feeling of skydiving is hard to put into words, but, luckily, you can capture those magical moments through skydiving photos and videos to relive again and again!
There you have it. Keep these 5 things in mind when you come for your skydive, and you’ll set yourself up for success. Ready to reach new heights? Contact WNY Skydiving and schedule your first jump today!