Tips On Dressing For Success For Your First Skydive

Tuesday, April 26, 2022

The big day is quickly approaching. You’ve been waiting for what seems like an eternity for this moment, and it’s finally here! Your nerves are buzzing and your heart starts to race in anticipation of the experience of a lifetime. Your first skydive. It’s going to be one for the books. You’ll have photos and videos that you’ll show off for decades and you need to feel and look your best. We’re here to help you answer the perpetual question: what do you wear skydiving?

What to Wear Skydiving

Your skydiving attire doesn’t need to be extravagant; the day will already have enough excitement and you don’t need to be worrying about your ’fit! With few exceptions, we generally recommend that your skydiving dress reflect what you’re most comfortable in. Leggings, sweatpants, gym shorts, cargo shorts, jorts, and even good ole fashioned jeans (while not the most comfortable) are all permitted. For your top half, short-sleeved or long-sleeved T-shirts and tank tops are great in warm temperatures, and thermal undershirts and sweatshirts are all recommended. 

Sharp Dressed Skydiver | WNY Skydiving

You can also opt for a super-cool skydiving jumpsuit. We recommend wearing one, especially during the chillier months. There are a couple of reasons skydivers wear jumpsuits, with utility being number one. Jumpsuits cover your clothing, mitigating any potential snag hazards and adding to your aerodynamics. 

Now that your legs and torso are covered, let’s talk about feet. Closed-toed shoes are a must; no exceptions. Lace-up sneakers or tennis shoes are a great choice! For reference, seasoned skydivers tend to wear laced Vans, Converse, and DC shoes. Why laces? SECURITY. Fun fact: ‘tied shoe laces’ is usually part of a skydiver’s gear check before they jump!

Can I Wear My Glasses?

Yes – and you should! If you need your glasses or contacts to help you see on the daily you can wear them during your jump, no problem. We have some extra-fashionable goggles that will fit right over them, nice and snug, so you won’t have to worry about them flying off to hang out with those flip flops you won’t be wearing. Your eyeballs will be happy and protected, able to take in the entire experience! Sunglasses are not permitted, though, as skydivers rely on the eyes for communication. We need to see your eyes to gauge how you’re feeling.

So… What Can I NOT Wear?

The most beautiful thing about skydiving, as you will soon experience first-hand, is the pure bliss of it. We don’t want your time with us to be dampened by losing an item in the sky or by you getting hurt. So …

Open-toe shoes are a big time no-no. There are several reasons why you absolutely cannot wear sandals when skydiving. They could fly off into the abyss, never to be seen again – or worse, hit something above or below you. (No cracked windshields this weekend, OK?) You could snag a shoe in the airplane or when you’re coming in for a landing, and you don’t want to end your jump by tripping and face planting. And, of course, your piggies could get stepped on. While we understand that certain sandals are ‘secured’ with extra straps, they are still not permitted for skydiving. 

Next up is our good friend: jewelry. We do not recommend wearing any jewelry, not only because you can lose it, but also because it creates a potential snag hazard. We don’t want your family heirlooms (or even the cheap-and-cheerful jewelry you don’t remember buying) to fly off into the unknown with your open-toed shoes. If you have more permanent jewelry, feel free to ask us directly about wearing it during your jump. 

Also, no boots (keep them spurs at home, cowboy!), high heels, or anything with buckles or hooks, and no dresses, skirts, or coats. 

Why Does It Even Matter What I Wear?

Safety and comfort. Safety is at the forefront of our minds every time we step foot on the dropzone, and although we may sound like a broken record at times, everything we do is with your best interest in mind. If anything is flapping around, has the risk of falling off, or is too bulky, it can hinder your experience and become a distraction. You will be in an “arched” body position for the freefall portion of your jump, and before this, you will be with multiple other jumpers in an airplane. 

Your clothing needs to be flexible to not restrict your movements. Test your ’fit by placing your hands above your head with extended arms and then make your elbows 90 degrees with your hands at head level, now push your hips forward. This is the basic belly-to-earth, arch position that you’ll be doing during freefall. If you pass the test in what you’re wearing, then it is probably okay by us! 

WNY Skydiving instructors team members

Is There Anything I Can’t Bring?

Empty all of your pockets (yes, even you with the 7-pocket cargos). Neither food nor water can accompany you on your jump, but we do urge you to stay nourished and hydrated the day of your jump. No GoPro’s, phones, or other cameras. Despite huge strides in the sport, we have yet to attempt strapping two tandem students to an instructor … but we do encourage bringing your besties to jump too. 

The way you look can directly correlate with the way you feel, and we want you to feel comfortable, confident, and empowered on the day of your jump! Your first jump will only happen once – make it awesome! Ready? Let’s go!!

Follow WNY Online

Get news and updates in your inbox!