All specialist equipment such as helmet, goggles and jumpsuit will be provided. Goggles will fit over glasses and contact lenses are fine. Please wrap up warm, on a hot day t-shirt and trousers/shorts are fine, please wear good fitting trainers. High Heels are not suitable for skydiving!
Author Archive | freefall
We are in the process of running a competition on Facebook to give away a free tandem skydive!
You can view the competition by clicking this link
Feel free to enter and hopefully win yourself a free skydive over the beautiful Lake District.
All students wishing to progress in their chosen discipline be it FS1 FF1 will only have to pay £36 per ticked this covers the cost of you’re instructor jumping with you and is cheaper than paying the old method of their ticket.
We hope this will reduce the cost of training you guys to be able to fly with each other and hope to progress our students to be where they want to be with the Sport.
Generally speaking the weather conditions have to be pretty good – especially when you are a student skydiver going through your AFF course. This means only little cloud – because it’s important you can see the ground beneath you so that you know where you are in the sky – and light winds so that your parachute can be maneuvered easily.
Qualified, more experienced skydivers can jump in marginally windy conditions. You can technically skydive in light rain – but it is unpleasant to do so and also when it’s raining it tends to be cloudy! British summers are normally better than people give them credit for and it’s a great place to learn to skydive.
Once you are a qualified skydiver – that is you have completed your AFF course and done your compulsory 10 consolidation jumps to get your Cat 8 certificate (“A licence”) you can skydive at a number of dropzones in the UK for around £20 a jump if you have your own parachute equipment.
If you do not have your own equipment you can rent everything you need for around £10 a jump. Most new skydivers buy used equipment from other more experienced skydiver who’s needs within the sport have changed with a gain in their experience.
A quality complete used “rig” (this is the term generally a parachute pack – a harness, container, main and reserve parachutes) suitable for a new skydiver can be bought for about £1500 – additionally you will need an altimeter and helmet, both these could be bought used for less than £100. It’s certainly not a cheap hobby, but it’s certainly not expensive either.
Once you have all the right gear you can make a skydive for just £18! You will need to maintain membership of the British Parachute Association (“BPA”) each year for £118.60 per annum or the current prevailing membership price. Unless otherwise stated all our AFF course prices include first year membership of the BPA.
Modern parachutes are highly maneuverable, you can steer and fly them in whatever direction you like. With a bit of practice you will be able to land your parachute with a great deal of accuracy. This allows you to choose a good, flat place to land which is clear of obstacles. At landing time itself you can momentary slow the descent of the parachute using a manoeuvre called a flare to give you an easy, soft stand-up landing. You will be taught how to steer and land your parachute on your AFF course.
First and foremost, modern sport parachutes are extremely reliable and its extremely rare that a parachute “doesn’t open”. Long gone are the days are high-malfuction rates, modern parachutes are incredibly well designed and tested. However, in the rare event of a malfunction all skydivers have a secondary reserve parachute that they can deploy and fly to the ground in exactly the same way as their main parachute. It is mandatory in most countries that all skydivers wear a reserve parachute. In addition to the reserve parachute most skydivers have an Automatic Activation Device installed on their equipment. This automatically deploys the reserve parachute in the event the skydiver is still in freefall at low altitude, i.e. doesn’t deploy their own parachute. Modern skydiving equipment is very advanced.
Although skydiving is a high risk sport when compared to say, snooker or football – and like any fast adventure sport it is of course possible to twist an ankle, hurt yourself in some other way or yes – you could in theory even die, it’s not anywhere near as risky as many people would believe.
You can sustain exactly the same injuries in an accident walking across the street, driving to work, horse riding – in fact doing just about anything! Lots of other adventure sports are just as or even more dangerous than skydiving and modern parachute systems and teaching methods are extremely reliable.
There is always something new to learn in skydiving. Amongst many other things your AFF course will teach you to fall “face to earth” in a stable position and perform turns (rotating your body), but you can refine these skills to enable to to fly very close to other skydivers, around them, towards them, over them and under them – with phenomenal control and precision! There are hundreds of freefall disciplines to develop and wide range of canopy skills to learn and refine.
Many skydivers with thousands of skydives will say there’s still lots of new “stuff” for them to learn and this, in part is why skydiving is such an addictive amazing sport.
The best in the sport often choose to compete in their chosen discipline against other at any of the hundreds of events around the world each year. Once you have become a fully fledged licensed skydiver and have gone on to buy your own equipment you can skydive in the UK for around £20 a jump.
The average skydiver falls at somewhere between 110 and 130 miles per hour in the “standard” face to earth position.
It takes very roughly 10 seconds to fall the first 1,000 feet and then about 5 seconds for every subsequent 1,000 feet – so if an experienced skydiver falls for about 10,000 feet before deploying their parachute they will have had roughly 60 seconds of freefall.
Different people fall at slightly different rates because different sizes and shapes of people create more or less air-resistance. As you fall through the air you create air-resistance and have air passing around your body at high speeds. This is referred to in the sport as the “relative wind”.
Essentially you feel a great deal of wind as you fall through the air at high speed. A less air-resistant – more aero dynamic shape (such as small person with a pot belly) will generally fall faster than someone with a similar mass – but who is tall with long arms and legs. As you become a more experienced skydiver you will learn how to alter your fall rate by making changes to your body position. By altering your body position you effect your air resistance and subsequently the rate at which you fall. It is a common MYTH that all objects fall at the same rate, this rule only applies in an absolute vacuum, where there is no resistance – here on earth we have air!
Anyone between the ages of 16 and 65 can learn to skydive in the UK, so long as you are fit, healthy and alert. Note that if you are under 18 years old you will need to get parental consent and if you are over 40 years of age you are required to get a certificate from the doctor.
There are approximately 5,000 active skydivers in the UK from a wide range of social backgrounds, there is a hugely rich social scene associated with the sport, which presents its participants with many opportunities to make friends and travel. If you have any medical conditions you must declare them to us and discuss them with our instructors.
Most of our skydives are made from a minimum of 12,000 feet above ground level or higher – normally 13,500 feet. If you wish to make a static line parachute jump, this is normally made from 3,500 to 4,000 feet. If you wish to make more static line jumps you can progress on to higher and higher altitudes.
On tandem skydives and AFF skydives your parachute is deployed between 5,000 feet and 6,000 feet. This gives you about 45 seconds of freefall. This deployment altitude is higher than most qualified skydivers would normally deploy and gives plenty of time for a beautiful and enjoyable parachute ride back down to earth. When you are a qualified skydiver you can choose to deploy your parachute at any altitude above about 2,500 feet – although most skydivers deploy at between 3,000 and 3,500 feet.