As a young student jumper, staying alive is of paramount importance. Everything you are taught in the first jump course aims to teach you survival skills and what to do when things start to go wrong.
The focus has been high on free fall and how to deal with straight up canopy malfunctions. More and more we are learning that we need to pay just as much attention to stay, stay, stayin’ alive under canopy – especially as the skydiving population moves towards high performance canopies. Heck, just about everything out there these days is of decent performance, so that includes you and your hunk of nylon!
Our friends at New Zealand Airsports get that. They get high performance too, with multiple record holder and World Champion Nick Batch as a part of their team of pilots. When we asked them to participate in the #GetCurrent series, they responded by shaking down some of the top pilots of the Universe for input. This post is dedicated to their sage advice.
Swooping and Staying Alive
Swooping is the ultimate test of skill and control under canopy. Breathtaking distances and high speeds combine to create competitions full of action and anticipation. However, despite the high level of skill attained by the canopy pilots who participate, it continues to be one of the most dangerous disciplines in the sport.
“Every year, incredibly skilled, highly experienced people with the best possible training, currency and equipment perform fatal, intentional turns.” – Bryan Burke
We thought it would be good to explore why this is the case. What are some steps we can take to stay alive and injury free while we are swooping? We asked a range of our friends, colleagues and sponsored canopy pilots to share some of their experience with us. Keep reading to see their thoughts and advice on Swooping and Staying Alive.
-The NZ Aerosports Team
As we add the installments, we will highlight the names below with active links. Check back every day until all the names have turned clicky. Share with your friends, share with your dropzone and help get the word out. Let’s make 2014 the year we see a dramatic reduction in canopy related incidents/fatalities.
>> Check out the entire Get Current 2014 series for more articles and information.