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Introduction to Skydiving

Updated on April 20, 2009

Skydiving - known also as parachuting - is a multi-discipline extreme sport that is getting very popular in the last few years. Almost all the disciplines involve a parachute jump of some kind even if it's used only at the landing time.

In this hub I'll present you the main types of skydiving disciplines, what does it take to start skydiving, how safe it is and what equipment you are going to need.

Don't worry, I'll be short!

What Are The Disciplines In Skydiving

The number of disciplines in skydiving is growing all the time. There are many jumpers who don't want to practice any specific discipline and that's just fine. Skydiving is to have fun with, not to feel like on competition.

However I'm sure you'd like to know shortly some of the most popular disciplines:

  • Accuracy landing
  • Style
  • Free style (nothing in common with Style)
  • Formation skydiving
  • Base jumping
  • Free Fly
  • Wingsuit Base Jumping - absolutely insane stuff :)
  • and more!

I am sure you can find information for at least 10 other types of skydiving.

What Equipment Do You Need

If you plan to do parachute jumps regularly, you need to think about your parachuting equipment. Don't rush into buying the most expensive one, it's not always the best. But don't underestimate the equipment either - although equipment failure is very rare reason for skydiving fatalities, I wouldn't advice you to take risks in that. Here is what gear you may need:

  • A helmet - very important!
  • Parachutes - impossible to jump without one :)
  • Harness and container
  • AAD and altimeter - optional but very good
  • Jumpsuit - optional

Of course there are hundreds of other tools, clothes and gadges you may decide to obtain - it's up to you.

Is Skydiving Safe?

Skydiving is classified as an extreme sport. Being such, it can't be as safe as sitting at home and watching TV (It's maybe safer long term, because watching TV isn't good for your physical and mental health at all!).

Seriously, skydiving has some risks, and there are fatalities in skydiving. But statistically they are less than the fatalities in street traffic. So if you are afraid to jump with a parachute, do you also avoid getting out of home?

Don't close your eyes for the risks, but don't let the fear paralyze you. If you want to make a parachute jump, you should take the required security measures and go ahead. At least this is how I see it.


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      JordanM 7 years ago from Glasgow

      Can i make an ammendment please? If you "plan" to jump regularly you certainly aren't ready to be thinking about your own equipment! You need to be licensed before you can get your own stuff (apart from things like goggles and gloves. And it's adviseable to use your clubs rigs until you've downsized to about a 170 canopy. Most people start out on a 280 or 260 canopy. You can downsize fairly soon after you're licensed but only to for example a 220/210. This canopy size is basically just used for people in a transitional period. You'll only be doing 20-50 jumps on it before you downsize to a 190 or 170. What is the point in buying a rig for that few jumps? Your own rig is something you grow to love and become familiar with. It's not worth splashing out on one as soon as you're licensed just so you can say you have one.