How scary is skydiving, really? Are people just overreacting? Us seasoned skydivers are a bit more immune to the fear of a skydiving experience than the first timer, BUT we will admit that yes, skydiving is scary. However, the overwhelming elation that comes immediately after (and during) the jump is not talked about enough! Let’s take a look into what makes skydiving so intimidating and how ultimately embracing the thrill will help you kick your fears straight out the door of a perfectly good airplane!
What’s So Scary About Skydiving?
Well … the word in itself says it all! Skydiving entails full-heartedly flinging your body through the vast expanse of the sky from a perfectly functioning airplane – it’s an understandably scary concept! The overarching reason that people’s knees start knockin’ leading up to a skydive is ignorance (don’t get offended, we’ll explain).
Once we encompass all the parts of skydiving that entice fear, it’s obvious that what we’re actually scared of is the unknown. We’re ignorant! Who the heck is my tandem instructor? Is the plane functional? What if the parachute fails? What if I can’t arch well? What if, what if, what if!
Every veteran skydiver you encounter when you come for your first jump started off as a scared baby bird, but you wouldn’t believe it by talking with them today – after they’ve completed a couple hundred (or thousand) jumps! Skydiving presents the opportunity to overcome a fear. Here’s an example: a scary movie is flat out scary, and when we leave the theater we typically feel more scared — looking over our shoulder on our way to the car — not empowered or bigger than what scared us! Skydiving on the other hand presents a seemingly scary scenario, but once you’ve completed it, you feel on top of the world – you DID IT! On the ‘scary’ scale, skydiving would be at the ‘good’ end and a horror film would be at the ‘bad’ end. Catch our drift?
We will note that isolated parts of the skydiving experience can cause people to feel a bit jarred, such as riding in an airplane, being super close to other people, and being high up. While we definitely don’t want to undermine anybody’s legitimate fears or phobias, the majority of people who are scared of skydiving are simply scared of the mystery of the experience. Newness is scary for everyone! And, if you struggle with any of the aforementioned, let us know! We are adept and accommodating in helping our customers face their fears and experience the freedom of flying.
Are Skydivers Always Scared?
Yeah! Skydivers who have multiple skydives under their belts still get a little nervous before a jump. Newsflash: being scared is normal! However, the more someone does what scares them, the less fear they feel.
People who regularly skydive have a sense of fear – this is what prevents them from becoming complacent and dangerous – but the exhilaration and multiple other happy feelings override the feeling of being scared. In the beginning, someone may feel 99% scared and 1% excited, after a few jumps that ratio may go to 90% and 10%, and then later on to 20% scared and 80% confident excitement – yay!
Fear is weird. We’re not going to force you through a psychology lesson (that’s not our specialty), but here’s the long and short of it: fear is something that can’t be rationed with. Our brains have to be repeatedly trained to show that whatever we’re scared of is actually okay. It takes one time (or no times; thanks, anxiety!) for our brains to learn that something is bad or scary, but it takes multiple times to learn that something is actually not scary or threatening. Many people actually get hooked on skydiving because it’s confidence-inducing, relaxing, and dare we say…peaceful..
How Can I Decrease The Skydiving Scaries?
There are two steps you can take to keep the oogly wooglies in your belly at bay prior to jumping: preparing your body and mind, and doing research.
- Getting a good night of rest, arriving on time for your tandem reservation, keeping fed and hydrated, and having an open mind will all help you stay at ease before the skydive.
- Researching where you plan on completing your jump can help to ease your mind. It’s important to differentiate skydiving being scary and new from being dangerous. Did you know there’s a much higher chance of getting hurt on your trip to the dropzone than at the actual dropzone? Skydivers are able to jump time and time again because they prioritize safety above all else. Being safety-minded, practicing humility, being hungry to learn, and embodying respect for the sport is what skydiving is all about!
Remember: the most important space is your headspace. If you feel prepared to send it, book your skydive today! If you have any further questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us, we would love to hear from you, and we can’t wait to shred the skies with you!