If I asked you to tell me what skydiving is, what would you tell me?
Falling out of an airplane
A once-in-a-lifetime experience
A serious sport
A full-time job
An international community of like-minded adventurers
If you’re unfamiliar with the sport, you’d almost certainly be wrong. Skydiving isn’t just falling out of an airplane. Not by half! It’s all of the above, baby. And we’re here to tell you what skydiving really is, why it’s different than you think – and how!
A) Falling out of an airplane
Okay. Kinda. The thing is – it’s not really “falling.”
One of the many things we love about skydiving is that it’s the closest you’re ever gonna get to really flying. (Just like in your dreams!) We can use bodyflight techniques to manipulate the surface area of our bodies. That way, we can turn, go forwards, go backwards, fall faster and fall slower. We can fly with other people; we can cover distances; we can get super-acrobatic with it. So it’s not just falling… but you get the idea.
B) A once-in-a-lifetime experience
For lots of people, skydiving is a once-in-a-lifetime experience. It’s on most folks’ bucket lists for good reason. Skydiving is a great way to take a moment for yourself, gain a little perspective and stretch the boundaries of personal possibility. Ask anyone: Once you’ve done it, you’ll forever carry yourself with the confidence that you’ve met a steep, scary challenge and come out swinging on the other side. Of course, it wasn’t a once-in-a-lifetime experience for us… nor is it for the many, many thousands of sport skydivers the world over.
C) A serious sport
Because bodyflight provides such latitude for awesome hijinks, freefall has given birth to loads of skydiving disciplines, each of which has everything from local-level to national-level to world-level competitions. World record attempts sprinkle any given year’s calendar. And charity efforts connect this competitiveness to the community’s passion for giving back.
D) A hobby
Even if you don’t have a competitive bone in your body, the constant challenge of sport skydiving will keep you reaching for exciting new skills. Plenty of skydivers keep coming back to the dropzone to push their own athletic envelope, never looking to medals and podiums for reinforcement. (Anyway, there’s no FAI gold medal for Best Skydive Riding an Inflatable Turtle While Wearing A Glitter Wig. When there is, maybe I’ll give competition a go myself.)
E) A full-time job
Look around you on the dropzone. That staff does what they love as a day job! From the tandem instructors to the solo skydiving instructors to the professional videographers to the coaches to the manifest staff, skydiving keeps love in the hearts (and food on the tables) of a great many very lucky people. Who knows: One day, you might have your instructor ratings and an “office” in freefall!
F) An international community of like-minded adventurers
Freefall is rad and all, but of the biggest things that keeps people coming back to the dropzone is the community that populates the sport. Skydiving brings together people from all the backgrounds, cultures, regions and belief systems you can imagine. It brings together people who honor stepping out of the ordinary in order to enjoy true freedom. It’s a powerful force for connection!