First Experience in Skydiving
Welcome back, sports fans! I’ve returned to share with you something even I can’t believe took me this long to try, skydiving! The idea of jumping out of a plane going hundreds of miles an hour while strapped to another human may seem daunting to some. Once you actually get there and stand at the edge of the door, you can understand why. It doesn’t matter how many times your tandem partner has jumped before, in that moment it’s just you and the world. I can now definitely count skydiving as one of my favorite extreme sports and you should too.
Waiver and Wait
Before actually getting to the skydiving place, I needed to read safety materials and watch a few videos online. I signed several waivers swearing not to sue the company if one of the many things that could go wrong, does go wrong. Once all the paperwork was done, I chilled out for a few hours while waiting for my turn.
Finally, someone called my group and I went to the changing room filled with brightly colored jumpsuits in a multitude of sizes. A photographer followed us around and snapped pictures of the various preparation steps. She also told us how to position ourselves while jumping to get the best shot. I met my tandem partner, Zach, who went over the steps for skydiving again.
Flying and Jumping
We boarded the plane and everyone chatted nervously to their partners. The plane climbed steadily until we reached about 10,500 feet above ground. Zach led me to the door and I stood at the edge of the unending miles of earth stretching to beneath me. My heart pounded so loud in my ears I almost couldn’t hear Zach reminding me to bend my knees on landing.
Zach and I jumped out of the plane and my photographer joined a few seconds later. The first 60 seconds out of the plane you are in free fall. The uncanny sensation makes you feel like you’re not moving when you’re actually hurtling to the ground at a couple hundred miles/hour. Soon we got the part where the parachute opens and we gently floated toward the landing zone.
As we floated down, Zach spun the parachute around a few times to give me a 360-view. I floated just under 10 minutes after the chute opened, plenty of time to look around. We reached the landing zone and I remembered to bend my knees for a surprisingly smooth landing. 10/10 would recommend a tandem skydiving jump to anyone looking for an adrenaline rush with a high safety record and lots of support.
Skydiving companies, like Cigognes Chute Libre in southwest France, offer tandem jumps to beginners to help them get a taste of adrenaline. Or check out the time and cost to learn to skydive alone!