Skydiving for the first time is unlike anything you have done before. Your body doesn’t even know exactly how to react! Jumping out of an airplane is completely unnatural. Because of this, it can be helpful to have some skydiving tips and tricks to improve your experience.
Knowing how to mentally prepare for skydiving can be a bit of a mystery. Without having any prior experience, how do you know where to start?? Luckily, we have been doing this skydiving thing for quite a while and we know a thing or two about what it takes to ensure a phenomenal first-time skydive.
No need to scan the internet for, “How do I get better at skydiving?” Check out our top 7 tips to improve your skydiving experience below.
1. Practice Self Care
Self-care means different things to different people. Do whatever feels right to you on the day of your jump. If that means getting an early workout in, go burn that adrenaline! Maybe you would rather curl up with a hot tea and do some meditation to get your mind right. You can even do some breathing exercises to help calm your body and mind.
The important thing to remember is that there is no wrong way to mentally prepare yourself to skydive. You know you best.
Some common ways to ensure you are ready to go the day of your jump include getting enough sleep, staying hydrated, and having a well-balanced meal. Also, plan on skipping that night-before liquid courage. Alcohol will dehydrate you and a hangover is no way to experience your first skydive. And definitely don’t drink the day of your jump. Skydiving with alcohol in your system is prohibited.
2. Arrive On Time
The last thing you want to be doing on the day of your skydive is worrying about being late. There will be enough going on that will stress you out (see: jumping out of an airplane). Give yourself ample time to drive to the dropzone and get checked in.
The more relaxed you are about everything, the more you can focus on your jump. We want you to have plenty of time to get a sense of the dropzone, sign your paperwork, and attend your training session. Arriving on time helps everyone involved in the process, and it allows you to enjoy your skydive even more.
3. Bring Your Support System
That’s right, you can bring your very own cheer section! Or, even better, get them all to book skydives, too! The only thing more fun than going skydiving is going skydiving with people you like. (Pro tip: groups of 5 or more receive a $10 discount on each skydive!)
Skydiving can be a great activity to do with family, friends, or even colleagues. And think about how much calmer you will feel if you have people who care about you there when you do this amazing (and scary) thing!
4. Get the Video
Trust us on this one. You only get to make your first skydive once. Like a baby’s first steps or that hilariously cringe-worthy high school talent show performance, documentation makes the experience that much better.
In a world where “pics or it didn’t happen” is a mantra, you’re gonna want the pics. Or video. Or both! Your day will go by in such a whirlwind that it will be over before you know it. Having video of the experience will give you a chance to go back and relive it again and again. Heck, you might even notice things you missed when you were actually there!
Someday, when you don’t know what the slang means anymore and your outfits look like they came out of a decades-old sitcom, you can whip out this bad boy and prove that you were once, indeed, cool. (Or maybe we’re projecting!)
5. Listen to Your Instructor
Your skydiving instructor is a veritable boss. They have to garner a lot of very specific experience, pass a whole host of tests, and keep up their credentials to take folks on a tandem skydive. To sum up their years of hard work and dedication, they must:
- Log 500 parachute jumps
- Log 4 hours in freefall (perspective: a tandem includes about 60 seconds!)
- Have at least 3 years in the sport
- Earn the highest-level sport skydiving license (USPA D License)
- Demonstrate mastery of numerous emergency procedures
- Log at least 50 jumps within the previous 12 months
So, yeah. It’s important to listen to your instructor. Contrary to how it may look, you are more than just a passenger on a tandem skydive; you’re an active participant. Your skydiving instructor is taking in and responding to a ton of information on the flight up, during freefall, under canopy, and when it’s time to land. Trust that they know best.
The skydiving experience will change your life. Sounds a little woo-woo, maybe, but it’s true. Although the entirety of your first-time skydive will last less than 10 minutes from exit to landing, your whole perspective will shift.
There’s something about literally being above it all that makes you look at things from a whole new angle. The glorious chemical cocktail you’ll give your brain during your skydive – we’re talking about adrenaline, serotonin, and dopamine – will feed your soul in a way that’s difficult to achieve in any other way.
Before the day is done, take time to reflect on your skydiving experience. Seize the mega-boost of empowerment you’ll earn in whatever way feels right — maybe that means journaling, talking with a trusted friend, meditating, or recording your thoughts on video.
7. Keep Jumping!
Want to get more of that good-good feeling you landed with after your first jump? We get it! If you land from your tandem and just know that you have to keep doing this, you are not alone!
Skydive California has a full-service instructional skydiving program that will take you through your licensing journey step-by-step. Our Accelerated Freefall (AFF) instructors are top-of-the-line professionals who will be super-stoked to help you earn your stripes.
Once you cross over from Tandem student to AFF student (welcome to the Dark Side, muahaha), you’ll notice some changes in how things operate. Self-care and punctuality are still top priorities, but your day-to-day engagement will look a little different.
First of all, plan to spend a lot more time at the dropzone. Learning to skydive is a commitment. The more time you can dedicate to learning, the safer and smoother your progression will be. A lot of us spend entire weekends here!
You also want to cut out any possible distractions. While it’s great to have people who love and support you, it may be best if they do it from home. Your time at the dropzone is about focusing and learning. Come prepared to give it your all, including your full attention.
There’s one tip that improves your skydiving experience no matter your level: HAVE FUN!!
Ready to put these tips to the test? Book now! We can’t wait to support you in your out-of-this-world skydiving experience. Blue skies!