The Transition from Student to Experienced Jumper

The Transition from Student to Experienced Jumper

Friday, October 12, 2018

Any skydiver of experience will tell you emphatically that this is a critical time. Once you’ve earned your license to skydive solo, how do you keep moving forward in the sport? How do you keep that fire burning, even when you’re facing challenges and the world outside the dropzone is rolling its eyes and checking its watch? Lean in, y’all. There are a few tried-and-true tricks to keep that valuable currency in hand.

1. Band together.

Y’know the folks you did your AFF with? Those are your tribe. Stick close to them–and make an effort to meet others who are coming through the program–then plan out regular jumping days together.

After the green light clicks on after those jumping days, don’t peace. Stay! Bring a tent–a trailer–a bar-b-que–some beer. Enjoy those close-knit bonfire nights. Spot each others’ sloppy handstands on the packing mat. Try out the sketchy single-wheeled scooter thingy. Make weekends of it. Soon, skydiving will grow its roots into the depthiest depths of your heart.

2. Set solid goals.

Three words, y’all: Crystal. Clear. Goals. These are worth their weight in platinum as you’re in your greenhorn days on the dropzone. Set each one with deep intention–like earning that B- or C-License; fly a wingsuit; fly relative in small groups; go for the rookie gold at the next big comp–and don’t forget to add reasonable (but challenging) time limits. Go for that rating! Get on a big record jump! Skydiving is full of brass rings to grab, but you need to own it and get moving towards them.

3. Take a skills camp.

Skydive Tecumseh holds camps regularly to get your skills dialed, no matter what your level. Get involved! Sign up. Skills camps won’t just make you a better skydiver; they’ll get you more connected to the whiz kids and legends that regularly cruise the country bestowing their insights on our keen, knowledge-hungry community. It’s so worth it.

4. Find a mentor (or load organizer) and learn all you can.

Along those lines: Our hometown all-stars at Skydive Tecumseh are here for you, and they’ll mentor you straight to greatness. Take them up on it!

Coaching is the single most active choice you can make to level up your skydiving and push away encroaching burnout. When you place yourself in the care of an awesome coach, you’ll learn significantly more effectively on each skydive. (That, y’know, saves money.) Beyond that, a great coach can act as a guide and mentor along your skydiving path. Doesn’t that sound great?

Three skydivers making a formation during free fall

5. Don’t be a stranger!

Ask anybody: The key to becoming a great skydiver is consistency. Commit to coming out once a week, even if the weather looks marginal. There’s still plenty to learn and loads of great connections to make on the ground. Above all, don’t be a stranger, dear new-jumper reader. It takes a lot of chutzpah to commit to this sport, and we’re here to help you along the way!


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Tandem Skydiver in freefall at Skydive Tecumseh

Best place to skydive in Michigan hands down!! Super friendly and knowledgeable staff make you feel special, comfortable and safe. Our first tandem experience was incredible!!! Definitely coming back soon and recommend friends to go here!!!

Erik Chovan