Skydiving Weight Limits Explained

Monday, November 9, 2020

You may be asking yourself if – or have indeed already heard that – there is a weight limit for skydiving. This is correct. While there is no minimum weight requirement (you just need to be at least eighteen years old and therefore adult-sized), the max weight for tandem skydiving is 230lbs. This is for a few reasons and they are important, so let’s have a look…

Airplanes

Getting things into the sky and keeping them there is a complicated business, and success has a great deal to do with the weight of whatever you are trying to get airborne. Compared to what you might be used to when flying places, skydiving aircraft are relatively small – and it is crucial that they are both full people and also balanced correctly. In order for a skydiving center to function well as a business, it is important that as often as possible every ‘slot’ in the plane is filled before it takes off. A full plane is easily within operational parameters. However, an aircraft’s weight and balance is important and therefore, may impose weight restrictions.

skydiving weight limits

Equipment

As with any aircraft, skydiving equipment is a careful balance of strength and size. A parachute system is worn like a backpack and therefore must not be too big. At the same time, it needs to be strong enough to support whoever is using it. Skydiving equipment is well designed and built – but even so, it still acquires wear and tear from each use. The official weight limit is within parameters laid out by the manufacturers of the parachutes and harnesses we use, and to overload, it would mean it wears out much faster than it is supposed to – thereby putting pressure on the business side of things with all the extra maintenance on top of the already thorough and regular procedures.   

People

The two main human parts of a tandem skydive are the student and the instructor. The combined weight of these parts must be within the parameters described, but also need to do the skydiving part smoothly and successfully. Skydiving aircraft are often smaller than what you’re used to, and getting in and out can be made difficult if either (or both) depending on their size. Going skydiving is supposed to be (and is!) super fun. Getting in and out of the plane with a big grin on your face is an important part of the process, rather than it being a struggle.

minimum weight for skydiving

Conclusion

Anyone who has experienced the thrill of freefall cannot help but tell others about it and try to get them involved, and here at Skydive Tecumseh, we definitely want everybody to go skydiving. 230lbs is not exactly small so most people easily qualify, but if you are over this then it is perhaps not the end of the world – there is a small amount of wiggle room. If you are over the limit but are size and weight proportionate then give us a call and we will see what we can do. If you are carrying a few extra pounds that you perhaps don’t need then maybe let this be motivation for you and a target to aim for. What better way to celebrate getting into shape than by launching that shape from an airplane at 14,000 feet? Skydiving is very much worth the effort, and when you are ready – we are waiting for you. Contact us to book your jump today!

Tandem Skydiver in freefall at Skydive Tecumseh

On Labor Day my daughter took our first jump. She got me it for my 62nd birthday to check off my bucket list. It was the most intense adrenaline rush I have ever experienced. James and Amber (my daughters tandem partner) were very professional and made our jumps fantastic. We will be back again and hope to bring a group with us. Tremendous experience.

John Gay

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