Skydiving is a sport in which a person jumps from an aircraft, then free falls for some distance before deploying a parachute to slow their descent back to the ground. Skydiving is also used as a military tactic. It can be a means of quietly getting troops zones.

1,963 Questions

How fast do you tracel in freefall during tandem skydiving?

The velocity of a skydiver is largely governed by weightand drag. Obviously both can vary quite a bit. The typical skydiver flying in "belly" or prone position reaches the terminal velocity of about 110mph to 150mph (typically 130mph) after about 1000ft of freefall. This equates to a rate of approximately 1000ft for every 5.5 seconds. Tandems would fall at about twice that velocity if it wasn't for a drogue chute that is deployed by the tandem instructor shortly after leaving the aircraft to increase the drag on the tandem pair. This is needed because there is about twice the weight and essentially the same drag because the student is laying directly below the instructor. Similarly to the situation with an individual skydiver, tandem freefall rates can vary quite a bit. Many camera fliers wear small wings under their arms to allow them a higher range of adjustability in their fall rates.

The rate of change of velocity "g" caused by earths gravity is a constant in a vacuum. But we have variables such as air resistance which may change due to change in air density and the surface area of an object falling through the air.

Skydivers utilize that principle through adjustments in body position, using baggy jumpsuits to increase drag, streamline jumpsuits to reduce it, wings as mentioned previously and lead shot to increase weight.

At the start of the freefall, gravity "g" is the overwhelming force as the low velocity produces minimal drag but as the velocity increases due to the acceleration g then so does drag and the rate of acceleration reduces to the point where it reaches zero. This is the so called terminal velocity and is the point where the force g and the drag are equal and opposite forces. Now the fun begins.

Because forces on a skydiver are in constant flux due to intentional or unintentional changes in body attitude (position) and changes in air density due to air temperature changes and altitude, the net force on a skydiver may approximate zero but there is always some out of balance force somewhere. Even gravity changes as we approach the ground, but by an infinitesimal amount. Even mass m is affected by v velocity. Unless you were skydiving at a reasonable factor of the speed of light, this may be ignored.

Ever tried to balance a knife on its edge ?

What are the forces involved in skydiving?

The forces involved in the freefall part of a skydive are Gravity and air resistance (drag). As the parachute is deployed, drag opens the canopy and the skydiver's weight provides tension on the lines. When the canopy has opened, the skydiver's weight is supported lift provided by the canopy. The canopy also generates thrust and drag, like an aeroplane's wing.

Where in India skydiving is done?

There are three places to skydive in India. There is the Parachuting Association of India in Pant Nagar, the Indian Parachuting Federation in New Delhi, and Indradahanush agni aero sports in Bangalore.

How long do skydivers fall before opening the paraCHUTE?

This greatly depends on the exit height as well as the opening height. The first depends on cloud cover, plane and pilot. The latter depends on the experience and comfort level of the diver. A standard dive would be from 13,500 ft. to about 4,500 feet and would take about one minute.

What kind of forces work on a skydiver?

Gravity pulling the skydiver to the ground as well as wind resistance pushing up on the skydiver.

How was Joseph Kittinger's parachute jump in 1960 similar to Andre Jacques Garnerin's jump in 1797?

For skydivers, the sky isn’t the limit. It’s just the beginning. Thousands of people each year try the sport of skydiving. Some only jump once, while others go on to experience lifelong adventures, maneuvering and flipping through the air.

β€œSkydiving is not for everyone. But, if you enjoy the challenge of learning to perform in a completely new environment, are willing to make the effort to do it safely, and can overcome your fears to make the first few jumps – the rewards can be tremendous,” says skydiver Bill von Novak. He has jumped around 5,500 times, is a fill-in instructor at Perris Valley Skydiving in California, and sometimes teaches a free fall course to Navy SEALS at Tac-Air.

Skydivers jumping from an airplane (photo by Bill von Novak)

First Jumps

There are three options for your first jump. However, before you can make any attempts at skydiving, a ground course on safety and equipment is required. The length and complexity of the course depends on the jump you choose.

The most popular first-jump technique is tandem. Tandem has the shortest ground course, and is the easiest to complete. You and the instructor are strapped together in a double harness (the instructor behind, with you in front). Your instructor wears the tandem rig, which contains a main and a reserve parachute. You jump out of the plane together, and the instructor takes care of opening the

What clothing do you wear parachuting?

Apart from a skydiving rig containing two parachutes, most skydivers wear a jumpsuit, a helmet and an altimeter of some kind. The jumpsuit keeps you warm at the high altitudes and protects your clothing. Many skydivers do not wear a jumpsuit when the weather is warm. The helmet protects your head in case you hit the aircraft on exit or other jumpers in freefall, or if you land in obstacles like trees. In the UK, all skydivers are required to wear a helmet, but in the USA it is the jumper's choice. A barometric or electronic altimeter worn on the wrist or chest, or an audible altimeter in the helmet lets the skydiver know how high they are and when to deploy their canopy.

Why was the parachute invented?

so people wouldn't die when they jump out of airplanes

What is a sky diving mask?

There is no such thing as a 'skydiving mask'. There is however a skydiving helmet. These are typically split into the categories of:

  • Open face
  • Full face
  • Leather helmet

How old do you have to be to indoor skydive?

That varies from wind tunnel to wind tunnel. Personally, I have seen kids as young as 3 in tunnels.

How does a parachute fly with Aerodynamics?

A conventional round parachute works by slowing rate of descent. The resistance of the air against the bell of the parachute provides an opposing force to the gravity pulling down. Such parachutes have a small opening at the top to let the air out slowly and provide stability. Without the hole the parachute tends to swing from side to side like a pendulum allowing air to escape from the upper edge which makes for a very unhappy person beneath. There is limited control on such a parachute with lines that can open small vents or collapse portions of the parachute.

The wing parachute operates completely differently. Forward motion allows air into slots at the front, blowing up the chute into a wing shape. Normal aerodynamic principles apply where air flows over the curved top surface faster than under the wing reducing pressure above the wing and providing lift. Such parachutes can climb as well as descend. Control lines provide equivalence with normal airplane wing controls such as aerilons but they work by flexing the wing as a bird, rather than moving small sections as on a fixed wing. By adjusting the lift ratios on different edges of the wing, turning, stalling, diving etc are achieved.

What age do you have to be to skydive?

16 years old, I'd say but only with parent consent.

--- confirmed, 16 requires parental consent. 18 otherwise.

Where can you skydive at 16?

One of the few places in the USA is Start Skydiving, formerly in Lebanon, Ohio and now moving to Middletown. You will need notarized permission to both parents. One thing, though. You cannot do a tandem skydive, as that age limit is 18. But you can learn how to skydive at Start by taking the Accelerated Freefell (AFF) course at 16. It's about six hours in the classrom, followed by your jump. Instead of being attached to an instructor (like you would on a tandem) you wear a rig yourself. Two intructors jump with you, but you're trained to fly yourself, deal with any malfunctions and how to fly and land your canopy.

What are skydiving goggles made out of?

Plastic. The sort of plastic that, say, an mp3 player is packaged in but wrapped into goggle shape. Lightweight, flexible, and very strong.

Can you you skydive at 40000 feet?

No, since the air is too thin - there is not enough oxygen to breathe.

It can be done, but you have to wear an oxygen mask. The military does HALO (high altitude, low opening) jumps from 35,000+.

What is a normal height to skydive from?

Skydivers like to go at between 14,000 and 15,000 Altitude Above Ground Level, so they get more time to do tricks, practice relative work or just enjoy the feeling of dropping like a rock at 120mph for as long as possible.

How can you talk your wife out of skydiving?

I don't know why you would want to talk your wife out of skydiving. The instructors train them well and usually go with them on the first jump. Perhaps you should join her because they say once you get over the fear and try it, it's quite the thrill.

Where is skydiving done?

Skydiving can be done all over the world. Most people begin with a tandem skydive where you are hooked up to a qualified experienced instructor.

Jumps usually take place at small airfields away from major commerical airports. Most countries have a federation or association which manages all the dropzones in its country. For instance, in the UK, this job falls upon the British Parachute Association.

Indoor skydiving in Washington?

Check out the related link for more information on indoor skydiving.