Skydiving was perhaps the world’s first extreme sport, involving jumping out of an aircraft using a parachute to descend to earth. Skydivers use a two-parachute system, with a main parachute that is usually opened manually, along with a back-up parachute in case of emergencies. The back-up parachute is usually set up to open automatically if the main parachute fails to open or the skydiver is for some reason unable to manually open their main parachute.
The aircraft can be any vessel that can take flight, such as an aeroplane, helicopter, paraglider with tandem harness, microlight, hot air balloon or dirigible. Off-shoots of the sport of skydiving include base jumping, which takes place with a single parachute from a stationary object, as well as hang-gliding and paragliding.
Razi Salih is passionate about many forms of extreme sports including skydiving, along with jeep driving, motorcycling and snowboarding. For beginners, the PDF attachment provides some top tips to prepare for a first skydive. Part of the appeal of skydiving is experiencing views that cannot be seen any other way, so location is key to making the most of the experience.
Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Dubai in the United Arab Emirates is home to the famous drop zone at Palm Jumeirah Island and the largest skydiving school in the world, Skydive Dubai’s Desert Campus. Skydive Dubai manages all of the skydiving operations in the Emirates, offering a range of options from first-time jumps to training to become a professional skydiver. Indoor skydiving simulation experiences are also available, which can be a great way for first-timers to get an idea of what it is all about before committing to an outdoor jump. Newbies and unlicensed skydivers can experience outdoor skydives in a tandem jump with a qualified instructor at either the premium Palm Drop Zone or the Desert Campus Drop Zone. Licensed skydivers can also opt to experience a solo jump at either of these locations.
The infographic attachment looks at some of the most amazing world records achieved by skydivers.
Denarau Island, Fiji
Denarau Island in Fiji offers spectacular views of clear tropical waters and the coral and fish below, from a typical drop of around 14,000 feet. There are two main skydiving operators on Fiji, each of which caters to all ages and levels of experience. Skydive Fiji provides tandem skydives in Denarau and provides complimentary transfers to and from the airport as part of the package deals. Free Fall Fiji also offers pick-up and drop-off services and complimentary refreshments. Both companies operate with fully licensed professionals and offer drops of up to 14,000 feet.
Mount Everest, Nepal
When most people think about viewing Mount Everest, they envision days of hiking and climbing in extreme conditions and temperatures. However, there is another way to take in the spectacular scenery of the tallest mountain above sea level in the world, and that is with a skydive. Mount Everest skydives combine extreme landscape with extreme sports for the ultimate thrill-seekers’ experience. The Everest skydive team provide all the necessary clothing and equipment, including special jumpsuits to combat the cold, which can reach minus 48 degrees Fahrenheit. The main drop zone lies at an altitude of 12,050 feet, with a typical fall rate of around 140 miles per hour. Jumpers will freefall for just over half a minute next to Everest. Options include tandem jumping, wingsuiting and freeflying.
A definition of wingsuiting can be seen in the short video attachment.