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From Fear To Thrill: Facing Your Skydiving Anxieties Head On


Start Skydiving Posted by: Start Skydiving 8 months ago

Facing skydiving anxieties is one of the most difficult parts of deciding to jump out of an airplane. The act of exiting an airplane in mid-flight is completely outside of natural human behavior, so it’s understandable that it would come with some intense stress. 

Sure, there’s plenty you can overthink and worry about when falling toward the earth at 120 mph, but struggling over overcoming skydiving fear doesn’t have to keep you from undertaking one of the most fulfilling experiences of a lifetime. 

While a lot of the fears around skydiving are valid, understanding the actual risks versus the perceived risks and learning how to mitigate them certainly makes the idea of jumping out of an airplane a lot less scary. Using techniques to cope with your fear not only helps make skydiving more enjoyable, it also serves you well in other areas of your life. 

And, of course, it helps to know that you’re in good hands. Read on for some skydiving anxiety tips and let Start Skydiving support you as you embark on a life changing journey. 

Common Skydiving Fears

It’s completely normal to feel anxious about exiting an airplane and plummeting toward the ground at 120 mph. And the popular representation of skydiving as a reckless pursuit doesn’t exactly help in calming any of those fears! 

Equipment Malfunction 

The most common worry that arises around skydiving is equipment malfunction or failure. After all, once you leave the airplane, your entire life depends on the assumption that the gear you’re wearing will work properly. That’s a lot of responsibility for a bag of fabric and string! 

Here’s the reality. Many decades of research and development have gone into making the equipment skydivers currently use safer and more reliable than it’s ever been. In fact, equipment malfunctions account for a very small fraction of skydiving fatalities. And hear this: at Start Skydiving, we operate with an uncompromising commitment to safety. For us, doubts are don’ts – if we doubt the viability of any gear or equipment, we don’t jump it. Period. 

Our fleet of skydiving rigs is meticulously maintained and regularly inspected by an FAA certified rigger. And every tandem pack job is completed by a highly trained and experienced professional packer. 

Fear of Heights

Now that you know you don’t need to worry about equipment issues, what about those psychological and physiological reactions that are out of your control? A fear of heights is a very logical concern for someone considering exiting an airplane thousands of feet in the air, but it’s also actually a lot less of a problem than it seems. 

The extreme height at which skydiving occurs, and the lack of any close points of reference, mean that your brain can’t really process the height as something to fear. It’s like you’re flying over a topographical map rather than the ground. So, if looking out the window in a regular airplane feels OK, chances are you’ll be just fine when skydiving. What you’re really dealing with is altitude rather than height. There are actually a lot of licensed skydivers who have an extreme fear of heights and do just fine – many with thousands of skydives under their belt!

What If???

But, of course, there’s still the “what if?” What if you panic? What if you pass out? What if you … yikes … puke?? These are all valid concerns that could pose a real problem mid-jump. 

The good news is, between having an instructor who’s trained to handle anything thrown their way and some solid pre-jump calming techniques, it’s possible to not only make it through the skydive (even if you’re worried that you can’t!) but to have a fantastic time throughout!

Mind Over Matter

There are several techniques that even seasoned skydivers sometimes use to calm the nerves associated with jumping out of an airplane. Do you really think Team Fastrax never gets nervous before a big jump?? Think again! 

Starting your day off right is a big part of managing your nerves. Have a balanced breakfast, go for a run, do some meditating – whatever helps you find your Zen. Take some time before you even leave for the dropzone to get our mind where it needs to be. 

It also helps to visualize yourself on the jump and everything going well. If you can get your mind’s eye used to the idea of what you’re about to do, it’ll be a lot easier to process once your real eyes see it. 

And if you’re someone who needs more than just imagination to get used to something, YouTube is a great resource. There are plenty of skydiving videos on the internet that will show you exactly what it’s like to jump out of an airplane. 

Pro Tip: Maybe just avoid the videos that are intended to sensationalize fear.

Ultimately, you know your brain and body best, and chances are this isn’t the first stressful situation you’ve been in … and it won’t be the last. Dealing with the nerves of a skydive isn’t all that different than working through any other stressful situation. Do what calms you and your experience will be better for it. 

The Start Skydiving Assurance

On top of all of your efforts to keep yourself calm, you can also rest assured that we are doing everything in our power to make your skydiving experience go as smoothly as possible. We prioritize your safety and comfort above all else, and the most important thing to us is that you leave the dropzone happy

Every single one of our instructors is highly experienced and USPA certified as a minimum requirement of working at Start Skydiving. No matter which one of our instructors you’re paired with, you’ll know that they’re qualified to do their job. We only hire instructors who share our vision of safety and satisfaction. As Start Skydiving’s primary representatives, they know how to treat our customers with patience and respect: 

  • “I can’t thank Start Skydiving enough for making this experience one I will never forget. My instructor Stephen made me so comfortable and relaxed, as I was not sure I would even go through with the jump. I was reassured every step of the way that I was in good hands and safe.  This is a day I will never forget and Start Skydiving/Stephen made it one of the best experiences I have ever had!”
  • “A couple friends and I went to Start Skydiving for the first time. The staff was so friendly and nice. All of us went tandem. I was paired with Rodrigo Lopes. He was better than could be expected. He was funny, light-hearted and all around welcoming. He helped to calm my nerves and to make the experience one that I’ll never forget!”
  • “Our first time skydiving and we loved it. We did tandem jumps and our guys were easy going and knew what they were doing. Made us relaxed and able to enjoy the experience.”

Additionally, our airplanes, equipment, and infrastructure are all top-of-the-line and meticulously maintained. These are the variables that we have control over, and we take advantage of that opportunity to ensure they are in tip top shape. 

At Start Skydiving, we’re right there in the air with you. We’re your instructors, your pilots, your videographers, and we use all the same gear and facilities that you do. 

Our mission is that the love we feel for this sport comes across in the way we make you feel while you’re in the sky with us. 

Overcoming fear is both the hardest and most rewarding thing in life. It opens doors and shifts outlooks in life-changing ways. Come visit with us at Start Skydiving and let us help you open your wings and fly. Book your jump! Blue skies.