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How To Prepare For Your First Solo Jump


Start Skydiving Posted by: Start Skydiving 8 months ago

Learning how to skydive solo requires you to enroll in a comprehensive training program that equips aspiring with the necessary skills, knowledge, and confidence needed before they skydive solo. This quick guide will walk through some essential preparation steps and answer common questions, such as, “How many tandem jumps before solo jumping are required?” Let’s dive in! 

How Many Skydives Before Solo?

If you’ve frantically been Googling “how to solo skydive,” you’ve discovered by now that more often than not, a single tandem skydive is a prerequisite. Yes, just one! How come? Safety! Everything in skydiving is safety oriented. 

When you skydive for the first time, it’s easy to become overstimulated. During the tandem skydiving process, you’re introduced to a lot of NEW. Such as unfamiliar equipment and procedures, being in an airplane with the door open, and the sensations of freefall – your first time flying through the sky with nothing else but your incredible instructor

Tandem skydives are a great way to be introduced to the freedom of body flight, and for our frantic Googlers, are a fantastic first step in the gradual progression to skydiving solo. As a precursor, it offers insight to the sport before making the commitment to send it solo. 

Mental Preparation

Let’s start hyping yourself up! We’re not mathematicians, but we would bet that skydiving is about 90% mental and 10% physical. 

  • Do research.
    Entering the skydiving realm can be STRESSFUL. How can that be reduced? Education. We encourage you to reach out to us or do your own research about any concerns you may have. Whether you’re worried about the safety stats of the sport, how to dress, or what to eat on the day of your first solo skydive, we’ve got your answers! Solidifying these questions beforehand will give you the assurance you need to take the next steps in learning to jump solo. 
  • Breathe deeply.
    Practice some techniques that help to calm your nerves and re-engage your mind. There’s lots of learning that goes on before an initial solo jump, and if you find yourself feeling nervous, it’s good to have some tricks in your back pocket that you know will help keep you composed. 
  • Be present.
    Skydiving is all about enjoying the present moment! The next time you find yourself in a situation where you find your mind wandering, consciously work to bring yourself back. 
  • Increase stamina.
    Skydiving is a mentally demanding sport, and understandably so! Doing things that push your mental limits will help your brain gain stamina and be more quickly adaptable for all the “new” you’ll experience on your first solo jump! 
  • Embrace fear.
    This may be our most significant piece of advice: whole heartedly embrace the fear. Hug it! Love it! Accepting the (totally normal) fear about skydiving will make it easier to overcome. On the other hand, if you resist it, it will be a constant uphill battle. Taking the first step of acceptance allows you to conquer it! 

Physical Preparation 

Don’t worry … it’s not a prerequisite to look like a bodybuilder or marathon runner to skydive solo. If it was, (almost) all skydivers would be banned! That being said, skydiving is a physically demanding activity. 

When we skydive, our bodies have to resist the wind, which is flowing by at over 100 mph. Imagine sticking your arm out the window of a moving car, now multiply that by 10 and with your entire body! Let’s go over a few key moments of a skydive and how you can prepare your body for them. 

  • Prepare for the plane.
    Climbing into the plane, crouching down, scooching along the seat, and waddling to the door all take a degree of flexibility. Practicing some toe touches can help prep for this. 
  • Prepare for the sky.
    Arch! The “banana” position is the most common position in skydiving, and is the position you will be in while in freefall, during both a tandem skydive and first solo skydive. The arch can be practiced by lying on your stomach and pushing your chest up with your arms into a cobra position. Stretch that tummy! 
  • Prepare for the ground.
    The landing will go one of two ways – a stumble or a fabulous walk out, either way A+, you did the dang thing! Doing some squats, hamstring stretches, and quad stretches can help prepare your body to stick your first solo landing. 

What about attire? We suggest wearing clothing that allows for mobility and is weather appropriate. No open-toed shoes, please! 

Training & Education 

Is there an actual class that teaches you to skydive solo? You betcha! Accelerated Freefall (AFF) is the most all-encompassing, intensive, and efficient way to teach beginners how to skydive alone, and we are so proud to use this method! A First Jump Course (FJC) is taught by a certified instructor and takes place prior to the first solo jump. This five to eight hour course takes place on the ground and extensively covers every part of the skydive, how to safely handle any possible situation, and how to have a successful first solo jump – woo! 

Solo Skydiving Requirements 

How can you skydive alone? By meeting the following requirements! 

  • 18 years old (no maximum age limit)
  • Maximum of 235 lbs 
  • Be height-to-weight proportionate
  • Generally good physical and mental health

Requirements or restrictions in the skydiving world are never put in place to exclude anyone, but to ensure the experience is safe and fun for both students and instructors. 

Are you ready to get a tandem under your belt, discover skydiving is the best thing since sliced bread, and learn to skydive solo!? Book your First Jump Course today! We cannot wait to have you and welcome you to our sky fam. Blue skies.