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Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)?

 


Poll: Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)?
Good idea. 48 / 40%
Bad Idea. 18 / 15%
Ridiculous idea. 53 / 45%
119 total votes
 
mkb0909  (D 31965)

Dec 22, 2011, 7:32 PM
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Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? Can't Post

What are people's thoughts on this? I think it is an absurd requirement. I was taught to fly my canopy with my head on a swivel and be aware of what's around me at all times and never assume I have the air all to myself. I think flying your canopy with your eyes closed makes about as much sense as driving or cycling on a public road with your eyes closed, even if you 'assume' it's empty.Pirate According to a contact on the S&T committee, this is so people can 'feel' their canopy. I think they are more likely to 'feel' someone else's canopy or body or a plane or the ground, than they are to benefit from this absurd idea. Apparently, this has been in the SIM for some time, however until now, most instructors have exercised common sense and chosen not to have students pilot their canopy with their eyes closed. I'm curious if anyone thinks that flying your canopy with your eyes closed will actually decrease canopy related fatalities.


(This post was edited by mkb0909 on Dec 22, 2011, 7:39 PM)


diablopilot  (D License)

Dec 22, 2011, 8:06 PM
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Re: [mkb0909] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

Considering one of the requirements of the canopy progression card is that all the qualifying jumps be done as hop and pops with planning and focus on JUST canopy flight, I think the danger is pretty small.


davelepka  (D 21448)

Dec 22, 2011, 8:09 PM
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Re: [mkb0909] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

 
As a guy who already knows it all, I don't read the SIM or keep up on the 'latest news' from the USPA. Clear this up for me, is this a USPA reccomendation (or, god help me, a requirement) for how people are supposed to learn to fly a canopy?

I'm guessing it is, and it's another example of the USPA doing nothing that makes any sense with regards to training people to fly parachutes. Let's review -

It all started with the USPA 'reccomending' that people take a canopy control course. They did not endorse, organize, or train people to administer a canopy control course, but they sure enough reccomended that everyone go out and take one (after you find one, and hopefully a good one.

Next, they were good enough to print a poster reminding jumpers to be safe under canopy, and sent it to group member DZs to hang up. Of course this was because jumpers didn't know they should 'be safe' under canopy, and jumpers are mentaly on par with a 9 year old gril, and love to stand around and look at posters. Again, there was no extrapolation on what 'be safe' meant, just that you should do it.

Now they have progressed to making an actual reccomendation of direct action a jumper can take, and it's to close their eyes and cram 5 practice flares into 15 seconds?

(I'm not sure the timing and count is correct on that, but if that is correct, can you even flare a canopy fully in 3 seconds? You can jam the toggles down, but will the canopy respond and complete it's reaction to the input within 3 seconds? How long does it take for the canopy to return to steady-state full flight (like you would have on final) to 'practice' another flare? My best guess it that you 'might' be able to get 2 full flare 'practices' from full flight within 15 seconds, and I stress 'might')

That aside, when was the last time anyone flared for an actual landing with their eyes closed? Why the hell would you practice it that way? Part of 'feeling' the canopy is relating it's actions to the horizon, and when you shut your eyes, your inner ear goes all wonky and you can't tell up from down (to some degree). No offence to the newbies out there, but the idea of practicing with your eyes closed sounds like one of those 'genius' ideas some newbie engineer-type thinks up at home, alone, and is going to use to really 'get to know' their canopy. It's absurd.

I still cannot why the USPA has such a resistance to using the resources we have available to us, and bringing the experts in to come with a 'real' plan that jumpers can follow, or better yet, a real class they can take. There are some very smart, talented canopy pilots out there who would be honored to donate their time to developing a program for the USPA that would run concurrently with the licensing program to further educate jumpers as they make their way to 'expert' status, but instead they give us 'close your eyes and flare'?


diablopilot  (D License)

Dec 22, 2011, 8:17 PM
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Re: [davelepka] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

They are on the right track on this one....
Quote:
Reminder: New B-License Requirements in Effect Soon As of January 1, 2012, the USPA B-license requirements will change for the first time in decades. In addition to the B-license application, a completed and signed USPA Canopy Piloting Proficiency Card will be required. A USPA Safety & Training Advisor must verify that the applicant has completed the training and must sign the proficiency card before it is submitted to USPA Headquarters for processing. The training material and guidelines, including the recommended qualifications for those who can teach the course materials, appear in Skydivers Information Manual Sections 6-10 and 6-11. The proficiency card is available in the SIM and as a download on the USPA website.

http://www.uspa.org/...PProficiencyCard.pdf


mkb0909  (D 31965)

Dec 22, 2011, 8:17 PM
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Re: [davelepka] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

It's a requirement now. 15 seconds was just a guesstimate of how long it would take to do 5 fairly quick flares. I think my flare is longer than 3 seconds, but I"m trying to be conservative in my estimate of how long you are now required to fly with your eyes closed. Apparently planning the jump and exiting from 5000' means there are no other hazards in the sky. I'm sure a lot of DZ's are going to ground all of their planes and only allow one jumper in the air at one time, so that anyone getting a B license can safely fly with their eyes closed. They will also shoot down any large birds or other planes that might be in the area. Oh, they better tell the dust devils not to kick up either while the jumper has their eyes closed.

http://www.uspa.org/Portals/0/Downloads/Form_CPProficiencyCard.pdf


Premier PhreeZone  (D License)
Moderator
Dec 22, 2011, 8:36 PM
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Re: [davelepka] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

Quote:
That aside, when was the last time anyone flared for an actual landing with their eyes closed? Why the hell would you practice it that way? Part of 'feeling' the canopy is relating it's actions to the horizon, and when you shut your eyes, your inner ear goes all wonky and you can't tell up from down (to some degree). No offence to the newbies out there, but the idea of practicing with your eyes closed sounds like one of those 'genius' ideas some newbie engineer-type thinks up at home, alone, and is going to use to really 'get to know' their canopy. It's absurd.

Dave, try to do a flare with your eyes closed at altitude sometime. This is a normal activity that is taught in the majority of the canopy courses I have seen over the last 5-7 years. The point of the activity is to get you to fee the swing of your body under and then in front of the canopy for proper flare timing. Removing the vision makes you focus on the sensation you are feeling and not what you are/are not seeing. If you are flaring too fast you only feel yourself in front, if you are flaring too slow you don't really feel any movement but a properly timed flare lets you feel all the motion. I've done this as part of the 3 canopy courses I have taken including 2 from Scott Miller and I've seen it used in lots of others. You should not have balance issues just by closing your eyes and if you do then you might have a medical condition that needs to be looked at since you should be able to maintain balance without sight (Otherwise I am not sure how blind people could walk)


diablopilot  (D License)

Dec 22, 2011, 8:43 PM
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Re: [mkb0909] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

Did you know the sky is falling?


mkb0909  (D 31965)

Dec 22, 2011, 8:57 PM
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Re: [diablopilot] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

I"m not suggesting it's likely that something bad will happen. I'm just suggesting it is likelier when you have your eyes closed. I don't have to close my eyes to find my canopy's sweet spot or know whether it's in front of me or behind me. I can feel it just fine with my eyes open while being more aware of any potential hazards. I think where someone jumps factors in as well. At a cessna DZ, this is not a big deal, at somewhere with multiple turbines flying at the same time, it could be a bigger deal.


Premier billvon  (D 16479)
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Dec 22, 2011, 9:25 PM
Post #9 of 108 (2119 views)
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Re: [mkb0909] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

>I think flying your canopy with your eyes closed makes about as much sense as
>driving or cycling on a public road with your eyes closed, even if you 'assume' it's
>empty.

Or flying with a hood on during pilot training?


pchapman  (D 1014)

Dec 22, 2011, 10:01 PM
Post #10 of 108 (2105 views)
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Re: [mkb0909] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
I don't have to close my eyes to find my canopy's sweet spot or know whether it's in front of me or behind me.

OK, YOU don't, with 400+ jumps. The idea is for NOVICES to learn to feel the canopy without the visual distraction. It's a teaching technique.

The specific numbers and timings reported for the SIM are a bit odd. One should be able to get the right effect by closing eyes and doing one flare, taking one's time (no 3 sec rush), and opening eyes to check one's surroundings between each flare attempt.


jrjny  (A License)

Dec 22, 2011, 10:58 PM
Post #11 of 108 (2091 views)
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Re: [mkb0909] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

I'd like to see someone flare with their eyes closed and land.


piisfish

Dec 23, 2011, 1:22 AM
Post #12 of 108 (2052 views)
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Re: [jrjny] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
I'd like to see someone flare with their eyes closed and land.
I did complete paraglider flights blindfolded and guided by radio as part of a research on how to teach blind people to paraglide. It was very interesting Smile And provided guidance is good, landings were scary, but good


JerseyShawn  (Student)

Dec 23, 2011, 1:42 AM
Post #13 of 108 (2047 views)
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Re: [jrjny] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
I'd like to see someone flare with their eyes closed and land.

Im sure you realize the drill isn't meant for blind landingsLaugh

I would imagine its to feel when youre approaching 0 G's/line slack/collapse, rather than looking up at your canopy when you get near a stall, taking your eyes off of other canopies in the area that you can run into.

I used to look up at my canopy doing my control stall checks after opening, what younger jumper wouldn't, feeling the canopy start to collapse. Even though I would look all directions first, for a few seconds I wasn't paying attention to what other canopies could be next to me in those few seconds (were in constant motion til we land).

Being able to feel your canopies stall point (doing radical turns, avoidance maneuvers, getting out of a bad spot, turbulent conditions, ect.) without looking up at at a stalling canopy and adjusting properly while keeping your eyes out for others is beneficial to learn (for the newer jumpers). Feeling a canopy about to collapse isn't a natural feeling, tendencies will be to look up until were used to it, looking away from traffic.

I don't look when I feel my canopy about to stall anymore, just slowly adjust with my eyes on others flying around.

Edit: I didn't need to close my eyes to feel my canopy stall and feel its effect, I simply didn't look at it anymore when I practiced other than the visual inspection upon opening.


(This post was edited by JerseyShawn on Dec 23, 2011, 2:03 AM)


chuckakers  (D 10855)

Dec 23, 2011, 4:19 AM
Post #14 of 108 (2001 views)
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Re: [jrjny] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
I'd like to see someone flare with their eyes closed and land.

That's easy, once.Laugh


theonlyski  (D License)

Dec 23, 2011, 5:07 AM
Post #15 of 108 (1975 views)
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Re: [jrjny] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
I'd like to see someone flare with their eyes closed and land.

Go watch first time jumpers at the army airborne school... many of them do night jumps at 10 am!Laugh


theonlyski  (D License)

Dec 23, 2011, 5:08 AM
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Re: [billvon] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
>I think flying your canopy with your eyes closed makes about as much sense as
>driving or cycling on a public road with your eyes closed, even if you 'assume' it's
>empty.

Or flying with a hood on during pilot training?

Slight difference there is that you have a safety pilot to keep you clear of aircraft and other things.


davelepka  (D 21448)

Dec 23, 2011, 5:13 AM
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Re: [PhreeZone] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

Quote:
You should not have balance issues just by closing your eyes and if you do then you might have a medical condition that needs to be looked at since you should be able to maintain balance without sight (Otherwise I am not sure how blind people could walk)

Blind people can walk because they have the solid ground to use as a reference point, and they spend their entire life learning to walk without a visual reference. Comapre that to a sighted person, who uses visual references everyday for all of their movements, and can you see how the change might be more drastic than comparing them to a blind person.

Without the ground as a solid reference point, you use the visible horizon (or ground) as your reference point, and that build off of that. This is the reason we have IFR flight, when there is no visual reference or solid ground to stand on, the inner ear gets confused and leads to spatial disorientation.

The resutls can be more dire in an aircraft, where you can enter a spin and possibly not recover. A canopy is different in that it shouldn't produce such negative results, but if you're trying to get someone to 'feel' what a canopy is doing, removing one of their balance refernce points seems like a step in the wrong direction.

A better move might be to explain what to look for, and have the student focus on that aspect during the manuver. If you're trying to illustrate the movement of the canopy relative to the jumper, you might even have them look up at the canopy, and see how it's position changes during the flare. Maybe do one or two watching the canopy, then one or two looking ahead (as if you were landing) and then 'feel' what you just saw.


DaVinciflies

Dec 23, 2011, 8:51 AM
Post #18 of 108 (1887 views)
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Re: [PhreeZone] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
This is a normal activity that is taught in the majority of the canopy courses I have seen over the last 5-7 years.

Agree. I have been instructed to do this in all 4 canopy courses I have attended.


BMichaeli  (C License)

Dec 23, 2011, 8:59 AM
Post #19 of 108 (1881 views)
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Re: [mkb0909] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

The slip stream canopy corse teaches this. I have taken it and actually found that closing my eyes helps you really feel the progression of the flair. We were instructed to do a hop and pop then turn north or south and proceed with checking our air space then closing our eyes and flare hold it for a second then return to full flight open our eyes and again check our air space. with the vertical and horizontal separation between each jumper we were pretty safe. We were exiting from 5K and were not supposed to do any more maneuvers under 2K. I at the time had around 250 jumps however most of the people in the class had under 20 jumps.


Kralovec  (C License)

Dec 23, 2011, 10:16 AM
Post #20 of 108 (1849 views)
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Re: [mkb0909] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

I think it is a good idea based on the intent of the canopy card and not what you are making it out to be.

The idea of closing your eyes and doing a practice flare deprives you of one sense to help you better appreciate your other senses.

This card, like all thing give to new jumper will require instruction to explain how to properly preform the tasks. Just because it says "Practice flares, five with eyes closed" does not mean this should all before at one time keeping your eyes closed the entire time.

This was one of the first thing I tired on my new canopy on a high pull after reading. 25 Ways to Become a Better Canopy Pilot (http://parachutistonline.com/...-better-canopy-pilot).

I looked in all direction to make sure the air space was clear, closed my eyes, did a practice flare, and then opened my eyes to make sure I ways still clear.


InfiniteSky  (B 33221)

Dec 23, 2011, 10:18 AM
Post #21 of 108 (1847 views)
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Re: [mkb0909] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

I did that drill in the canopy course I did as a newbie. It was made clear that we were to clear our airspace before each flare and open our eyes upon returning to full flight. I would say that doing them consecutively without opening your eyes would be foolish. FWIW we also did flares watching the canopy and flares looking at the horizon. I think it's definitely a useful drill to learn to feel your canopy early on.


DaVinciflies

Dec 23, 2011, 10:22 AM
Post #22 of 108 (1842 views)
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Re: [davelepka] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
As a guy who already knows it all,...

I assume you're joking, right?!!


dthames  (B 37674)

Dec 23, 2011, 10:32 AM
Post #23 of 108 (1839 views)
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Re: [mkb0909] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

Just looking at what the card says, couldn't you take a look around after each blind flare? I don't see anything about keeping your eyes closed the entire time.

Maybe it is to enhance the Jeti skills, or the first step toward instrument rating requirements.


Premier billvon  (D 16479)
Moderator
Dec 23, 2011, 10:37 AM
Post #24 of 108 (1837 views)
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Re: [theonlyski] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

>Slight difference there is that you have a safety pilot to keep you clear of aircraft and other things.

So have them get out on their own pass. Or if they absolutely have to jump in traffic, put a radio on them and have someone on the ground say "OK you're clear." Or just do it well away from other people. If you are 1000 feet from anyone else, it is unlikely that any other canopies will manage to accelerate to 100 knots and hit you before you open your eyes again - even if it's a very long flare.


(This post was edited by billvon on Dec 23, 2011, 10:39 AM)


jimjumper  (D 11137)

Dec 23, 2011, 10:38 AM
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Re: [mkb0909] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

Not to hijack this thread but the other thing that I notice is that the signature requirement on the proficiency card is S&TA only. I assume that this means Instructors can no longer sign off "B' or "C" liscenses? If so, our S&TA's are gonna keep even busier than they are already.


DBCOOPER  (D 24112)

Dec 23, 2011, 12:09 PM
Post #26 of 108 (919 views)
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Re: [billvon] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
>... Or if they absolutely have to jump in traffic, put a radio on them and have someone on the ground say "OK you're clear." ....

That might just be the answer to swoopers too...


diablopilot  (D License)

Dec 23, 2011, 4:30 PM
Post #27 of 108 (876 views)
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Re: [jimjumper] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Not to hijack this thread but the other thing that I notice is that the signature requirement on the proficiency card is S&TA only. I assume that this means Instructors can no longer sign off "B' or "C" liscenses? If so, our S&TA's are gonna keep even busier than they are already.

Instructors may still sign for licenses, S&TA's are the ones who must sign the CP card. I think the intent is to maintain some standards, and have a lower number of the card "whipped".


jimjumper  (D 11137)

Dec 23, 2011, 4:52 PM
Post #28 of 108 (865 views)
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Re: [diablopilot] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

I'd believe that if DZ's were required to have S&TA's that actually had some qualifiactions. I've seen S&TA's that had never jumped much less had any instructional ratings.


PiLFy  (A License)

Dec 23, 2011, 5:14 PM
Post #29 of 108 (853 views)
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Re: [mkb0909] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

Here's the new card: http://www.uspa.org/...PProficiencyCard.pdf

I don't see where you're getting "Fifteen seconds w/eyes closed" from(?). It's really a moot point, though. No way am I flying around under canopy for fifteen looong seconds w/my eyes closed.

Maybe it's my newness to the sport, but I really don't see the benefit of this new requirement. If it taught me more about effective piloting? Sure, that would be great. I did most of my training last year. I already had to do every canopy drill this supposedly new card cites, w/only one exception. We didn't do simulated flares from 1/4, 1/2, & 3/4 brakes.


Premier skybytch  (D License)

Dec 23, 2011, 5:46 PM
Post #30 of 108 (835 views)
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Re: [PiLFy] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Maybe it's my newness to the sport, but I really don't see the benefit of this new requirement.

Maybe for some people there is no benefit. For me and for many of the people who have done the canopy courses we put on, there is great benefit. I hear nothing but positive feedback from those who do the flare exercises in our course (flare looking at the horizon, flare looking up at the canopy and flare with eyes closed).

Like mentioned upthread, nobody is saying you should close your eyes and fly your parachute for fifteen seconds straight. Five practice flares with your eyes closed, clearing airspace before and after each one, preferably on a jump dedicated to canopy flight practice... not a safety issue.

Go do it once and then come back and tell us how it wasn't helpful...


shattenjager  (C 41561)

Dec 23, 2011, 5:53 PM
Post #31 of 108 (834 views)
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Re: [PiLFy] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

It's on number two drill: Practice flare, five with eye closed.


tdog  (D 28800)

Dec 23, 2011, 6:18 PM
Post #32 of 108 (827 views)
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Re: [jimjumper] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Not to hijack this thread but the other thing that I notice is that the signature requirement on the proficiency card is S&TA only. I assume that this means Instructors can no longer sign off "B' or "C" liscenses? If so, our S&TA's are gonna keep even busier than they are already.

Considering the only S&TA I know at our DZ is a member at large, and is a Tandem instructor doing back to backs all day, the requirement to have an S&TA sign it is foolish and stupid. He will never be in the landing area helping or have time to coach or instruct.

I think the DZO is an S&TA, but he is never in the landing area and does not teach. He has a lot of other legitimate things to do, such as run a business.

I think there is another TM who is the DZ S&TA, at least he told me he was about an year ago, but he also is only at the DZ when doing tandems...

The S&TA concept is not "endorsed" by all DZOs/DZs. Some use them a lot - others rely on instructors, staff, mentors and others to help with safety.

The S&TA concept is a tough conflict of interest... I had a DZO (not my home DZ) tell me once, "I own this business, not the USPA. I will be the one sued if someone gets hurt, not the USPA. So when it comes to safety, I run the ship, my rules, my policy, my enforcement, not the USPA. Therefore the S&TA is useless."

Instructors (AFF) are the ones that work with students every day. AFF instructors can be on loads and can be asked by other jumpers, "hey, watch my landing, I am getting this signed off." They are the ones in the landing area looking up every load. The USPA, in effort to actually get students to LEARN should consider who the resources are that can help TEACH. An S&TA is not the right tool for every DZ.


diablopilot  (D License)

Dec 23, 2011, 7:09 PM
Post #33 of 108 (815 views)
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Re: [jimjumper] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
I'd believe that if DZ's were required to have S&TA's that actually had some qualifiactions. I've seen S&TA's that had never jumped much less had any instructional ratings.

Well we've got to start fixing it sometime, right?


diablopilot  (D License)

Dec 23, 2011, 7:21 PM
Post #34 of 108 (808 views)
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Re: [tdog] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

The S&TA isn't signing it for the DZ. The S&TA is signing it for the jumper, and the USPA. If a DZO doesn't want to use them that's fine, but then they won't be able to offer their jumpers the benefits of the USPA.

No one says by this that the S&TA has to be the one to supervise the jumps, they can delegate that responsibility to the instructor/coaches. The S&TA's are simply ensuring that the education is happening. It's always been intended by the USPA that instructors work under the supervision of S&TA's much like coaches work under the supervision of Instructors.

I understand that being a full timer on a DZ means that you have to jump for money and may not be in the landing area, or able to drop everything to watch an event. That's where an S&TA who knows their instructors well enough, delegates. If your S&TA's can't find the time when jumping is done to sign a card, or check some knowledge then you have the wrong people in the role.

At your home DZ in particular you have a team that teaches this canopy stuff within the A license package, right? Then the S&TA can simply confirm that this team has done the job, or perhaps one of them needs to become an S&TA (Slipstream).

The USPA seems to be getting the programs back on track to the way they were intended to work.


Para5-0  (D 19054)

Dec 23, 2011, 7:41 PM
Post #35 of 108 (808 views)
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Re: [tdog] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

Hello All,

If I can clarify a few points or muddy the waters a bit probably.

This was a response/complaint we had about the S&TA having sign off athority.

Complaint
Sign off authority complaint from the membership.... they want it to be any instructor. So far this is not advanced canopy training and they feel any Instructor should be able to teach , supervise and sign off on the form.

Response
We hashed this out at the meeting and determined that there were some very competent non Instructors who could teach the course. That is why we gave the overall authority to the S&TA to select who he felt was qualified. By him signing the form he is approving of the Course Director as now referred to. The S&TA is someone we can stay in contact for future updates and changes and that I feel we should empower to oversee this program. The S&TA is in theory someone who is our link to the DZ and in our chain of command so to speak. If the S&TA is not competent enough to handle this then replace the S&TA. I also think this is too important to just let any instructor sign off on it (Tandem, Static, Etc., without some internal control. Students will just go to the easiest or most lienent instructor and get signatures. If we keep the control with the S&TA that may still happen but it will be seriously reduced. One last point- this is advanced canopy training as defined by the sim sections, it is not just 5 basic hop and pops. The syllabus is very detailed and should be taught as a canopy class. It also allows the canopy courses out there to all start to come together using the SIM as a starting point for a national syllabus. With input from the big dogs out there we can add or delete as we go.

The S&TA does NOT have to teach the course he just needs to approve the person teaching it and ultimately sign the card saying it was taught properly and in accordenance with the SIM. We did have it originally as an instructor which drew critisim from members teaching canopy progression with no ratings. It was a bit of give and take and as I mentioned a starting point.


As far as the eyes closed, I reponded to the complaint or I think the OP as follows: and this was the sentiment of the S&T committee.
"I too had some concern about this being on the card but it was determined via debate to be a good thing and that it should STAY there and not be removed. If the below posters had an issue with it, I am curious why it was not voiced prior. Section 6-11F4 has stated for some time now, "repeat the practice flares with eyes closed, paying close attention to the physical sensation during each phase of the flare." We did NOT add this, it was already there.

As Skydive University has preached for some time Kinestetic development is, "A sensory report that subconsciously tells us where our body parts are in relation to our environment" (Skydive University Coaches Certification Clinic, pp.13)."

Listen, if you clear your air space and make a flare to feel the sensation and open your eyes to clear the airspace again. I truly believe this can be accomplished safely. We just need to brief it properly on the ground and explain the benefit of the drill and of course the potential hazards of closing your eyes for a few seconds.

Lets not forget the reason for USPA is tackling the issue. We are attempting to add a continueing educational component to our requirements. As I have stated many times we used to have to beg students to take a canopy class by being proactive and seeking them out. Usually the ones in the class are the self motivated skydivers who are not and will not be the problem. We were trying to figure a way to MAKE skydivers come to us for the training. and when I say us I mean advanced canopy pilots, instructional rating holders, instructors, and S&TA's. We have accomplished at least that. Now the new jumpers wanting a B license must be educated on section 6-10 and 6-11, similar to water training.
Now, if anyone has any recomendations or suggestions to add or delete material in those sections please let me know and I will bring it to the next meeting for discussion.
The S&T committee did their best to start a program to address the rash of canopy incidents. Fuuture topics were even C and D license requirements for canopy to keep the student skydiver learning right up until his D license.
I am all ears for any suggestions but please try not to get side tracked from the ultimate goal of reducing canopy incidents.

Further, it may be difficult to track the progress of this idea. Why? It is hard to track avoided incidents. Sorry to rampble on.

Rich Winstock
National Director


(This post was edited by Para5-0 on Dec 23, 2011, 7:41 PM)


tdog  (D 28800)

Dec 23, 2011, 8:59 PM
Post #36 of 108 (787 views)
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Re: [Para5-0] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

Quote:
This was a response/complaint we had about the S&TA having sign off athority.

Complaint
Sign off authority complaint from the membership.... they want it to be any instructor. So far this is not advanced canopy training and they feel any Instructor should be able to teach , supervise and sign off on the form.

Being that one of my best friends, and a fellow instructor who was once my coach and someone I respected a lot when I was learning - both died last year due to canopy incidents - I can tell you I support your efforts 100%... It was a sad year.

Now back on topic.

I don't understand the logic of S&TAs signing off. It seems like the wrong answer to a real problem.

S&TAs are politically appointed members of the establishment. I looked up a few random dropzones and found often it is the DZO. For example, in my home state, every DZO is a S&TA - or director of the military program at the military base. A S&TA faced with challenges of making a profit, can, if they choose, turn the new B licence program into a profit center and force their customers to attend a for-profit course. As a business owner, I understand the need for profit, but saving lives are so much more important. This needs to be a grass roots, gorrila marketing, solution, not part of the establishment. More instructors, not less, should be encouraged to help students. More conversations, not less, should occur. Limiting the program to S&TAs actually, in my opinion, isolates this program from the daily conversations that could or should occur between skydivers.

There are no requirements for an S&TA to have any knowledge of anything... Here is exactly what the USPA says about S&TAs:

Quote:
Safety and Training Advisors are usually very experienced instructors (although instructional ratings are not specifically required), who possess a great deal of knowledge in all aspects of skydiving and drop zone operations. An S&TA should be available at the drop zone anytime skydiving operations are conducted. The drop zone owner will select an S&TA for the drop zone and notify his Regional Director of his choice. If the Regional Director agrees with the selection, the appointment is forwarded to the Director of Safety and Training at USPA Headquarters for processing. If you are interested in an S&TA appointment, contact your drop zone owner or Regional Director.

By contrast, instructors are tested for their ability to teach and knowledge prior to earning ratings. They work every day (or just on weekends) with students. Sometimes they are equally part of the "political system", by making money from a DZO, following the DZO's policies, but sometimes they are retired from working at the DZ, but still are mentors to many.

Quote:
I also think this is too important to just let any instructor sign off on it

This kind of offends me. If the USPA is worried that instructors are not serious about teaching, they seem to forget instructors are faced with life or death teaching experiences every day. 50 jumps before it is time to teach someone how not to die under canopy, we have to teach our students how to pull and deal with malfunctions.

Quote:
If the S&TA is not competent enough to handle this then replace the S&TA.

There is absolutely no way any student, instructor or skydiver can do this. The appointments are part of a political system. Perhaps you are suggesting the public can vote out the regional director and hope the new RD would appoint a new S&TA - but that takes years. And even then, the DZO chooses the S&TA, the regional director can only approve the candidate.

Solutions? Maybe limit the signatures to AFF, SL, IAD instructors (not tandem). Make instructors apply for an "endorsement" to sign the card - and just add it into the existing computer system as another instructor type. There are solutions...


P.S. I started this post to say that I support your mission because I have lost friends.

Would this program have saved their lives? I am confident not. One friend died while being under the direct coaching of a world class canopy competitor. The other was one of the most experienced canopy pilots in our region. Both hit the ground "in the corner." Both had D licences and thousand(s) of jumps. I have seen other incidents first hand, and it has become clear to me the USPA can do very little to prevent swooping incidents. However, the braked turns and canopy collisions are an area where USPA coaching can help. Once someone starts doing high performance landings, it becomes very personal and very individual, and I can't see any standardized program helping.


(This post was edited by tdog on Dec 23, 2011, 9:04 PM)


tdog  (D 28800)

Dec 23, 2011, 9:20 PM
Post #37 of 108 (774 views)
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Re: [diablopilot] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

Quote:
The USPA seems to be getting the programs back on track to the way they were intended to work.

I agree... However I also think that the S&TA is a broken concept full of political appointments, etc.

In the business world, 3rd party testing agencies certify people to have proper skills, that, do not have a financial incentive.

The FAA endorses pilots. The USPA endorses instructors. DZOs and politically elected individuals endorse S&TAs.

I rather see instructors (even if it is just a whole new type of instructor with no freefall teaching skills, but canopy skills) earn a rating to teach. It would give a lot of credibility to the program and process and get everyone, not just a select few appointees, involved.


Para5-0  (D 19054)

Dec 23, 2011, 9:33 PM
Post #38 of 108 (772 views)
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Re: [tdog] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

I think everyone is tip toeing around a concept that has been discussed and will contine to be discussed; A Canopy Instructor Rating, dare I say that.


VideoFly  (D 25621)

Dec 23, 2011, 9:44 PM
Post #39 of 108 (768 views)
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Re: [mkb0909] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

I am not sure that adding flying with your eyes closed without appropriate instruction would be helpful. I have never been told to close my eyes by any instructors, but I have been doing it for years. I kind of discovered on my own that after ensuring clear air space, periodic flight with my eyes closed enhances my awareness of canopy flight characteristics. For me, it has been a valuable learning tool, but again, the practice requires a lot of explanation, analysis, and subsequent reflection. Unfortunately, I dont believe we see a lot of those attributes in much of what we call skydiving instruction.

The learning technique may be a good one, but not in the absence of quality instruction.


Andrewwhyte  (C 1988)

Dec 23, 2011, 10:02 PM
Post #40 of 108 (762 views)
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Re: [VideoFly] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

Is there anything that stipulates that the eyes must remain closed continuously for this exercise or can the novice open his/her eyes between iterations to check for traffic/spot?


Premier skybytch  (D License)

Dec 24, 2011, 6:42 AM
Post #41 of 108 (725 views)
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Re: [tdog] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

I'm encouraged that the BOD has begun to address this issue. My hope/guess is that this is a start on the way to a full canopy education program that will include dedicated canopy coach ratings.

In reply to:
I don't understand the logic of S&TAs signing off.

In the absence of dedicated canopy coaches, having an S&TA sign off the card is the best option. Most if not all S&TA's know the local jumpers and instructors; they know which instructors teach canopy control well and which ones tell noobs they'll be fine under 1.5 loaded Katanas.

In reply to:
50 jumps before it is time to teach someone how not to die under canopy, we have to teach our students how to pull and deal with malfunctions.

Your skills as an instructor are not being maligned by this requirement. You know that there are at least some instructors out there who should not be allowed to talk to anybody about canopy control. Are you okay with those instructors being able to sign people off without any oversight?

In reply to:
There are no requirements for an S&TA to have any knowledge of anything...

There are no requirements for a BOD member to have any knowledge of anything, and they are the ones doing the appointing of the S&TA's - not to mention they are the ones making these decisions.

Here's a question for those who are complaining about this requirement - have you taught even one basic canopy control course at your local dz within the past year?


PiLFy  (A License)

Dec 24, 2011, 7:00 AM
Post #42 of 108 (717 views)
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Re: [skybytch] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

"Go do it once and then come back and tell us how it wasn't helpful..."

"I did most of my training last year. I already had to do every canopy drill this supposedly new card cites, w/only one exception. We didn't do simulated flares from 1/4, 1/2, & 3/4 brakes."

As I'd said earlier. I've already done it during my initial training. It WAS very helpful to me. My point is that I already had to fulfill the requirement for my A. Why require it to be done again, & be signed off only by an ST&A? If I didn't display enough proficiency doing the initial drills. My instructors would've made me do them again until I was. Are these canopy drills not already a part of the standardized training that students receive in this country?


(This post was edited by PiLFy on Dec 24, 2011, 7:01 AM)


Para5-0  (D 19054)

Dec 24, 2011, 7:30 AM
Post #43 of 108 (707 views)
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Re: [PiLFy] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

The answer to why make you do them again is multi facitted:
1) One of the main purposes of the card is to go over section 6-10 and 6-11. These sections mimic most canopy courses to date and include invaluable information. The end goal, we are using these two sections as a starting point for a basic canopy course. If you have to do the drills a second time, does it really hurt that much. Repetition is a good thing and the better you learn all of your controls and the canopy flight characteristics the safer you will be especially in an avoidance or emergency scenario.

2) If you instructor feels you completed a particular portion of the card then by all means let him endorse it under the supervision of an S&TA.

GOALS of this iniciative:
1) Begin a continueing education curriculum in canopy.
2) Look to improve the syllabus as we move forward.
3) Discuss advanced criteria for C or D license to keep continuity in prigression training.
4) Have all Canopy Instructors and courses begin to get on the same page with the instruction being taught.
5) Eventually discuss a Canopy Instructor rating and if that is the direction we want to head.

Another main goal is to standardize the canopy education being received. To standardize it we are not recreating the wheel we are asking for all of the course instructors out there to assist USPA in improving what we already have.


PiLFy  (A License)

Dec 24, 2011, 7:42 AM
Post #44 of 108 (708 views)
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Re: [Para5-0] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

Hi Rich,
So, these new requirements aren't just the expense & time of five jumps. They're a part of a mandatory class I must pay for?

I've some questions, please. I already had to do every one of those "New" drills, save one, when I was a student last year. We didn't do simulated flares from 1/4, 1/2, & 3/4 brakes. If I didn't display sufficient proficiency during those drills. My instructors would've made me do them until I did. Are those drills not already a part of the standardized training students receive? If this new requirement is such a positive step towards increased safety. Why did I just receive an E-mail from USPA urging me to send in my application (& monie$) before Jan 1, to circumvent the new requirement? From your post, am I to infer that additional time & money demands are coming for other requirements I've already fulfilled?

This sport is already expensive. It's too expensive for many who would otherwise like to pursue it. Adding to that expense w/o providing additional benefit doesn't seem like the way forward. I've an alternative suggestion. How about a few of you canopy Gurus get together & write a short book? USPA's Essential Canopy Drills need be nothing more than a short affair, including the canopy drills you wish to impart. Any DZ has instructors readily available to clarify any points of confusion for a student. Would that not accomplish the same, or more objectives, w/o adding nearly as much to the costs? Ultimately, would that not be a better way to bring more people into the fold? Increasing safety & membership numbers is the bottom line, right?

Edit to add: Oops. I just saw that you replied to me while I was typing. Sorry for any repeats, Rich.


(This post was edited by PiLFy on Dec 24, 2011, 7:46 AM)


Para5-0  (D 19054)

Dec 24, 2011, 8:06 AM
Post #45 of 108 (694 views)
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Re: [PiLFy] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

 
In reply to:
So, these new requirements aren't just the expense & time of five jumps. They're a part of a mandatory class I must pay for?

As much as I dont want to make anyone have to pay anything for extra instruction the fact is they probably will have to. The answer would depend on the DZ. Remember you have to have 50 jumps to be elligible for your B license. So requirring 5 dedicated jumps to just canopy practice, repetition , and education is not that big of an investment. You would have to do the five jumps anyway. Depending on how your DZ and instructors decide to implement this program is really up to them. If you are a student that is right around the 50 jump mark and this new requirement wasnt put into place, I would suggest you take a canopy course at your earliest convienence. The cost of that will range from 100-300 plus jumps depending on the class. All USPA is trying to do is require the education but unfortunately it cant be done for free, so yes there will be some expense.


In reply to:
Are those drills not already a part of the standardized training students receive?

Keep in mind as a student you are usually on rental studen gear loaded .75.1.0 and you are very overwhelmed with learning as much as possible. At 50 jumps you more than likely will be flying a smaller canopy and quite possibly your own canopy that you will have for some time. These drills are recommended after you change you canopy anytime during your career. An example would be any experienced swooper changing canopies or downsizing. He/she will repeat these drills hundreds of times to get the feel of the flight characteristics. This is done before attempting any high speed/performance landing.
I will defer your question to your canopy coach or instructor by the way because I really am shooting in the dark as to your specific experience.

In reply to:
If this new requirement is such a positive step towards increased safety. Why did I just receive an E-mail from USPA urging me to send in my application (& monie$) before Jan 1, to circumvent the new requirement? From your post, am I to infer that additional time & money demands are coming for other requirements I've already fulfilled?

I will agree in one area if I understand you correctly. USPA probably shouldnt be advertizing to renew before Jan 1 to avoid the extra requirement. The requirement is a good thing and should be encouraged. That will be a mute point in about 6 days. It will be requirred for all students wanting a B license

In reply to:
This sport is already expensive. It's too expensive for many who would otherwise like to pursue it. Adding to that expense w/o providing additional benefit doesn't seem like the way forward.

Like I said it will be about the same cost as you taking a canopy course. I assume this was a possibility for you in the upcoming months? If so whatever course you go to make sure to bring your card with you and have it completed in the course. Any canopy course worth its weight will cover the card and you should walk away with it completed. If you decide to do it at your DZ the cost will be comparable. One suggestion: dont show up to the course and tell the instructor you already did these drills as a student. You will probably get a very harsh answer.


In reply to:
I've an alternative suggestion. How about a few of you canopy Gurus get together & write a short book? USPA's Essential Canopy Drills need be nothing more than a short affair, including the canopy drills you wish to impart.

I hope this doesnt come out as being wise, but it is a great idea and we already did it. It is called the SIM and the drills we want you to perform are in it. It was put together by input from the Big names in the sport regarding canopy. And the great part about this is that it is a book that can only get better with continued input from the big gurus.


(This post was edited by Para5-0 on Dec 24, 2011, 8:17 AM)


PiLFy  (A License)

Dec 24, 2011, 8:44 AM
Post #46 of 108 (679 views)
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Re: [Para5-0] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

You're not coming across as being a wiseguy, Rich. I hope I'm not, either. I'm fully aware of my Newbness. Paying for five jumps w/friends. Or, paying for five dedicated jumps, & having to sit in a class on a rare day off aren't the same things. I had a feeling you might say it's already all in the SIM. I was thinking more of a pocketbook w/only the drills as a progression to work on individually. Perhaps it would be a bit of spoon-feeding, but would make it easier for some of us to more-easily improve between instruction. I know the SIM is available for smartphones, but I don't have one. Not_fur_nuttin, but the SIM is kinda big, & has a lot of other info in it. I work a lot, including weekends. So, I haven't had the opportunity to take a canopy course, yet. It's not that I'm averse to paying for qualified instruction. I rankle at having additional demands placed on me. Especially when I already do those demands on my own. I still jump rental gear. I routinely jump different canopies depending on where I go that day. I'm only humbly offering another approach to the same goals.


davelepka  (D 21448)

Dec 24, 2011, 9:19 AM
Post #47 of 108 (674 views)
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Re: [Para5-0] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

Quote:
I think everyone is tip toeing around a concept that has been discussed and will contine to be discussed; A Canopy Instructor Rating, dare I say that.

Don't say that. I couldn't be more behind the idea that canopy piloting education needs to be ongoing, tied directly to licensing, and tied directly to a WL/canopy type restriction, but the last thing you should do is make another rating.

I can already feel the momentum dying out, and the whole process becoming expensive, cumbersome and time consuming. If you create the rating, you need a rating course, an I/E, another fee on the renewal, etc, etc, etc.

This isn't about teaching students, who are essentailly non-jumpers, this is about teaching licensed jumpers and so you lose the need for a 'rated' person. It doesn't have to be that formal or complicated.

What happens when a DZ doesn't have a Canopy Instructor on the field? Or then they only have one, and they are busy with tandems or AFFs?

The idea is twofold - first it's to get the info, good solid correct info, out there into the jumpers heads. The other is to imprint upon the sport as a whole that canopy flight is it's own 'thing' and needs to be regarded as such. If you make it a part of the 'scene' it lends a degree of importance to what has thus far been the red-headed stepchild of skydiving training.

Again, what you need is to develop a solid classroom syllabus for three or four progressivly more advanced canopy control courses. The syllabus allows it to be taught by anyone with a modicum of experience and an understanding of the aerodynamics/mechanics of a canopy. They don't need a rating, or any of the administrative hassles or costs that go along with it, they just need the approval of the DZO, S&TA and DZ staff in general. If those people feel they are qualifed to teach the established syllabus to already licensed jumpers, then that should be good enough.

Neither Scott Miller, Brian Germain, or Luigi Cani have a Canopy Instructor rating, but they all teach a good canopy control course and all have the endorsement of DZOs, S&TA and DZ staffs around the world.

Partner the classroom time with a proficiency card (simialr to what you have now) outlining the drills and air-skills that correspond to the classroom time, and there you go. You have the book knowledge presented in the class, the air time outlined on the card, and if it's all tied in to a WL/canopy type restriction, you'll have educated, practiced jumpers, flying canopies within their abilites at appropriate WLs.

Every DZ has a 'best choice' for who coudl teach the classes, and they could be scheduled for a Fri night (or other weekday time) once or twice per season for each level of class. It provides all jumpers at every DZ access to the classes without requiring anyone (students or the instructor) to travel anywhere at any specific time.

The more complicated you make it, the better chances it will fail. Keep it simple, stupid (no offence).


DaVinciflies

Dec 24, 2011, 9:39 AM
Post #48 of 108 (663 views)
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Re: [Para5-0] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
I think everyone is tip toeing around a concept that has been discussed and will contine to be discussed; A Canopy Instructor Rating, dare I say that.

Sign me up. I'd definitely go for that.

At the moment, with the exceptions of the likes of Flight-1 and Brian Germain, young jumpers take a hell of a gamble asking instructors about canopy flight. Many otherwise competent instructors don't know even the basics such as the right control inputs to get back from a long spot, and a Canopy Instructor Rating would take the guesswork out of finding the right person to ask.

I applaud this initiative.


jimjumper  (D 11137)

Dec 24, 2011, 10:13 AM
Post #49 of 108 (648 views)
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Re: [Para5-0] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

In light of some of the responses Ive received/seen I thought I would clarify my opinions on this subject. I think that using the S&TAs for this purpose is contrary to how the USPA outlines its instructional hierarchy. S&TAs may be assigned without regard to their individual skills and are not required to demonstrate any skills as is the case with Instructor ratings. For that reason I believe that Instructors should be the primary authority for verifying skills demonstrated for the purpose of qualifying for a license.
In the past, there was a constant friction between AFF Course Directors and qualified Instructors wanting to be Course Directors which took years to fix. The same path appears to be the direction taken here. Instructional ratings should have a definite path from the bottom to the top with definitive performance and evaluations for each step. The position of S&TA does not have any performance definitives or a USPA pathway for individuals to achieve the designation. I would prefer to not have to suck up to my DZO to obtain an arbitrary designation to evaluate the performance of students in my perview.
I agree that canopy flight safety needs to be addressed but I would submit that it needs to start at the top and work down. Statistically the largest fatality sector in canopy flight are the most experienced. How about requiring a canopy flight course starting with Course Directors and then working down to Coaches over a 2 year period? For Instructional rating holders a requirement to get a Canopy Flight Instructional endorsement in 2 years I dont think would be excessive.
I have also heard the argument that some Instructors would try to get around the new requirements, hence the S&TA endorsement. I personally have seen way more abuse of the system by S&TAs than by Instructors. S&TAs are beholden to the person that appointed them and the designation can be taken away when the S&TA doesnt cooperate. A previous post said that Instructors arent being maligned by this new requirement but I would submit that they are. Its just being implemented in a polite way.


Andy9o8  (D License)

Dec 24, 2011, 11:37 AM
Post #50 of 108 (635 views)
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Re: [davelepka] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

I agree with your end conclusion; however I'm still sympathetic to the emotion behind suggesting a canopy instructor rating. Perhaps a good approach, and a way to harmonize the 2 schools of thought on this issue, would be to further enhance the canopy-instruction training and requirements in the current instructor courses.


davelepka  (D 21448)

Dec 24, 2011, 12:36 PM
Post #51 of 108 (728 views)
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Re: [Andy9o8] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

Quote:
Perhaps a good approach, and a way to harmonize the 2 schools of thought on this issue, would be to further enhance the canopy-instruction training and requirements in the current instructor courses.

Then you run into the problem of DZ with no new instructors. If you were to add the additional info today, only instructors who recieve their rating from this point forward will have the 'qualifications'.

The key point to keep in mind is that were not dealing with students. First jump or AFF level students need a rated instructor, every jump they make invovles new-to-them experiences with no track record of how they will do. There can be no question as to the training or abilites of the people who work with them, thus the need for the rating and the certification courses that go along with it.

Take the coaches, for example. They are permitted to work with and jump with students who have passed AFF and proven themselves to be able to 'self jumpmaster'. The training and abailites of the coach is less than an instructor because the people they are working with have proven their ability to save their own lives.

When it comes to canopy training beyond the A license, everyone involved will have at least 50 jumps (or close to it), and none of them will be undertaking 'life saving' manuvers during the course of the training. With this in mind, why burden the program with the need for a rating.

Who is the most qualifed canopy pilot on your DZ? They may or may not hold an instructional rating, they may or may not have the time to go get an instructional rating, and they may or may not have the desire to get an instructional rating, but if you make that a requirement, they will not be the ones giving the canopy control course.

Along those lines, what if the best candidate has no ratings as of now, would they need to dedicate a whole weekend of travel to a coach course, then add-on the canopy control rating? Would they allow a stand-alone canopy control rating? Would they tie it to the coach course, and then you have jumpers with 50 jumps teaching the course? What about the advanced courses for the 'expert' rating to go along with the D license, would that be taught by the 50 jump wonder?

The USPA should work out the syllabus, and let the DZ choose who will do the training. They know who the best person for the job is, and there's no reason to make any more out it. It's experienced jumpers dealing with experienced jumpers, and the USPA doesn't need to weigh it down with all of their administrative nonsense.


diablopilot  (D License)

Dec 24, 2011, 12:50 PM
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Quote:
The USPA should work out the syllabus, and let the DZ choose who will do the training.

That's exactly what has happened.


jimjumper  (D 11137)

Dec 24, 2011, 1:30 PM
Post #53 of 108 (710 views)
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Re: [diablopilot] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

The USPA has said by virtue of the S&TA signature requirement that it must be approved by said S&TA. Again where do I go to get my S&TA rating? USPA and DZO's are separate entities for a reason. I think USPA should develop a canopy course syllabus that can be taught to Instructors for use by their students and can be signed off by those same Instructors at any DZ they work at. What if I work at multiple DZ's? Do I have to "try out" for the benefit of the S&TA at each one? By the way, according to the 1998 SIM, "The S&TA is a local jumper who is available on your dropzone to provide you with administrative services and information. The S&TA is appointed by your Regional Director." I'd submit that the position was never intended to be an Instructional supervisory position but evolved that way over the years. I still feel that if it is to be used in this way, a path to obtaining an S&TA rating should be outlined by USPA prior to it's adoption rather than after.


Andy9o8  (D License)

Dec 24, 2011, 1:32 PM
Post #54 of 108 (708 views)
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Re: [davelepka] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Then you run into the problem of DZ with no new instructors. If you were to add the additional info today, only instructors who recieve their rating from this point forward will have the 'qualifications'.

Then maybe I didn't make myself clear. I only meant to suggest it as a going-forward requirement for new instructors. Existing instructors would be grandfathered-in; and all instructors' ratings would continue to be on par with all others'.

I'd also continue to allow anyone to give canopy instruction (although if there are currently certified freefall coaches who don't yet have full instructor ratings, why not certified canopy coaches?). That might address your concern. But if instructors already teaching pre-A license novices had even more enhanced canopy-instruction skills, the natural result might be that novices will become better canopy pilots sooner than is presently the case.


DaVinciflies

Dec 24, 2011, 2:01 PM
Post #55 of 108 (702 views)
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Re: [davelepka] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

Quote:
Then you run into the problem of DZ with no new instructors. If you were to add the additional info today, only instructors who recieve their rating from this point forward will have the 'qualifications'.

That would still be a good start, right? And you could make it available to existing instructors who want a canopy flight endorsement on their rating.

Quote:
When it comes to canopy training beyond the A license, everyone involved will have at least 50 jumps (or close to it), and none of them will be undertaking 'life saving' manuvers during the course of the training. With this in mind, why burden the program with the need for a rating.

This is a valid point. Mayne then we make it a Canopy Coach rating, rather than a Canopy Instructor rating.

Quote:
Who is the most qualifed canopy pilot on your DZ?

Well, there's the question. The best swoopers may not be the best teachers. Indeed, they may not even know enough about why they do why they do. I know a great swooper who was asked to do a canopy course and refused on the grounds that he did not understand the science behind canopy flight well enough.

With the introduction of a canopy rating, the answer to your question would be clear. There would be an official, sanctioned subject matter expert.

Quote:
Along those lines, what if the best candidate has no ratings as of now, would they need to dedicate a whole weekend of travel to a coach course, then add-on the canopy control rating? Would they allow a stand-alone canopy control rating? Would they tie it to the coach course, and then you have jumpers with 50 jumps teaching the course? What about the advanced courses for the 'expert' rating to go along with the D license, would that be taught by the 50 jump wonder?

Where are you getting the idea that someone can get a coach rating with 50 jumps? Not really following you on this one.

I really don't understand why you are so against this. Nobody would be forced to get the canopy rating, but the ones who did get it would be a known source for canopy instruction and information having been trained with approved material instead of the sort of ad hoc crap that gets passed down by the bonfire currently.


popsjumper  (D 999999999)

Dec 24, 2011, 2:03 PM
Post #56 of 108 (701 views)
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Re: [Para5-0] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
I think everyone is tip toeing around a concept that has been discussed and will contine to be discussed; A Canopy Instructor Rating, dare I say that.

So...is there any planning going on to ensure better quality than what USPA has in place to ensure quality of AFFI?

We see how well that is going.
Unsure


diablopilot  (D License)

Dec 24, 2011, 3:18 PM
Post #57 of 108 (683 views)
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Re: [jimjumper] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

Quote:
Do I have to "try out" for the benefit of the S&TA at each one?

Yes. As was always intended.

Quote:
I'd submit that the position was never intended to be an Instructional supervisory position but evolved that way over the years.

Then why since the beginning of the S&TA program have S&TA been granted the power to suspend instructional ratings for a period of up to 30 days pending the review of their RD?

The S&TA is not only an advisor, but also a safety stop for ineffective instruction and unsafe behavior. They are the eyes, ears, and an important line of safety checks for the USPA. The program has been slack in the last decade. It's coming back.


jimjumper  (D 11137)

Dec 24, 2011, 3:47 PM
Post #58 of 108 (679 views)
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Re: [diablopilot] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

Still doesn't answer the question of how to get an S&TA designation without kissing the butt of the DZO or how to keep it! When I got my "I" one of the priviliges was being able to approve "B" and "C" licenses. Now I have to have approval from a possibly unqualified and unknown indivdual with no recourse in the event of a dispute. When the USPA makes the S&TA an open to all position and not a "good ole' boy" appointment I might be willing to change my opinion.


Para5-0  (D 19054)

Dec 24, 2011, 5:20 PM
Post #59 of 108 (669 views)
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Re: [jimjumper] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Still doesn't answer the question of how to get an S&TA designation without kissing the butt of the DZO or how to keep it! When I got my "I" one of the priviliges was being able to approve "B" and "C" licenses. Now I have to have approval from a possibly unqualified and unknown indivdual with no recourse in the event of a dispute. When the USPA makes the S&TA an open to all position and not a "good ole' boy" appointment I might be willing to change my opinion.

Jim,
I must admit your concern has made me sit and think a bit. I like to think of the S&TA as the most knowledgeable, most rated, most conservative, most respected person at the DZ. With that being said, maybe I am being a bit naive. Of course that must not be the case across the country 100%.
Putting myself in your shoes and not having a relationship with the local S&TA or if I travel from DZ to DZ, what would I do? Kiss ass is not in my tool chest as it probably isnt in yours. I would hope that if you are an active instructor at any DZ and they know you and your values, instruction ability, and passion for teaching new skydivers they would have no problem with endorsing the card for you.

I do not know you personally but based on your initiative here if the above is true and you came to me explaining how you taught your student the requirred material, I will endorse your card, (hold me to that)
Please remember that the goal is to educate as many skydivers as possible in every aspect of canopy flight. Why would any S&TA refuse to accept and use you as an instructor unless they had some sort of grudge, or didnt want to reach as many students as possible? I guess you may run into the S&TA that just doesnt like the instructor for some reason, if that is the case I would suggest going to the Regional Director or National Director.
Or further pm me your particular situation and I will see if we need to adjust or ammend what we came up with. I will do what can to help a self motivated instructor.

It was also brought up that it could become a good ole boys network, where only certain instructors made financial gain off of the canopy initiative. If that is the case, again I would shed light on the particular situation via director. Your RD can bring the situation forward to the board and a possible remedy can be discussed.

This is just starting out and problems will arise, but as many above have said, it is a starting point and hopefully a step in the right direction.


Para5-0  (D 19054)

Dec 24, 2011, 5:26 PM
Post #60 of 108 (667 views)
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Re: [diablopilot] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Quote:
The USPA should work out the syllabus, and let the DZ choose who will do the training.

That's exactly what has happened.

+1 That is exactly what was done.


diablopilot  (D License)

Dec 24, 2011, 8:25 PM
Post #61 of 108 (648 views)
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Re: [jimjumper] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

Quote:
When the USPA makes the S&TA an open to all position and not a "good ole' boy" appointment I might be willing to change my opinion.

It shouldn't be. That's what has screwed up the quality of instructors, and IEs. A person should be a know quantity, vetted and proven before they receive an appointment to the position of S&TA.

Now if you're worried about proving it to a DZO, I'll tell you I received my first S&TA appointment without the approval of a DZO, as an S&TA "at large". Talk to your RD.


Premier skybytch  (D License)

Dec 25, 2011, 7:19 AM
Post #62 of 108 (621 views)
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Re: [PiLFy] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Paying for five jumps w/friends. Or, paying for five dedicated jumps, & having to sit in a class on a rare day off aren't the same things.

You are correct, they are not the same things. Five fun jumps with your friends won't improve your canopy survival skills the way five hop and hops dedicated to working on those skills combined with classroom instruction and discussion will. That was certainly what I found when I did a canopy course at 900+ jumps, and it's also the feedback we get from those who do the canopy courses we put on (jumpers with experience ranging from 7 jumps to 1000+).

You can choose to do what many people with way more experience than you or I will ever have are suggesting, or you can choose to do whatever you want (but be sure to send in that B license app tomorrow!). Your life is your life. It is apparent that you're good enough that you'll never hurt anybody else. But should you ever be taken out by someone else, know that by choosing NOT to do a canopy course you are reducing your chances of survival in a worst case scenario.

IOW, it's all fun and games until somebody dies in front of you. And then it's hilarious.


Premier skybytch  (D License)

Dec 25, 2011, 7:21 AM
Post #63 of 108 (619 views)
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Re: [jimjumper] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Still doesn't answer the question of how to get an S&TA designation without kissing the butt of the DZO

Easy. Kiss the ass of the regional director. Since that is the person who handles S&TA appointments.


jimjumper  (D 11137)

Dec 25, 2011, 7:47 AM
Post #64 of 108 (611 views)
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Re: [Para5-0] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

I thought about it overnight and I believe what I am going to do is when a student/novice comes to me for their "B" or "C" license I will just pass them on to the S&TA and inform them that I am not qualified to sign off their application or profciency card. This will place the responsibility on the S&TA. It is obvious that USPA wishes to have final authority for "B" and "C" licenses vested with the S&TA's and by extension the DZO's. If, (or when), USPA decides to let Instructors have the authority to complete the license application, I will then attend what should be (by then) a complete, USPA Endorsed, Advanced canopy piloting proficiency course for the purpose of being current at instructing a basic course. In the meantime I will still teach to the "A" license as USPA hasn't placed me under supervision to teach to that level. I'm afraid after 12 years as an AFF Instructor, "I don't try out." However, the suggestion of getting designated by my RD as an S&TA is an excellent one that I intend to pursue. Thanks for listening to my opinions and I hope I was clear in my thoughts.


PiLFy  (A License)

Dec 25, 2011, 7:57 AM
Post #65 of 108 (605 views)
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Re: [skybytch] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

"It is apparent that you're good enough that you'll never hurt anybody else."

Are you inferring in any way that I said I've got Mad Skillz? I never said that. Nor did I say I didn't want or need a canopy course in the near future. In fact, I specifically said I just haven't had the opportunity to take one yet, due to time constraints.

"My point is that I already had to fulfill the requirement for my A. Why require it to be done again, & be signed off only by an ST&A? If I didn't display enough proficiency doing the initial drills. My instructors would've made me do them again until I was."

BTW, don't preach to me about bodies under plastic. I'll bet I've seen more deaths than you ever will.


Para5-0  (D 19054)

Dec 25, 2011, 8:04 AM
Post #66 of 108 (601 views)
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Re: [jimjumper] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

Jim,

USPA or nobody else is saying you are not qualified to teach the canopy requirement. Think about the big picture for one moment.
All USPA is suggesting is that someone should say, YES, that instructor is competent to teach this syllabuse. Now who should that person be? In our minds the S&TA is supposed to oversee operations at any particular DZ. He/she is also easy to communcate with all in one shot, (Through the regional Director reaching out to all S&TA's in the area.)
If we just said yes any instructor can teach this whole card, and 6-10 and 6-11 then we believe there would be a shit load of pencil whipping and instructors who do not fully understand the entire purpose or mission. I have taught AFF Instructor courses and I am telling you just because you walk away from a 7 day course with a nice endorsement in your log book does NOT mean you can teach a full canopy course. It doesnt even touch upon it. 6-10 and 6-11 is a lot of information and until the AFFI course specifically hits upon the fundamentals of the two chapters, I dont think a new AFFI or maybe even a seasoned AFFI can just jump in and start teaching the whole card. Not to say some cant but how do you tell? and the flip side is there are some people very qualified to teach it that do not have any ratings. Again, how do you control it? We came up with what we thought was a way to keep a moderate handle on it.

Here is a question; Is every Instructor in this day and age capable of teaching advanced canopy skills? If the answer is not Yes 100% then we need someone to evaluate that persons teaching skills, ability, knowledge...etc. Who do you think it should be?

You mentioned it is obvious that USPA wants to have final authority for B and C licenses vested with the S&TA. I can tell you that is 100% not true. This is just a way for USPA to use the S&TA position to oversee who teaches the canopy course at their DZ.


Para5-0  (D 19054)

Dec 25, 2011, 8:14 AM
Post #67 of 108 (594 views)
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Re: [PiLFy] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
"My point is that I already had to fulfill the requirement for my A. Why require it to be done again, & be signed off only by an ST&A? If I didn't display enough proficiency doing the initial drills. My instructors would've made me do them again until I was."

Do you understand that for every single downsize of a canopy, change of a type of canopy, change in wing load for whatever reason these drills should be done. That means although an instructor said yes you can perform the drills properly: it doesnt mean you dont need them ever again. Every canopy has its own flight characteristics. Especially when you get to the high performance canopies.
Try going from a stiletto to a velocity and not going through the initial drills we are talking about. (I am being facetious, DO NOT do that, Disclaimer) You will inititate what you thought was a great turn to final on your stiletto to find your canopy hitting the ground before you do.

I am not preaching at all by the way, just trying to point out that basic drills are the building blocks for safe canopy progression and flight. Similar to any sport out there. Build solid basic fundamentals like the base of a pyramid and the pryamid will go high and be strong. I might be having some difficulty explaining what I am trying to say so any other instructor out there feel free to elaborate on this.
Rich


PiLFy  (A License)

Dec 25, 2011, 8:24 AM
Post #68 of 108 (591 views)
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Re: [Para5-0] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

I understand your points on that clearly, Rich. I do go through drills when jumping an unfamiliar canopy. I only pasted that quote in again because someone else (whose admitted hobby is to stir the pot) chose to cite a different reply I'd sent to you.

We're cool Wink.


kallend  (D 23151)

Dec 25, 2011, 12:30 PM
Post #69 of 108 (559 views)
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Re: [theonlyski] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
In reply to:
>I think flying your canopy with your eyes closed makes about as much sense as
>driving or cycling on a public road with your eyes closed, even if you 'assume' it's
>empty.

Or flying with a hood on during pilot training?

Slight difference there is that you have a safety pilot to keep you clear of aircraft and other things.

AND the hood lets you see the instruments.


Premier skybytch  (D License)

Dec 25, 2011, 5:56 PM
Post #70 of 108 (533 views)
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Re: [PiLFy] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
"My point is that I already had to fulfill the requirement for my A. Why require it to be done again, & be signed off only by an ST&A? If I didn't display enough proficiency doing the initial drills. My instructors would've made me do them again until I was."

So your point here is to complain about having to get someone to initial a few spots and sign a name on a card? If you've done the drills, go tell the local S&TA that you've done so and have them signed off. No big deal.

btw, one of my hobbies is indeed pot stirring . Not much else I can do until the ortho says I can jump again (fyi, ice hockey is dangerous). Other than teaching canopy courses that is..

In reply to:
BTW, don't preach to me about bodies under plastic. I'll bet I've seen more deaths than you ever will.

And if you stay in the sport, you'll see more.


tdog  (D 28800)

Dec 25, 2011, 6:04 PM
Post #71 of 108 (534 views)
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Re: [Para5-0] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

Para,

I understand the concept that an instructor might need to be proven before teaching. However, the new card requires an s&ta to sign each student. In years past my instructor rating expired, as it needs an s&ta signature yearly, for over a month because no one was around to sign it. The s&ta was out of town, or working off site. My app was sitting unsigned for weeks. The RD has never been to out dz that I know of during his term, so he would not even know who would and would not be qualified to be an S&ta. Thankfully we now have a good one, but this is new, and I am not confident if he moved away again we would get a replacement.

Not every dz has an s&ta hanging around the students. That is my problem. Instructors with endorsement should have power to sign. Maybe the s&ta grants that endorsement. Some non uspa dropzones also have uspa students and instructors, but no s&ta, unless an at large rep travels there.


(This post was edited by tdog on Dec 25, 2011, 6:40 PM)


davelepka  (D 21448)

Dec 25, 2011, 7:34 PM
Post #72 of 108 (521 views)
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Re: [tdog] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

Quote:
In years past my instructor rating expired, as it needs an s&ta signature yearly, for over a month because no one was around to sign it. The s&ta was out of town, or working off site. My app was sitting unsigned for weeks. The RD has never been to out dz that I know of during his term, so he would not even know who would and would not be qualified to be an S&ta. Thankfully we now have a good one, but this is new, and I am not confident if he moved away again we would get a replacement.

Not every dz has an s&ta hanging around the students. That is my problem. Instructors with endorsement should have power to sign. Maybe the s&ta grants that endorsement. Some non uspa dropzones also have uspa students and instructors, but no s&ta, unless an at large rep travels there.

Perfect examples of what I'm talking about. The subject at hand is licensed jumpers teaching other licensed jumpers, there's no need for the USPA to goof it up with all of their 'hoops' that just makes it hard to achieve the real goal, passing along the info.

What the USPA should be doing is the hard part. Taking all of what we (as a community) know about canopy flight, chopping it up into seperate levels, and writing a syllabus and dive flows to effectively get the info out to the jumpers. From that point on, they should step back and let the comminuty handle it from there.

Show me the DZ where the DZO, S&TA, and every staff member is going to allow an unqualifed jumper to teach the classes? It's not going to happen. Everyone out there can already picture the short list of jumpers they could see filling the role at their DZ. Knock off any of those people who just don't want to do the job, and you have an easy job of selecting a person to teach the classes.

Then, get this, have the same person sign on the proficiency card that the class was completed. They are guaranteed to be there and available to sign, everyone is in the same room at the same time, just get it done.

As far as the jumps go, you leave that to the jumpers honor. Unless an instructor follows them out and witnesses the drills being performed, it's on their honor anyway. Have them sign their own card, comfirming that they did indeed follow the dive flows as indicated. If they want to be a schmucko about it and lie, so be it. There's nothing to stop them from lying to an S&TA about having done the work, so take the S&Ta out of the picture.

The harder they make this, the longer it will be before it gets done. The sooner these programs can be put in place, the sooner the info gets out the people, and the sooner it looks like the USPA (and the community in general) gives two shits about any of this. All of the talking, and thinking, and posturing do nothing to impress upon new jumpers as to the importance of taking canopy flight seriously. Until continuing education becomes something that everyone is doing everywhere, it will remain one of those things that some people do in some places, and that doesn't make the impression that it's important or neccesary.


nigel99  (D 1)

Dec 26, 2011, 1:14 AM
Post #73 of 108 (497 views)
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Re: [Para5-0] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

Quote:
I have taught AFF Instructor courses and I am telling you just because you walk away from a 7 day course with a nice endorsement in your log book does NOT mean you can teach a full canopy course. It doesnt even touch upon it. 6-10 and 6-11 is a lot of information and until the AFFI course specifically hits upon the fundamentals of the two chapters, I dont think a new AFFI or maybe even a seasoned AFFI can just jump in and start teaching the whole card.

Wouldn't it be an idea to allow or require AFF-I's to undertake a canopy control course and for them to do the progression card. Once the USPA had proof that the AFF-I had done the appropriate training they could sign off the card for B applicants?

What is pretty shocking is that this is an apparent admission/recognition by the USPA that instructors in our sport lack basic canopy control skills. Lets face it the B license is hardly an 'advanced' license (although I am proud of what I have had to do to achieve mine). I'm not saying the USPA are wrong in their assumption - but it does go along way to show why canopy related deaths and injuries are so high.


craigbey  (C 31991)

Dec 26, 2011, 5:04 AM
Post #74 of 108 (487 views)
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Re: [davelepka] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

Quote:
Until continuing education becomes something that everyone is doing everywhere, it will remain one of those things that some people do in some places, and that doesn't make the impression that it's important or neccesary.

No worries ... good old 'common sense' will prevail when necessary. Those DZ's that don't offer the continuing ed will enforce their good will and wisdom on everyone.


craigbey  (C 31991)

Dec 26, 2011, 5:06 AM
Post #75 of 108 (484 views)
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Re: [skybytch] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

Quote:
one of my hobbies is indeed pot stirring . Not much else I can do until the ortho says I can jump again (fyi, ice hockey is dangerous). Other than teaching canopy courses that is.

Good on you for staying involved in that way. Thank you. Hope you heal up fast.


PiLFy  (A License)

Dec 26, 2011, 6:21 AM
Post #76 of 108 (741 views)
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Re: [skybytch] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

"...go tell the local S&TA that you've done so and have them signed off. No big deal."

I jump at different DZs, now. Is a different S&TA to merely take my word for it? Also, what about the classroom component? My still unanswered question to instructors, in general: Aren't these canopy drills already a part of every initial student progression? I had to do them for mine.

"btw, one of my hobbies is indeed pot stirring ."

Some people have issues. Issues that can get in the way of teaching. If someone openly proclaims themself as a SkyBeeyatch? Whose stated hobby is stirring the pot (AKA:Trolling)? Whose sig-line reads: Just another anonymous troll. I'm a lot less inclined to hear their message. In fact, I'm more inclined to block it out, entirely. That's not a slam. It's purely an observation. A lot more people would benefit from your knowledge if you dropped the 'Tude.

"And if you stay in the sport, you'll see more."

Sadly, I'm afraid that's a given. Unsure


Para5-0  (D 19054)

Dec 26, 2011, 7:02 AM
Post #77 of 108 (735 views)
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Re: [nigel99] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Wouldn't it be an idea to allow or require AFF-I's to undertake a canopy control course and for them to do the progression card. Once the USPA had proof that the AFF-I had done the appropriate training they could sign off the card for B applicants?

Discussed at length and it is a good idea but one that will take a bit of work. It would be from a certain point on. Yes this should be part of the AFFI course, you will have no arguement about that. Along with that great suggestion comes probably about 40 hours of in room discussion and debate on a million what if's.

In reply to:
What is pretty shocking is that this is an apparent admission/recognition by the USPA that instructors in our sport lack basic canopy control skills.

BINGO!! That is why the BOD is trying their hardest to come up with something to get started on this problem. The B license proficeincy card is a start for new up and coming jumpers. At a point in the near future all AFFI's will have gone through the new process. It is not fast enough for my liking so suggestions on how do we get all instructors up to date on canopy instruction, and who will do it?

In my dream world I picture a team of canopy experts who are all working off of the exact same syllabus, traveling to every DZ in the country and giving a Canopy Education Course to all instructors, needed to renew your rating within a certain amount of time. The course should consist of every topic in 6-10 and 6-11 and cover techniques to teach, evaluate, and conduct the canopy course for the B license. or since I am dreaming a bit how about a online webinar with a test at the end. the webinar could easily track who has taken the course and what score they received on it. After completion you are elligible for renewal. Although that takes the hands on training out of the picture.

Now the objections will be:
1) Who teaches the course
2) What syllabus do we use
3) How much to charge for it
4) Some people dont have a computer.
5) Some people will just not do it, then what.
6) People generally complaining about having to pay for another requirement.
7)

I have learned one thing dealing with this process and that is you can recognize the problem fairly quickly. It is the solving and implementing that takes forever. Maybe that is a good thing. If I were king maybe the decisions would be too hasty and not have the proper review and analysis that a 22 member BOD offers it. Who knows.

Here is another thought:
Go to the BOD meeting in February in San Diego and sit in on the Safety and Training committee. They will welcome any input at all from a member who took the effort to show up. It shows a genuine concern. Or if you cant go then pm me your ideas and concerns and I will gladly read them aloud and bring up for discussion. Just remember we have to pre-post agendas for meetings and whatever it is will have to be added to the agenda. Just dont bog me down with bullshit please, seriously you know what is legit or not or I hope so.


(This post was edited by Para5-0 on Dec 26, 2011, 7:10 AM)


jimjumper  (D 11137)

Dec 26, 2011, 7:27 AM
Post #78 of 108 (727 views)
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Re: [Para5-0] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

When the Coach rating was first incorporated into the Instructional system, Kevin Gibsson traveled the country in just that way, teaching and rating Coach Course Directors. It's been done before and can be done now. But before anybody can do anything it must be decided what will be taught and how. One of the basics taught to any new instructor is "Define a standard and then teach the student to the standard." What is to be the current standard?


Para5-0  (D 19054)

Dec 26, 2011, 7:50 AM
Post #79 of 108 (718 views)
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Re: [jimjumper] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

traveling the country and teaching this class will take forever to reach all instructors out there. I take back my suggestion. Instructors wont want to take it, they wont want to pay for it, they wont want to do anything to make themself a better instructor. No not everyone but many. I spoke to instructors about this already and I got a resounding get the F*&k out of here, im not taking another class.

The webinar on the other hand can be made madatory for renewal of all instructor ratings. The cost of a 45 min to one hour training video with canopy landings, evaluations, and even a demonstration of each of the five jumps would not cost that much in the grand schemem of things. Webinars can log who signs in and what score they receive on a test. Now dont ask me how we know who actually was sitting at the computer and taking the test. I see so many minor issues with this idea even as I type. Screw the test if they at least watch the video we are getting somewhere.

Just thinking aloud. Anyone want to produce a canopy instructors basic canopy teaching syllabus, course, and webinar? lol


davelepka  (D 21448)

Dec 26, 2011, 7:55 AM
Post #80 of 108 (713 views)
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Re: [Para5-0] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

Quote:
In my dream world I picture a team of canopy experts who are all working off of the exact same syllabus, traveling to every DZ in the country and giving a Canopy Education Course to all instructors, needed to renew your rating within a certain amount of time. The course should consist of every topic in 6-10 and 6-11 and cover techniques to teach, evaluate, and conduct the canopy course for the B license.

Sure, that should be simple and afforable too.

What would be your objection to a team of canopy experts developing a syllabus, and simply distributing it to DZs for them to hold their own canopy control courses, taught by their choice of jumper?

It's simple, cheap, and gets the ball rolling fairly quickly. Again, DZs want to succeed at things, and be good at stuff, and this would be no different. If you give them the syllabus, and tell them to pick their best candidate to teach it, they'll do that. Some DZs will even go above and betyond, and do more, but the min that the USPA provides will get done. Have the person giving the course sign the card, and it's done.

What's the objection to having the air skills demonstrated on the honor system and skipping the signature all together? As of right now, the jumper tells the S&TA or instructor that they did the work, and the S&TA signs off that they were told that the jumpers did the work. In the end, it's no different than the jumper smply signing to the USPA that they did the work, with the exception that now they don't have to hunt down the S&TA.

Again, the harder you make this, the longer it will take to realize. It's about jumpers teaching jumpers, no students are invovled. Everyone in the process had (at min) 50 jumps (as per the B license requirement). Just like Scott Miller or Brian Germain doesn't need a rating to teach a canopy control course because they're teaching licensed jumpers, this is the same.

I think the USPA and the BOD are a little to 'taken' with themselves. Everything they do is mired in red tape, paperwork, hoops to jump through, and fees. None of this needs to be that complicated, come up with what people need to know, print it up, and have DZs conduct the courses for the benfit of their local jumpers. Yes, make it a license requirement to ensure that everyone does it, but then make it easy so every DZ can provide the training without too much trouble. Let the DZ pick the best person for the job, regardless of ratings, fees or otherwise.


Para5-0  (D 19054)

Dec 26, 2011, 8:15 AM
Post #81 of 108 (708 views)
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Re: [davelepka] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
If you give them the syllabus, and tell them to pick their best candidate to teach it, they'll do that. Some DZs will even go above and betyond, and do more, but the min that the USPA provides will get done.

I thought we did exactly that. The syllabus is section 6-10 and 6-11. We asked the S&TA to pick their best candidate to teach it, and we hope that DZ take it to the next step providing any feedback regarding the syllabus and proposed additions or subtractions.

In reply to:
What's the objection to having the air skills demonstrated on the honor system and skipping the signature all together

I guess it can be done that way. But the purpose of the syllaus is to actually offer a canopy course at your dropzone being taught by a qualified canopy person. Any course worth its weight will video landings, debrief patterns, our course does proximity flying with an instructor to visually see control input compared to your flight pattern... This all requires the instructor to be knowledgeable, experienced, good at teaching theory and skills, and most of all PRESENT.
I dont think having some oversight of the program and how it is taught is a bad thing Dave. the honor system just makes me shrug a bit. I know many would actually do it but those are the ones who are generally safe. we need to think about those that will just try to bullshit their way through to get the license. If A actual appointed instructor at a DZ teaches the course and is present to witness and evaluate the jumps, how do they get around it.


In reply to:
come up with what people need to know, print it up, and have DZs conduct the courses for the benfit of their local jumpers

How is this different then what we did? Okay minus the S&TA giving the ok for a local person to teach the course and signing it.


Premier skybytch  (D License)

Dec 26, 2011, 9:26 AM
Post #82 of 108 (689 views)
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Re: [PiLFy] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
I jump at different DZs, now. Is a different S&TA to merely take my word for it? Also, what about the classroom component?

Pretty sure that the USPA BOD members understand that not every jumper can get to a canopy course right now. I'm hoping that these new requirements will change that.

There are many things in skydiving where the person "in charge" is going to have to take your word for things. Your instructor had to take your word that you did at least some of the canopy drills during student status. Show up for an instructional rating course and the course director will be taking your word that you have done whatever number of jumps, hours of freefall and/or time in sport are required. It is that way for a reason - so that jumpers like you who don't do the majority of their skydives at one dz can still become instructors.

Regarding getting the things you've already done signed off, talking to the S&TA at whatever dz you are currently jumping at might be a good first step. I'd bet a quarter that s/he will be glad to help you out.

In reply to:
Some people have issues. Issues that can get in the way of teaching. If someone openly proclaims themself as a SkyBeeyatch? Whose stated hobby is stirring the pot (AKA:Trolling)? Whose sig-line reads: Just another anonymous troll. I'm a lot less inclined to hear their message. In fact, I'm more inclined to block it out, entirely. That's not a slam. It's purely an observation. A lot more people would benefit from your knowledge if you dropped the 'Tude.

There was a time when I cared what others think of me and my opinions. That time is long past. But what the hell, I have a few minutes this morning....

The screenname I use is as old as these forums and it does fit me quite well. When I think something is unsafe or non ethical or just plain wrong, I'm not likely to keep my mouth (or keyboard) quiet. Which, to some makes me a bitch. Might as well claim it.

I like cooking and I enjoy a good beating of a dead horse. Pot stirring seems to cover both of those quite well.

The current sigline is an inside joke. Anybody who has been around here for more than few years knows who I am.

In reply to:
I'm a lot less inclined to hear their message. In fact, I'm more inclined to block it out, entirely.

And that's just fine with me. There are lots of people out there who can give the same messages that I am in a way that is more palatable to you. There are also lots of people out there who have thanked me for not only the messages I've delivered but also the way I have delivered them. what you call Tude, others might call being honest.


In reply to:
"And if you stay in the sport, you'll see more."

Sadly, I'm afraid that's a given.

Doesn't have to be. As I see it, what USPA is doing right now will reduce the number of funerals and hospitals we have to go to. I just wish it would have happened before Cliff and Tommy and all those other super nice people went and died under perfectly good parachutes...


tdog  (D 28800)

Dec 26, 2011, 7:33 PM
Post #83 of 108 (658 views)
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Re: [Para5-0] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

Quote:
BINGO!! That is why the BOD is trying their hardest to come up with something to get started on this problem.

I witnessed one of my best friends die under a perfectly good canopy, and I have witnessed a few others that were "just friends". I can tell you what it looks like to see the impact... So I honestly want a change for the better.

It seems the BOD, or at least you, have officially said instructors are not qualified to teach canopy control skills...

What I am curious about... Has the BOD put together a matrix of the incidents - how they occurred, etc? Before you claim the majority of the instructors are not qualified, do you have any proof that instructor's lack of skills are a cause of the problem at hand?

Swooping accidents are killing people, but these are people with 1000+ jumps, and the coaching that might save a life is not going to be "fixed" by any USPA syllabus, in the same way the USPA could not write a syllabus that would teach a 4 way team to turn points like Airspeed - it takes highly personalized coaching, hundreds of jumps with coaching - and even then - it is the coaches that seem to die too, or people under the mentoring of world class coaches. (if you ignore the occasional guy with mad skillz that everyone tells to stop, and he ignores everyone).

Canopy collisions are an issue, but then again, the last one that killed someone I knew, was my 4way coach years ago from Perris, someone who would have been qualified to teach basic canopy flight by any one's standards. Someone with all the ratings and world champion trophies. The other canopy collision that killed a friend - both parties in the collision had many jumps, decades of experience, and it occurred right after deployment.

But, I witnessed someone die at Skydive AZ, with less than 500 jumps, due to a collision, so I think this is something we can work on collectively.

So, I am thinking here - how can I be part of the solution... And the sad part is, I honestly don't think this program is going to make a big dent in the funeral count as it is currently written - because it is the D licence jumpers that die the most.

Should it be thrown away... No... I can see injury count going down as the long spot drills and braked turn drills will help people with reasonably loaded canopies, not break their leg avoiding a powerline. And maybe it will save a funeral here and there, so it is worth it...

But - I would like to see a matrix that breaks down all the canopy related injury/fatality statistics - that identifies how (if) the USPA training can address each category. Until this is done (and maybe it already has) - the training program is not focused on the proclaimed goal of saving lives.


(This post was edited by tdog on Dec 26, 2011, 7:37 PM)


Premier DSE  (D 29060)
Moderator
Dec 26, 2011, 8:57 PM
Post #84 of 108 (640 views)
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Re: [Para5-0] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
traveling the country and teaching this class will take forever to reach all instructors out there. I take back my suggestion. Instructors wont want to take it, they wont want to pay for it, they wont want to do anything to make themself a better instructor. No not everyone but many. I spoke to instructors about this already and I got a resounding get the F*&k out of here, im not taking another class.

The webinar on the other hand can be made madatory for renewal of all instructor ratings. The cost of a 45 min to one hour training video with canopy landings, evaluations, and even a demonstration of each of the five jumps would not cost that much in the grand schemem of things. Webinars can log who signs in and what score they receive on a test. Now dont ask me how we know who actually was sitting at the computer and taking the test. I see so many minor issues with this idea even as I type. Screw the test if they at least watch the video we are getting somewhere.

Just thinking aloud. Anyone want to produce a canopy instructors basic canopy teaching syllabus, course, and webinar? lol

The USPA was offered Chris Gay's canopy control video for next to nothing, to distribute online or otherwise. There was no interest.
It's not just the instructors saying that...look inward.
Flight One has a great teaching syllabus, course, and turning it into a webinar would be crazy easy.
Brian Germain has one too.
So do a few others.
Rather than re-inventing the wheel, how about supporting and taking advantage of what's already available?


nigel99  (D 1)

Dec 26, 2011, 11:40 PM
Post #85 of 108 (628 views)
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Re: [tdog] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

I think the change in culture takes time. Starting at B level seems appropriate. I completely support the fact that the BOD have tried to minimise the chance of pencil whipping or treating the canopy progression as a simple tick box. It reflects the reality in our sport that we don't treat canopies with the respect they deserve.

I would like to see swooping reserved as the sport of the elite. Much like aircraft display teams. Too many of us think we are elite sportsmen, the sad fact is we aren't. The USPA leadership are complicit in this. Look at the emphasis on canopy flight at nationals - it is all about swooping. They need to broaden the CP to include and show case sport accuracy, tradtional accuracy and CRW.


jimjumper  (D 11137)

Dec 27, 2011, 7:26 AM
Post #86 of 108 (603 views)
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Re: [nigel99] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

As far as gettng the profiecency card signed off it shouldn't be to hard in my area even if I won't be. I just checked the USPA website for S&TA's and in my area there are 14 at 3 different DZ's, 5 at large in the local area, and 1 specialty S&TA for Demo's only. I had no idea there was that many S&TA's around. Of course a couple of them haven't jumped in years so maybe they wouldn't be the best to teach canopy flight. Seems to me there won't be much need for an "I" to sign the card at all.


Para5-0  (D 19054)

Dec 27, 2011, 8:48 AM
Post #87 of 108 (593 views)
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Re: [tdog] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
It seems the BOD, or at least you, have officially said instructors are not qualified to teach canopy control skills...
If I said that somewhere I am very sorry, I do not hav ethat stance at all. I believe that many many instructors are more than capable and very very good at what they do. Please dont take me the wrong way, I am just trying to convey the thought process that went on when discussing the issue in the committee. I am sorry if anything I said inferred that. All I was trying to say is that continueing education for instructors in the area of canopy instruction is a good thing and cant hurt at all. Especially the new instructor who has had limited experience teaching canopy skills or a class.

Everything else you said is spot on. The statistics are there and I have gone over them. They are not the student, they are the person with 1000 + jumps. I mentioned this is a start to eventually get to those people. I would love to see a C license card, D license Card, or maybe even some sort of wingloading prodiciency card. I know as well as you do this is not going to stop the problem, I dont know if anything will but it shows a genuine attempt to reduce the incidents.
I know i dont have to tell you this but I think we have all seen someone we care about get hurt under a canopy.


DaVinciflies

Dec 27, 2011, 9:13 AM
Post #88 of 108 (586 views)
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Re: [nigel99] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
I would like to see swooping reserved as the sport of the elite.

How are you going to define "elite"?

How do you police this?

You don't just start "elite" at something, there has to be a progression. That's the whole point of this thread, after all. What's the progression?


ozzy13  (D 29344)

Dec 27, 2011, 10:59 AM
Post #89 of 108 (566 views)
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Re: [mkb0909] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

I looked trough this thread. It never seems to amaze me how people can sit in front of there computer and pick things apart.

Now with that said come get me :)

Bottom line something had to be done . in the ISP progression they go over basic canopy flight and before this year that's all you had to do. With everyone wanting to go fast and down size things needed to change. I understand that not everyone wants this but most do. I had a guy wanting to freefly with 10 jumps. Actually did freefly until I noticed that's what they were doing. I think this requirement is awesome. Helping everyone that comes threw this sport understand whats over their head and how it actually works. Not just teaching them to get down safe.
The whole S&Ta thing I think is a good start so we have some control on who teaches. Is it right? Im not sure. Time will tell. There are so many variables from dz to dz that its really hard to make one standard across the board. This is uspa's way of trying to control this. At least I think it is. 2012 will be the first year this is in effect. Im sure there will be adjustments along the way.
The only thing I can say to the unhappy people is if you don't like something go to a board meeting and do something about it. Being that canopy was the number one killer this year something has to be done. Two thumbs up to USPA for seeing this.
As far as the eyes close while flaring. Every canopy course I took had me do this. I never heard of a indecent from this type of a maneuver in a course. There has been 100s if not 1000s of these courses given. So whats the problem?
Just my thoughts.


nigel99  (D 1)

Dec 27, 2011, 12:38 PM
Post #90 of 108 (549 views)
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Re: [DaVinciflies] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
In reply to:
I would like to see swooping reserved as the sport of the elite.

How are you going to define "elite"?

How do you police this?

You don't just start "elite" at something, there has to be a progression. That's the whole point of this thread, after all. What's the progression?

I don't know how civilian aircraft display teams filter their applicants. But if you look at the Red Arrows and similar US display teams. It is only the cream of the crop that are selected and then undergo intensive training.

I just think that to many of us skydivers believe we are good enough when to be blunt we are not and never will be. It is not so much a matter of progression and I think the statistics back this up. It is just that to really swoop, you need to be talented. I don't have the knowledge to propose how the selection is done.


DiverMike  (C 40024)

Dec 27, 2011, 1:27 PM
Post #91 of 108 (537 views)
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Re: [nigel99] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
I don't know how civilian aircraft display teams filter their applicants. But if you look at the Red Arrows and similar US display teams. It is only the cream of the crop that are selected and then undergo intensive training.

Pilots have limited access to high performance aircraft and most insurance policies dictate who may intentionally fly in formation. Neither restriction exists in skydiving.


wolfriverjoe  (A 50013)

Dec 27, 2011, 2:05 PM
Post #92 of 108 (529 views)
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Re: [nigel99] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
In reply to:
In reply to:
I would like to see swooping reserved as the sport of the elite.

How are you going to define "elite"?

How do you police this?

You don't just start "elite" at something, there has to be a progression. That's the whole point of this thread, after all. What's the progression?

I don't know how civilian aircraft display teams filter their applicants. But if you look at the Red Arrows and similar US display teams. It is only the cream of the crop that are selected and then undergo intensive training.

I just think that to many of us skydivers believe we are good enough when to be blunt we are not and never will be. It is not so much a matter of progression and I think the statistics back this up. It is just that to really swoop, you need to be talented. I don't have the knowledge to propose how the selection is done.

Right. And the PD Factory Team does the same thing. But just like the airplane demo teams, the canopy pilots are already highly skilled. They don't take the "best" pilots that are just off student status and teach them.

And there are thousands of aircraft out there that are aerobatic-capable.
Spin training is mandatory for a Flight Instructor rating (at least it used to be).
Basic aerobatic training is available to just about any pilot who is willing to make the effort and pay the expense. A quick search found THIS

Clearly aerobatic flight isn't reserved for the "elite". It is considered advanced, but is also considered helpful. The ability to recover from really unusual attitudes that aerobatic training teaches would have saved a lot of pilots over the years.

And you are also going to have to define "Swoop." Competition? Multiple turn setups? Turns above a certain rotation (say more than 180)? Any turn? Any speed inducing manuver?

I agree that too many of us think we can swoop when we really can't. But with the right attitude, proper training, dedication and the willingness to progress at a reasonable rate (all back to attitude) many of us could.


DaVinciflies

Dec 27, 2011, 2:09 PM
Post #93 of 108 (526 views)
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Re: [nigel99] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
In reply to:
In reply to:
I would like to see swooping reserved as the sport of the elite.

How are you going to define "elite"?

How do you police this?

You don't just start "elite" at something, there has to be a progression. That's the whole point of this thread, after all. What's the progression?

I am not sure that swooping requires raw, innate talent. I think it is a trainable skill. The problem comes when people (and as you say, far too many people) try to short cut that training. The hundreds of jumps learning smaller turns on bigger canopies, the dedicated canopy jumps, the coaching all have to be there for safe progression.

It may be that likes of Tagle, Drennan, Moledzki, Batsch do have some innate ability above the rest of us, but I believe swooping can be safe enough to be acceptable for the rest if us if approached correctly and I think the correct approach is through managed progression rather than marginalization to a small elite group.

I don't know how civilian aircraft display teams filter their applicants. But if you look at the Red Arrows and similar US display teams. It is only the cream of the crop that are selected and then undergo intensive training.

I just think that to many of us skydivers believe we are good enough when to be blunt we are not and never will be. It is not so much a matter of progression and I think the statistics back this up. It is just that to really swoop, you need to be talented. I don't have the knowledge to propose how the selection is done.


nigel99  (D 1)

Dec 28, 2011, 12:38 AM
Post #94 of 108 (474 views)
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Re: [wolfriverjoe] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

Quote:
And you are also going to have to define "Swoop." Competition? Multiple turn setups? Turns above a certain rotation (say more than 180)? Any turn? Any speed inducing manuver?

I agree that too many of us think we can swoop when we really can't. But with the right attitude, proper training, dedication and the willingness to progress at a reasonable rate (all back to attitude) many of us could.

I was going to let the topic die, as it is a hijack of the OP's thread. However, yesterday another fatality from a highly experienced jumper swooping.

I want to define 'elite' and why I don't believe the average skydiver should be swooping.

Swooping it would seem requires excellent eyesight, lightning reflexes for when things go wrong, excellent depth perception and judgement. Someone who is not in peak physical condition will almost certainly not be in this category. I also believe that somewhere around 40 years of age most of us start to lose the physical 'peak' conditioning required.

Time and again we are seeing 'safe' skydivers die swooping despite having thousands of jumps. As you pointed out there is no clear definition. I am sure that most jumpers who have 1000+ jumps can quite safely swoop a Sabre 2 loaded at 1.4 or so. But the number who can safely swoop a Velo at 2+ wingloading has got to be smaller. Where I disagree with popular consensus is, I don't believe that training can make all of us capable of safely flying a Velo - regardless of jumps. I am lucky, I already know that I have the motor skills of a brick.

I don't support banning swooping. I also don't have an answer on how you fix stupid.


Para5-0  (D 19054)

Dec 28, 2011, 7:18 AM
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Re: [nigel99] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
I also believe that somewhere around 40 years of age most of us start to lose the physical 'peak' conditioning required.

Speak for yourself, 43 and still swooping like a 21 year old. lol


ozzy13  (D 29344)

Dec 28, 2011, 8:17 AM
Post #96 of 108 (444 views)
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Re: [Para5-0] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
In reply to:
I also believe that somewhere around 40 years of age most of us start to lose the physical 'peak' conditioning required.

Speak for yourself, 43 and still swooping like a 21 year old. lol

I think you should listen to him old man I don't want to see you get hurt. Plus you suck at swooping anyways


DaVinciflies

Dec 28, 2011, 8:45 AM
Post #97 of 108 (440 views)
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Re: [nigel99] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
I am sure that most jumpers who have 1000+ jumps can quite safely swoop a Sabre 2 loaded at 1.4 or so. But the number who can safely swoop a Velo at 2+ wingloading has got to be smaller.

This may be true, but is not the same as only letting "elite" jumpers swoop, in fact it could be seen as supporting the opposite as the Sabre2 guy is safe but not jumping an elite canopy.

What you're saying here is that there should be some restriction on the canopy type and/or WL people are allowed to jump, which is a different discussion.

I am in favour of some form of type-rating system for canopies where you have to qualify to jump a certain WL or planform. I believe it should be related to demonstrated skills though, not jump numbers.


craigbey  (C 31991)

Dec 28, 2011, 10:49 AM
Post #98 of 108 (417 views)
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Re: [DaVinciflies] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

One of your posts from the Elsinore incident thread may have been removed, but I want to respond here if possible.

You can probably do something that many others cannot ... land on a predetermined target after flying a pattern with distinct downwind, base and final legs and 90 deg (+/- 10 deg) turns, straight in with no sashaying or s-turns. I believe this because you dedicate some of your jumps to structured canopy flight.

It sucks to hear about anyone pounding in. The recent incidents are a bad sign and should serve as warnings that more training and oversight is needed.

But my beef is with experienced jumpers who can't fly a consistent pattern or who choose to spiral down into the pattern or need to sashay and s-turn in the pattern to land at a desired location. I have never been in a situation where I felt my safety was jeopardized by someone under a HP canopy or someone setting up for or executing a HP landing.

I have been in several situations, however, where my safety was jeopardized by someone spiraling down in or near the pattern or flying their canopy in an unpredictable manner while in traffic. In one case, the jumper was already at a safe horizontal distance, but spiraled down and into the pattern almost directly below me. Why?

Downwind, base and final. It's that fucking simple.

Part of the CC proficiency requirements for advanced USPA licenses should include landing on a predetermined target after flying a pattern with distinct downwind, base and final legs and 90 deg (+/- 10 deg) turns ... straight in with no sashaying or s-turns.

If someone wants to call themselves expert, master or whatever the most advanced license from USPA says, you must be able to do this. I've seen too many people who can't.


DaVinciflies

Dec 28, 2011, 11:49 AM
Post #99 of 108 (403 views)
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Re: [craigbey] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

Absolutely agree.

I (and I imagine you from your post) take pride in flying a well-executed, pre-planned pattern, whether it results in a HP turn to final or not, and regardless of whether I am the only one in the air.

It's another sign of our dysfunctional culture (there's that word again) that such self-controlled flight is not held in higher esteem by many jumpers, and that same lack of self-control appears to be involved in at least some of the incidents where people have hooked themselves in.

The self-control to say "I'm not sure about this, I won't hook it this time", rather than "I think I can make it".


ozzy13  (D 29344)

Dec 28, 2011, 2:14 PM
Post #100 of 108 (385 views)
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Re: [craigbey] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
One of your posts from the Elsinore incident thread may have been removed, but I want to respond here if possible.

you should keep responses to that thread there

You can probably do something that many others cannot ... land on a predetermined target after flying a pattern with distinct downwind, base and final legs and 90 deg (+/- 10 deg) turns, straight in with no sashaying or s-turns. I believe this because you dedicate some of your jumps to structured canopy flight.

It sucks to hear about anyone pounding in. The recent incidents are a bad sign and should serve as warnings that more training and oversight is needed.

It has been noticed hens the new requirement

But my beef is with experienced jumpers who can't fly a consistent pattern or who choose to spiral down into the pattern or need to sashay and s-turn in the pattern to land at a desired location. I have never been in a situation where I felt my safety was jeopardized by someone under a HP canopy or someone setting up for or executing a HP landing.

you cant point out just experienced jumpers doing this. For the most part its newer jumpers wanting to get on the next load

I have been in several situations, however, where my safety was jeopardized by someone spiraling down in or near the pattern or flying their canopy in an unpredictable manner while in traffic. In one case, the jumper was already at a safe horizontal distance, but spiraled down and into the pattern almost directly below me. Why?

I hate when people do this to me, with that said. Its your responsibility ultimately. You are in charge of getting yourself down safely. What I do is look at who's on the load and adjust what im going to do for that. If I know i guys always buries their toggle to the ground and they are getting out after me. I go into breaks until they pass. Of course I have already said something to them on the side away from anyone not to in embarrass them. Some people dont listen,care so there is only so much you can do. Head on swivel and protect yourself.

Downwind, base and final. It's that fucking simple.

Part of the CC proficiency requirements for advanced USPA licenses should include landing on a predetermined target after flying a pattern with distinct downwind, base and final legs and 90 deg (+/- 10 deg) turns ... straight in with no sashaying or s-turns.

You already need to do accuracy jumps for B and C nothing new there

If someone wants to call themselves expert, master or whatever the most advanced license from USPA says, you must be able to do this. I've seen too many people who can't.

Again some people dont care. some people come to the dz every other month to do a skydive or two have a beer and go home. From day one you were told that you are responsible for your self. With that said always protect yourself by looking at who's on the load and adjusting to that. Most importantly keep your head on a swivel. hope this helps. stay safe


ozzy13  (D 29344)

Dec 28, 2011, 2:18 PM
Post #101 of 108 (289 views)
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Re: [craigbey] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

One more thing HP landings require a little different pattern. depending on what kind of turn and if its a left or right hand turn. Uspa last year or the year before required uspa DZs to have a separate landing area for HP landings.Cool Just wanted to add that.


craigbey  (C 31991)

Dec 28, 2011, 2:35 PM
Post #102 of 108 (282 views)
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Re: [ozzy13] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

Quote:
you cant point out just experienced jumpers doing this. For the most part its newer jumpers wanting to get on the next load

Wrong. I've seen several experienced jumpers doing this.

Quote:
You are in charge of getting yourself down safely.

No kidding. And it would help if others would get a clue on how to fly their canopies in traffic.

Quote:
You already need to do accuracy jumps for B and C nothing new there

Yes, but I'm asking for a little more.

Quote:
Part of the CC proficiency requirements for advanced USPA licenses should include landing on a predetermined target after flying a pattern with distinct downwind, base and final legs and 90 deg (+/- 10 deg) turns ... straight in with no sashaying or s-turns.

Again, there are too many people who can't do that.


matthewcline  (D 21585)

Dec 28, 2011, 2:43 PM
Post #103 of 108 (274 views)
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Re: [craigbey] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:

Quote:
Part of the CC proficiency requirements for advanced USPA licenses should include landing on a predetermined target after flying a pattern with distinct downwind, base and final legs and 90 deg (+/- 10 deg) turns ... straight in with no sashaying or s-turns.

Again, there are too many people who can't do that.

Seems like a good idea to require it in the progression some where then!

Matt


ozzy13  (D 29344)

Dec 28, 2011, 2:52 PM
Post #104 of 108 (269 views)
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Re: [craigbey] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

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Quote:
you cant point out just experienced jumpers doing this. For the most part its newer jumpers wanting to get on the next load

Wrong. I've seen several experienced jumpers doing this.
again not disagreeing just stating

Quote:
You are in charge of getting yourself down safely.

No kidding. And it would help if others would get a clue on how to fly their canopies in traffic. Its the job of the insturctors at the DZ you jump at to handle that

Quote:
You already need to do accuracy jumps for B and C nothing new there

Yes, but I'm asking for a little more. USPA just gave you more

Quote:
Part of the CC proficiency requirements for advanced USPA licenses should include landing on a predetermined target after flying a pattern with distinct downwind, base and final legs and 90 deg (+/- 10 deg) turns ... straight in with no sashaying or s-turns.

Again, there are too many people who can't do that.
and again uspa is addressing this matter

Good luck


ozzy13  (D 29344)

Dec 28, 2011, 2:56 PM
Post #105 of 108 (264 views)
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Re: [ozzy13] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

Next time a guy spirals down like that, ground them and see if they do it again lol simple fix if you ask me


DaVinciflies

Dec 28, 2011, 3:44 PM
Post #106 of 108 (254 views)
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Re: [ozzy13] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
you cant point out just experienced jumpers doing this. For the most part its newer jumpers wanting to get on the next load

In my experience it's older RW jumpers who are really the worst culprits for spiraling and complete disregard of a pattern, although of course, nobody is immune.


craigbey  (C 31991)

Dec 28, 2011, 5:13 PM
Post #107 of 108 (241 views)
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Re: [DaVinciflies] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

Quote:
It's another sign of our dysfunctional culture (there's that word again) that such self-controlled flight is not held in higher esteem by many jumpers

The coolest landing I've seen all year...

Wasn't a swooper at the DZ or on video somewhere. It was a young guy just off student status who walked out into the landing area, talked out his landing pattern, altitude checkpoints and intended target. He then got on a load, jumped and flew his canopy almost exactly the way he planned and landed almost exactly where he intended. Downwind, base, final ... just about perfect. And after he landed, he reviewed what he had done in the pattern and on his landing to try and see if he could make any improvements.

Not sure how many jumps he had at the time, but looking back, it really was the most impressive thing I've seen all year because of his planning, execution and review.

(This post was edited by craigbey on Dec 28, 2011, 5:15 PM)


craigbey  (C 31991)

Dec 29, 2011, 3:45 AM
Post #108 of 108 (212 views)
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Re: [matthewcline] Requiring B license applicants to fly their canopy with their eyes closed for 15 seconds (5 flares, approx 3 seconds each)? [In reply to] Can't Post

Quote:
Seems like a good idea to require it in the progression some where then!

Indeed, part of what I said already is. But there are no specific requirement for straight legs and 90 deg turns. If someone wants to fly their canopy like they're the only one in the pattern, they can count a landing even if they are flying all over the place to get to the target.



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