Forums: Skydiving: Safety and Training:
Additional reasons to not jump camera

 

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TLob456  (C 37825)

Feb 4, 2012, 8:49 PM
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Re: [billvon] Additional reasons to not jump camera [In reply to] Can't Post

This topic has been interesting to me for the past couple years. Compared to many of you I'm new to skydiving (a bit over 4 years now w/ about 450 jumps) so I'm not posting with any illusion that I'm an expert or a pro. BUT, I first jumped with a side mount camera when I had just over 100 jumps and never once did it affect my performance in the sky (in terms of being altitude aware, situational awareness, landings, etc.). As some of the posts in this thread state, cameras are smaller and cheaper than ever before so the idea that new skydiver aren't' going to strap a camera to their head is no different than abstinence only sex ed. I'm a USPA coach with hopes to one day be an AFF instructor so my curiosity stems from a mentor perspective...I just don't have a strong aversion to flying a camera at 75/100 jumps if you've shown that you're a competent, aware skydiver. Am I missing something?? I think that REQUIRING 300 skydives before you're allowed to jump with a camera is kind of ridiculous...I've been in the air with D-license jumpers who scare the hell out of me so #s are very misleading.


dragon2  (D 101989)

Feb 5, 2012, 2:30 AM
Post #52 of 101 (1403 views)
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Re: [TLob456] Additional reasons to not jump camera [In reply to] Can't Post

Quote:
BUT, I first jumped with a side mount camera when I had just over 100 jumps and never once did it affect my performance in the sky (in terms of being altitude aware, situational awareness, landings, etc.)

I find that hard to believe. Because I've SEEN lower jump number skydivers in the plane and in the air with a camera, and they have NO CLUE what they're missing around them. So yeah, from their perspective, they would say they have no issues whatsoever. The rest of the load however might disagree on that Unsure


Andy9o8  (D License)

Feb 5, 2012, 12:29 PM
Post #53 of 101 (1336 views)
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Re: [TLob456] Additional reasons to not jump camera [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Am I missing something??

Yes. There's so much discussion on here (not just in this thread) about it, that at this point, you either get it or you don't.


(This post was edited by Andy9o8 on Feb 5, 2012, 12:29 PM)


TLob456  (C 37825)

Feb 5, 2012, 1:41 PM
Post #54 of 101 (1317 views)
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Re: [Andy9o8] Additional reasons to not jump camera [In reply to] Can't Post

I guess I wasn't clear in what I was trying to get across. My point is that if you are unable to wear a camera and maintain your situational awareness after 100 skydives, you're going to be unaware during lots of free fall circumstances (going for that last dock, geeking out for someone else's camera, trying to coach a student, etc.) The physical demands of wearing a modern digital camera are almost negligible...so my comment about "am I missing something" was meant to ask "is there something other than situational awareness that is at issue?". By the way, if this is such a tired, over discussed topic on these threads than why are you still reading them and posting? I noticed an interesting heading...read it...and made a post. Next time I'll be sure to research all the years of previous threads so I don't bother people like you (actually no I won't because that's the point of a forum, to discuss things)

I maintain that the numbers game is counter productive. I know jumpers w/ nearly 1000 skydives who are far less competent and safe in the sky then others who have less than 300. Attitude, ability, focus, awareness are not solely based on who many times you've been in free fall.


5.samadhi

Feb 5, 2012, 1:50 PM
Post #55 of 101 (1311 views)
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Re: [TLob456] Additional reasons to not jump camera [In reply to] Can't Post

I think he was just pointing out that just because you dont think you are missing something doesnt mean you arent missing a whole lot.

I bet most people that walk out in front of a bus on the street and get killed weren't thinking about missing the bus right before they got hit...Unsure

maybe best solution is to ask those who jump with you and any body else who might know you as a skydiver if you are heads up enough to add another complicated piece to the equation.


airtwardo  (D License)

Feb 5, 2012, 2:42 PM
Post #56 of 101 (1293 views)
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Re: [TLob456] Additional reasons to not jump camera [In reply to] Can't Post

Attitude, ability, focus, awareness are not solely based on how many times you've been in free fall.

In reply to:

Absolutely...BUT it definitely is a significant factor.

Another is time in the sport, if someone really wanted to they can fairly easily knock out 100 jumps in a month, they are more current than a jumper taking a year to make that 100, but are they a safer more knowledgeable skydiver?

Building the necessary skill set to safely jump with a camera certainly takes more than just numbers, but that's the lowest common denominator that the USPA really has to work with.

'On average' someone with 200 jumps has spent some 'time' logging those dives, they've matured in the sport through exposure, observation, socialization and the like. They have experienced more and therefore to what ever degree, they are a more skillful and competent Skydiver than they were with 1/2 the time &/or number of jumps.

It's more of a bell curve thing, sure some are ready quicker, some may never be ready.
Realize that having a general baseline is a pretty good way to serve the 'masses'...

...'most' people 'should' be ready by 200 jumps, barring a mandatory camera course, study guide & a rating test - that's what we are working with for now.

It's not meant to be a penalty, it's an acknowledgement that there is more to this than boltin' a box to your head.

Situational awareness, though important isn't the only thing one needs to be concerned with.

Will someone with a new B license react correctly to a helmet horseshoe?

Are they jumping a safe set-up?

If say, someone thinks the GoPro is 'easy', might they then also think I'll add an SLR...what could go wrong?

Without some logical guidelines the 'when' & 'how much' will as always, be pushed until it breaks a bunch of PEOPLE.

Let's work together and be proactive on this one!

~ I understand what you're saying... but seriously, isn't it better to 'error' on the side of caution regarding adding complexity for the sake of shits & giggles on YouTube?

What's the point??

You did it with low numbers...so did I.
In fact - I was using a hand held Super-8 with well under 100 jumps, and doin' it back when it took both hands to cutaway.

In BOTH of our cases ~ Doesn't mean it was a GOOD idea! Wink

Just because 'we both' got away with it, doesn't by any means prove it's safe to do - in general.







~~With this part ---> I'm not tryin' to rag on ya but instead give you something to mentally chew on. You're a Coach aspiring to get your AFFI, there aren't any 'could be, should be, might be' good enough when somebody puts their life in your hands.

You'll study, you will train...you will be tested during your certification.

The reason you're not an AAFI right now is because there are hoops to jump through, minimum qualifications outlined that you hopefully understand are set up to create a safe 'standard' for performance.

IF your really don't understand how that concept applies to an extremely basic #'s requirement 'standard' for the use of additional and unnecessary gear that unquestionably adds complexity & risk to the Skydive...I'd seriously reconsider becoming an Instructor.
Angelic


(This post was edited by airtwardo on Feb 5, 2012, 6:28 PM)


TLob456  (C 37825)

Feb 5, 2012, 4:04 PM
Post #57 of 101 (1271 views)
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Re: [airtwardo] Additional reasons to not jump camera [In reply to] Can't Post

 

In reply to:

there aren't any 'could be, should be, might be' good enough when somebody puts their life in your hands.

Point well taken.

All great points, airtwardo and I really appreciate the well formulated response. I agree, to "error" on the side of safety is nearly always going to be a good thing. I can only imagine the transformation that jumpers like you have seen over the years as USPA started to implement BSRs and a real culture of safety developed. All of which I am a grateful beneficiary of.

One thing that I've seen (and here I mean folks who start jumping a camera immediately once they get an A-license) is that the #s argument alone is...like I said before...like abstinence only sex ed. It's really really easy to think, "well they obviously don't know how awesome I am and this rule is clearly for other people". Unfortunately I've never been around to hear an instructor delve into the real whys of needing more experience before making a skydive more and more complex (when it comes to cameras)...and lots of jumpers don't read through the SIM so the finer points fail to reach them.

Hell, I remember at one DZ having a wing suit instructor try and talk me into doing a WS flight with only 90 jumps under my belt...and with absolutely no ground schooling! I guess my point there is that the typical skydiver is a risk taker, and I think risk takers tend to ignore "rules" but respect "common sense". I'd love to see more of that, but have no idea how the organization would go about implementing/encouraging that in a concise and repeatable manner.

Thanks again. Blue Skies


Andy9o8  (D License)

Feb 5, 2012, 4:15 PM
Post #58 of 101 (1265 views)
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Re: [TLob456] Additional reasons to not jump camera [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
people like you

Attaboy. You'll do well here.


wmw999  (D 6296)

Feb 5, 2012, 5:07 PM
Post #59 of 101 (1248 views)
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Re: [Andy9o8] Additional reasons to not jump camera [In reply to] Can't Post

I made my first camera jump with about 130 jumps; it was also my first cutaway. I of course landed with both ripcords and the camera (although my plan had been to discard everything).

This might be a case where the local Area Safety Officer or I/E or even AFFI could override the suggested minimum. But it might just be that a formal checklist of skills that have to be demonstrated for early camera usage (before some X number of jumps) could help local officials in making that evaluation.

Yeah, some will cave at any request, and others won't approve the next Norman Kent/DanBC combination. But it's a way of formalizing the process, but leaving it to local control.

What kinds of skills and requirements are necessary for camera jumping?

Wendy P.


hcsvader  (E 2952)

Feb 5, 2012, 8:08 PM
Post #60 of 101 (1191 views)
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Re: [wmw999] Additional reasons to not jump camera [In reply to] Can't Post

I started jumping camera at around 160 jumps. I bought a used camera helmet with a pc109 with a cutaway chin cup. I didn't just strap in on and forget about. I got coaching, lots of it.
The first thing my coach did was teach me 4 different EPs for various malfunction scenarios when jumping with a camera and had me drill them many times over.
Can anyone here even tell me what the 4 different EPs might be while jumping a camera helmet with a cutaway system?
The the first couple of jumps I was to jump without turning the camera on just to get used to the extra weight of the helmet.
Then I did a couple of 2 ways where the objective was to keep the subject in frame while maintaining altitude awareness.
We debrief my video pointing out where I was looking at what I was doing after deployment. You know, fly away from the formation and clear your air space before doing anything else with the camera, slider, toggles etc.

I think this coaching really helped prepaid me to fly camera and I think it's one of the bigger problems with today's culture is that you never really see anyone getting coaching on flying camera. Everyone is to busy saying you don't have enough experience and your going to die if you do that...

So it would be nice to see some kind of camera endorsement, even if it is just informal coaching from a senior camera jumper. Most people are keen to learn if presented with the opportunity.


EOCS  (C License)

Feb 6, 2012, 5:46 AM
Post #61 of 101 (1130 views)
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Re: [hcsvader] Additional reasons to not jump camera [In reply to] Can't Post

Well i dont jump a camera, although at 81 jumps and 1 year in the sport i should at least have 3 or 4 running by now. Especially on my wingsuit jumps. Crazy


I had figured there was some other things that have to be considered before jumping cam besides something like. if it gets caught cut it away (which may or may not be right, havent checked yet) But seeing as i came across this, what are the 4 EPs for camera jumping?


Premier billvon  (D 16479)
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Feb 6, 2012, 7:31 AM
Post #62 of 101 (1091 views)
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Re: [TLob456] Additional reasons to not jump camera [In reply to] Can't Post

>BUT, I first jumped with a side mount camera when I had just over 100 jumps and
>never once did it affect my performance in the sky . . .

I very much doubt that. I started jumping a camera in bigways at about jump #1000 and I wasn't aware of the problems it was causing either - until I got told "lose the camera or you're off the dive." I was flying more poorly because I was aware of where the lens was pointed. But if you had asked me before Kate had talked to me I would have said "never once did it affect my performance in any way."

>As some of the posts in this thread state, cameras are smaller and cheaper than ever
>before so the idea that new skydiver aren't' going to strap a camera to their head is no
>different than abstinence only sex ed.

No one's teaching abstinence. They are teaching (to use your analogy) "absolutely no sex before age 12 because you're just not ready for it, no matter how much you think you are. When you ARE ready, here's what to do to be safe." And such rules seem pretty reasonable.

>I just don't have a strong aversion to flying a camera at 75/100 jumps if you've
>shown that you're a competent, aware skydiver. Am I missing something?

A lot of things. Look at DSE's list.

And why stop at 75 jumps? Once 75 jumps becomes the lower limit, there will be exceptional people who can do it at 50. And once 50 becomes the new limit, there will be exceptional people who do not need to follow the 50 jump limit - that's for average jumpers. So they'll start at 20 jumps. After all, the camera is tiny, it won't affect their skydiving at all, there's no snag hazard, they will just "turn it on and forget it" etc etc.

>I think that REQUIRING 300 skydives before you're allowed to jump with a camera
>is kind of ridiculous...I've been in the air with D-license jumpers who scare the hell
>out of me so #s are very misleading.

I think you may misunderstand the 200 jump thing. 200 jumps does not mean "you're good to go! Strap a camera on and go jump." It's the minimum number of jumps you need before you start LEARNING about camera. It's just a part of the foundation that gives you the experience you need to do it safely. And most people will not be ready at 200 jumps - it depends on the person.


Melliandra  (B License)

Feb 6, 2012, 7:47 AM
Post #63 of 101 (1078 views)
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Re: [billvon] Additional reasons to not jump camera [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
200 jumps does not mean "you're good to go! Strap a camera on and go jump."

The difficulty is though, by putting a specific jump number recommendation rather than, say, a signed off camera training card (or equivalent) that's exactly what people do think. At jump 201 or anything beyond, because that limit is there, they must now be ok, you effectively said as much happened to you, and you had 1000 jumps.

Quote:
I started jumping a camera in bigways at about jump #1000 and I wasn't aware of the problems it was causing either - until I got told "lose the camera or you're off the dive."

I'm not saying that the 200 jump recommendation should be removed or become a more rigid requirement (in the US, as it's already a requirement in the UK), simply that on it's own it's largely irrelevant.


Premier billvon  (D 16479)
Moderator
Feb 6, 2012, 8:01 AM
Post #64 of 101 (1072 views)
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Re: [Melliandra] Additional reasons to not jump camera [In reply to] Can't Post

>At jump 201 or anything beyond, because that limit is there, they must now be ok, you
>effectively said as much happened to you, and you had 1000 jumps.

Then we need to make that clearer. We could adopt the same sort of guidelines that wingsuit instructors use - "200 jumps if you are VERY heads up, are willing to train for it and do your first jumps with an instructor who will watch you. 500 jumps if you want to do it on your own."

>I'm not saying that the 200 jump recommendation should be removed or become a >more rigid requirement, simply that on it's own it's largely irrelevant.

It does tend to discourage people with less than 200 jumps from jumping camera, which helps keep them alive. I agree, you need more than just a limit to help people past that point though.


iowa  (D 16855)

Feb 6, 2012, 8:05 AM
Post #65 of 101 (1067 views)
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Re: [billvon] Additional reasons to not jump camera [In reply to] Can't Post

>BUT, I first jumped with a side mount camera when I had just over 100 jumps and
>never once did it affect my performance in the sky . . .

I very much doubt that. I started jumping a camera in bigways at about jump #1000 and I wasn't aware of the problems it was causing either - until I got told "lose the camera or you're off the dive." I was flying more poorly because I was aware of where the lens was pointed. But if you had asked me before Kate had talked to me I would have said "never once did it affect my performance in any way."

+1. Well said, Bill.

For everyone that claims the camera doesn't affect performance or that it isn't a distraction, I just set it and forget it....

I'm calling bullshit!

I didn't start really jumping camera until after 3000 jumps and I've made several silly mistakes caused by too much focus on the camera.

Little things like forgetting my altimiter or to switch from my usual sunglasses to my jump ones. I've made mistakes with the camera getting in a hurry on jump run.

I've seen friends make the same kinds of mistakes and many more. Like not doing the chest strap properly, the list goes on.

I've seen one and heard of another where the camera person actually got on the plane without a rig! Seems obvious but they both had thousands of jumps. They were distracted by the camera.

The 200 jump # is for the exceptional jumpers, not just everyone.

DSE's Small Format Camera Incedent list is a MUST READ for anyone thinking about flying camera.


airtwardo  (D License)

Feb 6, 2012, 9:47 AM
Post #66 of 101 (1040 views)
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Re: [iowa] Additional reasons to not jump camera [In reply to] Can't Post

  

+1. Well said, Bill.

For everyone that claims the camera doesn't affect performance or that it isn't a distraction, I just set it and forget it....

I'm calling bullshit!

In reply to:





Blush

Yeah, it can be a distraction Keith, ...No Bullshit! Angelic


http://youtu.be/EwQAdULPP20

~ When people talk about 'turn it on and forget it', they're describing pretty much what I 'intend' my camera jumps to be.

Just a little personal memento of some jumps from my perspective. I have a side mount Sony with a wide angle pointed forward, no bells, whistles...not even a ring-sight. -should be no problem! Sly


And hey the camera work in all my vids pretty much SHOWS it. I'm lookin' around, doin' what I'm supposed to be doin'...no distractionAngelic

Well...the link is to a jump I did last summer with 'iowa'. He's in white 'really' flying camera. At 3:05 in MY video ya see a skip...

Shortly into my dive I had a thought that I hadn't turned the camera ON, so head-down no-lift diving I reach up and cycle the power switch...Crazy

My plan to 'set it & forget it' got lost somewhere...might have been worse all things considered. It WAS a distraction. Blush



Here's the view from 'iowa's' lens...HE knows what he's doin'! Cool

http://www.youtube.com/...=channel_video_title


(This post was edited by airtwardo on Feb 6, 2012, 9:54 AM)


PiLFy  (A License)

Feb 6, 2012, 2:46 PM
Post #67 of 101 (987 views)
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Re: [hcsvader] Additional reasons to not jump camera [In reply to] Can't Post

"The first thing my coach did was teach me 4 different EPs for various malfunction scenarios when jumping with a camera."

& those would be what???


Premier DSE  (D 29060)

Feb 6, 2012, 3:06 PM
Post #68 of 101 (973 views)
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Re: [PiLFy] Additional reasons to not jump camera [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
"The first thing my coach did was teach me 4 different EPs for various malfunction scenarios when jumping with a camera."

& those would be what???

I too, would like to read these different EP's for various malfunction scenarios.


EOCS  (C License)

Feb 6, 2012, 4:02 PM
Post #69 of 101 (958 views)
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Re: [DSE] Additional reasons to not jump camera [In reply to] Can't Post

as a nood who has the belief that he shall fly cam in the future, yes what are the EPs besides cutting ut helmet away and dealing with what comes from there?

edit: i dont jump wingsuits for those that thought omgwtf 81 jumps and wingsuit :-)


(This post was edited by EOCS on Feb 6, 2012, 4:04 PM)


dthames  (B 37674)

Feb 6, 2012, 6:36 PM
Post #70 of 101 (909 views)
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Re: [airtwardo] Additional reasons to not jump camera [In reply to] Can't Post

I tried to talk about this on a thread some weeks ago but the replies were not much of a conversation. It was more like no one was reading the text of the message. This thread appears to have attracted a different crowd.

I have an interest that is not really related very much to the video produced by the camera but to basically record flight information. I would love to record my thoughts and actions as do canopy drills. Review of the recorded information, I feel, would be a tool to help me learn. I have a very small camera that has a clip on it. I attached a photo of it on a chest strap to show what I envision (someday). The video quality is not all that great but it would be okay to review with. I could talk to it and it would keep a general record of the direction I was facing, turns, or whatever.

However, it seems that no matter what the intended use or how small, most people have their minds made up from the beginning. It is if everyone thinks that you want wants to produce jump videos for Youtube, no matter what your plan might be. It has already been mentioned that in some cases the camera is just there for the ride and it is not influencing the jump. Where this is true, and the camera is not a physical encumbrance, I wonder if the attitude will ever soften up.

I know there is no answer to my query. But I like what someone suggested about taking a fresh look at the future situation.
Attachments: small-camera.jpg (184 KB)


5.samadhi

Feb 6, 2012, 7:38 PM
Post #71 of 101 (900 views)
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Re: [dthames] Additional reasons to not jump camera [In reply to] Can't Post

why not just use your memory? You will probably want to hone this skill (remembering details about the dive), especially if you ever find yourself in a role of helping out a friend learn something in freefall who has less experience. You might as well start now instead of giving yourself a handicap.

I'm not surprised though that seems to be the way the entire world is going with externalizing their mind to electronic devices.

dont be your cell phone!


TLob456  (C 37825)

Feb 6, 2012, 7:51 PM
Post #72 of 101 (894 views)
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Re: [billvon] Additional reasons to not jump camera [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:

Then we need to make that clearer. We could adopt the same sort of guidelines that wingsuit instructors use - "200 jumps if you are VERY heads up, are willing to train for it and do your first jumps with an instructor who will watch you. 500 jumps if you want to do it on your own."

I like the analogy to the WS approach, let a qualified instructor make the call. But this also poses some difficulties in that you'd need an instructor flying 2nd camera slot (sort of) while the "student" flew camera on another group..right? Right off the bat we're starting to make it very hard for C182 DZs. That's a lot of bodies to coordinate and get to participate in a coaching jump.


(This post was edited by TLob456 on Feb 6, 2012, 7:54 PM)


airtwardo  (D License)

Feb 6, 2012, 8:26 PM
Post #73 of 101 (881 views)
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Re: [dthames] Additional reasons to not jump camera [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
I tried to talk about this on a thread some weeks ago but the replies were not much of a conversation. It was more like no one was reading the text of the message. This thread appears to have attracted a different crowd.

I have an interest that is not really related very much to the video produced by the camera but to basically record flight information. I would love to record my thoughts and actions as do canopy drills. Review of the recorded information, I feel, would be a tool to help me learn. I have a very small camera that has a clip on it. I attached a photo of it on a chest strap to show what I envision (someday). The video quality is not all that great but it would be okay to review with. I could talk to it and it would keep a general record of the direction I was facing, turns, or whatever.

However, it seems that no matter what the intended use or how small, most people have their minds made up from the beginning. It is if everyone thinks that you want wants to produce jump videos for Youtube, no matter what your plan might be. It has already been mentioned that in some cases the camera is just there for the ride and it is not influencing the jump. Where this is true, and the camera is not a physical encumbrance, I wonder if the attitude will ever soften up.

I know there is no answer to my query. But I like what someone suggested about taking a fresh look at the future situation.


That IS tiny! Laugh

As I said before, it's kind of a one rule fits all thing right now it seems...and it's aimed at the center-line.

In conversing privately with you, I understand your reasons for wanting to add this type of assist to your learning toolbox.

With that in mind, have you approached your instructor about the possibility of clipping it on, out of the way, after the canopy opens?


Premier billvon  (D 16479)
Moderator
Feb 6, 2012, 8:41 PM
Post #74 of 101 (878 views)
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Re: [dthames] Additional reasons to not jump camera [In reply to] Can't Post

>I feel, would be a tool to help me learn.

People are giving you their opinions on this but you're not listening. If you want to do it, do it. It's a bad idea, you won't learn anything from it and it's dangerous to other skydivers, but if you don't have anyone looking out for new jumpers at your DZ you'll probably get away with it.

>It has already been mentioned that in some cases the camera is just there for the
>ride and it is not influencing the jump.

Yep. There are ~20 or so cameras "just along for the jump" listed in DSE's thread. And yet they caused incidents anyway.

Of course none of those cameras "influenced" the jump. In all cases the jumper was the one who got influenced by the knowledge that there was a camera on the jump - even though they were sure that wouldn't happen.


dthames  (B 37674)

Feb 7, 2012, 4:03 AM
Post #75 of 101 (846 views)
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Re: [airtwardo] Additional reasons to not jump camera [In reply to] Can't Post

Quote:
With that in mind, have you approached your instructor about the possibility of clipping it on, out of the way, after the canopy opens?

No, maybe someday I will. I also have a small MP3 player that has a voice record mode on it. I think it would work in an upper shirt pocket and be somewhat effective. I would not have to use the C word then.

Dan


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