Forums: Skydiving: Instructors:
One-armed student experience?

 


livendive  (D 21415)

Jul 1, 2004, 8:05 AM
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One-armed student experience? Can't Post

We've got a guy at the DZ with 225 military (s/l) jumps who wants to get into the sport. The trouble is his right arm, while present, doesn't work. He's already gotten himself a big student rig that is currently being converted to left side BOC & SOS and has done a couple tandems. I've got some loose ideas about how to teach him one-armed canopy flight, but don't want to be re-inventing the wheel. Anyone else here had such a student? If so, can you tell me what lessons you learned, both good and bad?

Blues,
Dave


obelixtim  (D 84)

Jul 1, 2004, 2:59 PM
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Re: [livendive] One-armed student experience? [In reply to] Can't Post

 Tricky...I had a S/L student once....right arm missing just below the elbow (about a 2 inch stump)....His left arm was massively developed and strong.....he did a strut dangle one handed, no probs.....

Steering.....he just hooked the right toggle over the stump and steered OK, but I'd already suggested he could just steer with the left toggle only...which wouldn't have been a problem.....

Landing.......he just set up early with both toggles in his left hand and hauled both brakes down together, got a stand up.....

Gear was Telesis 2, SOS, PISA 290 sq ft 9 cell main.........

He only did one jump, and was stoked.....

If your guy is going F/f, your problem seems to be what his arm is gonna do in F/f....is it just flopping around or is it rigid.....is it gonna cause a turn during the F/f......

What else can you tell us??....a bit more info please......


livendive  (D 21415)

Jul 1, 2004, 3:23 PM
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Re: [obelixtim] One-armed student experience? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
If your guy is going F/f, your problem seems to be what his arm is gonna do in F/f....is it just flopping around or is it rigid.....is it gonna cause a turn during the F/f......

What else can you tell us??....a bit more info please......

We have all the options available to us (I've got S/L, IAD, AFF, and tandem ratings). At first I was thinking a high S/L or IAD would be good so he could just focus on the canopy flight and not have to worry about hand signals/dive flow etc. But our plane is a rear-door 206, i.e. a "poised" exit rather than a hanging exit, so then I thought a rudimentary AFF Level 1 would be better, perhaps with a high pull. Controlling the arm shouldn't be difficult, we can just tape/strap it to his belly. I'm sure we could teach him to freefall stable with that arm in (modified mantis perhaps), my bigger concern is canopy flight. His good arm isn't massive, and my experience with one-handed canopy flaring (up high) is that it is quite difficult. If that hand isn't exactly centered on the torso you'll turn, and the corrections are counter-intuitive to natural tendency. Pulling right to counter a left turn will make you turn harder to the left. This may not be an issue on bigger student type canopies, but then we run into a fatigue factor due to the increased toggle pressure of those canopies.

Blues,
Dave


obelixtim  (D 84)

Jul 1, 2004, 4:30 PM
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Re: [livendive] One-armed student experience? [In reply to] Can't Post

 I think the F/f probs are solveable as you say....AFF is the way.. you can teach him to fly stable I would think.....

Canopy ride, particularly landing, seems to be the major problem for you....My guy was so strong, one handed controlled flare was easy for him.....I tried it and couldn't do it, and I'm quite strong......

Maybe the best bet for him would be to use both toggles in one hand, but only pull on half brakes for landing and PLF (ex military shouldn't be a problem).......doesn't require so much power to pull them on evenly.....maybe only let him jump in 10 to 15 knots of wind for easier landings....if its possible.........plus a big canopy.....but don't forget the possibility of a reserve ride...allow for the differences........

Or you could shorten the brake lines a bit....will decrease performance a little, but make for a shorter pull to flare.....but tell him to watch the stall point......

Turning only one way under canopy is not really a big deal once he gets used to it...careful spotting would help him as well.....

My guy had obviously put a lot of time into beefing up and increasing the strength of his good arm.....tell your guy to get to work on that, it'll help a lot.......


obelixtim  (D 84)

Jul 2, 2004, 10:06 AM
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Re: [obelixtim] One-armed student experience? [In reply to] Can't Post

 Actually, thinking about it further, it could be a problem for him at pull time as well....depending on the position of the ripcord/pilotchute, is it possible he might go a bit head down or roll a bit when he comes in to pull when solo???......

Perhaps his handle needs to be positioned quite high on the harness so he can use his left elbow to keep a bit head high.............just a thought, but maybe you've got it sussed already.......


skydiverjerry  (D 9092)

Jul 2, 2004, 6:20 PM
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Re: [obelixtim] One-armed student experience? [In reply to] Can't Post

hi there. ok steering the canopy.
this is gonna sound funny but.....
you need two snap lock carrabinas (rock climbing type and need to make two styrups for the feet got that? measure the lines so that when his feet are all the way up as high as he can get them the canopy is in normal flight.

now open high take the two carabinas one to each toggle attach styrups to feet get the idea?

took me a few hours to think of this we did it in military ff (haho) keeps your hands free, he can use one hand for fine adjustments, i would like to suggest that he spend as much time as possible in a suspended harness and practicess this if you need more info please pm me and the gantry set up so you can both see if you are doing it correctly

hope this helps.
blue skies


(This post was edited by skydiverjerry on Jul 2, 2004, 6:21 PM)


freeflynick  (D 24960)

Aug 9, 2004, 7:23 AM
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Re: [livendive] One-armed student experience? [In reply to] Can't Post

There is a one-armed skydiver at Skydive Houston, but my crappy memory cannot remember his name.
I'm sure if you email SDH at info@skydivehouston.com
they would be able to put you in touch with him or ask around for who his instructors were.
Hope this helps........



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