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AFF4 - I failed twice... what to do?!

 

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Kuper  (C 35707)

Dec 14, 2002, 9:54 AM
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AFF4 - I failed twice... what to do?! Can't Post

Yesterday i had 3 jumps. At the first - my AFF3, the 2nd guide didn't leave me, and though we continued to the AFF4.
I've tried to stay in control, but from the first second the guide left me, i started turning without any control (god knows how many degrees i had there...). Then he cought me and held me till i pulled.
At my 5th jump i've tried again to success my AFF4, but still - i did 360 turns like a CD in the sky. I even tried to 'take a track' in order to get out of the turning, but the same shit happend again; the track didn't help me, my goggle went up, i put them back, and he (my guide) needed to stabilize me.

After those two (bad) experiments I was (and i'm still, though less) very disappointed and depressed because i failed twice, and I have to try it againUnsure.
Is it normal that after my 5th fly i'm not stable in air? Did someone of you had a thing like that? What can i do? I really want to learn how to do that right and...

Please help :)
thanx,
Ori Kuper.


CrazyIvan  (A 43359)

Dec 14, 2002, 10:01 AM
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Re: [Kuper] AFF4 - I failed twice... what to do?! [In reply to] Can't Post

Dude, I had the same problem, and the cause was I wasn't relaxed, you need to relax and arch, also, the spinning could be caused by NOT 'steering' with your arms, what I mean is, if you start to turn to one side, counter-turn, also, perform some toe taps, I did level IV, 3 times, don't feel bad, is better that you make mistakes now that you're learning and not after, when there is no one next to you.

BLUE SKIES!!!


Jimbo  (D License)

Dec 14, 2002, 10:04 AM
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Re: [Kuper] AFF4 - I failed twice... what to do?! [In reply to] Can't Post

 

Take some comfort in knowing that almost everyone fails AFF level 4 at least once. I think I did that level 3 times before I passed. Take a week or two off, relax, visualize the dive, and when you can visualize the dive perfectly from start to finish, then head back to the DZ. It's all in your head.

-
Jim


(This post was edited by Jimbo on Dec 14, 2002, 10:22 AM)


CanuckInUSA  (D 26396)

Dec 14, 2002, 10:08 AM
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Re: [Kuper] AFF4 - I failed twice... what to do?! [In reply to] Can't Post

It is not uncommon for people to fail AFF levels and most people start messing up on Level IV or Level V (I had to repeat my Level V jump once). So don't beat yourself up too much here.

I'm sure you've heard this many times, and at first it's hard to comprehend what we're saying. But staying relaxed in the air is the key. Now I have a question for you. It sounds like your turns are a little too aggresive. How are you initiating your turn? Are you dropping your shoulders? Anything like that? Dropping the shoulders works, but if you're too aggresive you'll rotate like a man-man. Here's something to try the next time out. Instead of initiating your turn by dropping your shoulders, try bending your waist in the direction of the turn. You will turn slower, but still fast enough and you might find you're in more control. Now serious RW jumpers (which I am not) will actually turn with their legs, but at your level of experience this may just get you into trouble.

Anyway, relax next time you jump and remember that many other people before you have had to repeat AFF levels (so you are not alone).


(This post was edited by CanuckInUSA on Dec 14, 2002, 10:09 AM)


Emmie  (C 33000)

Dec 14, 2002, 10:23 AM
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Re: [Kuper] AFF4 - I failed twice... what to do?! [In reply to] Can't Post

Hi,
First thing I am going to tell you is to not get discouraged by this. Spinning is probably one of the biggest problems in AFF. Trust me! It took me about 15 jumps and a trip to the tunnel to get rid of this problem. I was one bad AFF student.
So first of all, try to relax when you are up there. Relaxing will mold your body into a natural arch. Also, pay attention to your legs, chances are that you are unconciously dropping one knee lower than the other, and thats causing the spin. Or you could be doing the same thing with one of your arms.
On your next jump if you do start spinning out of control, relax, and then make a hard arch. Don't rely on your jm to stop the spin for you, try to conciously do it yourself. Chances are if its happening as soon as your out of the plane, you do have some time to fix whatever the problem is.
One last thing, maybe on your next jump, instead of doing turns you should work on just staying stable. If you are able to hold heading, then try making slow 90 degree turns.
Best thing would be to talk to your jm. Since he's the one jumping with you, he can see what you are doing wrong, and work on fixing it.
Good luck, and don't get discouraged, there is hopeSmile


Premier PhreeZone  (D License)
Moderator
Dec 14, 2002, 11:04 AM
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Re: [Kuper] AFF4 - I failed twice... what to do?! [In reply to] Can't Post

See about getting video on the next jump. It might cost a bit but the info you can get from seeing what you are doing is priceless. You might see a knee is droped a few inches, your sholders might be turned, or a leg might be out and the other in. Only way to see is via video.


cgross

Dec 14, 2002, 11:45 AM
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Re: [Kuper] AFF4 - I failed twice... what to do?! [In reply to] Can't Post

One of the hardest things to do, but the shows the best results is Relax. Don't be stiff with your hands arms and legs. Just arch and let the wind hold you up.

Chris


Cepheus  (Student)

Dec 14, 2002, 2:35 PM
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Re: [Kuper] AFF4 - I failed twice... what to do?! [In reply to] Can't Post

Oh my god... Dude, you sound EXACTLY like I did last week...

I just recently passed level 4, last weekend. Took me 4 attempts to do it.

What was the problem?

I was all intensely focused on 'getting it right.' I was so rigid and tense that every little error I made was magnified 100-fold. My legs were slightly asymmetrical, and my arms were just the smallest amount out of alignment, but these minor errors would have been easilly corrected if I weren't as tense as I was.

What'd I do about it?

Told myself, 'screw the dive flow.' Yup. All I wanted to do was jump and fall stable, so I told myself that, despite what the original plan was, all I'd do is enjoy the ride.

Did I work?

Well, I passed level 4 last Saturday, and I had more fun on that jump than I've had on the 9 before it, combined. Hell, the feeling is still with me.

Something I think that helped me a lot is that I had a jumpmaster that agreed with me. 'Screw the dive flow. Let's just have fun.' He recognized that my problem was that I was so focused on the specifics that I was forgetting the very most important thing... Have fun.

Of course, I had a lot of help from dz.commers on that relax part, too... AggieDave gave me some wonderful words, and I don't think he'd mind if I repeated them here:

Quote:
Breathe, do it. Before you give the count, take a deep breath and let it out. Next, smile, you're doing one of the greatest things on earth, enjoy the view.

A lot of students (fun jumpers too for that matter) have some control problem because they won't relax, they're worried about too many things and not focused on the jump. Let it go, you'll be surprised how much better your dive will go.

The plane ride.
"fagedaboutit" Look out the windows, enjoy the view. Touch your handles once or twice, think about your dive a couple times, then relax. Think about how much fun you're about to have.

The Door.
When it opens, enjoy the fresh air (since you'll probably have assholes like me on the load who tend to fart in planes), enjoy the cool breeze. Smile and laugh at the people going out the door (like lemmings sometimes) and think about how much fun you're about to have.

The count.
Focus, look in the eyes of your instructor, take that deep breath, let it out slowly, give the count and leave.

The Dive.
Go through your dive, smile.

The canopy.
Deploy. Don't worry about a malfunction, if you have one, you've been trained to deal with it and you've practiced your emergancy proceedures, take care of it if it happens. Otherwise, kick your feet, smile and laugh, you just had a great skydive. Look at the other canopies landing, setup your landing pattern, fly your pattern and land.

Alright, so what if your dive didn't quite go as planned, what if you even have to repeat a dive? So what. Were you safe? Did you have fun? Would you like to do it again? Then don't worry about it, smile, buy beer for the DZ (most important) and enjoy the company of fellow skydivers.

Every single skydiver experienced fear when they had lower jump numbers, that's natural, some of the best had to repeat student jumps when they were students even.

Bottom line: smile, breathe, have fun.

Remember the reason you're doing this. Remember the freedom you feel when you're up in that beautiful blue sky, flying as man has always dreamed. Remember that you are doing something that only so few of us are brave enough and lucky enough to even so much as think about doing.

Most of all, remember that, as one very smart person told me in chat a couple weeks back, "The punishment is the same as the reward -- you get to jump again!"

Good luck with your jumps, Kuper, and have fun. Smile


Michele  (B 26874)

Dec 14, 2002, 6:11 PM
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Re: [Cepheus] AFF4 - I failed twice... what to do?! [In reply to] Can't Post

Hey, Kuper...

Quote:
AFF4 - I failed twice...
You didn't fail, not exactly. You got a whole canopy, you didn't die, or break something, right? So you didn't fail...you just didn't accomplish particular things. So what? It's a learning process. You learned. Well done!

Quote:
what to do?!
Jump again.

Most people do have to repeat, once, twice or three times, an AFF level or two. I had real difficulties on level 5. A friend of mine did one level 4 times (I don't recall which one).

As to advice for what you're doing wrong, I'll bet you didn't smile at all. I really don't understand why or how that works, but smiling, really smiling, changes things. And it does work.

Phree said it: get some video. Others said it: relax. And I'll add my own: smile.

Also, make sure you have breakfast and lunch. I had the hardest time remembering to eat, but for some reason, eating does help. No, not a ton of food, but something (bagel, muffin, fruit) in your belly helps.

Hang in there. You'll be fine. You already are fine - you just don't know it yet.

Ciels-
Michele


seedy  (Student)

Dec 14, 2002, 6:29 PM
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Re: [Kuper] AFF4 - I failed twice... what to do?! [In reply to] Can't Post

You are not the only one in this boat. I can't freefall without spinning either. My JM thinks I have a knee low that is causing the spin, but even with video we haven't nailed it yet. I am taking a few weeks off before I try again. I know relaxation is one of my biggest problems. I am really keyed up with attempting to do my tasks.

Just keep trying...that's what I'm going to do. Someday we'll both get through this.Wink


Taosson  (D 24739)

Dec 14, 2002, 7:17 PM
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Re: [Kuper] AFF4 - I failed twice... what to do?! [In reply to] Can't Post

Hey Kuper--
Dont worry about this one little bit! It took me 5 tries, yes that means I 'failed' it 4 times, to get it right. It is probably not that big of a problem, some little thing that is getting in the way. What finally happened with me? I dont rightly know, on the fifth attempt I just didnt spin anymore. I did the same thing that some other people are suggesting, including getting video and there was nothing that stood out in the video to explain the spin, and I spun like a top! I got frustrated as well but kept at it. I also know that it is very hard to relax when you know you have 'failed' a couple of times already, but just remember you are doing this to have fun. There is one aspect which I will disagree with some others on and that is the waiting. I did not wait, I wanted to get back in the air and try it again and again and again until I got it. My jump master made me take a day off, but I think waiting a couple of weeks may be a mistake. I have always been of the opinion that you have to get back on the horse that threw you and the sooner the better. Overall just dont worry about it, you will get it and then you will be so happy you will not know what to do! I know when I got it I landed and just yelled at the top of my lungs and couldnt wait to do it again. Stick with it and Good Luck!!!


Luna  (A 43126)

Dec 14, 2002, 7:36 PM
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Re: [Kuper] AFF4 - I failed twice... what to do?! [In reply to] Can't Post

Everyone is right! I'm also going through as a student and spinning has become a problem for me. I had to repeat a level for spinning. The next time I tried it, I couldn't make myself turn. Third time was a charm, but then the next jump (my last jump), I was doing barrel rolls and back flips, and after doing one of each, I went into a spin again. I saw my instructor coming closer each time I went around, but I got the feeling he wasn't coming in to stop me (and he didn't). I was trying everything to stop it, doing those toe-taps like mad, but nothing worked. I just kept thinking about the wicked line-twists I was going to have when I deployed, but amazingly enough, I didn't have one. Instructor says that I actually stopped the spin right as I went to deploy. He said that I was just too stiff from panic (I've had a bad experience with spins and they just freak me out), and that if I had RELAXED, I would have come out of it. Apparently when I went to deploy I must have relaxed finally and it stopped. I know that everyone says that relaxing is the key, but it is probably the hardest thing about this sport to learn. I told my instructor though that this is one of the reasons I am doing this. I have a very hard time with stress and not being able to relax in my "real life." I figure, if I can figure out how to relax in freefall, I should be set! If you can relax in a skydive, you should be able to relax anywhere! At least, that's my theory. And one of these days I'm going to get it.

Incidentally, my husband also had terrible spinning problems on 2 jumps, so he went to the tunnel for an Airspeed camp. Problem solved. Wish I could go! Most of us just have to keep plugging away at it until we get it right. Hang in there. You'll get it one day too! Smile


Kuper  (C 35707)

Dec 15, 2002, 9:44 AM
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I'll try it again... Thanx you all! [In reply to] Can't Post

Thank you all for your advices, I be able to jump again just 2 weeks from now (tough i hope i'll jump before), and i'm gonna try beeing relaxed, stay stable and all that... i hope it'll work :)

I'll tell you when i'll get there...
thanx againSmile

Ori Kuper


CrazyIvan  (A 43359)

Dec 15, 2002, 10:16 AM
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Re: [Kuper] I'll try it again... Thanx you all! [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Thank you all for your advices, I be able to jump again just 2 weeks from now (tough i hope i'll jump before), and i'm gonna try beeing relaxed, stay stable and all that... i hope it'll work :)

I'll tell you when i'll get there...
thanx againSmile

Ori Kuper

Just think happy thougts and you will fly

Peter Pan Tongue


falxori  (D License)

Dec 15, 2002, 11:18 AM
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Re: [Taosson] AFF4 - I failed twice... what to do?! [In reply to] Can't Post

Quote:
I think waiting a couple of weeks may be a mistake. I have always been of the opinion that you have to get back on the horse that threw you and the sooner the better.

i agree, but there are those days that NOTHING will go right.
i'd go back in the following weekend (if i could), not wait a few weeks...

what did the jm (and who was it btw)tell you in the debrief ? these guys usually know best.

hope to meet you on the ground, after AFF5 in two weeks Sly ...

from one Ori to another...
O


cmnorris  (D License)

Dec 15, 2002, 4:46 PM
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Re: [falxori] AFF4 - I failed twice... what to do?! [In reply to] Can't Post

My relaxation technique...I "wiggle" in the air. I found that if I do something silly in the air that puts me in a good mood, helping me to relax.

I've also found that quite a few people found it amusing as well.


darkwing  (D 4164)

Dec 16, 2002, 4:44 AM
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Re: [Kuper] AFF4 - I failed twice... what to do?! [In reply to] Can't Post

Some very good skydivers had much shakier student experiences. Just keep working on it.


masher  (D 3806)

Dec 16, 2002, 5:26 AM
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Re: [darkwing] AFF4 - I failed twice... what to do?! [In reply to] Can't Post

It took me 10 jumps to figure out how to exit stable. (static line cse)

My instructors tried linked exits, hangin exits, dive exits. Nothing seemed to work.

Then it just clicked. I think it was a combination of pushing my belly further forwad in my poised exit before letting go, and waiting for stable flight to happen, rather than trying to make it happen.

After that clicked, I cranked through my stages.

All I have to do now is track straight, rather than in circles...


(This post was edited by masher on Dec 16, 2002, 5:27 AM)


rendezvous  (C License)

Dec 16, 2002, 9:53 AM
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Re: [Kuper] AFF4 - I failed twice... what to do?! [In reply to] Can't Post

Oh Dude ! you are doing just fine. Heck ! I failed level 2 where you do practically nothing with the instructors holding onto you. Level 4 was just like yours. Spun like crazy. Couldn't figure out why at that point. Later, in the debrief my instructor told me that my knee had dropped causing the spin. I was too busy focusing on the upper body to realize that I even had legs. so don't worry. Talk to your instructor about it. Ask him what went wrong and what you need to focus on. Make a mental picture of what you need to do and focus on and go enjoy the dive. Besides it's good that you've had to deal with this. Atleast now you know what it feels like and soon you'll have the confidence of knowing how to come out of it. AFF is about learning. You instructor is there so that you can make mistakes, learn from them and apply yourself with him being your safety net, atleast to a great extent. AFF doesn't mean you have to get it right on the first jump. Just work with your instructor and you'll be fine. And yes spinning and tumbling is part of the learning curve, so enjoy it. Once you know how to spin yourself and stop it, you'll miss that fear it caused the first time it happened unintentionally.


Sebazz1  (D 23382)

Dec 17, 2002, 12:46 PM
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Re: [Kuper] AFF4 - I failed twice... what to do?! [In reply to] Can't Post

You must relax harder...Smile I love to say that to students. Honestly it could be a variety of things and I am surprised you JM did not give you enough feed back. Relaxing is most important. Also in the past i have noticed when students start to turn that they are not countering the turn. Make an effort to stop the spin by countering it. And though it may be expensive there is no better training tool than video. Get a video and watch it afterwards. It should show you evrything and give you better awareness of what you are doing in those brief seconds of freefall. Good Luck!! Let us know how ebverything goes...Cool


Premier faulknerwn  (D 17441)
Moderator
Dec 18, 2002, 8:44 PM
Post #21 of 75 (2582 views)
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Re: [Kuper] AFF4 - I failed twice... what to do?! [In reply to] Can't Post

Read my student logbook at http://www.eco.utexas.edu/~faulkner/skydive/howcrw.html

I had 48 jumps when I got off student status :-) About 3100 now - I eventually got it :-)
W


pds  (D 27641)

Dec 18, 2002, 9:46 PM
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Re: [Kuper] AFF4 - I failed twice... what to do?! [In reply to] Can't Post

what everyone else said.

it is probably a dropped knee. i found that i was correcting for the knee with my reciprocal arm and that left me no where to go. just do a relax dive and hold a heading. it is all moving real fast for you right now, but just relax and try to feel the air.


Kuper  (C 35707)

Dec 28, 2002, 2:06 PM
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A Heading hold dive - I failed again... [In reply to] Can't Post

The last time i failed AFF4 twice. then we decided to do a heading hold dive.
Unimpressed and thats what happend:
I was at the DZ today, and had 1 jump. I started doing a slow (that's what my guide said) turn, and then 1st thing I took a track. When we debriefed - my guide told me that if I just waited 2-3 seconds, I could be stable and get out of this slow (he says so) turn. well, I started with the track & it was just fine. BUT: from the moment I tried to get back into a belly body position, I started turning again, I was on my back, I was with my head down, I was with my head up every thing you think about I did it. The problem, of course, was that I couldn't control any of those positions for more the 0.5 sec. each. The last time I saw the altimeter was at 6500 or something like that. After I saw it, I wasn't stable (still) and then, I tried (still and again) to get into body position. I didn't succeed, and I pulled at something like 4900 in god knows what position (without knowing that I'm there I pulled just because I knew I was somewhere after the 5500).

Next time I hope to be more relaxed. I didn't feel comfort to be in any of those "not belly" body positions. It looks like I always thought about 'Get back to body position! Get back to body position!' and that's why I worked so fast in the air. I needed to 'flow' more with the air, and not to be work so stiffly like I did.

Again I'll tell you when I get there...
Till then Blue sky everybody and have fun!!!


Cepheus  (Student)

Dec 28, 2002, 2:20 PM
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Re: [Kuper] A Heading hold dive - I failed again... [In reply to] Can't Post

Why were you on your back for a level 4?


Kuper  (C 35707)

Dec 28, 2002, 2:39 PM
Post #25 of 75 (2472 views)
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Re: [Cepheus] A Heading hold dive - I failed again... [In reply to] Can't Post

because i couldn't control it from the moment i finished the track...


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