Forums: Skydiving: Safety and Training:


dove  (D 26128)

Aug 20, 2001, 10:06 AM
Post #1 of 14 (1897 views)
Swoop! Can't Post

I am hesitant to ask this for fear of being screamed at... but here goes anyhow: How do you swoop a landing? I have always had great landings and I am certainly not looking for instruction on doing a low/hook turn. But I'd like to get a little surf every now and then. I have done it a few times, but never intentionally and it was quite enjoyable!!!!! So any safe suggestions would be greatly appreciated! Thanks! If you'd like to bite my head off, feel free to do so! It's happened before and it grows back!


freaksister  (B 25147)

Aug 20, 2001, 10:37 AM
Post #2 of 14 (1866 views)
Re: Swoop! [In reply to] Can't Post

I think this is a valuable question. I have watched the swoopers many times to try to gauge what each of them is doing. Of course, front riser turns are still out of my league...I will follow the responses to this thread! Nothing better than learning how to swoop/surf safely! Is there technically a difference between swooping and surfing??? By the way, I have read enough articles lately to know that there is a difference between a hook turn and a front-riser turn to gain speed for your approach! So I too am not asking how to hook it (that's easy! LOL)


I don't want the meaning of life, I want the experience of being alive!

ramon  (D 26115)

Aug 20, 2001, 10:46 AM
Post #3 of 14 (1862 views)
Re: Swoop! [In reply to] Can't Post

Read the following

Worst mistakes
1. I have to swoop.
2. I'm really going to hook it this time.

Best habits
1. plan your swoop on the ground with several outs, and use your outs rather than stay in the swoop if something is in your way.
2. If anything looks different in the air from your plan, get into the pattern and land normally.
3. Practice far away from the congested 'close' landing area to lessen unexpected obstacles (unseen canopy, child, dog, car plane, relatives with camera's, RW 10 ways high fiving each other in the middle of the landing area Smile.
4. Carves build up a lot of speed as opposed to a snappy low turn, and are safer and easier to bail out of.

The Australian Skydiving fedaration published a handout (on the web) about high performance canopy piloting.

Also the Origianl lengthy discussion of it was an article (65 pages) written by Jerry Sobieski which Sangiro used to have on this website but I can't find it.

Ask Sangiro to tell you where it is.

bloo skies

P.S. a great swooper told me, "It is not a matter of if you are ever going to bust your ass, but a matter of when" safe

dove  (D 26128)

Aug 20, 2001, 10:50 AM
Post #4 of 14 (1860 views)
Re: Swoop! [In reply to] Can't Post


Thank you SO much! You are awesome! I am on my way to those sites now. And your good/bad habit tips were really helpful too. THANK YOU!!!!


ramon  (D 26115)

Aug 20, 2001, 10:51 AM
Post #5 of 14 (1859 views)
Re: Swoop! [In reply to] Can't Post

I hate telling people what to do , but it is better than not telling them. Laugh

If you want to experience a little extra speed safely. When you are on final ('100-150' up)...keeping your toggles in your hands grab both your front riser and tug down on them 2-3 inches. at about 15-20 feet (higher if the speed is disconcerting) slowly let them up and get ready to flare normally. With the extra speed you should surf a little bit, if you are used to flaring very hard, the extra speed may pop you up in the air a little due to the lift.

Be safe, cutie.


Premier phreezone  (D License)
Aug 20, 2001, 11:54 AM
Post #6 of 14 (1846 views)
Re: Swoop! [In reply to] Can't Post

Swooping or surfing is easist done on a ZP canopy. During the two stage flare process you will actually reach a point where you plane out and are traveling level with the ground. Mathmatically this means that your lift is equal to the rate of descent.If the planing is done low to the ground then you will be surfing across the ground. Flaring too late is a good way to join the "Heavy Metal Skydiving Club" and flaring too soon can drop you out of the sky because you will have translated all of your foward movment into lift. when the rate of descent overcomes your lift you will come to the ground again. By building up more speed on your landing you are able to increase the amount of lift you can create. More lift equals a longer and more powerful flare.

Do I HAVE to do another raft dive??? Smile

cobaltdan  (D License)

Aug 20, 2001, 4:00 PM
Post #7 of 14 (1797 views)
Re: Swoop! [In reply to] Can't Post

i would like to add to ramon's lists of do's.

do: practice swooping as much as you like UP HIGH.

the place to practice is not on landing.
landing is for displaying the skills you have practiced safely at altitude.



DZBone  (D 14358)

Aug 20, 2001, 4:23 PM
Post #8 of 14 (1788 views)
Re: Swoop! [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
keeping your toggles in your hands grab both your front riser
It would suck to lose your toggles at this point! To keep hold of them and grab the dive loops, keep the toggles in your hands, and use your 3rd and 4th (pinky and ring) fingers to hold the toggles against your palms. Grab the loops with your first and second (index and middle) fingers. Works great, lasts a long time. Using your whole hand in the dive loops can cause problems, especially as you let go to transition to the flare. I believe there was at least one fatality (some guy that used to jump w/his dog) that was caused by a lost toggle during a swoop.

Aug 20, 2001, 4:54 PM
Post #9 of 14 (1783 views)
Post deleted by sangiro [In reply to] Can't Post

dove  (D 26128)

Aug 20, 2001, 8:45 PM
Post #10 of 14 (1766 views)
Re: Swoop! [In reply to] Can't Post

Thanks so much everyone! And I definitely plan on doing this up high SEVERAL times before attempting it on landing. I really appreciate everyone being so helpful and all of the safety suggestions as well. You all rock!

happy dove

bbbilly14  (B License)

Aug 20, 2001, 10:47 PM
Post #11 of 14 (1750 views)
Re: Swoop! [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Last out lets you open higher every time

I love being last out for this exact reason. Whether it is to work on landings, or just giving me extra altitude to screw around (without endangering others) under canopy, I have learned more from being last out than anything else, aside from coaching from the ground, but that opens up another topic, entirely.

"Son, you've got a panty on yer head!"

riggerrob  (D 14840)

Aug 20, 2001, 11:17 PM
Post #12 of 14 (1743 views)
Re: Swoop! [In reply to] Can't Post

Study all the above mentioned pamphlets, but the most important skill is to learn how and when to bail out of a bad approach.

jfields  (C 33595)

Aug 21, 2001, 10:44 AM
Post #13 of 14 (1705 views)
Re: Swoop! [In reply to] Can't Post

Thanks for the links and advice, folks! I'm not the one that asked the question, but I appreciated reading the answers.

I'm more concerned about my canopy control skills than anything in freefall. I don't have to do RW, freefly, or much of anything, but I will definitely land. Since it is inevitable, I might as well get good at it. Smile

My Homepage

freeflir29  (D 10000000)

Aug 21, 2001, 11:34 AM
Post #14 of 14 (1700 views)
Re: Swoop! [In reply to] Can't Post

"It would suck to lose your toggles at this point!"

Been there done that. Got a cracked Coccyx(SP?) to prove it. Luckily I wasnt trying to swoop at the time. If I was I most likely wouldn't have walked away. I had around 30 some jumps and was making my approach into Raeford DZ. Two people landed "in my way" and ended up pushing me pretty close to the manifest shed and the trees (Beer Line too but I wasnt so concerned with it at the time.) I knew the "Dragon" would try and pull me into the trees so I was ready. Both hands in my dive loops. With toggles. Dragon hits and starts pulling me into the trees/manifest shed. I pull down smartly on the right front riser as to compensate without losing speed. Go to take hands out of the loops and the left toggle slips off my hand. Because I was inexperienced, I tried to retrieve the toggle, instead of going immediately to the rear risers (secondary controls) I reached twice with no success and the "internal clock" in my head went off with an altitude warning. I turned just in time to bend my knees (to absorb some of the shock) I hit like a sack of shit and people said I bounced about 3 ft in the air not too mention I'm still going 20 MPH forward so I got a nice long slide into home plate. Of course, this had to happen DIRECTLY in front of the pavillion (Cool Guy Packing area) I stood up. Started laughing at myself. Took a bow and (there were some kids standing there) said "Dont try that at home kids" It was funny cause I walked away but JUST BARELYand my ass hurt for the next couple months. I have sympathy for you Pyke! That was under an Aeroglide 235 loaded at 1:1. I shudder to think what would happen under my PD 190. Just one of the reasons I caution people on canopy choices.
I can say this for swooping. Once you do a couple really good ones and you are confident in your skills it mkes landing "normal" seem easy. It will improve your canopy flying. If you live long enough to implement the lessons learned.

"Gonna need...some cream for ya ass"-Chef/South Park

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