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AFF Student Thoughts

 


Flounder  (B 99999)

Feb 22, 2013, 8:24 PM
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AFF Student Thoughts Can't Post

Greetings Ya'll,
New student here. I've been reading for a while and thought I would make a first post. I am on AFF 5 at Skydive Dallas. Your own GlideAngle has been with me from Jump 1. I'm a Private Pilot (SEL) with approximately 1400 hours over the last 17 years. In other words, I have had a ton of training in my life. Professional student I guess you could say.

My skydiving training experience has been fantastic so far. I've never met a group of people in a "hobby/sport" who are more dedicated or accepting of anyone who walks in the door. I have been made to feel very respectful of the risks yet safe and confident during my instruction and recognizing my limits in what I can expect to accomplish. I ask a million questions since that's who I am. But I have only been told to shut up once and that was a different instructor, haha...

I'm enjoying the AFF program. The next lesson builds upon the previous one. That's how my brain works anyway. I'm a little nervous about winding up on my back in the next couple of jumps, but drill, drill, drill on the ground should help with that. Wish me luck...

Anyway,
Just wanted to say hello and wave off. Take it easy...

Joe

P.S. If my shoe is untied above 6000 I go to EP's right? :-D Couldn't resist...


davelepka  (D 21448)

Feb 23, 2013, 6:30 AM
Post #2 of 11 (2221 views)
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Re: [Flounder] AFF Student Thoughts [In reply to] Can't Post

 
Welcome to the sport. No joke, making sure your shoes are tied tight and double-knotted should be a part of your gear-up routine. I go so far as to take the loops/tails, and tuck them under the criss-cross of laces to make sure the wind doesn't blow them around and untie them. Is it a big deal? Generally no, but it's one less thing to worry about if they are all squared away.

Quote:
I'm a Private Pilot (SEL) with approximately 1400 hours over the last 17 years. In other words, I have had a ton of training in my life.

Good on you, and I hope you remember the most important lesson - that your current level of expertise in the cockpit took 17 years to achieve, and that it has nothing to do with your ability as a skydiver.

Often times we see people will accomplishments in other sports, sometimes unrelated to aviation, sometimes aviation itself, and they seem to think that it gives them some edge over 'everyone else' learning to jump, and that is a sad mistake they're making.

Don't get me wrong, your aviation experience will help you to be a better student/skydiver, within the confines of the regular progression. It doesn't give you magical powers above and beyond the other students/newbies, or qualiy you to do things that your experience/time-in-sport don't suggest you should be doing, it just gives you perhaps a better chance for success along the same road everyone travels.

I mention this more as a cautionary tale, and really for the benefit of everyone reading, not just yourself. On top of that, nothing you said specifiacly suggested that you felt as if you had any advatage over erveryone else, so don't take it that way. Consider it a public service announcement, nothing more, nothing less.


ChrisD  (No License)

Feb 23, 2013, 11:36 AM
Post #3 of 11 (2174 views)
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Re: [Flounder] AFF Student Thoughts [In reply to] Can't Post

Smile

I spend a lot of time thinking about psycology type stuff.

While I wholeheartedly support you in your efforts to achive your goals, I might suggest a different user name?

While a great name, Flounder is, a positvive affeermation, more will support you!

Just a suggestion Smile
C


Scrumpot  (D License)

Feb 23, 2013, 12:12 PM
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Re: [Flounder] AFF Student Thoughts [In reply to] Can't Post

Great perspective feedback - thank you for posting, and WELCOME! Smile

One of my favorites, is an A340 jockey, with over 10k hours of experience. He figured for sure all that EXTENSIVE aviation experience gave him an edge (I had 6 others in the FJC that day) & that he would be naturally, well... just a "natural" as well, on his first jump.

On his final approach, even being (supposedly - I later learned he turned it off, as he felt so confident) on radio, he flared (fully and hard) at @ 50 ft. - - - - I wonder why? Tongue

In all seriousness though - great post, and great attitude. Once again - WELCOME to the world of true (and not mechanically induced) HUMAN FLIGHT.


Flounder  (B 99999)

Feb 24, 2013, 7:40 PM
Post #5 of 11 (2017 views)
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Re: [Flounder] AFF Student Thoughts [In reply to] Can't Post

Thank you for the warm welcome.

Mentioning my amount of training was to emphasize my ability to recognize bad training, from adequate training, from superb training and I completely get the intent of your response. It's a good reminder.

I completed Level 5 and 6 yesterday. Not scared of back to earth anymore. Spent plenty of time on it... :-) Next up is 7 and 2 solos. Oh geez...

5 was very easy and fun. Wish it would have lasted longer. I fall fast I'm told...

6 was a mental battle. I won with my instructors help and confidence in me. I was actually stable out the door this time. First time I remembered to look up at the plane and read the undercarraige. They have previously told me on each jump "chin up" during debrief. Seems if I truly put my chin up I don't do any super awesome flippity dippities out the door. What did I learn from jump 6? Stop reading the book and just do what the instructor says! That's right sports fans, I've been reminded that knowledge is important, but wisdom trumps knowledge and is only obtained by experience. My instructors are not teaching a course, they are imparting wisdom they have obtained over a ton of years. I think there is over 100 years of experience walking around this school within the instructor cadre. Maybe I should just listen for a change... I think I have just hit a personal development milestone believe it or not. Forget the jumping out of airplanes part, I have been reminded how to LISTEN. In my life I do not do a lot of listening, I'm the boss at work and at home. Generally pretty alpha, I've forgotten how to be the low dog. For this, I'm grateful...

Now if I can only learn proper flare height I'd be good. I did have my first standup yesterday, but I just got lucky. Best landing tip so far? "Flare on the third Oh Sh*t" Prepared for PLF and just did it. It worked! Someone needs to put that in the manual...

Ya'll have a good night...


davelepka  (D 21448)

Feb 25, 2013, 3:50 AM
Post #6 of 11 (1977 views)
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Re: [Flounder] AFF Student Thoughts [In reply to] Can't Post

 
Good news all around. The best news was this -
Quote:
I have been reminded how to LISTEN. In my life I do not do a lot of listening, I'm the boss at work and at home. Generally pretty alpha, I've forgotten how to be the low dog

That's one of those fundamental lessons that will open the door to tons of learning and new lessons.

Back to your jumps -
Quote:
Now if I can only learn proper flare height I'd be good. I did have my first standup yesterday, but I just got lucky. Best landing tip so far? "Flare on the third Oh Sh*t" Prepared for PLF and just did it.

That's a funy story, but not a reliable or advisable method for moving forward and developing that skill. A late or early flare can lead to a hard landing and injury, and not something that should be left something as ambiguous as 'the third oh shit'.

Ask your instructors about the' two-stage flare' technique. More or less, you break the flare into to steps, the first being about half of the flare stroke. Once you have the toggles halfway down, you pause and see how things look, and continue based on what you see.

How high are now? How much did the half-flare arrest your descent rate?

If you were high, you can hold the toggle position (NEVER put the toggles back up once you start your flare near the ground), and then finish the flare as you approach the ground.

If you were low, you can skip the 'pause' between the two steps, and just haul the toggles all the way down. At the very least, you'll land with a half-flare, and with a good PLF this should be enough to walk away injury-free.

The fine print - not all canopies can be flared this way. There are several caveats to this method, and you need to consult with your instructor before moving forward with any modification to the landing phase of your jump. Landing with a good PLF and the toggles down in the full flare position is almost always a good idea.


JohnMitchell  (D 6462)

Feb 28, 2013, 3:36 PM
Post #7 of 11 (1784 views)
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Re: [davelepka] AFF Student Thoughts [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Ask your instructors about the' two-stage flare' technique. More or less, you break the flare into to steps, the first being about half of the flare stroke. Once you have the toggles halfway down, you pause and see how things look, and continue based on what you see.
I also like that technique for helping people who are having trouble finding the right time to flare. Remember that it's a training "crutch", not the best way to flare.

Another way to approach flaring too early? Learn to watch and react to your changing rate of descent as you're flaring. If you realize you flared to early, STOP your flare and then start again moments later when you feel it's time to complete your flare.

It's this feedback loop between toggle input-canopy response that will fine tune your landings. Smile


chuckakers  (D 10855)

Mar 3, 2013, 6:37 AM
Post #8 of 11 (1557 views)
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Re: [Flounder] AFF Student Thoughts [In reply to] Can't Post

Dig your username.


Flounder  (B 99999)

Mar 3, 2013, 4:27 PM
Post #9 of 11 (1502 views)
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Re: [chuckakers] AFF Student Thoughts [In reply to] Can't Post

Thanks fellas...

Learned something else that doesn't work. Watching your shadow. Oops. Haven't tried the stepped flare yet. Haven't even asked about it as of yet. Trying to tone the questions down a notch right now although not doing such a good job so far.

And now it's off to SDU. Someone new to harass! :)

More fun with each new experience.


dthames  (B 37674)

Mar 3, 2013, 8:12 PM
Post #10 of 11 (1477 views)
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Re: [Flounder] AFF Student Thoughts [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Thanks fellas...

Learned something else that doesn't work. Watching your shadow. Oops. Haven't tried the stepped flare yet. Haven't even asked about it as of yet. Trying to tone the questions down a notch right now although not doing such a good job so far.

And now it's off to SDU. Someone new to harass! :)

More fun with each new experience.

There are canopy control drills as part of your A license that you can be practicing up high on all of your student jumps. One series is specific to learning more about the feel of the flare. You might study that section in the SIM and talk to your coaches about getting those done. You need to get those done and signed off anyway.


Flounder  (B 99999)

Mar 3, 2013, 8:17 PM
Post #11 of 11 (1473 views)
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Re: [dthames] AFF Student Thoughts [In reply to] Can't Post

The canopy stuff feels fine up high. Problem is I don't have the ground to reference so it is much different down low for me.

I'm not worried about it too much. Not bad enough to have hurt myself so far so as long as I keep getting better and not worse, ill figure it out. Maybe I'm just slow... Lol

I'm sure there will be something at safety day on Saturday which will help too. At least I hope so.



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