AFF students are awesome! They are incredibly excited, nervous, and sometimes quite hilarious. Ben Lowe and I have complied some of our favorite experiences with teaching and getting to know some of our students over the last few years.
A graduated student of mine came up to me as calm as could be. The way he looked at me was that he was in trouble.I asked him, “What’s up?”
“I had a cutaway,” he replied.
“That’s awesome! You saved your life!” I replied as thrilled as could be.
“What type of malfunction did you have?”
“I think it was a hard opening.”
“How do you know it was a hard opening?”
“I opened up so hard I lost my shoes.”
Ben and I had a student who sheepishly walked in the student room on a Sunday morning.
“Good morning,” we said. “How are you?”
Laughing he replied, “I’m at church!”
Ben and I look puzzeld at each other, “Church?”
“Yes, I tell work that I have to go to Church Sunday mornings so I can jump!”
One of our favorite water training responses:
I had a student who wore a digital altimeter that recorded her freefall speeds and liked writing them down in her logbook. She was about my size, 5’3” 120 pounds. After one jump she ran out of a room holding her altimeter high.
“Melissa! Melissa! I reached a max speed of 168mph! That’s a freefly speed!”
Ben and I always give our student’s the opportunity to always ask us questions, even after they graduate. This was one of our favorite downsize questions:
We had a student who repeated Level 4 several times. Although discouraged, she kept moving forward and ended up graduating to her A-License. The following season after accumulating 100 jumps and tunnel time and ran up to Ben, “I want to do a jump with you to show off my bad ass 360° turns – in control!”
Ben had been working with a student on exits for several jumps. She finally just said, “I’m terrified about jumping out of the plane. I’m just gonna throw myself out, then get stable.”
I was walking into the student room and I had overheard several students giving shout outs for their landing stats.
“I have 2 corn landings,” one says.
“I have 1 corn and 1 bean landing,” says another.
“Oh yeah, I have 1 corn, 1 bean and 1 runway landing,” he said laughing with a few gasps and questions. Then another pipes up.
“Well I landed in the corn 2 miles away!” and the laughter ensued!
It’s pretty tough as an Instructor to beat YouTube these days. But you have to stand your ground!
Teaching is something Ben and I also take seriously as we know our actions will make a lasting impression. However, the rewards are great as we get to meet so many different people and watch them progress in the sport we’re so passionate about. If you’re an AFF student, I encourage you to keep going and keep learning!
Got any interesting stories about what you've heard coming from AFF students? Share them with us in the comments section below...
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