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TheBile

Skydiving related fears that need alleviating.

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These are the situations that play on my mind and sneak into my thoughts when I visualize skydiving my remaining AFF levels. I'd like to hear your opinions on the validity of them and if I'm thinking complete bollocks.
  • Getting into position in the doorway and accidentally falling/slipping out of the aircraft before myself or the JM's are ready.
  • Having a bag lock malfunction, cutting away, immediately deploying the reserve and having that bag drop onto the inflated canopy.
  • After a reasonable freefall, getting unstable at the crucial pull height.
  • Getting cramp in the aircraft, or even worse in freefall (A regular occurance when I'm lounging in front of the TV), especially in the cold air of 12k.
  • Spotting the aircraft somewhere over Scotland when the airfield is in the North of England.

Gerb

I stir feelings in others they themselves don't understand. KA'CHOW !

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Getting into position in the doorway and accidentally falling/slipping out of the aircraft before myself or the JM's are ready.

That's OK - you have a parachute... you know what to do!

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Having a bag lock malfunction, cutting away, immediately deploying the reserve and having that bag drop onto the inflated canopy.

I don't think this has ever happened. It's a bit of paranoia...which is healthy! :)
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After a reasonable freefall, getting unstable at the crucial pull height.

Remember the three golden rules: 1) Pull 2) Pull at the right altitude 3) Pull at the right altitude with stability. Sounds to me like #2.

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Getting cramp in the aircraft, or even worse in freefall (A regular occurance when I'm lounging in front of the TV), especially in the cold air of 12k.

Where do you get your cramps? If it's in your legs... you know what to do!

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Spotting the aircraft somewhere over Scotland when the airfield is in the North of England.

Skreamer can help with this one.... ;)
Safe swoops
Sangiro

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"Spotting the aircraft somewhere over Scotland when the airfield is in the North of England."

Aw c'mon, the spotting at Border PC has improved a lot since I first visited....;)

What about 'fork fear' on the forums.....;););)
--------------------

He who receives an idea from me, receives instruction himself without lessening mine; as he who lights his taper at mine, receives light without darkening me. Thomas Jefferson

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The worst thing that could happen is you could get seriously maimed. You could die, but you might just get all messed up, and live. If you fall out of the airplane before the JM's are "ready" they have messed up, and you should just do what you were taught (you went up in the airplane to fall out, anyhow). If you cut away a bag lock and it falls into the inflated reserve, it will just slide off of the reserve, and fall past you (don't try to catch it at this point in your skydiving career - just keep flying your reserve). If you get a cramp in freefall, it will just hurt. Endure a little pain (if you even notice it with all of that adrenalin). If you are a poor spotter, your Instructors will refine your spotting skills. They check the spot after you, and bad spots happen to all of us. Find an alternate landing area (do what you've been taught about landing). If you land in Scotland, try to land near a good pub.
Don't make me ask if you want some cheese with your whine... >:(

The laws of physics are strictly enforced.

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I am SO SICK of how an ill-sent backspace will kill my whole carefully-constructed, brilliant post at once. So then I'm stuck with posting some dreck.
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  • Getting into position in the doorway and accidentally falling/slipping out of the aircraft before myself or the JM's are ready.
  • Having a bag lock malfunction, cutting away, immediately deploying the reserve and having that bag drop onto the inflated canopy.
  • After a reasonable freefall, getting unstable at the crucial pull height.
  • Getting cramp in the aircraft, or even worse in freefall (A regular occurance when I'm lounging in front of the TV), especially in the cold air of 12k.
  • Spotting the aircraft somewhere over Scotland when the airfield is in the North of England.



I was petrified my first 8 jumps; all static lines. The kind of paralyzing fear that made me wonder why I was out there. The first freefall was magic, because all of a sudden it was clear that I COULD do it, and it I wasn't perfect, well, I could still open my parachute.
As far as falling off the step is concerned, consider it a cheap opportunity to get your first opportunity to look like an ass out of the way. It's the only thing that would happen (well, that and the beer). Refer to point #1. I hooked up my main backwards once, and then went on a cross-country jump. Now THAT's an opportunity to look like an ass; 12,000 feet of others knowing. I rode it back (it was a round) and landed it on the DZ, and bought my beer.
Bag locked main landing back on the reserve and messing it up? I'd worry much more about a bird crapping on my canopy. Much more likely, and messier too.
Going unstable at pull time? Again, refer to point #1. If you do it while unstable, then you'll just prove to yourself that it'll open when you're unstable. Just about everyone has opened unstable -- I sure have.
Cramps? In the aircraft, you can ride it down. Everyone will congratulate you on your good sense. In freefall? I'd be willing to bet that adrenaline would refer you back to point #1.
Spotting over Scotland? Well, all fields look alike anyway. Just blame the GPS -- it's what everyone else does. If you can't, well, just about everyone has done that. I put a load 1 1/2 miles off the DZ at Z-hills once.
There are many many opportunities to look stupid in this sport. I'd suggest taking a few of them; once you've got fear of looking stupid out of your system, it'll be a lot more fun. Courage isn't the same as not being afraid; it just means you don't let being afraid stop you from doing what you need to (refer back to point #1).
Good luck. Go to the DZ and just hang out with real people, rather than here on DZ.com. Even if the weather's bad, you'll get more exposure, and some friends.
Wendy W.
There is nothing more dangerous than breaking a basic safety rule and getting away with it. It removes fear of the consequences and builds false confidence. (tbrown)

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# Getting cramp in the aircraft, or even worse in freefall (A regular occurance when I'm lounging in front of the TV), especially in the cold air of 12k.



Not that I know anything about the kind of cramps you get but it has happened to me a few times. It was not pleasant, but didn't affect my stability either.
---
PCSS #10

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Spotting the aircraft somewhere over Scotland when the airfield is in the North of England.
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Skreamer can help with this one....



Damnit, you beat me to that one.

___________________________________________
meow

I get a Mike hug! I get a Mike hug!

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Lots and lots of good advice below....and as I have had the exact same fears (with the exception of the bag lock one and spotting in Scotland), I'd like to add my .02....which is, as stated, exactly worth .02....B|

* Getting into position in the doorway and accidentally falling/slipping out of the aircraft before myself or the JM's are ready.

There came a time to do a floating/climb out exit (level 5 for me). Ed asked me what was wrong, and I told him "what if I fall? What if I trip or slip or something? What if I leave before you????" And he said to me "don't worry about me. I'll be right there for you. If any of the other things happen, you know what to do...ARCH, and check your alti. You have 7500 feet to regain stability, girl. And you know what to do, or I'd not let you up here." So I pass that on here.....You know what to do, if you fall or trip. YOU can handle it, or you wouldn't be allowed to go up. YOU can do it...

* After a reasonable freefall, getting unstable at the crucial pull height.
Pull anyway.

* Getting cramp in the aircraft, or even worse in freefall (A regular occurance when I'm lounging in front of the TV), especially in the cold air of 12k.
I get cramps in my back under canopy. They hurt. They also don't stop me from flying. I have gotten cramps in my hips during freefall. They hurt. They don't stop me from flying. They are getting less frequent if I make sure I have had enough water and have stretched all major muscle groups, but they still occur occasionally (like on the high alti hnp I did last week...back cramps...).

* Spotting the aircraft somewhere over Scotland when the airfield is in the North of England.
Bring your passport. ;) This is not easy to learn. get more information, more teaching. Watch how others do it. When there's a great spot, when you're landed, go to the spotter and ask what they did and how they did it. Spot in conjunction with others...you do it, and have them check it. There are lots of formulae for it, none of which I actually understand. I am not a great spotter...but I haven't actually exited the aircraft in the wrong place (o.k., I land way back lots of times, but that's because I am still learning how to fly the canopy, not because of "bad" spots.).

The more you learn, the more comfortable you'll get. Like I said, I've had (and still do have) all the same fears, as I think most of us have. Fear can be a great debilitator, but it can also be turned around and used as a motivator. Find how to do that in yourself, learn more, educate yourself more, and then, my friend, go fly!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Ciels-
Michele


~Do Angels keep the dreams we seek
While our hearts lie bleeding?~

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Getting into position in the doorway and accidentally falling/slipping out of the aircraft before myself or the JM's are ready.

whats the worst thing that could happen...A SKYDIVE? your instructors are prepared for such events!

Having a bag lock malfunction, cutting away, immediately deploying the reserve and having that bag drop onto the inflated canopy.

thats a new fear. I wouldnt worry too much about that happening. get the reserve open first, then watch fo rfalling objects!

After a reasonable freefall, getting unstable at the crucial pull height.
students pull pretty darn high for a few reasons. one of them is so the instructor can pull for you if you arent going to another is so they can be there when you do pull. parachutes now-a-days are MADE TO OPEN. you will undoubtedly being flying a BIG main which is pretty apt to open!

Getting cramp in the aircraft, or even worse in freefall (A regular occurance when I'm lounging in front of the TV), especially in the cold air of 12k.

well if you get a cramp your brain will put things in a priority listing! pull parachute. land(or plf) deal with cramp

Spotting the aircraft somewhere over Scotland when the airfield is in the North of England.
well your instructors should help you with the spotting!


ok now that I've stated my brief opinions here is my summary. haha

FEAR IS GOOD, especially when youre a student. itll keep you alive. and by this I mean that you will be more apt to check recheck your gear, go through your jump repeatedly etc.
if you werent nervous then you may say "itll be ok Ive got nothing to worry about..etc" this may cuase you to overlook a simple thing!
while having some fear is good, be careful not to let it get debilitating. if you are frozen with fear in the airplane then maybe you should take up Knitting:P

in the end it is YOU who is responsible for you safety and it is Great that you posted here to get advice from more then 1 source. keep a respectable level of fear and you will be ok!
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.

  • Getting into position in the doorway and accidentally falling/slipping out of the aircraft before myself or the JM's are ready.

  • Getting cramp in the aircraft, or even worse in freefall (A regular occurance when I'm lounging in front of the TV), especially in the cold air of 12k.

  • Both of these happened to me, and it's no big deal.

    For my second PRCP, when I went to go reach the strut of the Cessna w/my right hand, I slipped right off the step (my friend Anna was so impressed by my quick exit!) So, I arched, got my PRCP in time, and passed that jump.

    I rarely workout, so whenever I take up exercising, I get evil cramps in my calves and hamstrings. I've gotten them a couple of times in freefall. It hurts, but you can still move and pull and stuff. Not too much of an issue.
    There's a thin line between Saturday night and Sunday morning

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    Spotting made easy :

    * wear hiking shoes
    * take your passport (and foreign currency)
    * take GPS (not for spotting, for getting back)
    * wear a life-vest

    As for spotting itself :
    When you get in the plane, close your eyes and start counting to 1 000.
    When you reach 1 000 jump out (shouting 'CUT!!!' over your shoulder as you go).
    Open your eyes.
    Check your altimeter.
    Look down.
    If the cars are all driving on the left then you are still in the UK - no problem, deploy main at '3 000.
    If cars are driving on the right then you are over France - deploy main immediately and head west (using personal GPS).
    If the cars are all boats then you are over the Atlantic - prepare for water landing.

    :D (but I'm crying on the inside... ;))

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    Having a bag lock malfunction, cutting away, immediately deploying the reserve and having that bag drop onto the inflated canopy.

    thats a new fear. I wouldnt worry too much about that happening. get the reserve open first, then watch fo rfalling objects!



    Is this really something to even worry about? Afraid it's going to punch a hole in your canopy? Collapse it? Why is this scary?
    it's like incest - you're substituting convenience for quality

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    Getting cramp in the aircraft, or even worse in freefall (A regular occurance when I'm lounging in front of the TV), especially in the cold air of 12k.



    I know how you feel on this one. I had a sore knee and ended up jumping anyway. We jump a 182 and its pretty cramped wih 3 good sized guys and me in there. Then some jackass kept moving around and ended up kicking my sore knee several times before he finall got his butt out the door and outta my way.>:( It didnt help things that I landed kinda hard after that and really hurt my messed up knee.[:/]


    "...just an earthbound misfit, I."

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    One of the greatest things my first jump course instructor told me....

    I did static line out of the 182. Someone asked, "What if I slip off?"

    He replied, "If you feel yourself slipping....let go...that is what you were planning to do anyway!"

    Just relax!

    Anne

    ~Anne

    I'm a Doll!!!!

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