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CrimsonDiver

Maintaining Composure During Exit

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I have done two tandem jumps and two AFF jumps and the same problem keeps occurring. As soon as I exit the plane, my stomach drops, I lose my composure for a few seconds, and flop around like a fish briefly before I can get a good arch and get stable. The initial drop really rattles my brain and makes it difficult to maintain control, but it goes away pretty quick. Any advice on what I can do to recover my composure faster and maintain a good arch during the first couple of seconds after the exit?

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First, do you think this is a physiological problem or a psycological one?

Physiological... get a check up. It could be a symtom of something more serious?

Psycological... Make more jumps and welcome to the sport. Jumping out of an airplane is not a normal activity. Fear is something to be expected. Most people need to discover how to deal with this fear.

If this fear continues to be debilitating and can't be overcome... Have you ever been bowling? ;)

Try reading some of Brian Germain's stuff. :)
Birdshit & Fools Productions

"Son, only two things fall from the sky."

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all i can say is, exit in a relaxed but confident arch position, into the relative wind. remember that the relative wind, while flying in the plane and upon exit, is coming from the front of the plane. think of stepping out facing the front, in an arched position while trying to start at the wing of the plane until you are over the hill. i had the same problem during my aff, i though belly flopping out was the way to go, but this only causes you to flop around without control until you are at terminal.

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It's called sensory overload. It's normal, but affects different people to a different degree. It will go away when your brain learns to cope better. Even when you are able to maintain an arch you will find that you have no memory of exactly what happened at exit. This too will improve as you get used to it. All you can do is try to stay calm and focused. A very deliberate pause just before the actual count and exit helps some people.
Always remember the brave children who died defending your right to bear arms. Freedom is not free.

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FlyingRhenquest

Kinda like this exit? Look at that silly monkey, kicking his legs like it's going to help somehow. Oh yeah, that's ME.

That goes away, sooner or later.



Watching experienced jumpers who have never jumped a balloon before, can be very entertaining during the initial ten seconds. I shot video of a guy doing a furious dog-paddle on one of my balloon jumps.:D
"There are only three things of value: younger women, faster airplanes, and bigger crocodiles" - Arthur Jones.

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ryoder

***Kinda like this exit? Look at that silly monkey, kicking his legs like it's going to help somehow. Oh yeah, that's ME.

That goes away, sooner or later.



Watching experienced jumpers who have never jumped a balloon before, can be very entertaining during the initial ten seconds. I shot video of a guy doing a furious dog-paddle on one of my balloon jumps.:D

Heh yeah. No relative wind, right? Now that I'm used to it, I'll probably do the same thing on my first balloon jump! I'm not at all upset at the idea. :)
I'm trying to teach myself how to set things on fire with my mind. Hey... is it hot in here?

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Quote

It is probably much more mental than physical. I am just going to have to fight through the fear during the initial drop.



Just do what you're trained to do. What's the exit count at your DZ? Up/down/Arch? Out/in/Arch?

Either one end in 'arch', and if you just arch you will have a good exit. It's just like every other part of the jump, you do what you're trained to do, and that works out fine. You manage to do some practice touches, altitude checks, and open a parachute, all per your training. Well, you need to believe that the training will also provide you with a good exit.

One idea is to boil it down to the basics. If you squeeze your butt muscles together, it becomes very hard not to arch. So if you rehearse your exit count on the ground, make sure to mentally and physically squeeze your butt muscles together as you practice, you are training for what you're actually going to do. In the plane, think about the count, and than actually arching by squeezing your butt muscles together.

Some people will just talk through the practice, and just think 'blindly' in the plane reviewing the steps but not how to do them. Include the actual actions needed to achieve the steps, and say them out loud as you exit.

In all fairness, exits are a problem area for a lot of students. Making the transition from standing to flying is a 'finesse' move, and it takes time to get it right. Just believe in the training and your instructors, and focus on what you need to do during the exit.

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What was helpful to me was to practice my exits a lot on the ground. But in the plane after I am in position I would pause and do a quick visualization in the door right before I gave the count. So after I was ready I would think, “I am going to say Ready, Set, Go, and my actions are going to be Up, Down, Arch”. Then I would do the count and go. But the most important thing was to do what I intended, ARCH and focus 100% on that for those 2 seconds.

Of course always work with your instructors on any ideas you have for your improvement. If you are going to pause in the door you would want to get into position early so not to delay others behind you.
Instructor quote, “What's weird is that you're older than my dad!”

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