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billvon

Meet Stan the Student (long)

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We do have that.



Again, it comes down to the idea of how much regulation do you want. I don't think anyone wants it to be lawless, and I am not saying we should have one license, and let everyone do whatever they want. I am fine with the BSR's saying different licenses have different pull altitudes and reasonable guidelines. I am fine with light and reasonable regulation, but I don't want heavy regulation that puts a governing body or bureaucracy in the way of every decisions I want to make. Let the jumpers, DZ's and community of jumpers do their part there.

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I can think of at least one popular DZ in California and another popular one in the upper Mid-Atlantic that more or less fit that description.



Your characterization of that NorCal dz is not entirely accurate.



http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/California#Geography_and_environment

California adjoins the Pacific Ocean, Oregon, Nevada, Arizona, and the Mexican state of Baja California. With an area of 160,000 square miles (414,000 km2), it is the third-largest state in the United States in size, after Alaska and Texas.[12] If it were a country, California would be the 59th-largest in the world in area.


List of California DZs


:)

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*** when I was 16 my parents created their own version of "graduated licensing" - they limited my driving at night, they limited my driving with others in the car, they limited where I could drive. Like most 16 year olds, I did whatever I could to get around those restrictions because I thought I had Mad Driving Skillz..


Perfect point, and this is what I advocate. Your parents were like mine, and used their experiance and understanding to guide me (even if i thought i knew betteR). In skydiving, I think that is the role of the DZ/Community/etc. And just like I think it would be a little crazy for you to have to stand in line at the DMV to get approval to drive to your friends party across town one night, I think it would be just as silly to have to get approval from a governing body to go from a wingloading of 1.3 to 1.6. or go from to an elliptical from a square. Let me make that decision on my own and with the help of the dz community, just the way we did when we were driving and figuring out with our folks how much slack to let out on the leash.

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> That is the reason why demonstration of ability rather than jump number
>needs to be used before someone can be recommended to do X, Y or Z.

I think you need both.



If you trust the evaluator, you don't need the jump number requirement.

If you don't trust the evaluator to identify the prodigies, then why would you trust her to filter out the klutzes either.

Prodigies with mad skilz, (as well as total klutzes) really do exist in all forms of human endeavor. There just aren't many of them 3 standard deviations from the mean. Doesn't mean we shouldn't accommodate them.
...

The only sure way to survive a canopy collision is not to have one.

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*** when I was 16 my parents created their own version of "graduated licensing" - they limited my driving at night, they limited my driving with others in the car, they limited where I could drive. Like most 16 year olds, I did whatever I could to get around those restrictions because I thought I had Mad Driving Skillz..


Perfect point, and this is what I advocate. Your parents were like mine, and used their experiance and understanding to guide me (even if i thought i knew betteR). In skydiving, I think that is the role of the DZ/Community/etc. And just like I think it would be a little crazy for you to have to stand in line at the DMV to get approval to drive to your friends party across town one night, I think it would be just as silly to have to get approval from a governing body to go from a wingloading of 1.3 to 1.6. or go from to an elliptical from a square. Let me make that decision on my own and with the help of the dz community, just the way we did when we were driving and figuring out with our folks how much slack to let out on the leash.



I am not aware of any requirement to "have to stand in line at the DMV to get approval to drive to your friends party across town one night" under the graduated licenses. You simply can't have that many teens in a car driven by a teen or drive after a certain time of day until the graduated status is lifted.

The problem occurs when parents who think little Johnny is just fine in a Corvette at 17 because he is so far above average, then he gets into a race on the street at 11 at night and T-bones a Jeep while doing 140, killing both occupants of the Jeep (this is a real accident I read about. I did a quick search and couldn't find it). Then the parents bitch that their wonderful son gets 2 years in prison for vehicular manslaughter.

Has the DZ /community/ect done a good enough job in keeping younger jumpers in check? Or do we need to add a few restrictions on canopies and cameras to the lower licensed jumpers?

I don't know.
"There are NO situations which do not call for a French Maid outfit." Lucky McSwervy

"~ya don't GET old by being weak & stupid!" - Airtwardo

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Who evaluates the people who propose any BSR?
Group concensus

Who evaluates the folks who decided that 200 jumps is appropriate for a camera or wingsuit or that 25 jumps are needed for an "A"?
A collective of highly experienced skydivers with an idea of what has gone before.

Who evaluated Brian Germaine's WL chart?
Obviously Brian did, but the industry hs come to accept it as a "standard" based on common knowledge and experience in the industry.

Who evaluated BV's downsizing checklist?
It's by no means an "official" document, but one the community has elected to use as a baseline.

Whenever any kind of restriction is imposed you will have the same problem, and I don't think it's insurmountable.



Agreed, it's not insurmountable. You must have XXX hours with a private license before you're allowed to pilot commercial. Those determinations were created by studying incidents, experiences, and common sensical approaches to problems. The answer may not entirely be a "one size fits all" but it provides a very basic, standard foundation from which all other aspects may be judged. The problem I mention is that there are unscrupulous instructors that agree to abide by the USPA recommendations and rules when they take on the rating. Five minutes after they receive their rating and are out of earshot of their evaluator, they are willing to put newbies with mad skillz into a canopy that industry standards and common sense say are inappropriate. Hence the need for BSR's, recommendations, and careful oversight by a community or quorum, IMO.

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The problem occurs when parents who think little Johnny is just fine in a Corvette at 17 because he is so far above average, then he gets into a race on the street at 11 at night and T-bones a Jeep while doing 140, killing both occupants of the Jeep (this is a real accident I read about. I did a quick search and couldn't find it). Then the parents bitch that their wonderful son gets 2 years in prison for vehicular manslaughter.



I've yet to meet any parent (present company included) that didn't think their child was "above average" or "much smarter than other children in his/her group."

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From what I have seen, I think we are doing ok. Perfect? No. What we do is risky, and we attract people who like taking risks and pushing the limits. I don't think we will ever be able to regulate that out of our sport. When it comes down to it, it has to be on a DZ by DZ basis, and by a case by case basis.

USPA and BSR's are voluntary... they are not law. There are many non uspa DZ's out there, and many "uspa" dz's that don't follow the SIM. I think we have helped keep the FAA from further regulating us (I LOVE that we don't have many laws that regulate our sport), but when it really gets down to it we could write 90 new BSR's and recs in the SIM from everything about wing suits, wing loading, swooping, etc. etc., and if the DZ's don't enforce it, and the community doesn't support it... it won't matter. The jumper community, IMO, is still the keystone.

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I submit that a license is a better indicator than "x-hundred jumps". At least to get a license you have to demonstrate that you have certain abilities in addition to simply surviving.

Jump numbers are a very poor indicator of either ability or judgment.



No argument from this peanut gallery.

Seems to me that the flow is:
ignorance -> knowledge -> stupidity.
The mad skillz young ones are ignorant until they gain a little knowledge and then they get and do stupid.

Too many examples of big numbers doing stupid stuff out here.

Damn. Ain't I the cynic?
[:/]
My reality and yours are quite different.
I think we're all Bozos on this bus.
Falcon5232, SCS8170, SCSA353, POPS9398, DS239

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>If you trust the evaluator, you don't need the jump number requirement.

I disagree. Would you allow someone with 10 jumps to put on a wingsuit and jump with it so that they could be evaluated? Would you give someone with 4 hours of flight time the keys to your airplane to see if they can fly it? (I assume you trust yourself enough as an observer to remain on the ground and fairly evaluate their skills in the pattern.)

Now, if you wanted to propose a much longer course - say, a 30 jump course starting with emergency procedures training and progressing through harness hold jumps, release dives, tracking, spotting, gear maintenance, aerodynamics, canopy flight, pull stability, wingsuit dangers, flight planning etc etc - then that might indeed work with someone of any skill level. But you'd have to do that FIRST. And most would fail if they started at 10 jumps, which would no doubt make them very, very unhappy, since it would cost thousands.

>Prodigies with mad skilz, (as well as total klutzes) really do exist in all
>forms of human endeavor.

Not in skydiving they don't. There are people born with the ability to run, to block, and to jump. There are people born with very fast reflexes, good eyesight, good balance etc. In many sports this makes them naturals.

There are no naturals in skydiving. No one is born with the instinct to pull. No one is born with the instinct to arch to regain stability, or to spot an airplane flying at 100 knots at 13,000 feet, or to be able to judge what 1000 feet looks like. These all must be learned. Some learn much faster than others, but all must learn, and that takes time. The ones that do it incredibly quickly - the ones that are indeed prodigies - might be ready to go at the absolute minimum level of experience (200 jumps in the case of wingsuiting.)

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USPA and BSR's are voluntary... they are not law. There are many non uspa DZ's out there, and many "uspa" dz's that don't follow the SIM.



Not to nitpick or go off on too minor a tangent, but they are industry standards that, as a practical matter, are given weight in certain legal contexts. Following or failing to follow industry standards has a great deal of legal effect in the event of a lawsuit or administrative action.

Take a lawsuit against a DZ after a hypothetical incident, for example. If the BSRs, or SIM, etc. have not been followed - whether by the jumper or by the DZ, etc. - you can bet that, one way or another, that fact will figure prominently at trial.

For this reason (among others), both in skydiving and in many other contexts, business owners, etc who fail to abide by accepted industry standards, especially if they've been "codified" like BSRs and the SIM has been, do so at their own peril.

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>If you trust the evaluator, you don't need the jump number requirement.

I disagree. Would you allow someone with 10 jumps to put on a wingsuit and jump with it so that they could be evaluated?



Kallend began with the supposition that you trust the evaluator.

You would never trust an evaluator who would do the 10 jump thing you propose.

If you truly trust the evaluator, you don't need to worry that he needs jump number requirements to make a proper evaluation.

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>Kallend began with the supposition that you trust the evaluator. You
>would never trust an evaluator who would do the 10 jump thing you
>propose.

Agreed. So presumably there is a jump number lower limit at which point it would be reasonable for an evaluator to evaluate the skills of the student safely. I agree. Right now that number is 200, which I think is a good number. If people think it should be higher or lower, that's a fair discussion to have as well. IMO it is unreasonable to say that there should be no such limit due to mad skillz or whatever.

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>Kallend began with the supposition that you trust the evaluator. You
>would never trust an evaluator who would do the 10 jump thing you
>propose.

Agreed. So presumably there is a jump number lower limit at which point it would be reasonable for an evaluator to evaluate the skills of the student safely. I agree. Right now that number is 200, which I think is a good number. If people think it should be higher or lower, that's a fair discussion to have as well. IMO it is unreasonable to say that there should be no such limit due to mad skillz or whatever.



Were getting somewhere now.

Now, if you trust the evaluator, and a person who has 175 jumps comes to him and asks about whatever we are talking about, what happens?

The evaluator, being of good intent and proper state of mind says, "you have fewer jumps than are recommended, so I will have to do some evaluation to see if we can proceed even though you don't yet meet the recommendation. Let's go make a few jumps, you and I, to see where your skills really are. If all goes well, maybe we can start your training a few jumps early. But, if I don't think that's right, we'll just keep working on your skills until I am happy that you can proceed."

Maybe the person gets to jump a few jumps early. Maybe not. But the evaluator has the skill and judgment to make that call, and does not necessarily need some hard and fast rule upon which to fall back.

It seems to me that always being clear that whatever happens will depend on the judgment of an evaluator is what we need.

As they stand now, recommendation don't necessarily require any evaluator, rated or otherwise, and therein lies a problem. Some of these low jump wonders think the recommendation represents a qualification which allows them to proceed on their own. There is a certain feel to the current SIM that supports that notion. I am sure that you and I both would say that's not the intent at all.

I just re-read the camera flying section of the 2009-2010, and nowhere does it recommend an evaluation of any kind. In fact, it appears to attempt to provide a "self-study" guide to approaching camera flying.

Now, it does say that you should get an experienced camera flyer and/or a rigger to evaluate the safety of new gear. But it doesn't actually tell anyone to get instruction from someone who knows.

It seems to me that the recommendation should at least say that you should get some supervision and guidance from the most experienced camera fliers you can find to help be sure you don't make mistakes. Even without having an explicit rating, this would be better than allowing the incorrect interpretation that the SIM is a self-study guide.

If they are doing that, then raw jump numbers as absolute requirements become a bit less necessary. They can remain in the nature of recommendation that will be considered by whoever is providing the supervision.

Just making it clear that you should be getting help/instruction/supervision/evaluation from someone who is skilled in the art changes the whole nature of the problem. Even without a formal rating, it is still possible to tell the novice that he should consult with his S&TA to find a person who can help him. Now we will have more than one person doing an evaluation of one sort or another.

To me this seems far better than trying to write down a set of hard and fast rules that may or may not be totally appropriate in all cases. It give the candidate novice a feeling that there is some flexibility that he can has some influence upon, and he will look forward to the interaction with someone who has knowledge and skill to impart, instead of making him feel as though he is being treated as a child.

Of course, there will still be some who gripe and moan that it isn't right for them. We will always have them. But I imagine we would have fewer of them than we have now if we can incorporate some of what I have said here into the program.

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I strongly disagree.
Real world scenario...
USPA says 200 jump recommendation.
Person A with 175 jumps comes along and "instructor" says "OK, you're close and I know you, you're pretty solid."
Person B with 150 jumps comes along and "instructor says "You're close, the guy with 175 jumps did OK. You can do this too."
Person C comes along with 100 jumps, "instructor" says "Last two guys with lower than recommended did OK, you can go as well."

And so on. This is real, it's happened and would be continuing to happen.
There is one "well-known" WX "instructor" that has taken people with as few as 50 jumps (in more than one instance). One instance ended with two people being hurt badly.
The standard continually is diluted without a firm benchmark, and eventually, that firm benchmark had to become a BSR because "evaluators" ie; "instructors with no USPA ratings, were taking new wingsuiters with fewer than 200 skydives. Three died in 2.5 years. How much of a statistical curve do you need before you realize how much it impacts your life, your sport, and all of us in the community?

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I strongly disagree. ...



You don't seem to trust anybody, do you.

You don't think that an S&TA can manage to find people who can work within the spirit of the thing?

You don't think that there are responsible people available who will take the recommendation seriously enough?

Right now, there is nothing that the 175 jump wonder can do at all to be "on the way". This makes them resentful. They want to ignore the whole damn thing. We need to create a process that engages them instead of a rule that alienates them.

Look, 199 jumps doesn't mean you automatically die. 200, even following everything else in the SIM, doesn't mean you will automatically live.

A responsible mentor could make all the difference.

The objective here is to get people to take the danger seriously and proceed accordingly, not to lord over the pack.

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Once again you muddy the waters by confusing total newbies with those with some experience.

In order to get into MIT you had to be in the top 0.04% of your age group. I don't suppose MIT made you take "college algebra" like the kids going to community college.

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Would you allow someone with 10 jumps to put on a wingsuit and jump with it so that they could be evaluated?



Strawman.

Whether it's 10 jumps or 200 jumps to jump a wingsuit (or camera), NO first time wingsuiter or camera flier has any prior WS/camera experience to be evaluated. The evaluation is based on what they can do currently, which is testable whether they have 10 or 200 jumps.

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Some learn much faster than others



My point exactly. So setting an arbitrary minimum is absurd.

Why 200? What is the relevance to skydiving of exactly 2*(number of toes)^2
...

The only sure way to survive a canopy collision is not to have one.

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I strongly disagree.
Real world scenario...
USPA says 200 jump recommendation.
Person A with 175 jumps comes along and "instructor" says "OK, you're close and I know you, you're pretty solid."
Person B with 150 jumps comes along and "instructor says "You're close, the guy with 175 jumps did OK. You can do this too."
Person C comes along with 100 jumps, "instructor" says "Last two guys with lower than recommended did OK, you can go as well."

And so on. This is real, it's happened and would be continuing to happen.
There is one "well-known" WX "instructor" that has taken people with as few as 50 jumps (in more than one instance). One instance ended with two people being hurt badly.
The standard continually is diluted without a firm benchmark, and eventually, that firm benchmark had to become a BSR because "evaluators" ie; "instructors with no USPA ratings, were taking new wingsuiters with fewer than 200 skydives. Three died in 2.5 years. How much of a statistical curve do you need before you realize how much it impacts your life, your sport, and all of us in the community?



So you clearly do NOT trust evaluators to do a proper job. So much for AFF instructors, coaches, etc.
...

The only sure way to survive a canopy collision is not to have one.

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I think his point is that there are no wingsuit evaluators or instructors per USPA. So your analogy to AFF, coaches etc. does not apply.

If there is no standard for wingsuit instructors how do you decide who can evaluate someone wanting to wingsuit?

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I think his point is that there are no wingsuit evaluators or instructors per USPA. So your analogy to AFF, coaches etc. does not apply.

If there is no standard for wingsuit instructors how do you decide who can evaluate someone wanting to wingsuit?



Not an insurmountable problem.

1. The evaluation is of prior skills. Doesn't even need to be a WS flier to do that, just a checklist like BV's downsizing list.

2. I'd far rather see a WS instructor rating than an arbitrary criterion.
...

The only sure way to survive a canopy collision is not to have one.

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Right now, there is nothing that the 175 jump wonder can do at all to be "on the way". This makes them resentful. They want to ignore the whole damn thing. We need to create a process that engages them instead of a rule that alienates them.

Look, 199 jumps doesn't mean you automatically die. 200, even following everything else in the SIM, doesn't mean you will automatically live.

A responsible mentor could make all the difference.



+1 i found mine last week

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I think his point is that there are no wingsuit evaluators or instructors per USPA. So your analogy to AFF, coaches etc. does not apply.

If there is no standard for wingsuit instructors how do you decide who can evaluate someone wanting to wingsuit?



And your point is that, since there are no persons anointed by USPA, there are no persons who can accomplish the task?

The role of being a mentor is not a new thing. Every new discipline began with mentors who were not anointed by USPA.

News flash - Standards come from people who set them for themselves. They don't magically appear in the S&T committee meeting.

S&TAs didn't become responsible because they became S&TAs. S&TAs became S&TAs because they were responsible.

A rating does not create anything - it acknowledges what was already there.

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I strongly disagree.
Real world scenario...
USPA says 200 jump recommendation.
Person A with 175 jumps comes along and "instructor" says "OK, you're close and I know you, you're pretty solid."
Person B with 150 jumps comes along and "instructor says "You're close, the guy with 175 jumps did OK. You can do this too."
Person C comes along with 100 jumps, "instructor" says "Last two guys with lower than recommended did OK, you can go as well."

And so on. This is real, it's happened and would be continuing to happen.
There is one "well-known" WX "instructor" that has taken people with as few as 50 jumps (in more than one instance). One instance ended with two people being hurt badly.
The standard continually is diluted without a firm benchmark, and eventually, that firm benchmark had to become a BSR because "evaluators" ie; "instructors with no USPA ratings, were taking new wingsuiters with fewer than 200 skydives. Three died in 2.5 years. How much of a statistical curve do you need before you realize how much it impacts your life, your sport, and all of us in the community?



Reading between the lines (as I have to because you do not make a suggestion), are you saying that there is no place for personal evaluation and that BSRs are the answer?

I would argue that this goes against the principle of skill demonstration that is the basis of AFF, static line, and the A, B and C licenses. I would further argue that BSRs have no bite and will only be obeyed by those who want to do so anyway. I know that because I have seen it happen.

For those who want a BSR, why not have one which requires basic skill demonstration rather than requiring a totally arbitrary jump number?
"The ground does not care who you are. It will always be tougher than the human behind the controls."

~ CanuckInUSA

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I think his point is that there are no wingsuit evaluators or instructors per USPA. So your analogy to AFF, coaches etc. does not apply.

If there is no standard for wingsuit instructors how do you decide who can evaluate someone wanting to wingsuit?



And your point is that, since there are no persons anointed by USPA, there are no persons who can accomplish the task?

I never said that.
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The role of being a mentor is not a new thing. Every new discipline began with mentors who were not anointed by USPA.

News flash - Standards come from people who set them for themselves. They don't magically appear in the S&T committee meeting.

Not necessarily. What about the ST&A and dzo who signed off on a recent poster to jump a camera at less than a 100 jumps. Or the supposed mentor who teaches people how to wingsuit with less than 50 jumps per DSE. Just because someone teaches or mentors doesnot mean they should. People have died listening to these kinds of 'instrutors'. If you want you do something in response to these instances I simply believe creating hard and fast rules are the only solution since we cannot always rely on those instructing us. 200 jumps minimum for camera or wingsuiting is really not that much. Would it really hurt anyone to wait until 200?
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S&TAs didn't become responsible because they became S&TAs. S&TAs became S&TAs because they were responsible.

A rating does not create anything - it acknowledges what was already there.



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Would you allow someone with 10 jumps to put on a wingsuit and jump with it so that they could be evaluated?



Strawman.

Whether it's 10 jumps or 200 jumps to jump a wingsuit (or camera), NO first time wingsuiter or camera flier has any prior WS/camera experience to be evaluated. The evaluation is based on what they can do currently, which is testable whether they have 10 or 200 jumps.



As you pointed out, at any given jump number there's going to be an average "readiness" to do something more advanced and there's going to be a standard deviation. You basically argued that we shouldn't set minimums higher than 3-sigma below the average because otherwise we wouldn't be accomodating to phenoms. You're entitled to that opinion, but that means Billvon's argument isn't really a strawman.

Now you're also arguing that more jumps in and of themselves don't help prepare you to put a camera on your head or to put on a wingsuit, and I'm going to disagree. Another 50-100 jumps when you've got a couple thousand isn't going to help prepare you for wingsuiting or camera flying, but another 50-100 jumps (yes, in and of themselves) when you only have a hundred jumps is a big climb up the experience curve in terms of awareness both leading up to a jump and in the air regardless of how phenominal a jumper you are. Both of these are important for wingsuiting and camera flying.

And as a side note, this whole argument presupposes that making another 50 jumps or whatever is some interminable death march of Bataan, which is ridiculous.

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