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dve

Do AFF all over again?

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I did about 30 jumps a little over 10 years ago (AFF, WARP jumps, some solo jumps and a few formations) but had to quit that summer to get enough money to start my own business. Don't have any licenses whatsoever.

Over the years I periodically spent some time in the wind tunnel. It's hard to let it go, right? This past winter for example, I spent about an hour in the wind tunnel with a coach. I'm absolutely no expert, but I can fly belly in all directions and do some back flying too. At a minimum, I can control my body in freefall, stay stable and more...

Went to my local DZ yesterday to inform what it would take to get back in the sky again. The answer: do the complete AFF course again.

I feel like I am not going to learn much if I just do AFF again. It's not that I don't know how to fly or that I am oblivious to how a parachute words, safety/emergency procedures and how to inspect and fly a canopy. I remember my AFF course as if it was yesterday and have kept somewhat up-to-date by reading this forum and studying the AFF course material.

I realise I can't just go jump out of a plane without any supervision. But I was hoping a refresher course and several refresh jumps with an instructor would suffice to get up-to-date again.


What's your opinion? Is a doing AFF all over again absolutely necessary? Do you have any experiences with people with a similar background?


PS: I do agree it's better to be safe than sorry...
PS2: I posted this intentionally in the instructors forum (if inappropriate, please move)

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Physical currency is extremely important in this sport. There is a definite reduction in flying skills and information retention in students who can only jump once a month versus those who come out every week or more often.

The USPA requirement to make a jump every 30 days for students makes sense to instructors because we can see the difference. Also the way things are taught has evolved over the last 10 years.
AFF and completing all of the A license card is what you have to do to get in the air, and it's for a reason.

The best skydivers (and the best ones to be around) are humble about their skills and eager to learn. Every jump, every course, every interaction with a coach or instructor is an opportunity to learn. If you want to get your license, accept that there are things you don't know (that you think you do know!), head to the dz with an open mind, and then do everything your instructor says. I had two students last year in similar situations (one with a years-old A license card 90% completed, one who thought he was licensus bUT it never got to the USPA). They learned a lot, were eager to practice the skills they needed too to pass their jumps, and ultimately were a breeze as students.

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short answer, yes.

Seriously, the chances of you missing 'that one thing' are just too high.
But also, as a coach, I'd feel *extremely* uncomfortable taking you up until an AFF-I cleared you. Even if you'd technically qualify for a "coach only recurrency", and you don't, I would probably pass and for good reasons.

I have had all sort of recurrency jumps, that go all the way to "do nothing, watch how pretty the student is" to - fuckfuckfuck, he's completely balled up and taking me for a spin on the back.
Do you want to take a guess on which ones where the "technically still coach recurrency but only 3 or 4 jumps in the last 4 or 5 years" ones?

If you really remember and retained a lot, you might be able to skip some of the coach jumps later or combine most of them together, sure, but I wouldn't skip on AFF material and jumps, because that's the life saving stuff.
So IMHO, once you "prove" yourself during AFF you might have better luck talking yourself into skipping some coach jumps, but there is no way you can talk yourself out of AFF.
I'm standing on the edge
With a vision in my head
My body screams release me
My dreams they must be fed... You're in flight.

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Repeat the entire AFF progression of jumps? Certainly not.

Assuming you have your logbook with those 30 jumps in it and the instructor comments on all of the jumps are "normal" ...

I would expect most places to have you go through the equivalent of the first jump AFF course to ensure you are refreshed on everything (perhaps at a reduced price if that place is where you used to jump), and then do a typical first AFF jump.

During that jump they should be able to find out how skilled you are and then accelerate the progression (perhaps by quite a lot) if you perform well. (The fact that you have done tunnel flying recently is significant.)

The key to this is to find a drop zone and an instructor that cares to take the time to do this with you.

At the same time, keep in mind that skydiving is not all about freefall. Anything about canopy control you get refreshed on is good.

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People coming back into the sport after a long time off are at a very high risk of having an accident. There's no way for a DZ school to be able to determine what you've forgotten without covering all the material, especially when it comes to canopy, deployment, and gear knowledge. If you have money for a winter full of coached tunnel time then doing the AFF course shouldn't be an issue. You'll be able to breeze through the stability and maneuvering issues and focus on the rest.

Any school that doesn't have you go through the full A-license card is doing you a disservice.
"I encourage all awesome dangerous behavior." - Jeffro Fincher

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I agree with Peek, at a min. I would have you sit thru a FJC and do the first jump just as if it were your first. Then we would have to see where to go from there.

I started at a Static line drop zone, and they/we would do modified courses for people pretty often if they had been out of the sport for awhile or if they were military free fall personal. It is all a matter of finding a DZ that will work with you and what you actually remember, not just what you think you remember.

You may sit thru the FJC and be like....oh I forgot all about this, and this, oh and that too. All that said, I wouldn't think you need to go the the entire AFF again.

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Peeks approach makes so much more sense to me...

I would have no problem at all repeating the entire AFF theory and doing an AFF 1 jump. If I can prove I can fly I believe I would benefit more from a more personalised approach imo. I guess it depends on the instructor then...

I do agree we should at least cover ALL the material a regular AFF progression covers, including canopy skills... More if possible..

You can't know what you don't know.

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If I was king of the forest I would have you sit thru the first jump course ground school and then train you up and do a level 3 or what ever they call it these days. Then take it from there. That is if you show up with your log book.
Replying to: Re: Stall On Jump Run Emergency Procedure? by billvon

If the plane is unrecoverable then exiting is a very very good idea.

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dve, reading between the lines I take it you're in the UK?

I don't see a specific currency requirement in the ops manual, but I only had a quick glance through it. I suspect this stuff is at the chief instructor's discretion, so it might be a question of finding a dropzone that feels differently. At least a truncated AFF with a single instructor might be on the cards? (Disclaimer: I am not an AFFI or a BPA rules lawyer, nor do I play one on television.)

The thing that they will first see is your lack of licence - you were technically a student when you stopped, although you had quite a few jumps, and skydiving can be very conservative about students. Other than that, do you at least have a logbook?
--
"I'll tell you how all skydivers are judged, . They are judged by the laws of physics." - kkeenan

"You jump out, pull the string and either live or die. What's there to be good at?

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DBCOOPER

If I was king of the forest I would have you sit thru the first jump course ground school and then train you up and do a level 3 or what ever they call it these days. Then take it from there. That is if you show up with your log book.

My same thoughts. I would prefer to do a 1-on-1 course so I could quiz and evaluate more than teach. 2 person level 3 would be more than adequate. I might even consider a level 4.

I and a friend took a guy on his AFF 1 not too long ago, after taking the group course. Did really well. Turned out it was a 1000+ jump former TI who had been out of the sport for almost 20 years. :D

I wondered why he was so curious about the Sigma rigs. :D:D

He said he just wanted to make sure he was complete and up to date on everything. :)

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Here's my take, but this is only my take....
"I did about 30 jumps a little over 10 years ago. Don't have any licenses whatsoever.
I remember my AFF course as if it was yesterday and have kept somewhat up-to-date by reading this forum and studying the AFF course material
"
No, you don't remember it all. Reading forum pages and studying course material is great, but not the total answer.
"I feel like I am not going to learn much if I just do AFF again. It's not that I don't know how to fly or that I am oblivious to how a parachute words, safety/emergency procedures and how to inspect and fly a canopy. "
If you came up to me with this attitude it would raise a LOT of red flags.
"Went to my local DZ yesterday to inform what it would take to get back in the sky again. The answer: do the complete AFF course again. "
Think about this before you start to argue. What's wrong with going through the program? If you keep an open mind, there will be things covered in the FJC that you may have forgotten or might have changed over the last ten years. If your flying ability is as good as you think, there's no reason you can't complete all of the objectives of Cat A, B and C-1 in one skydive.
Then do single side (cheaper) C-2 and D in one jump.
One jump for Cat-E.
Then some coach jumps.
If you progress that fast, I would have no problem with this. If you don't, make sure YOU don't have a problem with it.
Just remember, the worst that can happen in the tunnel is a bounce off the net. The worst that can happen in a skydive is a bounce.
Read the incident report on the guy with lots of jjumps many years ago, got unstable at pull and died.
Stay humble, stay safe.
This is the paradox of skydiving. We do something very dangerous, expose ourselves to a totally unnecesary risk, and then spend our time trying to make it safer.

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Quote

Don't have any licenses whatsoever.



That's your problem right there. You did not follow though and consolidate your learning. Because of that it now counts for nothing. The DZ has no real choice but to treat you as a new student.

Quote

But I was hoping a refresher course and several refresh jumps with an instructor would suffice to get up-to-date again.



If you had a license they would probably still require many recurrency jumps with an instructor. Possibly nearly equivalent to AFF anyway. Depending on how you did.
Always remember the brave children who died defending your right to bear arms. Freedom is not free.

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After skydiving for 10 years, I realize now that the only difference between a student and a current/licensed skydiver is how much money one has to pay to jump, and how much freedom one is allowed while jumping. Actually, there is also a third difference: Students have to wear very ugly jumpsuits! And that's probably the most important difference. So just make sure you buy a really kick ass jumpsuit and helmet before your return to the DZ.

Here's a pretty kickass looking student suit I happened to stumble upon: http://www.intrudair.hu/skydivesuit_studentsuit.html

Hint: Make sure to get your suit in black/grey so that it goes with whatever hideous rental gear you happen to get stuck with.

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megamalfunction

After skydiving for 10 years, I realize now that the only difference between a student and a current/licensed skydiver is how much money one has to pay to jump, and how much freedom one is allowed while jumping. Actually, there is also a third difference: Students have to wear very ugly jumpsuits! And that's probably the most important difference. So just make sure you buy a really kick ass jumpsuit and helmet before your return to the DZ.

Here's a pretty kickass looking student suit I happened to stumble upon: http://www.intrudair.hu/skydivesuit_studentsuit.html

Hint: Make sure to get your suit in black/grey so that it goes with whatever hideous rental gear you happen to get stuck with.



That's an interesting take.
Life is all about ass....either you're kicking it, kissing it, working it off, or trying to get a piece of it.
Muff Brother #4382 Dudeist Skydiver #000
www.fundraiseadventure.com

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You screwed up because you didn't get a license. That pretty much obligates you to repeat AFF, especially after 10 years. Sorry bro. Also you could die, and you haven't jumped in 10 years, so you'd be stupid not to repeat AFF. 30 jumps is a credential for nothing. 500 or 1,000 and haven't jumped in 10 years, one instructor refresher followed by some solos would make sense.

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peek

Repeat the entire AFF progression of jumps? Certainly not.

Assuming you have your logbook with those 30 jumps in it and the instructor comments on all of the jumps are "normal" ...

I would expect most places to have you go through the equivalent of the first jump AFF course to ensure you are refreshed on everything (perhaps at a reduced price if that place is where you used to jump), and then do a typical first AFF jump.

During that jump they should be able to find out how skilled you are and then accelerate the progression (perhaps by quite a lot) if you perform well. (The fact that you have done tunnel flying recently is significant.)

The key to this is to find a drop zone and an instructor that cares to take the time to do this with you.

At the same time, keep in mind that skydiving is not all about freefall. Anything about canopy control you get refreshed on is good.



^ this is the perfect response IMO


30 jumps is basis for little, especially after 10 years - it's barely a novice level of experience for someone that's current. However, the tunnel time certainly is in favor. So:

1 - FJC - absolutely needed as a safety refresher course. Silly to NOT do it. Sometimes I'll let a returning jumper sit and participate - depends on the management and the class size. I've had very experienced jumpers sit a full class just to refresh - if they are willing, certainly a 30 jump newbie shouldn't skip it.

2 - Cat A or a modified Cat A (with turns and motion) is a good option to assess his starting point.

3 - The instructors can then assess the necessary skill set needed from there and do an accelerated course if the student shows he's heads up enough for it. If so, great - a couple jumps with an AFF I, and then release to coaches. If not, nothing wrong with the full progression. But I, for one, couldn't tell unless I see him fly at least one jump (both freefall and canopy).

...
Driving is a one dimensional activity - a monkey can do it - being proud of your driving abilities is like being proud of being able to put on pants

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