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ZoneRat

Defending da belly

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ok. My first rig wasn't FF friendly, so I went belly. Then... I got into it and stayed there for the most part even though my latest rig is fine for FF.

Many my friends went straight FF right off student status.

Every one of them, and I mean EVERY ONE has, at one time or another quietly admitted that he/ she wished they'd spent more time developing their belly skills prior to going darkside.

They get bummed 'cause they can't perform well on hoop dives, raft dives, and won't go on sunset formation loads. They are scared of looking the fool and won't attend scrambles meets.

It seems to take much longer to get to a point in FF to justify attending State or National competitions, than belly. So... no competition to get excited about.

Also, some would like to get coaches ratings... and you can do that in FF, but most DZ's support RW coached jumps prior to A licence. It takes belly skills to Instruct and at least some to TM.

But then again... many don't care about any of that stuff.

(Well, they think they don't until they're stuck on a 3 way FF, when everyone else on the DZ does an awesome formation load...)

So... as experienced FF folk, what advice would you give to newbies?
“There are more things in Heaven and Earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophies.”

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I wish i could cast 2 votes but could only make one. I say do about 100 belly then go FF... I agree you'll appreciate the belly experience later on. Its good also not to completely forget about the belly dives too. Sunset if the RW'ers are organizing something fun, hop on the load and have a good time with the old farts ;) Its good to be an all around flyer, although I will admit, my belly skills are not as up to par as I would like, spending too much time upside down and inside out these days...

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I started FFing on my 11th jump in Gananaque, ON... and I was on my own for a long time, but as a smaller DZ most were into the belly life. I was fortunate to have one of the guys from the 286 and now the 300 way there to teach me the belly life...

But now I feel I am a better jumper for having spent the time on my belly... I can get on a larger belly load, or just have fun on my 3 way FF sunset load :P
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What doesn't kill you... only requires brief hospitalization!!

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I'm one who believes in the old crawl,walk and then run progression.
Master the basic's first then move on, I don't mean that you need to be Mr. RW, just capable of safely performing basic RW. Then you can move on to FF starting with sitflying and working up from there.

I like being able to do a little of everything and being able to do it well enough to get in on all the fun whether it be RW, FF or CRW;)

ChileRelleno-Rodriguez Bro#414
Hellfish#511,MuffBro#3532,AnvilBro#9, D24868

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Why cant you just do both? So far I have 40+ jumps and they are about 1/3 RW (including AFF) I plan to work a lot on my FF but I dont see a problem with throwing some RW in during my weekends of jumping. Over my last 10 jumps about 6 of them are FF attempts though (got my sit, whoohooo:)

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Doing RW every few week's won't be enough to get you on the sunset bigways. There are very specific skills that both types of flying teach you. Learning how to sit fly won't do anything for teaching you how to swoop to a big way. And turning blazing fast points on a 4 way won't help you learn to fly on your head.

Unless you are willing to invest hundreds of jumps into something the best you can be is mediocre at everything but a master of none (coming from someone who been there)
Yesterday is history
And tomorrow is a mystery

Parachutemanuals.com

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Unless you are willing to invest hundreds of jumps into something the best you can be is mediocre at everything but a master of none (coming from someone who been there)



Ahh, I C!! I guess I dont really have a desire to be on a big way, maybe one day I will. I do enjoy RW but not on a big scale. I guess I will stick to FF for awhile but try not to lose complete touch with me belly.

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I've got 40 jumps so far and probably about 15 of them are RW jumps. The rest are FF and tracking. Freeflying seems to be more exciting for me. There's more positions, and more maneuvers to play around with. I may not do a lot of RW jumps, but I do do at least 1 tracking jump per visit to the DZ. I don't wanna be in a hairy situation and go to track and have my track sucks so bad I end up getting slammed into. Ya never know, so I've been praticing that a lot lately.

I'm just all caught up in freeflying right now. When I made my first headdown jump a few months ago, that just got me hooked. B|

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Freefly, baby.

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Tracking Dives and flat tracking are VERY different. If you can't smoke past the rabbit in a tracking dive you have serious tracking issues. The Best way to practice flat tracking is to do flat tracks with an experinced Bigway jumper. They tend to have the best tracking skills since they know how important tracking is.
Yesterday is history
And tomorrow is a mystery

Parachutemanuals.com

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Yeah, I've done that before Phree. He whooped my ass... lol it was kind of sad actually. He spead off... I dropped... :P But that was around jump #20. Who knows, maybe I've improved. I'm about to find out in about an hour when I get to the DZ. :)

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Freefly, baby.

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Just do whatever you feel like doing. Make sure you are realistic about your abilities though. If you feel like RW, find a group and size that fits your skills. You may have 200 FF jumps, and be shit hot, but for RW you'll need to do some 2-ways or drill dives at first.

Unless you have a goal ie., ratings, competition, coaching, or whatever, skydiving should just be whatever suits your mood. It's fun. Thats why we do it.

I've got 3000 some jumps with 10 or 15 CRW jumps. In FF or RW I'll go on any jump of any size and feel confident. If I'm doing CRW, it's a 2 or 3 way; 4 way if the others are more experienced. If you recognize your limitations, whatever you feel like doing is the right thing.

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I feel that FF can also help people be better all-around fliers. I did the 50ish RW and then to FF, but now I really enjoy doing some formation RW. (especially when it's combat-RW...;)) The other advantage in keeping the RW skills up is hybrids. It's even fun to be a flat flier in a hybrid and feel the speed difference.
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- Does this small canopy make my balls look big? - J. Hayes -

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I feel that FF can also help people be better all-around fliers. I did the 50ish RW and then to FF, but now I really enjoy doing some formation RW. (especially when it's combat-RW...;)) The other advantage in keeping the RW skills up is hybrids. It's even fun to be a flat flier in a hybrid and feel the speed difference.





Yea, its always fun to do something that you havent done before, so if you simply are a FF, then just have a steady up-keep with RW, Tracking all that, cause as you all know, when you are better at something, you usually have a better time doing it cause you know whats going on, and you could even make a goal for that jump if you had that knowledge I was talking about. So, dont be all one-way about things, its kinda like being anti-social, all you know is one thing, and cant say nothing about anything else, cause you just dont know, hehe.


Up High!!

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RW is important. Basic RW skills SHOULD be acquired before doing FF. Of course, i didn't do this, but then again, i just play around with FF, and don't really care to do much Belly stuff. I can also go back to learning if i really have a desire to do it.:)
"Women fake orgasms - men fake whole relationships" – Sharon Stone
"The world is my dropzone" (wise crewdog quote)
"The light dims, until full darkness pierces into the world."-KDM

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DO thre 50/50 for a while till you wind something that suits you best. For 200 or so jist this will let you know what interest, challenges you and give you skills to jump with friends safely on both sides of the drop zone.

Cheers
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Yep. Last week. The first jump of the year, and the only load that got up that day. The DZ was empty so we were putting together what groups we could.

One of the "Went straight FF out AFF" guys was gonna hang a 3-way hybrid with me. Up saunters one of the coolest old hand skydivers on the DZ. One of those guru's you never want to miss a chance to jump with... "Hey. Can I jump with yall?"

So we made it a 4-way RW jump. FF guy never got in. Almost did... about 3 times... but couldn't quite pull it off.

We had great fun watching him try... but I don't think he enjoyed flailing in front of that old hand skydiver and the 80 jump newbie that completed our group.

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Last year a group of us talked our favorite bartendress into a tandem. Those that chose to be all around fliers got to lurk it. A couple that only went FF couldn't go.

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FF is fun as hell... but if you don't learn some belly, you cut yourself out of a lot of cool-ass jumps.

and ya know? I hate to see that...:(
“There are more things in Heaven and Earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophies.”

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FF is fun as hell... but if you don't learn some belly, you cut yourself out of a lot of cool-ass jumps.

and ya know? I hate to see that...:(


I hate to see that too. Why should you cut yourself out? "Free"flying isn't restricted to fast flying. Just go with 'm and fly on your back. Make a simple plan; they'll love to see you upside down (at least to their perception) and dock on you. It's all about wanting to share airtime to make a "cool-ass jump" wich fits and combines everyone's skills.

To my opinion you don't have to do traditional RW jumps before FF. If you have the opportunity ( or your home DZ is a tandem factory) play with tandems on your back & belly to practice slow flying. (besides the practice these are cool-ass jumps as well) Off course the TM must feel safe with you. All the stuff from fast flying can be done in slow mode: eagles, carving, transitions back to belly etc.

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i'll put it to you this way.... a true freeflyer should be able to fly his body in any orientation. Most feefliers seem to think it's about flying any any orientation EXCEPT on their bellies.

Really, if you want to be a well-rounded freeflyer, learn the belly skills and keep up with them.. go do a 4way with some friends some time, or some low-timers, or get enough to do the sunset bigway, even if that's only 12 or 16.

You don't have to be ready for competition 4-way to be a competant belly-flier, but you DO have to be decent on yuor belly to be a truly compentant freeflyer.

Consider this, IIRC there were belly points in the freefly compularies at nationals this year.

Also consider. Most hybrid jumps start out with EVERYONE on their bellys.

Landing without injury is not necessarily evidence that you didn't fuck up... it just means you got away with it this time

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i'll put it to you this way.... a true freeflyer should be able to fly his body in any orientation. Most feefliers seem to think it's about flying any any orientation EXCEPT on their bellies.



Some people can only define themselves by what they are not.

BTW - You stated it nicely.

...
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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