dthames

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Everything posted by dthames

  1. dthames

    Canopy transition for downsizing

    And I would add, it is very hard to do anything "double front" if you are loaded light. Well, chin-ups would be an exception. Instructor quote, “What's weird is that you're older than my dad!”
  2. dthames

    How to arch with scoliosis

    Lots of good advice already posted, but may I add..... I was pretty stiff when I started and my arch was not enough for me to be stable. After some amount of aggravation I switched to Static Line training so I could better learn at my own pace. I reasoned I could repeat $75 jumps with a lot less stress than $180 (AFF) jump. Don't lets a handicap keep you out of the sport. Instructor quote, “What's weird is that you're older than my dad!”
  3. dthames

    Florida newbie - want new friends

    Welcome to the sport and DZ.com. What type of skydiving to you plan to do, once licensed? Instructor quote, “What's weird is that you're older than my dad!”
  4. dthames

    New Girl, getting started on AFF

    There are a LOT of people get hurt (think broken leg or worse) with simple mistakes on landing. Two things that should help.... 1. Learn/understand how the canopy works. If you understand how it works, your chances of doing something dumb go down, even when you are not specifically told, "Don't do such and such". 2. Understand what you must do to correctly fly the canopy. This sounds like a simple no brainer, that you will be taught as part of your instruction. While it is true that you will normally be correctly taught, there is a difference in how your study as a student. Will you be a spoon feed student or someone that desires to own the process? I always expected the instructors to help me prepare for the task at hand. I never expected the instructors to prepare me. Work hard to be a good student. (I think you are starting the process with your questions) The book "The Parachute And Its Pilot" is a good place to start learning more about canopy flight. The book should help you to be better equipped to talk to your instructors about any concerns along the way. There are other books as well, which I am less familiar with. Instructor quote, “What's weird is that you're older than my dad!”
  5. dthames

    How to Flare

    Flying straight throughout deployment....up to the point that you can no longer fly has a LOT to do with a clean deployment. Flaring is a fun challenge. If you have a Flysight and can monitor your vertical speed, you can quickly learn how close you are getting to zero vertical and if you gain some altitude, how far you are going up. In a medium sized suit, a person can get to less then 10 MPH vertical for a few seconds. Instructor quote, “What's weird is that you're older than my dad!”
  6. 54. Why, So I could fly wingsuits. Trigger, if I waited too much longer, learning would become harder due to age. Instructor quote, “What's weird is that you're older than my dad!”
  7. dthames

    New To The Sport

    Welcome to the sport. Someday someone will say...."....you will want to downsize your canopy." Some of the best advice I ever received was regarding downsizing. If the desire to continue jumping is at the top of your priority list, make sure downsizing is not competing for top place. You should be here... I can land this thing safely even when things go bad (not as planned) You should not be here..... I can land this thing safely as long as things go as planned. Instructor quote, “What's weird is that you're older than my dad!”
  8. While not recommended to use as an altimeter, I use my Flysight alarms to voice the altitude at 10,000, 9,000, etc all the way down to breakoff. Recently I was a breakoff leader in a bigway event. I could keep my eyes 100% fixed on my formation references and still know where I was in the altitude. 7,000, 6,000, and then just waiting for the audible altimeter to beep at 5,000. Instructor quote, “What's weird is that you're older than my dad!”
  9. dthames

    Greetings - finally!

    If you wait long enough, you will be too old to be a good student. If you really want to skydive, you need to seriously pursue it before you get too old. Instructor quote, “What's weird is that you're older than my dad!”
  10. dthames

    Small Dropzone + Turbine Aircraft - Boogie = Totally Doable

    This plane climbs almost too fast. Super ride!
  11. I've seen people try to collapse all the wings entirely and fall like a rock. That was taught to me prior to my FFC (which was then corrected in my FFC). In fact, the SIM even still says to collapse everything even though Squirrel says otherwise and most people know that's not very feasible on large suits. The SIM also says to click your heals together to signal deployment and that the signal is mandatory. However, I have never once seen anyone do that. Like any other form of skydiving, you are better off with a large bag of tricks, rather than few tricks. While you might be able to full collapse everything, being able to stop most forward motion and go straight down until a better deployment altitude can be the best choice in some traffic/wind situations. If you are part of a group with a specific breakoff plan and the leader takes you to a less than ideal spot, you might find yourself needing to stay put and just deploy right there, but lower than your are flying. Regardless of how someone waves off, everyone should wave off before deployment. Yes, putting your feet together doesn't help your stability. I have seen some very entertaining wave offs. We did a formation record attempt the weekend before Thanksgiving. The largest formation jumps had 85 people in the formation. Everyone was expected to wave off before deployment. Instructor quote, “What's weird is that you're older than my dad!”
  12. I've seen people try to collapse all the wings entirely and fall like a rock. That was taught to me prior to my FFC (which was then corrected in my FFC). In fact, the SIM even still says to collapse everything even though Squirrel says otherwise and most people know that's not very feasible on large suits. The SIM also says to click your heals together to signal deployment and that the signal is mandatory. However, I have never once seen anyone do that. Regardless of how someone waves off, everyone should wave off before deployment. Yes, putting your feet together doesn't help your stability. I have seen some very entertaining wave offs. This is interesting because wave-offs are something that I've asked several WS LOs and WS coaches (like legit ones who actually coach on a regular basis at a major DZ). The answer that I've universally received is that outside of your FFC, there is no waving off in WS. You just never fly behind someone around deployment altitude. I'm still new myself, but I've never seen someone wave off in a WS, ever. I've always done it myself by rolling my wrists back and fourth and shaking my hands, but I've repeatedly been told it's unnecessary outside of an FFC, and I am the only person I've know that does it. Suppose you have 4 WS going up together. Joe has 600 WS jumps and always pulls about 3000. Larry and Jim have 200-300 WS jumps and Bob only has 54. So they put Bob in the lead as base. Someone says, Bob, where do you normally deploy. About 4,500 is the answer. So, we will form up on you, maybe takes some docks, and about 5,000 you give a signal and we will give you some room, you deploy, and we will go on for a bit. Joe falls behind a bit after trying to do something fun and is catching up to the group at 5500. Bob remembers he had some bad line twists last time and at the last minute decides he might pull a little higher. Bob don't normally signal a wave off and deploys at 4900 just as Joe is getting close to him. Stuff like that does happen. I was taught, First you are a skydiver....check of 3s, low man has right of way, always wave off, watch for traffic in the pattern, all of basics. Put on the wingsuit, what has changed? You are still a skydiver. Instructor quote, “What's weird is that you're older than my dad!”
  13. I've seen people try to collapse all the wings entirely and fall like a rock. That was taught to me prior to my FFC (which was then corrected in my FFC). In fact, the SIM even still says to collapse everything even though Squirrel says otherwise and most people know that's not very feasible on large suits. The SIM also says to click your heals together to signal deployment and that the signal is mandatory. However, I have never once seen anyone do that. Like any other form of skydiving, you are better off with a large bag of tricks, rather than few tricks. While you might be able to full collapse everything, being able to stop most forward motion and go straight down until a better deployment altitude can be the best choice in some traffic/wind situations. If you are part of a group with a specific breakoff plan and the leader takes you to a less than ideal spot, you might find yourself needing to stay put and just deploy right there, but lower than your are flying. Regardless of how someone waves off, everyone should wave off before deployment. Yes, putting your feet together doesn't help your stability. I have seen some very entertaining wave offs. Instructor quote, “What's weird is that you're older than my dad!”
  14. dthames

    TX newbie

    Bad weather is just part of the sport. Welcome to the sky. Instructor quote, “What's weird is that you're older than my dad!”
  15. Exactly! I often wonder why so many people try to make it harder than just that. Well I've seen several rather experienced WSers bring their arms in after deploying. Some of the people in the Squirrel instructional video on deployments do it if I recall right as well. The argument I got was that it reduces the size of your burble if you bring the arms in after pitching vs putting them back out into full flight. I deploy all sorts of ways depending on the situation. But I always keep straight until I am in the saddle. Even a poor form deployment can be helped a lot of then you get straight and stay straight. Instructor quote, “What's weird is that you're older than my dad!”
  16. Exactly! I often wonder why so many people try to make it harder than just that. Instructor quote, “What's weird is that you're older than my dad!”
  17. dthames

    AFF student

    I did some AFF jumps and also some ST (static line) jumps early in my student program. I then went to Florida during the winter and expected to knock out the AFF part and be rated for coached jumps. However at some point on my Florida trip I understood that I was not doing well and that repeating a jump several times was very likely going to happened. The idea of repeating a jump with the same results would cause me a lot of internal stress. I knew I could go back home and do SL jumps for $75 each. 2 jumps at $75 each without progressing was something I could endure. I my thinking was that someday it would all work out and I would make progress. I had also read where some others had terrible times learning, but finally got it figured out. That is what worked for me. Dan Instructor quote, “What's weird is that you're older than my dad!”
  18. dthames

    The fear!

    Not unusual. That is really too bad. I grew up learning to not back down but at the same time there are a lot of things that I would not sign up to do. I remember a time that I was 2 hours into the 4 hour drive to the DZ and thought, "Why I am I doing this....actually?" But I kept driving. Just my 2 cents, but because you let it stop you already, it is easy to let that roadblock continue to be there. I have seen others with that problem that didn't ever resolve it. If you look at the net results, they say you don't want to jump bad enough. I know that might not seem true, but if you woke up in the plane and it was on fire, I bet you would want to jump enough that you would do it. Maybe your leg being on fire would be required, but at some point the balance would shift. I am sorry that I have no magic solution but if you get to the root of the problem, the chances of success are better. I also think of it like this, I must trust the equipment and the operator before I feel like the risk is worth it. If you can figure out what the trust issue is, maybe you can focus on zeroing in on what you need to do. Instructor quote, “What's weird is that you're older than my dad!”
  19. Many a skydiver started out this way, Static Line. Instructor quote, “What's weird is that you're older than my dad!”
  20. dthames

    Hi

    Just FYI, "the bowling speech" is what you get when you are told you shouldn't be skydiving. If you tell the DZO, "I understand that I might not be able to but I am not ready for the bowling speech just yet.", I am sure he/she would get a chuckle out of that. You are acknowledging both sides of the challenge. It sounds like the DZO is willing to give you reasonable consideration, which is all anyone can ask for. I had a tough time getting started. I did get the bowling speech. but I was able to find someone that would work with me. My problem was motion sickness, which I have had all of my life. Instructor quote, “What's weird is that you're older than my dad!”
  21. dthames

    Things to do before AFF

    I told you what stretches you might do but I failed to answer your question. An older instructor showed me some stretches that he does every day. In addition to that I had a skydive friend that was in the medical field that helped me. He has a back problem and exercises keep him in shape so his back is less of an issue. I combined those people's input and added some things that might help me in certain areas. Instructor quote, “What's weird is that you're older than my dad!”
  22. dthames

    Hi

    You said you had a disability. It doesn't take much before some people will tell you, Skydiving is not for everyone. But at the same time there are instructors that will go out of their way to help someone live their dream. If you have not already done this, my I suggest that you call and talk to the DZ manager/owner. Tell that person what your physical limitations are and what your goals are. Ask specifically if they have an instructor that would be happy to take you on as a student. If you find such a person and can start conversing with them, then they might also help you resolve some of the other problems like getting to the DZ. It will do no good to get their if they will not let you jump. Instructor quote, “What's weird is that you're older than my dad!”
  23. dthames

    Things to do before AFF

    I was 54 when I started jumping and almost 61 now. My strength and stamina were good but my arch (back) was not. So naturally being stable in freefall was not happening. You can do Cobra stretches for your arch. https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=1&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=2ahUKEwjZi6vu_7rdAhXNt1kKHVoAAxAQyCkwAHoECAAQBA&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.youtube.com%2Fwatch%3Fv%3DJDcdhTuycOI&usg=AOvVaw1VQAkPU_RJUiIhc6Cc9iQS I also get on all fours, lift one leg, raise my foot far behind/above me, and then back to try to bring my knee toward my chest. I do that about 20 times (each leg) to keep tone in my lower back and my butt. That strength helps the arch as well. I also stretch my hamstrings and do lunges. I don't know that this helps in freefall but it is pretty easy to slip on landing and if you are limber, maybe less chance of pulling something. Instructor quote, “What's weird is that you're older than my dad!”
  24. dthames

    Cant seem to make up my mind

    It took several months for me to get my license and weather was part of the problem. One thing that might help is to jump with the same instructors each time. They will know you better and can adjust the learning for you, better than if you have someone different (new to you) each time. This might be hard to do if your work schedule it not the same every week. I was a slow learner and had to switch gears and slow down a bit. A did that at a small DZ. Each DZ will have strong points and weak points. At your stage in the game it will be hard to know what is good and what is less than good. A lot of that depends on the student. Everyone is a bit different, both students and instructors. I was a student at one DZ and everyone wanted Bob to be their instructor, including me. Bob was great. But after waiting in line for Bob too much, I decided I would rather jump with someone else than wait for Bob. As you get more jumps, things will make more sense. Instructor quote, “What's weird is that you're older than my dad!”
  25. dthames

    Hi

    If you plan to do a tandem you will be putting your life into the hands of the tandem instructor and the parachute equipment. That is a simple fact. if you don't trust both, you should not jump. If you do trust both, you can relax a bit and not worry. So right up front, think about what you are doing and what you are trusting in. Understanding that should make things a bit easier. Instructor quote, “What's weird is that you're older than my dad!”