Newbie looking for AFF advice.
I finished ground training a few days ago. After rehearsing dive flow, emergency procedures, and corrective actions for canopy malfunction a few extra times with my instructors, I fess stoked to go for my first jump.
Yesterday was (supposed to be) jump day, but I passed out before it was time to exit. I would like help figuring how to prevent the same thing from happening again.
For context, I am a 28 year old female, 5’2” and 102 lbs. While I am not a “star athlete” by any means, I am an active individual. No known cardiovascular issues. Overall in good health.
I’m not entirely sure what to attribute the syncope to. A few possible factors came to mind:
Rig/canopy sizing: One of my JMs said that for wingloading 0.6-0.7, my canopy size would need to be 175-200sq ft. The rig and canopy available were a bit larger than what would be considered a “good fit”. Canopy 220sq ft. To compensate for the larger rig, the leg straps and chest strap were tightened as much as possible so that I wouldn’t have difficulty reaching the toggles once the main deployed. Seemed like a reasonable rationale to me. That said, I did feel pretty weak and tingly (especially in my legs) once I had my gear on (about 10-15 min before boarding the plane). I chalked it up to nerves and adrenaline.
Dehydration: Yesterday was a relatively hot day 85-90°F. A few other jumpers were effected by the heat too.
Mindset: I went into the jump feeling a mix of pure excitement, and a healthy level of anxiety. While I have never passed out from any “extreme” emotion in my life, it’s always possible the plane ride up was a first experience.
My question to anyone and everyone with experience is this: How significant is the effect of a tight rig / harness on hemodynamic stability? Is it enough to consider it the primary cause of the syncopal episode? Or is the effect less severe, thus attributing the event to poorly controlled mindset?
Weather permitting, my (redo) first jump attempt is this coming weekend. I want to make any corrections necessary now so I can jump into blue skies, safely. :)