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Everything posted by Para5-0

  1. Too late. All I see that doing is going off while you hit the ground. It would be more of a bell or whistle telling you this is going to hurt.
  2. Almost like a red light or green light indicator before you make that final turn. LOL You are definately thinking that is for sure. Although you would have to program in: the canopy, the degre turn, the wing load, the weather, your currency, elevation, your IQ ...etc. It can be right in your eye like a video record light. if it is green go, red dont. Maybe you can program it to stay red if your jumps, currency, or IQ do not warrant you jumping the canopy. 0r if you do not use the gadget to progress from a 90Degree turn all the way up to a higher degree turn. It can just stay red at all time.
  3. If you want to really get an all inclussive course you can start to work on your EMT certification. Usually it includes a CPR cert with the course. It is a all inclussive long course with a national test at the end but well worth it. A bit of a hassle to keep current as you are requirred to maintain the rating by attending courses during the year.
  4. If I said that somewhere I am very sorry, I do not hav ethat stance at all. I believe that many many instructors are more than capable and very very good at what they do. Please dont take me the wrong way, I am just trying to convey the thought process that went on when discussing the issue in the committee. I am sorry if anything I said inferred that. All I was trying to say is that continueing education for instructors in the area of canopy instruction is a good thing and cant hurt at all. Especially the new instructor who has had limited experience teaching canopy skills or a class. Everything else you said is spot on. The statistics are there and I have gone over them. They are not the student, they are the person with 1000 + jumps. I mentioned this is a start to eventually get to those people. I would love to see a C license card, D license Card, or maybe even some sort of wingloading prodiciency card. I know as well as you do this is not going to stop the problem, I dont know if anything will but it shows a genuine attempt to reduce the incidents. I know i dont have to tell you this but I think we have all seen someone we care about get hurt under a canopy.
  5. I have written a few letters and discussed this with a few people and want some more opinions on the topic. Usually when a FAR, BSR, Law, Statute, or any other rule is being constantly broken the rule itself needs to be looked at. Without naming any particular location, I know cloud clearances are very tough to adhere to. We want to continue to have a good relationship with the FAA and that is done by being open and forthcoming with our opinions on some of their FARS. So are they reasonable or can they be reduced for skydiving operations in a seperate subsection. For example, we really have no need for the above 10k and below 10k differences and the above the cloud is a bit ridiculous. Do we really need 1 full mile of horizontal clearance at 13,500 agl to remain safe? I also want to add, I personally feel the safest place for us to be is closer to the cloud given the fact that general aviation shouldnt be that close. Use a 500 foot above below and horizontally from all clouds as a starting point. Is that safe? Can we operate without jeapordizing our safety and that of general aviation. On nice clear days with big white puffy clouds am I operating unsafe if I were allowed to go closer to the cloud then 2000 feet? I would love to see a subsection for us giving dropzones a bit more leeway than what is currently FAR Law. remember a parachute is slower, and more controllable than an airplane. just wanted some thoughts on our current cloud clearances and if it would be worth the effort to try to work with the FAA to reduce them for skydiving operations. Maybe some pilots have different opinions that would be helpful.
  6. I thought we did exactly that. The syllabus is section 6-10 and 6-11. We asked the S&TA to pick their best candidate to teach it, and we hope that DZ take it to the next step providing any feedback regarding the syllabus and proposed additions or subtractions. I guess it can be done that way. But the purpose of the syllaus is to actually offer a canopy course at your dropzone being taught by a qualified canopy person. Any course worth its weight will video landings, debrief patterns, our course does proximity flying with an instructor to visually see control input compared to your flight pattern... This all requires the instructor to be knowledgeable, experienced, good at teaching theory and skills, and most of all PRESENT. I dont think having some oversight of the program and how it is taught is a bad thing Dave. the honor system just makes me shrug a bit. I know many would actually do it but those are the ones who are generally safe. we need to think about those that will just try to bullshit their way through to get the license. If A actual appointed instructor at a DZ teaches the course and is present to witness and evaluate the jumps, how do they get around it. How is this different then what we did? Okay minus the S&TA giving the ok for a local person to teach the course and signing it.
  7. traveling the country and teaching this class will take forever to reach all instructors out there. I take back my suggestion. Instructors wont want to take it, they wont want to pay for it, they wont want to do anything to make themself a better instructor. No not everyone but many. I spoke to instructors about this already and I got a resounding get the F*&k out of here, im not taking another class. The webinar on the other hand can be made madatory for renewal of all instructor ratings. The cost of a 45 min to one hour training video with canopy landings, evaluations, and even a demonstration of each of the five jumps would not cost that much in the grand schemem of things. Webinars can log who signs in and what score they receive on a test. Now dont ask me how we know who actually was sitting at the computer and taking the test. I see so many minor issues with this idea even as I type. Screw the test if they at least watch the video we are getting somewhere. Just thinking aloud. Anyone want to produce a canopy instructors basic canopy teaching syllabus, course, and webinar? lol
  8. Discussed at length and it is a good idea but one that will take a bit of work. It would be from a certain point on. Yes this should be part of the AFFI course, you will have no arguement about that. Along with that great suggestion comes probably about 40 hours of in room discussion and debate on a million what if's. BINGO!! That is why the BOD is trying their hardest to come up with something to get started on this problem. The B license proficeincy card is a start for new up and coming jumpers. At a point in the near future all AFFI's will have gone through the new process. It is not fast enough for my liking so suggestions on how do we get all instructors up to date on canopy instruction, and who will do it? In my dream world I picture a team of canopy experts who are all working off of the exact same syllabus, traveling to every DZ in the country and giving a Canopy Education Course to all instructors, needed to renew your rating within a certain amount of time. The course should consist of every topic in 6-10 and 6-11 and cover techniques to teach, evaluate, and conduct the canopy course for the B license. or since I am dreaming a bit how about a online webinar with a test at the end. the webinar could easily track who has taken the course and what score they received on it. After completion you are elligible for renewal. Although that takes the hands on training out of the picture. Now the objections will be: 1) Who teaches the course 2) What syllabus do we use 3) How much to charge for it 4) Some people dont have a computer. 5) Some people will just not do it, then what. 6) People generally complaining about having to pay for another requirement. 7) I have learned one thing dealing with this process and that is you can recognize the problem fairly quickly. It is the solving and implementing that takes forever. Maybe that is a good thing. If I were king maybe the decisions would be too hasty and not have the proper review and analysis that a 22 member BOD offers it. Who knows. Here is another thought: Go to the BOD meeting in February in San Diego and sit in on the Safety and Training committee. They will welcome any input at all from a member who took the effort to show up. It shows a genuine concern. Or if you cant go then pm me your ideas and concerns and I will gladly read them aloud and bring up for discussion. Just remember we have to pre-post agendas for meetings and whatever it is will have to be added to the agenda. Just dont bog me down with bullshit please, seriously you know what is legit or not or I hope so.
  9. Do you understand that for every single downsize of a canopy, change of a type of canopy, change in wing load for whatever reason these drills should be done. That means although an instructor said yes you can perform the drills properly: it doesnt mean you dont need them ever again. Every canopy has its own flight characteristics. Especially when you get to the high performance canopies. Try going from a stiletto to a velocity and not going through the initial drills we are talking about. (I am being facetious, DO NOT do that, Disclaimer) You will inititate what you thought was a great turn to final on your stiletto to find your canopy hitting the ground before you do. I am not preaching at all by the way, just trying to point out that basic drills are the building blocks for safe canopy progression and flight. Similar to any sport out there. Build solid basic fundamentals like the base of a pyramid and the pryamid will go high and be strong. I might be having some difficulty explaining what I am trying to say so any other instructor out there feel free to elaborate on this. Rich
  10. Jim, USPA or nobody else is saying you are not qualified to teach the canopy requirement. Think about the big picture for one moment. All USPA is suggesting is that someone should say, YES, that instructor is competent to teach this syllabuse. Now who should that person be? In our minds the S&TA is supposed to oversee operations at any particular DZ. He/she is also easy to communcate with all in one shot, (Through the regional Director reaching out to all S&TA's in the area.) If we just said yes any instructor can teach this whole card, and 6-10 and 6-11 then we believe there would be a shit load of pencil whipping and instructors who do not fully understand the entire purpose or mission. I have taught AFF Instructor courses and I am telling you just because you walk away from a 7 day course with a nice endorsement in your log book does NOT mean you can teach a full canopy course. It doesnt even touch upon it. 6-10 and 6-11 is a lot of information and until the AFFI course specifically hits upon the fundamentals of the two chapters, I dont think a new AFFI or maybe even a seasoned AFFI can just jump in and start teaching the whole card. Not to say some cant but how do you tell? and the flip side is there are some people very qualified to teach it that do not have any ratings. Again, how do you control it? We came up with what we thought was a way to keep a moderate handle on it. Here is a question; Is every Instructor in this day and age capable of teaching advanced canopy skills? If the answer is not Yes 100% then we need someone to evaluate that persons teaching skills, ability, knowledge...etc. Who do you think it should be? You mentioned it is obvious that USPA wants to have final authority for B and C licenses vested with the S&TA. I can tell you that is 100% not true. This is just a way for USPA to use the S&TA position to oversee who teaches the canopy course at their DZ.
  11. Jim, I must admit your concern has made me sit and think a bit. I like to think of the S&TA as the most knowledgeable, most rated, most conservative, most respected person at the DZ. With that being said, maybe I am being a bit naive. Of course that must not be the case across the country 100%. Putting myself in your shoes and not having a relationship with the local S&TA or if I travel from DZ to DZ, what would I do? Kiss ass is not in my tool chest as it probably isnt in yours. I would hope that if you are an active instructor at any DZ and they know you and your values, instruction ability, and passion for teaching new skydivers they would have no problem with endorsing the card for you. I do not know you personally but based on your initiative here if the above is true and you came to me explaining how you taught your student the requirred material, I will endorse your card, (hold me to that) Please remember that the goal is to educate as many skydivers as possible in every aspect of canopy flight. Why would any S&TA refuse to accept and use you as an instructor unless they had some sort of grudge, or didnt want to reach as many students as possible? I guess you may run into the S&TA that just doesnt like the instructor for some reason, if that is the case I would suggest going to the Regional Director or National Director. Or further pm me your particular situation and I will see if we need to adjust or ammend what we came up with. I will do what can to help a self motivated instructor. It was also brought up that it could become a good ole boys network, where only certain instructors made financial gain off of the canopy initiative. If that is the case, again I would shed light on the particular situation via director. Your RD can bring the situation forward to the board and a possible remedy can be discussed. This is just starting out and problems will arise, but as many above have said, it is a starting point and hopefully a step in the right direction.
  12. As much as I dont want to make anyone have to pay anything for extra instruction the fact is they probably will have to. The answer would depend on the DZ. Remember you have to have 50 jumps to be elligible for your B license. So requirring 5 dedicated jumps to just canopy practice, repetition , and education is not that big of an investment. You would have to do the five jumps anyway. Depending on how your DZ and instructors decide to implement this program is really up to them. If you are a student that is right around the 50 jump mark and this new requirement wasnt put into place, I would suggest you take a canopy course at your earliest convienence. The cost of that will range from 100-300 plus jumps depending on the class. All USPA is trying to do is require the education but unfortunately it cant be done for free, so yes there will be some expense. Keep in mind as a student you are usually on rental studen gear loaded .75.1.0 and you are very overwhelmed with learning as much as possible. At 50 jumps you more than likely will be flying a smaller canopy and quite possibly your own canopy that you will have for some time. These drills are recommended after you change you canopy anytime during your career. An example would be any experienced swooper changing canopies or downsizing. He/she will repeat these drills hundreds of times to get the feel of the flight characteristics. This is done before attempting any high speed/performance landing. I will defer your question to your canopy coach or instructor by the way because I really am shooting in the dark as to your specific experience. I will agree in one area if I understand you correctly. USPA probably shouldnt be advertizing to renew before Jan 1 to avoid the extra requirement. The requirement is a good thing and should be encouraged. That will be a mute point in about 6 days. It will be requirred for all students wanting a B license Like I said it will be about the same cost as you taking a canopy course. I assume this was a possibility for you in the upcoming months? If so whatever course you go to make sure to bring your card with you and have it completed in the course. Any canopy course worth its weight will cover the card and you should walk away with it completed. If you decide to do it at your DZ the cost will be comparable. One suggestion: dont show up to the course and tell the instructor you already did these drills as a student. You will probably get a very harsh answer. I hope this doesnt come out as being wise, but it is a great idea and we already did it. It is called the SIM and the drills we want you to perform are in it. It was put together by input from the Big names in the sport regarding canopy. And the great part about this is that it is a book that can only get better with continued input from the big gurus.
  13. The answer to why make you do them again is multi facitted: 1) One of the main purposes of the card is to go over section 6-10 and 6-11. These sections mimic most canopy courses to date and include invaluable information. The end goal, we are using these two sections as a starting point for a basic canopy course. If you have to do the drills a second time, does it really hurt that much. Repetition is a good thing and the better you learn all of your controls and the canopy flight characteristics the safer you will be especially in an avoidance or emergency scenario. 2) If you instructor feels you completed a particular portion of the card then by all means let him endorse it under the supervision of an S&TA. GOALS of this iniciative: 1) Begin a continueing education curriculum in canopy. 2) Look to improve the syllabus as we move forward. 3) Discuss advanced criteria for C or D license to keep continuity in prigression training. 4) Have all Canopy Instructors and courses begin to get on the same page with the instruction being taught. 5) Eventually discuss a Canopy Instructor rating and if that is the direction we want to head. Another main goal is to standardize the canopy education being received. To standardize it we are not recreating the wheel we are asking for all of the course instructors out there to assist USPA in improving what we already have.
  14. I think everyone is tip toeing around a concept that has been discussed and will contine to be discussed; A Canopy Instructor Rating, dare I say that.
  15. Hello All, If I can clarify a few points or muddy the waters a bit probably. This was a response/complaint we had about the S&TA having sign off athority. Complaint Sign off authority complaint from the membership.... they want it to be any instructor. So far this is not advanced canopy training and they feel any Instructor should be able to teach , supervise and sign off on the form. Response We hashed this out at the meeting and determined that there were some very competent non Instructors who could teach the course. That is why we gave the overall authority to the S&TA to select who he felt was qualified. By him signing the form he is approving of the Course Director as now referred to. The S&TA is someone we can stay in contact for future updates and changes and that I feel we should empower to oversee this program. The S&TA is in theory someone who is our link to the DZ and in our chain of command so to speak. If the S&TA is not competent enough to handle this then replace the S&TA. I also think this is too important to just let any instructor sign off on it (Tandem, Static, …Etc., without some internal control. Students will just go to the easiest or most lienent instructor and get signatures. If we keep the control with the S&TA that may still happen but it will be seriously reduced. One last point- this is advanced canopy training as defined by the sim sections, it is not just 5 basic hop and pops. The syllabus is very detailed and should be taught as a canopy class. It also allows the canopy courses out there to all start to come together using the SIM as a starting point for a national syllabus. With input from the big dogs out there we can add or delete as we go. The S&TA does NOT have to teach the course he just needs to approve the person teaching it and ultimately sign the card saying it was taught properly and in accordenance with the SIM. We did have it originally as an instructor which drew critisim from members teaching canopy progression with no ratings. It was a bit of give and take and as I mentioned a starting point. As far as the eyes closed, I reponded to the complaint or I think the OP as follows: and this was the sentiment of the S&T committee. "I too had some concern about this being on the card but it was determined via debate to be a good thing and that it should STAY there and not be removed. If the below posters had an issue with it, I am curious why it was not voiced prior. Section 6-11F4 has stated for some time now, "repeat the practice flares with eyes closed, paying close attention to the physical sensation during each phase of the flare." We did NOT add this, it was already there. As Skydive University has preached for some time Kinestetic development is, "A sensory report that subconsciously tells us where our body parts are in relation to our environment" (Skydive University Coaches Certification Clinic, pp.13)." Listen, if you clear your air space and make a flare to feel the sensation and open your eyes to clear the airspace again. I truly believe this can be accomplished safely. We just need to brief it properly on the ground and explain the benefit of the drill and of course the potential hazards of closing your eyes for a few seconds. Lets not forget the reason for USPA is tackling the issue. We are attempting to add a continueing educational component to our requirements. As I have stated many times we used to have to beg students to take a canopy class by being proactive and seeking them out. Usually the ones in the class are the self motivated skydivers who are not and will not be the problem. We were trying to figure a way to MAKE skydivers come to us for the training. and when I say us I mean advanced canopy pilots, instructional rating holders, instructors, and S&TA's. We have accomplished at least that. Now the new jumpers wanting a B license must be educated on section 6-10 and 6-11, similar to water training. Now, if anyone has any recomendations or suggestions to add or delete material in those sections please let me know and I will bring it to the next meeting for discussion. The S&T committee did their best to start a program to address the rash of canopy incidents. Fuuture topics were even C and D license requirements for canopy to keep the student skydiver learning right up until his D license. I am all ears for any suggestions but please try not to get side tracked from the ultimate goal of reducing canopy incidents. Further, it may be difficult to track the progress of this idea. Why? It is hard to track avoided incidents. Sorry to rampble on. Rich Winstock National Director
  16. Sorry, Skydive Long Island is closed untile Safety Day.
  17. Maybe buy a one of the popular skydive CD's and give it to them to watch, then give them the certificate.
  18. Starting in March you will have a choice of: The Ranch Skydive Long Island Cross Keys Skys the Limit Skydive Sussex Jersey Shore Really depends what you are looking for. Each has its own identidy.
  19. Enjpy every jump! the first 200 are so much fun and will give you a lifetime of memories. Always expect the unexpected, when you least expect it murphy will show up unannounced.
  20. A prficiency card for C and D license was discussed and I am obviously in favor of it. It would be a nice goal but we would need to get input from membership, BOD, curent Canopy instructors,.... Implementing something new unfortunately has to be done systematically to avoid missing something obvious or causing more trouble than it is worth. I think it is a great idea for a long term goal. I want to see how the B card is received and if we can correlate statistics showing it has done something positive. I think it would be great if we had a canopy card for C and D licenses. It would definately keep with the continueing education in this area, mission. So many questions come to mind with advanced requirements and I am sure that there will be as many devils advocates out there against it. I will start to toss it around to see thoughts but remember the new B Card just came out. We might want to give it some time to evaluate. Rich
  21. Hello TOS, Just to give you some insight about the card and maybe clear up why we decided to give the S&TA oversight on the proficiency card. This was debated at length by the S&T committee. There were some concerns raised when discussing who can teach the canopy portions of the course to include going over section 6-10 and 6-11. It was brought up that there were some excellent and very qualified people teaching canopy skills at certain dropzones who were not coaches or instructors., do we really want to exclude them. (Another topic and I wont side track). This was a bit of a stumbling block to overcome to get the card up and running. We decided that if we empower the S&TA to select who he/she felt was the most qualified person to teach the course, they could allow a non coach or instructor to teach it, if that was their particular situation. The S&TA's are a direct link with USPA and if we need to get information out quickly to make additions or deletions to the canopy syllabus it would be easier and give us a chain of command so to speak also. The long term goal was to have a syllabus that all canopy courses and teachers could start to combine there course with. At the end of the day the student should have the entire card completed at the end of any quality canopy course. Again keeping in mind this is our atempt at continueing education in the canopy area. It used to be that we had to go to students and beg them to take a canopy course, and quite frankly the ones that really needed it didnt. In my experience the ones that volunterred to take a canopy course were generally the safety conscious skydivers. Now, by implementing the card all students must come to us. and by us I mean anyone wanting to educate newer jumpers in the canopy area. It is very important to understand this is just a starting point and it might take some tweaking as we move forward. There are so many teams out there teaching canopy that it will take some time to get everything pertinent into the syllabus. So input is encouraged, especially those who have been teaching a course for some time. I hope that shed a bit of light but feel free to ask me any specific questions. I promise to bring all concerns forward for discussion. I already have had some great input from the top canopy coches out there. My thought is not to recreate the wheel but use everyones experience and knowledge to improve upon it. Thanks, Rich Winstock National Director
  22. I will gladly give you as much information as I have feel free to contact me directly or call me. Trust me the memberships concerns have not fallen on deaf ears. It has been discussed at length and every email has been received.
  23. A very classy family I belong to, I am very proud. This will be great and I cant wait to read the followup.