Ground School!

Everything begins with an intensive first jump course, regardless of the method chosen. Like any pilot or aviator, learning how to fly begins with what’s known as “ground school” – it’s what you learn on the ground before you’re allowed to actually go fly. The class typically begins at 9am on weekends.

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What's Taught?

The components of a sport parachute system and their function, FAA regulations, body position, aircraft safety, emergency procedures, how to exit the aircraft, how to fly and land a parachute, and how to handle a parachute after landing.

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What next?

Once we’ve made sure you’re physically and mentally prepared to make your first skydive, your instructor(s) will manifest the jump for you – this basically means he or she registers your student jump for the next available planeload of skydivers.

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How Long?

The ground school for skydiving is usually 6-8 hours. Don’t worry, this is probably the most entertaining and engaging class you’ll ever take in your life!

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Which Method?

AFF – Quicker, Faster, Skydive Focused

Static Line – Slower, Less Expensive, Canopy Focused

Tandem – More interactive, Less Independence, Canopy Focused

Accelerated Freefall
Our AFF Student Skydiving Course is a seven-jump program designed as a fast track to solo skydiving – you can achieve the dream of learning to skydive in only seven jumps, first with two instructors, then just one, and then it’s all you! All skydiving lessons and student jumps begin with the Glidersports First Jump Course, a six to eight-hour ground school that will teach you everything you need to begin skydiving on your own.
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Ground School Differences

AFF teaches you how to make a complete skydive. Every jump that you execute with this method of instruction is a full skydive. Instead of learning just a portion of a skydive at a time, you get to do the whole thing! This allows your progress to be significantly accelerated, thus the name.

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The Skydive

During an AFF skydive, you jump with one or two instructors who hold on to you during your skydive from full altitude. They will offer you corrective input with hand signals you learned during your ground school. You will complete a set of advancement criteria that allows you to move on to the next level!

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Full Speed Ahead!

Want to take it to the highest level of intensity, fun, and awesomeness? Accelerated Freefall or AFF, is the most advanced (and fastest,) method of skydiving instruction, designed to work with and for almost anyone.

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Exit

After your airplane ride, where you’ve spent your time preparing for the jump ahead. You will move towards the door and position yourself for your instructors to assist you on the departure from the aircraft. Hands on the door, looking at the propellers with your head outside the airplane and say UP, DOWN, ARCH as you fall away.

Static Line & Instructor Aided Deployment
Learning to skydive by static line or instructor aided deployment will teach you to fly a parachute without having to be concerned about freefall. After your First Jump Course, you will jump from an airplane, solo, from about 4,000 feet. Your parachute will deploy immediately, and you will fly it to a landing via radio assistance. Every jump teaches you a few more skills, exposing you to more and more altitude and freefall.
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Differences - Static Line

With static line methods, a portion of your parachute will be attached to the airplane. After you leave the airplane and fallen an adequate distance, the attachment will open your parachute and be reeled back into the plane by your instructor.

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Differences - Instructor Aided Deployment

With instructor aided deployment, your instructor will prepare your pilot chute and give you instructions to leave the plane. As soon as you have left they will throw your pilot chute and this will begin to open your parachute.

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Similarities - Static Line & Instructor Aided Deployment

Both of these methods focus on teaching you to fly a parachute before freefall, this can make it a lower pressure environment. Don’t worry, we will increase the altitude of each jump and teach you freefall after you have mastered the basics.

The Jump

After you’ve completed your method-specific training. you will be manifested for an airplane load. although there are some differences in each method, these are the parts that are the same during the jump…

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How it Works

Our skydiving lessons follow the Integrated Student Program as put forth from by the United States Parachute Association. They are outlined by eight categories of skill and knowledge (2 to 3 jumps per category). Each jump counts toward the 25 skydives required for your A-License.

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Gear Up

Glidersports Skydiving uses only modern, state-of-the-art equipment to ensure the performance and safety of our skydiving students…and ourselves! (This is aviation, after all.) We will provide your jumpsuit, helmet, goggles, and altimeter. Your instructor(s) will select a student parachute system appropriate to your size, weight, and experience level. Once you’re both ready to go, you’ll board the plane for the ride of your life!

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The Skydive

You’re now in either in freefall or under a parachute and you’ll be fully prepared to handle the situation due to your ground school. You’ll be checking your altitude every few seconds, and accomplishing all the goals set for prior to your jump. An instructor on the ground will help guide you into landing on the radio. After you’re back on the ground you will gather up your parachute and head back to the building for debriefing and review of the jump with your instructors.

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Exit

Just before you reach jump run (with the plane over the target) your instructors will give you one last gear check to make sure everything is still good to go. A red light will come on and the skydiver nearest the door will open it up. A green light will come on in place of the red, everyone else will start exiting as you move toward the door, the open sky, and your first solo skydive.

Beyond A License

It takes at least 25 skydives to earn your A-license. What can you do after you get a license?

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Learn New Skills

Education in the sport of skydiving is never-ending. You can learn to freefly, compete in relative work, fly a wingsuit, become a high-performance canopy pilot, shoot freefall videography, or become a coach/instructor.

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Adventure!

Mix it up a little bit, you can jump from different aircraft like hot air balloons and helicopters. Night jumps and water jumps are always exciting. Demonstration jumps also add another level of excitement landing away from home!

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Cutaway

We all joke about the movie, but you can quit your job; learn to pack, get your coach and instructional ratings, riggers ticket, work in the office and/or become a pilot. Many people love skydiving so much they choose to make it a career instead of a hobby, we’d be happy to have you!

The GliderSports Difference!

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Materials

Students at GliderSprots are provided a comprehensive 66-page book of information to take home. This also includes all the information for your first jump class, a log book, and your A-license card.

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Superior Curriculum

Our first jump course exceeds USPA standards, we work very intimately with Michael Wadkins of XCEL Skydiving (who is also the safety and training chair of the USPA) to EXCEED the standards set forth by the USPA.

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Dedicated Instruction

We have a dedicated ground instructor who can focus their time on making sure you understand everything fully. Proper preparation leads to more successful skydives. Other dropzones may put a focus on getting you in the air as many times as possible, so they can charge you more. We set you up for the most successful jumps.

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Advanced Technology

Skydiving is a sport constantly changing and moving forward with technological advancements. For our most heads up students, we are developing programs to use digital altimeters, GPS flight mapping, and audible altitude awareness assistance. As these programs are further developed, these technologies will become the new standard.

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Facilities

GliderSports offers two freshly built, fully stocked classrooms. These classrooms offer your the privacy needed during your lessons to fully absorb all the material. Big screen TV’s and dry erase boards will help you understand the concepts being presented.