Skydiving Dos and Don’ts for Beginners and First-Timers
Monday, July 31, 2023
So, you’ve decided to take the plunge and experience the exhilarating world of skydiving for the first time in St. Louis, Missouri! Congrats!! You’re about to learn first-hand the ins and outs of the sport that stole our hearts. To ensure you have a safe and unforgettable experience, we’ve compiled some tips for first-time skydivers – dos and don’ts if you will – that can help you feel prepared whether you’re from Springfield, Indianapolis, or any other city where Skydive STL is “near me”!
How Do I Prepare for My First Skydive?
We don’t expect you to be experts just yet. But a bit of preparation for your first skydive can help make the whole experience more enjoyable and safe! Here are some simple tips to keep you safe and comfortable during your first jump.
1. Do Follow Instructions
Pay close attention during the pre-jump training session! Your instructor will guide you on how to exit the plane, maintain the correct body position during freefall, and safely land. Don’t tune this one out like you do the safety briefing on a commercial flight. As a tandem student, you will have an active role in the jump – this briefing lets you know what to do!
We know, we know … we hear it all the time … “Drink more water!” Really though, this is a biggie for getting your body in the right shape for your skydive. Hydration is key! So, drink plenty of water!
4. Do Remember to Breathe
Can you breathe through your mouth while skydiving? Yep, you sure can. In fact, during freefall, the rush of air might make it challenging to breathe solely through your nose. If you find yourself having a hard time taking a breath, just scream! No one will hear it, but it can help you get those lungs filled up with some of that sweet, sweet oxygen.
What Should You Not Do While Skydiving?
Our instructors do everything they can to mitigate risk and make your skydive the best one ever. That being said, it’s not completely up to them. There are some things that you should avoid doing on the jump to keep everyone – you, them, and people on the ground and airplane – safe.
1. Don’t Panic
It’s natural to feel a bit nervous before your first jump (you are hurling yourself out of a perfectly good airplane after all). But full-on panicking can cloud your judgment, cause you to freeze up, or otherwise hinder your ability to follow instructions. If you’re feeling any reservations about the experience, communicate with your instructor. They are super qualified and specially trained to not only get you through the skydive as safely as possible but to help you work through all the complex emotions that come along with your first jump.
2. Don’t Attempt Complex Maneuvers
As a first-time skydiver, you’ll be attached to an experienced instructor who will handle the necessary maneuvers. Don’t do anything crazy! Follow your instructor’s lead and remember what you learned in your training. Keep your arms crossed over your chest on exit and don’t let them up until your instructor tells you so!
3. Don’t Deploy the Parachute
We hope this one feels obvious to you … On a tandem skydive, your instructor is completely in charge. That means they’ll be the ones handling the parachute deployment! Do not attempt to deploy it yourself unless you are told to do so in a very rare emergency situation.
4. Don’t Bring Loose Objects
Can you hold your phone while skydiving? Negative. No skydiving selfies for you! Leave any and all loose items, such as phones, cameras, or jewelry, safely on the ground. Loose objects can become hazardous during the jump. Imagine your cell phone slipping out of your hand and bombing toward the ground at terminal velocity – that’s a full-on liability! Instead, you can capture your epic leap by adding on one of our video services!
5. Don’t Ignore Safety Guidelines
Always adhere to the safety guidelines provided by your instructor and your training, as well as the age, health, and weight requirements of the dropzone. These guidelines are in place to ensure your well-being and the safety of everyone involved! At Skydive St. Louis, you need to be 18 or older, under 260 lbs, and free from certain medical conditions.
What Should You Avoid Before Skydiving?
Since we’ve covered what not to do during your jump, let’s go over a few of the most important things to avoid before your jump! Namely: things that will help make sure you feel in tip-top shape on the skydive and are in the absolute best state of mind to have the time of your life.
1. Avoid Alcohol and Drugs
Lay off the booze the day of your jump. Not only is consuming alcohol or drugs before your jump strictly prohibited (read: this is a surefire way to get the boot), but it can jeopardize your safety and your skydiving experience. Skydiving hungover is also definitely not fun. Plan your libations for post-jump instead!
2. Avoid Heavy Meals
You should definitely, totally, 100% eat before your skydive – but keep those meals light! In our experience, eating a heavy meal right before your jump can leave you feeling uncomfortable and nauseous, or even lead to a vomiting situation. Yuck!
3. Avoid Lack of Sleep
Do your very best to get a good night’s rest before your skydive. Being well-rested helps you stay focused and alert during the whole skydiving experience!
Are you ready to take the leap? Is that a big ol’ “heck yea!” we hear?! Sweeeet! Book your first skydive today! We can’t wait to welcome you to our beautiful, blue skies over St. Louis!