An online skydiving logbook

July 23, 2007

Yep, another weekend!

AFF season is still in full swing, so here we go again. At least today the instructor team is complete, so it promises to be a relaxing day. I get the chance to team up with birky, whom i believe is one of the best teachers in our club. Everytime I listen to him debrief a student, I learn.

First is the 120 bpm girl again with her second attempt at level 3. She hesitates and has to overcome herself before she takes place in the door, lets herself fall out, rather then jumping out, and then, from a horrible no-control start of the dive, she begins to gather her senses, and we can see her improve all the way to through the dive. Birky releases at 8000, I give her 5 secs of solo flight from 7000 on, she makes a clean pull. Uneventfull canopy flight and landing. Birky gives a great debrief, and she decides herself to do it over.

Next is a guy on level 2. Everything OK in ground training, but up there, it 's all completely different. Very stressed, completely forgets about his legs, they are flapping all over the place, reacts ok to signs, as long as he sees them, but from the moment we retrieve a sign, there he goes again! He is mesmerised by his altimeter, stares so hard he starts the pull a little late, can't find it, panicks, birky has to pull.

The 120 bpm girl makes a great level 3. Third time lucky! (well, it 's not luck, she worked for it -:) Witnessing people at the moment they get that "click" in the air, the first time they actually feel they are flying, instead of just going down: i love it!

Next I quickly throw in a fun jump: an FS 7 way, to celebrate the 100th jump of an ex student of mine. It amazes me how quickly people progress nowadays. I wouldn't have dreamed of doing a 7 way at 100 jumps (it was all static line progression back then): things have definitely changed for the good!

Level 4 with the same girl. I am sure she is going to do fine, and she doesn't let me down. When i move in front of her and let her go, she starts turning, but she solves the problem herself after only about half a turn, and from then on she sails through. It is a joy to watch, but I have to pay attention to my fallrate. She is going very, very slow. I check it afterwards, and our average speed was 98 mph. As far as I remember, that's my slowest of the year so far. (btw, the fastest so far this year, excluding funnels and salto's, was an 148 mph average: talk about range!).

Today is our national independence day, and there is a big military parade in Brussels, wich includes the airforce (yes, our army has planes!). The only reason I mention it, is that due to this, traffic control closes us down halfway through the afternoon.

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