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Tips For A Successful First Tandem Skydive

Thursday, August 31, 2023

Okay, you’ve booked your first tandem skydive (congrats!) and in between the overwhelming excitement you experience blips of “WHAT DID I DO!?” You’re pulling out all the stops, Googling “What to expect your first tandem skydive,” and “How to do skydiving for beginners.” Don’t worry – we’ve got you covered! Keep reading to dive into our top four tips we have for your first time skydiving to ensure the ultimate skydive experience. 

Female tandem student smiling while skydiving about the clouds.

Satiate Your Stomach

What should I eat? We recommend preparing for your skydive sort of like you would prepare for a race; meaning, you wouldn’t do a full-blown fast, but you also wouldn’t annihilate a dozen doughnuts an hour before! It’s best to stick with what you know your belly likes while avoiding anything too greasy or heavy. 

What should I drink? Water! This is where we will gladly answer the question, “What should you not do before skydiving?” Drink alcohol. Please, please, please, do not show up inebriated or hungover from the night before. Not only is it illegal to skydive while under any sort of influence, it’s a big no-no for the tummy. Staying hydrated with water and some good ole sports drinks is the way to go. 

When should I eat? Some veteran skydivers can handle eating five seconds before boarding the plane. For first-timers, we generally suggest eating a larger meal a good 3-4 hours before your jump and bringing some light snacks. Common snacks are fruit, crackers, pretzels, and the like.

Dress For Success

We understand that the “chuck yourself from an airplane and fall through the sky at 120 mph” section doesn’t exist in department stores. Don’t worry … it’s not that complicated to choose a skydiving outfit. What to wear when skydiving is all about the layers. Depending on the time of year you choose to skydive (all times are good times!), the types of layers may vary. 

We suggest summoning the most athletic version of yourself to decide on your outfit for the day of your skydive. Athletic shorts, sweatpants, leggings, T-shirts, and sweatshirts are all good options. Some prohibited items include hoodies, winter coats, hats, boots, open-toed shoes, shoes without laces, and anything that has the potential to be a snag hazard or inhibit your body movements. (If you’re not dressed appropriately — or just want to look the part — we’ll kit you out with a skydiving jumpsuit.)

What in the world is a snag hazard? Anything that can snag on something (your harness, instructor’s hands, the aircraft, etc.) can be potentially hazardous! We aim to eliminate every hazard possible while jumping and dressing in comfortably snug clothing will do just that. 

Arrive On Time & Prepared

We ask that our tandem students arrive at least 30 minutes before the start of their scheduled pre-jump class. This window gives you time to properly relax and get situated before you have the best experience of your life! 

“What should I bring with me?” Not much, but do not forget your driver’s license or other valid, government-issued photo ID. The minimum age for skydiving at SkySno (and most everywhere in the US) is 18, and you need to be able to prove this! And no, as much as we wish we could, we cannot take your word (or your Mom’s word) for it. 

Note: Per the United States Parachute Association, tandem students (and solo students) are not permitted to jump with phones or cameras (this includes GoPros). We have awesome and professional videographers who will capture your jump for you! The recommended minimum to jump with a GoPro is 200 skydives. 

Tandem instructor and student excited post skydive with black, white, red, and white canopy in the background.

How do you physically prepare for skydiving? Well, you really can’t — the experience is unlike any other! If you’re adamant about being the best tandem student we’ve ever laid eyes on, practice the skydiving arch. Stand up with your feet hip-width apart and push your hips forward. Now put your hands by your ears and make your elbows about 90 degrees.

The arch is the classic belly-to-earth skydiving position. Arching allows skydivers to remain stable by putting their center of gravity (pelvis) closest to the ground. Imagine dropping a feather that has a penny tied to the hollow shaft of it, the penny will hit the ground before the other parts of the feather because it’s the heaviest — the penny is the feather’s center of gravity. 

Have Fun!

People passionately pursue skydiving for one reason and one reason only: it’s a blast. Although you’re a ball of nerves (totally normal), we can’t wait for you to experience the beauty, freedom, and incredible community that the sport of skydiving brings. Our best advice? Show up open-minded, relax, and be yourself. The skydiving community is the most welcoming on the planet, and we promise you will fit right in while having a mind-boggling experience

As always, please reach out if you have further questions or concerns about your tandem skydive. We can’t wait to show you the sky, SkySno style! 

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