In fact, the background dates back all of the way to Leonardo DaVinci when in 1485 he sketched the blueprints for the first parachute. It was June 26, 2000 that Adrian Nicholas jumped with an exact replica of DaVinci’s model and had a successful landing. The parachute weighed 187 pounds and was made of rope, canvas, and wood. However, the 10,000 foot jump consisted of Nicholas cutting away at 7,000 feet and having a regular parachute to complete his journey to the floor.
1. Airborne warfare started in 1918. The 1st infantry was the very first to go airborne. It was the U.S army dropping a unit from a bomber from the skies on the city of Metz.
2. The highest parachute jump happened in August 1960 by Captain Kittinger from almost 102,800 feet. The free fall lasted more than 4 minutes in which Kittinger’s free fall speed was nearly 715 mph. That mean he was in free fall mode for almost 85,000 feet.
3. There have been instances in which military planes have gone down in bodies of water and pilots have used their parachutes to save their lives. They have deployed their parachutes underwater and been pulled up from the parachute as well as activating their life vests.
4. The lowest combat jump occurred July 3, 1944 in 175 ft, which was accidental due to an altimeter error. The lowest planned combat jump was from 250 feet in Crete.
5. The lowest mass tactical jump was 143 ft.
6. To demonstrate that anyone from any age can sky dive, a 92 year old man sporting artificial knees did a solo jump in Cleveland, Ohio. He leaped at 3,500 feet. The earliest tandem skydiving jumper was a 100 year old in October 1999. A woman at the age of 90 wanted to dive for her birthday to demonstrate that age is just a number.
7. The youngest sky diver was four years old. Again, this indicates that any age individual can jump. The jump was a tandem jump, of course and the leap was made at 10,000 feet.
8. To demonstrate how groups can have a good time, on February 6, 2004, a group of 357 joined hands and stayed in creation for 6 seconds on their 7th attempt over Takhli, Thailand.
9. You don’t have to think about the free fall creating that”heart attack-inducing” roller coaster drop feeling. The feeling is actually one like floating along with the air resistance produces a degree of support. Free falling is like a human being taking flight. The air flow is continuous and permits for aerial maneuvers that are a lot of fun.
10. On May 20, 2001, Michael Zang broke the world record by completing 500 jumps in a day. This meant his jumps had to be done in cycles of less than 3 minutes and he completed these jumps from 2,100 feet.
Here are some safety facts for you:
• Approximately 2 million parachute jumps occur yearly. The average number of deaths is 35 and that’s less than 1% of those jumps that take place.
• There is truly no age requirement, but it is advised that individuals be around the age of 18. It is also essential that the skies is in reasonably good health. As shown above with the 92, 90, and 100 year old jumpers, there’s no upper limit.
• The charge to sky dive usually consists of the cost of the jump and all equipment required to make the jump.
• The jolt by the parachute isn’t painful and you can use the parachute controls to steer it to your desired landing spot. That way, if you somehow get off course, you can put yourself back on course.
You gently land on your feet and step like you are stepping off of a curb.
• There are a lot of safety precautions set up. You have your main parachute, which is bigger in a tandem jump, and you’ve got your drogue parachute, which is a parachute that the instructor releases soon after the leap to slow down the jump. Slowing down it prevents the leap from being as noisy, allowing for schooling. Slowing it down also means having the ability to enjoy the jump and for it to be a little less scary.
• It takes about 10 to 15 jumps before a student can jump with no instructor. Some may require more jumps than that until they are secure enough to undertake the sky solo.
These are all terrific facts for you to know whether you are taking your first tandem sky dive or you’re a seasoned jumper.