Skydiving for fitness
Learn a more extreme, fun way to keep fit this season.
Skydiving, also known as parachuting, free-flying or para-skiing, is an extreme sport that involves leaping from thousands of feet before deploying a parachute to slow the landing down to secure speeds. Apart from the exhilarating adrenaline rush, the sport does yield fitness benefits.
The jump and what goes with it
The classic jump means jumping out of the aircraft— typically an airplane, sometimes a helicopter or the gondola of a balloon—at roughly 13,000 feet altitude.
After the parachute is fully opened at 2,500 feet, the speed and direction can be controlled, with toggles on the end of steering lines found on the trailing edge of the parachute. This will enable the jumper to aim for the landing site and come to a reasonably gentle stop in a safe and sound landing.
While this outdoor activity shares the same popularity as snowboarding, mountainboarding, wakeboarding, and motocross what most people don’t know is that it burns around 230 calories per hour for an ordinary, 145-pound jumper. Something to consider if you’re one bored gym-goer in need of trying out a new way of burning calories!
If you’ve never tried skydiving before, you can make your first jump with a qualified and trained instructor by doing what they call a ‘tandem skydive.’ In a tandem jump, the jumpmaster is in charge of the steady exit, stable freefall position and activating the parachute. All you have to do is enjoy the ride.
Here are other types of jumps:
One of the oldest disciplines. Skydivers attempt to land as directly as possible on a determined target. The target, called a "dead center" is a circle with a 2cm diameter. The disk evaluates the distance from the edge of the dead center circle to where you touch the disk, in increments of 1cm.
BASE jumping uses a parachute or the sequenced use of a wingsuit to jump from fixed objects. BASE stands for the four categories of fixed objects from which an individual can jump: Building, Antenna, Span and Earth. BASE jumps normally have slower airspeeds than the standard skydives.
Big ways comprise a big group of skydivers during a freefall to form precise and predetermined formation. Lots of behind the scenes work comes with any big-way event, including invitation of individual skydivers, coordination of aircraft, pilots, freefall and ground cameras and support and ground staff.
Sky surfing is where the skydiver wears boards that are generally smaller than actual surfboards, fastened to his or her feet. These are normally removable, so if the skydiver loses control, the boards can be abandoned. The simplest skysurfing method is to stand upright on the board during freefall, and tip the nose of the board down to produce forward movement.
Skydiving utilizes all muscles in the body and may be very extreme to some, so try this batch of exercises first, two weeks prior to your dive.
Lie face up on the floor, with fingers laced behind your head. Bring the knees in toward the chest and lift the shoulder blades off the ground. Straighten the left leg out while simultaneously turning the upper body to the right, bringing the left elbow toward the right knee. Switch sides, bringing the right elbow toward the left knee.
Stand with feet hip-width apart, abs in and torso upright with medium weights resting in front of thighs. Begin by lifting the arms up to shoulder level. Immediately lift arms straight out to the sides to shoulder level.
From a seated position lean forward, with hands in front of feet, palms facing each other, lift arms straight out to the side, elbows bent and squeezing shoulder blades together. Elbows should go only a few inches past the body, wrists straight. Focus on contracting the back of your arms and shoulders.
Machine Shoulder Press
Sit on the machine with a small test load fixed on each side of the weight pins, feet placed firmly on the floor, shoulder-width apart. Grasp the handles and push the bars outward to full extension of the elbows. Keep the head steady, against the upright pad, and neck still. Breathe out on exertion and in on recovery. Try different weights until you are able to push out and back for about 10 repetitions.