student and instructor embrace after jump

Why Continuing Education & Mentorship Are So Important

September 1, 2017 8:13 pm Published by

Earning your first basic license in skydiving is beyond rewarding. Getting that A-license stamp delivered joyfully to your forehead feels like becoming an adult in skydiving. (Finally, you can jump without someone holding your hand!) At that point, you’ve officially mastered the rudimentary basics of making a skydive. After you do that first solo jump as a licensed skydiver, it feels like the world is your (windy) oyster!

From there–as in any process of “growing up” in any given field–it gets a little more complicated. Ask any skydiver you come across, and she’ll tell you: Continuing education and mentorship in the sport are the keystones to skydiving success. Even as unequivocal as that statement stands, there’s another inarguable truth: In the wide-open spaces after a new jumper gets her A-license, it’s easy for it to seem terribly mysterious as to what direction to go next. After a few solos in the absence of the structured guidance you’re under as a “baby bird,” it’s easy to get frustrated.

man holds up skydiving license at Perris

We’re here to help. We say, as skydivers, that skydiving is freedom. Finding the next goal after student status is important for the longevity (and giddy enjoyability!) of your skydiving career. What can you do if you’re looking for that next step? Here are some steps you can take.

Jump with Other Licensed Skydivers

Your newly earned ‘A’ license gives you license to jump with other experienced jumpers so stop doing solos and start doing some 2-ways or 3-ways! Our LO’s can’t wait to jump with you! Hit them up!

Earn Your Next License.

The next license after the A is, naturellement, the B. You can earn that baby with just fifty jumps–a totally do-able number!–as long as you can prove mastery of a few additional skills. Your B license is the next logical step, so get crackin’! Pro tip: The surest-fire way to earn your license efficiently (and progress forward in every other way, besides) is to reach out to one of our world-class Perris skydiving coaches to hone your skills.

Take A Canopy Course.

It doesn’t matter if you’re on jump 26 or jump 2,600: Completing a canopy course is a great idea. Canopy mastery is the difference between moving forward as an injury-prone jumper and an injury-proof jumper, but it’s not even just about that. Consider this: We spend considerably more time under canopy than we do in freefall. There’s always something to learn and–heck!–you might even fall in love with the discipline.

Duane Hall under canopy

Go To A Tropical Boogie

This is a fun one. You’ll need to set about earning the licenses the boogie requires (which are generally not a baseline “A.”) From there, it’s a straightforward checklist: get your jump numbers up; complete a canopy course; register; get your vaccinations; buy that ticket!

Help Other Skydivers!

Did you know that you only need a B license and 100 jumps to become a skydiving coach? It sounds a little crazy, but it’s true! Pursue the USPA coach rating progression in order to turn your focus from lil ol’ you to the skydiving community at large. Helping others along their path will help you along yours. At this point, you can start hanging around our rockstar Perris Load Organizers and bugging them to help you learn to load organize. (They won’t mind a bit!)

Join A Team.

Now that you’ve joined the meta-team of the skydiving community, it’s time to think about knuckling down and joining a smaller one to specialize and go for the gold! Signing up for a rookie team will put you on a strong path forward–and you’ll build skills (and skyfamily feels) like crazy.

formation skydiving team jumps at Perris

Photo credit: Craig O’Brien

Are you ready to forge ahead in your skydiving career? We bet you are! Come on over to Perris and get ready to stick quite a few more feathers in that shiny new cap.

 

 

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This post was written by Skydive Perris