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Wingsuit Flying: How to Get Started


Skydive Perris Posted by: Skydive Perris 7 years ago

matt blank wingsuiting

“I want to start flying a wingsuit as soon as possible. How do I get that done?”

Golly, but we hear that question a lot.

It’s not surprising that it comes up for us so often. After all, Skydive Perris is one of the best dropzones in the world to learn how to wingsuit. We have immense landing areas, great, wingsuit-friendly aircraft and–most importantly–a team of the most hailed wingsuit skydiving instructors on the planet.

Excited? Of course you are. But hear ye, hear ye: Wingsuiting as a discipline requires loads more in the way of prerequisites than other skydiving disciplines. You’re going to need to square up to them before you start playing birdie. Here’s what you need to know.

1. You’ll Need To Learn To Fly In Every Other Way

That said–even with conditions as top-shelf as ours–wingsuit flying is no plug-and-play adventure. Every new wingsuit flyer needs to approach the discipline by first mastering skydiving in general and sternly resist the urge to rush. You need to be able to fly your body comprehensively in all freefall orientations, to understand in detail how a wingsuit works and how your subtle inputs affect it, and to land your parachute with nano-precision on every jump (because how wingsuit flyers land is via parachute, not the wingsuit itself). This stuff, naturally, comes with time and dedication. You can’t cram for this test.

2. You’ll Need To Check Off A List Of Non-Negotiable Requirements.

Before you gear up to get on the plane for that wingsuit first flight course, you will need to run down a list of must-haves and must-dos. Here it is, so you can get started straight away:

  • You’ll need to prove in your signed logbook that you’ve completed a minimum of 200 skydives, preferably in the last 18 months
  • You’ll need to present a USPA B-license (or foreign equivalent)
  • You’ll need to be using a docile main canopy, loaded no higher than 1.3:1. No swoopity-zoomers, please.
  • You’ll probably be doing so already, but you need to be using a BOC (bottom-of-container) deployment system
  • Your pilot chute needs to be at least 28 inches in diameter, with a minimum 7-foot-long bridle (measured from pin to pilot chute)
  • You’ll need to have a visual hand- or chest-mount altimeter and an audible altimeter, a helmet, and an AAD.

3. You’ll Need To Get Great Coaching.

dan dupuis wingsuit flying at Perris

Great coaching makes the difference between nervous, uncertain wingsuit pilots and confident wingsuit pilots with the skills to navigate in multiple orientations, in groups and in a variety of ground and air conditions. If you want to at all resemble your viral-video heroes in the air, you’re going to have to invest in great coaching. Hands-down.

The dedicated team assembled at Skydive Perris to teach wingsuiting–Lightning Flight, by name–comprises some of the sport’s most preeminent, experienced athletes, and they have a serious knack for teaching all levels of skydiver how to spread their wings. From first flights to big-ass goals, Lightning Flight offers truly comprehensive wingsuit training.

We know it’s a tall order, but we also know you can do it! Start working today toward your goal of wingsuit flying by making a skydive with our experienced team. We’ll be with you every step of the way! 

Wanna know more about wingsuit flying? Be sure to check out the amazing story of Wakita Nozomu who left his home in Japan to pursue his lifelong dream to fly a wingsuit at Skydive Perris.

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