Is Skydiving Safe?
Safe compared to what? Statistics support that skydiving is actually much safer than many other sports and activities that we never question. As a matter of fact, statistics DO support the common statement that “driving out to the drop zone is more dangerous than the jump.”
Risks are eliminated by knowledge. We believe that learning and understanding the risks involved and how to deal with them with the safest possible methods eliminates the risk factor. However, please be aware that you could still be seriously injured. This is a risk we choose to take while participating in such an extreme sport.
Here at Skydive Manitoba, we take safety very seriously. We are affiliated with both the Canadian Sport Parachuting Association (CSPA) and the Manitoba Sport Parachuting Association (MSPA). The CSPA has been Canadian skydivers main governing body since 1956. We are proud to support and adhere to their program of licensing and training. All of our coaches and instructors are CSPA rated and licensed.
By the way, remember when visiting Skydive Manitoba, that Gimli has an active airport that we share with other aeronautic companies as well. Although safety always comes first, always be aware of potential hazards to yourself and your family while you are here.
What if the weather is bad?
Training occurs regardless of weather, although for safety reasons, we cannot jump in the rain, if the clouds are too low or if the winds are too high. If the weather is not clear when your training is complete, we wait. If it doesn’t clear up and your jump is cancelled for that day, you can return at any time until the end of the following season and we’ll get you up there (after a quick refresher, of course). However, there is no need to repeat the course.
Remember that the weather in Gimli is very often different from what you’re experiencing in Winnipeg. Being so close to the lake definitely has its advantages, too. Just like in the city, the weather changes throughout the day as well (this IS Manitoba, after all). It is not unusual for it to be cloudy and possibly raining in the morning, then turn into perfect skydiving weather in the afternoon. Winds also tend to become lighter in late afternoon, and especially in the evening, making for a spectacular jumping experience if you’re willing to be patient!!
What do I need to bring with me?
All you need to do is dress for the weather and bring running shoes for the jump. Loose fitting and/or non restrictive clothing is best. No sandals, open toed shoes, cowboy boots, clogs, or shoes with hooks for laces.
We provide everything else you’ll need at no extra charge. Don’t worry about glasses or contacts either because we also have goggles to fit over both.
Are there any restrictions that would prevent me from jumping?
In accordance with safety standards and the risk involved, there are a few considerations we all must take into account, and there is a waiver to sign. Before signing it, please read it carefully and understand what is involved.
You must be 18 years of age, no more than 230lb for men, and 200lb for women and in reasonably good physical shape, solely for safety reasons. Laws dictate that a waiver signed by a minor is unenforceable, as is one signed by a guardian for a minor. In order to have the safest and softest possible landing, our student canopies have a weight restriction of 240 pounds. If you have a past injury, we must know when you sign your waiver with a medical questionnaire so that we can be aware of what risks might be involved. It’s better to talk to your physician first because they are the medical professionals. We are not.
But I’m afraid of heights! (technically not a question, but still…)
Even some of the best skydivers are afraid of heights (We love the sport, but we’re not crazy!). However, you will find that once you actually get up in the air, the ground looks like a picture. As you gain altitude, references disappear, and your sense of the height decreases. This makes the higher altitudes easier to handle. Keep in mind too, that you’ll be concentrating on your training as you climb out of the plane and on into your jump. Students find that their focus is on those procedures, and not on the height.
What happens if my parachute doesn’t open?
Each jump harness is equipped with a reserve parachute Automatic Activation Device (AAD).
You’ll be trained in the First Jump Course to recognize any problem that might require that you cut away (disconnect) your main parachute and open the reserve. In extreme circumstances which might cause you to fall too fast, the AAD’s function is to automatically open the reserve parachute at 1000 feet. Our certified Riggers pack all of our reserve parachutes according to strict CSPA standards.
Can I jump with my friends?
If you are doing the IAD jump, three students go up with the instructor. However, you jump one at a time. Some prefer not to be on the same load so that they can see their friends from the ground. If you are doing a Tandem Jump, you’ll jump separately as you are one-on-one with your Tandem Instructor. Either way, the more the merrier, so by all means, bring out family and friends to witness your accomplishment! (Just keep in mind that if you take the First Jump Course [FJC], your jump will not happen until mid-late afternoon, so let your “entourage” know that.)
What about video?
Your IAD climb-out and exit will be videotaped by a camera in the wing of the plane. Every first canopy flight and landing is also videotaped from the ground.
In addition, you may also opt to purchase our video package for Tandems which includes your preparation and briefing for the jump, a hand mounted GoPro in-air video of exit and freefall, and video of your landing shot from the ground (including your post-jump reaction/comments/screams of joy).
*Optional at additional cost: 3rd person view camera jumper recording your freefall all the way from the plane to the point of the canopy deployment.
How old do I have to be?
You will be required to produce proof that you are the Legal Age of Majority (18 yrs.) before you will be allowed to participate in our sport.
NO EXCEPTIONS: Notes from Parents/Guardians are not accepted.
Can I bring my pets?
Please leave your pets at home. Airports are hot, noisy, and scary for your animals.