Refresher Course For a Safer Re-Start

Why you need a refresher course.

Every year, skydivers ask or are asked to take a refresher course. Maybe you’re ex-military with 1,000 jumps under your belt but you haven’t left a plane this century. Maybe you have a B-license, but you’ve sat out for a couple of years, or you completed your AFF graduation jump last summer but haven’t jumped since.

Whatever the reason, there are two important things Skydive Indianapolis wants you to know.

  1. We’re excited to welcome you back to the skies
  2. Our number one priority is to keep you and other jumpers safe

That means getting you current. The USPA has clear rules about this:

  • Students (anyone without an A-license) need to jump every 30 days
  • A-license holders need to jump every 2 months
  • B-license holders need to jump every 3 months
  • C or D-license holders need to jump every 6 months

Because every jumper is different, the USPA leaves the specifics of recurrency up to each DZ. To decide the appropriate amount of refresher training, we look at the following:

  • Logbook
  • Jump frequency (if you only made 10 to 20 jumps a year when you were active versus averaging over 100 jumps a year)
  • Time out of the sport
  • Gear
    • Are you using your own and how long has it been since you’ve used it? Has a rigger repacked your reserve and signed off on it?
    • Are you using our equipment and, if so, are you familiar with the advances in gear technology such as BOC pilot chutes (introduced in the late 90’s), faster canopies and such?
  • Familiarity with jumping a turbine vs. a small prop
  • Ability to understand and follow flight patterns

There are lots of  refresher course scenarios.

If you’ve experienced static line only or have sat out too long as a new skydiver, you will most likely have to do the full 10-jump AFF program. (ground school, AFF tandem jump and nine solo jumps). In other cases, your first jump back will be our first AFF jump, which means ground school, an AFF tandem jump and then an AFF solo jump. In still others, it will require some ground instruction, then a solo jump with an AFF or coach-rated instructor to determine your comfort and ability to maintain an arch, turn, track and follow DZ traffic patterns.

In all cases, you will be evaluated by a Skydive Indianapolis instructor, they'll determine next steps, and based on your performance, will determine your course and guide you through it.

Tips for a successful return to the sky

Ready to return to the sky? Before you go to a DZ, here are steps you can take to get you skydiving safely.

  • Watch USPA videos to familiarize yourself with skills before you come to DZ. You can find links to USPA videos for each category here
  • Consider a wind tunnel session to practice your arch, turns and so on
  • Know your gear, and if you need a repack, make sure you contact a rigger to do so

When you're ready to jump, give us a call 800-990-5509, so we can talk about your jumping history and possible scenarios.

  • If you're doing AFF ground school, know that it starts at 9 a.m. sharp and you need to schedule this
  • Even if you're not doing AFF ground school, come early, talk to our instructors and line up coach or instructor jumps
  • Know traffic patterns and be prepared to follow them
  • Your first time in the air, open high to practice steering, flaring and preparing to land
  • As always, plan your jump, jump your plan.

Most of all, follow the advice of the DZ, take your refresher course seriously and be safe up there.

Welcome back to the sky!

Refresher courses keep experienced jumpers safer