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As a student, you'll probably be one of the last skydivers to exit. It might be intimidating to see everyone else jump out, but take a deep breath and relax. It's your turn now!

Freefall is one of the most exciting, adrenaline-filled experiences you're likely to ever have. The feeling is different for everyone, so check out the testimonials from people just like you, with one exception—they've fallen towards the earth at 120 miles per hour!

Photo by Don Carrington.

Photo & application by: Bernd Dohrmann
Tandem Instructor: Andreas Licht; Conception: Thomas Büge.
Viewthe original (and more!) at

Parachutes are also called "canopies" in skydiving. There are many different types and sizes of parachutes. All modern day parachutes are square shaped, not round, and easily steerable.

Sadly enough, there comes a time when the fun is over, but landing a skydiving parachute can be part of the fun. You might see advanced skydivers "swooping" at your drop zone—landing at a high speed, skimming the ground just inches above it, or dragging their toe through a "swoop pond." Student canopies are big and docile, which makes them much more forgiving when learning landing maneuvers.

Gone are the days of bone-crushing, scary landings under round parachutes! Today's ram-air canopies allow skydivers of all experience levels to glide softly back to earth.

Copyright 2017 by United States Parachute Association