Indoor Skydiving

February 4, 2014 | Category: Seattle, Sports, Travel, Washington

My friend Jeff and I went indoor skydiving for the first time at iFLY Seattle. It was a lot of fun. It’s very similar to skydiving of course, but there are some key differences.

So indoor skydiving.. what is it? Basically you get inside a special room that has a massive fan underneath. The fan blows up from below and up through the tube-shaped room that you’re in. It simulates freefall without the danger of the sudden stop in case your parachute(s) fails. πŸ˜€

It reminds me of those fake surfing things you see on cruise ships. It’s kind of the equivalent of a treadmill in that sense. It mimics the experience, and you can make it last as long as you want, vary the speed, and it’s super easy to get into and out of.

As a first timer, you watch an intro video on maneuvers, hand positions (the instructor can sign things like straighten or bend your legs!), safety, and what to expect.

Then you suit up with your zip up jumpsuit with handles so the instructor can grab, hold, move, and spin you, as well as ear plugs, clear goggles for the wind, and your helmet.

I just got a GoPro so I brought it along and suction cupped it outside the chamber. πŸ™‚Β Here’s my first flight.

It’s like skydiving before you pull the chute so you can float, spin, learn how to hold yourself, how to actually execute different maneuvers like rolls, flips, spins, hanging upside down, and so on.

I’ve gone skydiving before back in freshman year of college and remember the experience quite vividly.

This was similar to that of course, but less intense. No jumping out of a plane and you don’t get the same adrenaline rush as freefalling to earth at 140 mph. This is more like training for that, and it provides a safe and controlled space to try new things and get the hang of different moves.

Here’s an example of a bunch of different moves and positions you can do.

It’s amazing how subtle everything is. For the first time we didn’t go super fancy. It was just a matter of starting off really basic and seeing what it’s like. You go belly down, arms and legs out. If you want to turn, rotating your palms left or right will cause you to spin. If your hands are open or closed, that make a big difference in drag. How much you bend or straighten your legs also has a huge impact on drag and control. There’s a balance between being loose enough to let the wind streak by and being tight enough to hold your body in the proper position. It’s a lot of fun. πŸ™‚

Here’s my second flight. As we got to the end, the instructor grabbed on and we spun together and shot up to the ceiling a few times. It was a really cool experience. πŸ™‚

You fly for a little over a minute and then lights flash as you approach the end of the run (really handy b/c it can be noisy with the fans) and then you fly into the door. I love being able to fly into doorways. It’s like being in a dream, being a superhero and flying where you need to go. πŸ˜€

After we went, the instructors would go and they’d demo a lot of cool fancier moves and tricks. It was a blast watching them. If you want to start leveling up and learning new things, they offer more classes and training you can take.

So yeah, it was a very cool experience! I highly recommend it if you have the opportunity!


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