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Skydiving License: How long does it take to get?

Learn To Skydive

Getting your skydiving license is one of the most rewarding things you can do. Once you have your skydiving license, a whole new world of opportunity opens up!

There is no specific time frame to learn to skydive and getting your skydiving license. Some people get it within a couple of weeks of starting jumping, while others may take longer. It really depends on how many jumps you get in and how quickly you want to progress.

Here are some of the factors that affect how long it takes to get your skydiving license:

How Many Jumps?

Learning to skydive, like learning to do anything, takes time. How quickly you progress will depend on how much time you’re willing to spend at the skydiving center – and how many jumps you want to get in while you’re there.

Before you even start jumping, you’ll need to complete ground training, which takes 6-8 hours and covers everything you need to know about flying your body and controlling your parachute.

Each jump you do is designed to teach you a new skill, so you’ll have more training before each jump. Then, there’s the jump itself – that takes around 15-20 minutes for the climb to altitude, around 1 minute in freefall and 5 minutes flying down.

Finally, you’ve got your post-jump debrief; so the whole thing takes around an hour per jump. When you consider that each jump takes quite a bit of energy out of you, you probably don’t want to be doing too many more than 4 jumps per day. On the basis that you’ll need to complete a minimum of 18 jumps (depending on the system you use to learn), you can work out how many days you’ll need as a minimum.

AFF instructors guide student on free fall position during a skydive

Weather Dependent Sport

Ours is a weather dependent sport. We’re pretty much ruled by the weather; when it’s good, it’s glorious and we jump to our heart’s content! But if pesky clouds start to come in, or worse still, it starts to rain, we can’t jump at all. Sad times!

That means that there are some days where we don’t get any jumps in. There are days where we’ll jump around the weather, waiting for those breaks where we do have wall to wall blue skies. Some days, we jump from dawn til dusk (and those days are the best!).

As a student skydiver, you’re even more weather affected. That’s because we have certain limits, like wind speeds, in which even the pros can’t jump – and those limits are lower for students because you’re less experienced.

If you are stuck on the ground for any reason, you can still learn. A lot of skydiving is about muscle memory and drilling things like the emergency procedures that we need to know off by heart. Grabbing some time in the hangar to go through those things in your head or with an instructor is a good use of bad-weather time.

Skydiving License Cost

Skydiving’s not a cheap sport, we won’t lie… We get that you’re making a big investment and depending on your financial situation, you might want to take your time, doing a couple of jumps a week rather than smashing them all out in one go.

Some students do one jump at a time, some save and do several at once. So it really is up to you and your budget. The benefit of doing them more quickly is that you’ll find it easier to remember your improvement points and to make the necessary changes. But if you do want to take it a bit slower, don’t worry – our instructors will make sure you receive a brief before every jump. Plus, as we said above, there’s lots to learn on the ground, too.

AFF student participating in hands on training while in free fall

Age and agility

You’ll find that things like your age and fitness levels will have an effect on how long it takes to get your skydiving license.

It’s a bit of a running joke that skydiving’s “just falling”. The reality is that it’s much more than that! In order to “fall” in a stable position and to successfully land on the ground under your parachute, you need to play an active part in getting your body in the right place and handling your equipment.

That’s why skydiving is a genuine sport. People compete as skydivers against one another. They work in skydiving as a full-time job. Those who jump can viably call themselves athletes because skydiving takes as much agility and fitness as going for a run or playing squash.

If you’re of a more sports-like disposition, you may find you have more endurance and can do more jumps per day and still be top of your game. You might find it easier to grasp things like the body position you need to stay stable in freefall. That can mean, in some cases, that you progress more quickly.

On the flip side, if you’re less fit, you may not find those things quite so straightforward and have to spend longer working on them.

Essentially, everyone progresses at their own pace – and that’s just fine! Skydiving isn’t just a great sport, it’s a great community and way of life. You’ll love getting to know your fellow jumpers and spending time on the dropzone, so there’s no need to rush! You’ll get your skydiving license at a rate that makes sense for you.

So what are you waiting for? Find out more about learning to skydive and book online with us today!

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