Jump out of an airplane; you have got to be kidding. I guess it’s the feeling off falling, Oh! Did I say falling, I meant flying. The closest human beings have ever come to free, unencumbered, non-mechanical individual flight.
Nearly everyone flies in their dreams at one time or another; the young idolize Superman and Spiderman while the aged tend to admire the liberty of the birds. Anyone who has vaulted from the three meter board at the pool, leaped from the hayloft into the haystack, or even stood on a rise in a high wind with arms outstretched has experienced a diminutive form of non-mechanical flight.
Since skydiving began to catch on as a sport in the late fifties, it has become a well-organized, widely recognized form of aviation activity and is now an established recreational pursuit. Advancements in techniques and equipment have made the sport of skydiving relatively safe and thoroughly fun for anyone who chooses to participate.
As with any extreme sport, whenever a person chooses to leave the ground, he or she risks injury or even death (I think that is part of the fun). Whether to accept or reject this threat and its accompanying challenge must remain a personal decision; one must weigh the risk and the reward. Safety as in any sport is in the education.
Sport jumpers wear a highly maneuverable main parachute that, when controlled properly, lets them down so softly that they can easily stand up on landing. They usually wear protective clothing; a helmet, a jumpsuit, and perhaps goggles and gloves. A reserve parachute is standard equipment for the same reason you would use a seat belt in your car, for back up in the rare instance when something goes wrong.
Standard procedure is; after leaving the airplane you will accelerate for eleven seconds until you reach roughly 140 kilometers per hour downward, which is nominal terminal velocity, that speed which the pull of gravity equals your wind resistance. You will continue to fall at this same speed unless you alter your body position.
I hear it does not feel like falling at all but more like lying on a very noisy partially deflated air mattress. You merely feel the pressure of the air against your body. It is then a simple matter (or so they say) to use the air pressure to perform loops and rolls and even to track (move horizontally).
Sport parachuting is considerably easy, anyone in reasonably good physical condition may participate, that is of course if you are interested in defying the law. The law of gravity that is.
Skydiving companies are situated at the Campbell River airport, and are offered for most of the year, whether you want to make one jump or get trained to become a licensed skydiver, instruction is available.