Have you heard the saying, “it’s just like riding a bike?” The implication of this maxim is that once you learn a skill, you never forget it. While this might be true of many skills, this oft repeated adage is not exactly true for skydiving.
Generally speaking, skydiving currency refers to jumping with some regularity and avoiding periods of time with no jumping. Skydiving currency requirements are determined by your experience level and the skydiving license that you have.
Skydiving is a technical sport built on mitigating risk. This is done by keeping your skydiving skills sharp, having your emergency procedures dialed in, and maintaining skydiving currency.
From the proper use of equipment to procedural specificity, there’s actually a lot going on during any one jump. Likewise, our ability to participate in skydiving safely is strengthened by proper repetition. You want to build and maintain muscle memory. When a person goes extended periods of time without skydiving, they subsequently go extended periods of time without thinking about skydiving. So, not only is their body losing familiarity with the feeling of skydiving, their mind is losing familiarity with the knowledge essential to skydiving safely. This physical and mental atrophy increases their level of risk. Thus, maintaining skydiving currency is a critical component to bolstering a safe skydiving experience.
The experience level of a skydiver factors into currency requirements. In the Skydiver Information Manual, the United States Parachute Association (USPA) outlines skydiving currency requirements and the subject areas of practical training that should be covered. Below is a basic table showing how often you need to jump to maintain skydiving currency.
|Level of Skydiver||Time Between Skydives|
|AFF Student||Must skydive every 30 days|
|Students Cleared for Self Supervision||Must skydive every 30 days|
|A License||Must Skydive every 60 days|
|B License||Must skydive every 90 days|
|C License||Must skydive every 180 days|
|D License||Must skydive every 180 days|
While the table above lists the minimums to be considered current, it is far better to jump more frequently. To stay current in skydiving, jump regularly.
If you have become uncurrent, you will need to reach out to the dropzone to schedule refresher training and a recurrency jump. The amount of training that you will require will vary depending upon your skill level and the skydiving license that you have. In addition to this training, to be considered current again you will need to complete a recurrency jump with a currently-rated USPA instructional rating holder.
Typically, Skydive Carolina closes for 6 weeks during the winter. If you are a student skydiver, during this time you may need to travel to another dropzone to stay current. Skydive Paraclete XP, located in Raeford, NC, is a dropzone we recommend while we’re temporarily closed.
Technically, a skydiving license never expires. However, your membership with the USPA and any ratings you might have can expire if you do not submit the proper paperwork and renew annually. Additionally, if you do not maintain your skydiving currency, your license is “null and void” until you complete a recurrency jump. To prove currency, you must show a valid signed logbook entry of your most recent skydive.
Another great way to get back into the swing of things after a season on the ground is to attend our annual Safety Day. Safety Day will be held this year at Skydive Carolina on March 12th, 2022, 9 AM – 4:30 PM! Contact us for more details.
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