Skydive is a skydive school, based in Évora, Portugal, that provides training in Accelerated Freefall. This method of skydiving training is called "accelerated" because the progression is the fastest
Skydive is a skydive school, based in Évora, Portugal, that provides training in Accelerated Freefall (AFF). Accelerated Freefall is a method of skydiving training. This method of skydiving training is called "accelerated" because the progression is the fastest way to experience solo freefall, normally from 10,000 to 14,500 feet "Above Ground Level" (AGL).
Two instructors jump with the student during their first three AFF jumps. On the initial levels, the instructors hold on to the student until the student deploys their own parachute. The AFF instructors have no physical connection to the student other than their grip on the student, so once the student's parachute is deployed the instructors fly away and deploy their own canopies.
Deployment of the main canopy for students in an AFF program is generally 5500 ft AGL.
Once the student has proven they can deploy their own parachute on the first few jumps, the student will be released on subsequent levels and will have the opportunity to prove to their instructors that they have the basic flying skills required to skydive without assistance. On release skydives there is a possibility the instructor may not be able to dock and assist at pull time, so it is important that the student has already learned the skills required to pull on their own.
As the instructors freefall with the student, they are able to correct the student's body position and other problems during freefall by communicating with the student with hand signals in freefall and debriefing the student and conducting corrective training after the jump. Later levels only require one instructor and involve the student learning to perform aerial maneuvers such as turns, forward movement, flips, and fall rate control. The purpose of the maneuvers are to prove to the student and instructor that the student can perform a disorienting maneuver causing intentional instability followed by regaining control.
The instructors determine when the student has passed the requirements or "Targeted Learning Objectives (TLOs)" for each level. During the AFF jumps, the student may have radio contact with ground personnel who direct the student's maneuvers under their parachute; However the student must have the skills for a solo landing in case the radio fails.