A few weekends ago I was in Croatia to celebrate Halloween. Halloween is the epitome of “scary holidays”, so I figured why not do the scariest thing and jump out of a plane? So my friend and I decided to just go for it.

We might look odd, but the whole time the instructor was yelling "banana, banana, banana"
We might look odd, but the whole time the instructor was yelling “banana, banana, banana”

I’ll admit, I was a bit nervous about skydiving again. The first jump I did was successful, but did I want to push my luck again? You’d better believe I did. We jumped with the Skydiving Tandem Group http://skydivingtandem.eu and was only around 230 Euros for both the jump and the video recording, which I definitely recommend.

Look Ma! No Land!
Look Ma! No Land!

There aren’t enough wonderful adjectives to describe how exhilarating skydiving is. I’ve tried my best to condense some of them down into my 5 Reasons Why You Should Go Skydiving.

 

  1. How many people can say they went skydiving?

During my senior year of high school, I was enrolled in an AP English class. My teacher, a tough-love Canadian, required each of his students to do a senior project. There were no parameters, just choose something you are passionate about or have always wanted to do. As soon as I heard this, I knew that I was going to go skydiving. My classmates were terrified for me to go, but after I survived my jump, several others ended up going skydiving as well. I’d like to think that I inspired them but they probably were just happy that I didn’t go splat.

However, this created in me a monster that could not easily be quelled. I had tasted the adrenaline of the jump… and I wanted more. So on Halloween, while traveling in Croatia with two of my best friends, I went skydiving again. The excitement of the jump was just as incredible the second time and I would without a doubt pay to do it again. I don’t see how you could ever get tired of jumping.

Aren't I so (un)helpful?
Aren’t I so (un)helpful?
  1. You don’t feel like you’re 10,000 feet in the air

Most people who are reluctant to skydive tell me that their fear of heights prevents them from making the jump. I don’t have a fear of heights so I unfortunately cannot directly relate to their situation. However, I can say that I did not feel like I was thousands of feet in the air when I jumped out of the plane. Sitting in the plane getting ready to jump did not make me feel queasy, scared, or worried about the ground being so far below. The feeling was very surreal, almost like looking at a painting. So if a fear of heights is preventing you from skydiving, don’t let it. Even though it might seem like a drastic way, I think skydiving can help you get over your fears.

During my second jump, the plane I rode up on was even smaller than the one I first jumped out of. To heighten the excitement, I was seated right next to the door. Except there was no door! I was able to sit in the frigid air with nothing between me and empty sky as our plane climbed to 10,000 feet. The strange thing was that I didn’t feel anxious or scared at all. Instead, it was an odd and calming peace. The world was continuing beneath me and I was just an omnipotent observer above.

When I say there was no door, I mean THERE WAS NO DOOR - Zagreb, Croatia
When I say there was no door, I mean THERE WAS NO DOOR – Zagreb, Croatia
  1. It’s actually relaxing

Relaxing? Skydiving? No, I haven’t lost my mind; I do believe that skydiving can be relaxing. The initial free-fall lasts anywhere from 30 seconds to one minute. It just depends on the elevation you jump from. After the free-fall ends and the parachute opens, you and your instructor just float in the air for around 10 minutes until you land. I expected that we would still be descending rapidly, even after the parachute opened. Nope! Once the parachute engaged, the wind stopped moving and we gracefully floated to the ground.

  1. It is also exhilarating

I absolutely loved free-falling through the air for 40 seconds as I reached my terminal velocity. It gave me the biggest and craziest adrenaline rush that I had ever experienced in my 18 years of living. I actually forgot to breathe during free-fall so there might’ve been a point where I almost passed out. My instructor had told me that I needed to remember to breathe because the wind almost takes away your breath. Leave it to me to forget his instructions. Thankfully I remembered to breathe though and stayed awake for the duration of my descent. I guess you could say that the experience took my breath away…?

I'm actually screaming for joy in this picture - Zagreb, Croatia
I’m actually screaming for joy in this picture – Zagreb, Croatia
  1. The experience is unparalleled

I wish I could describe skydiving to you in such detail that you feel like you were there. That’s a pretty impossible feat. Even the likes of Hemingway and Edgar Allen Poe would have a difficult time describing it the way it needs to be described. You truly did “have to be there”. Try as I might, my words could never do it justice. Skydiving is an experience unto its own and is one of the most amazing adrenaline rushes you will ever experience. I can’t recommend it enough.

Many people that I have met have told me that skydiving is on their bucket list. I ask them if they have plans to go anytime soon and nearly everybody tells me no. They give me a variety of answers, but I have noticed one common theme – they are scared and/or they have too much to lose. That’s completely understandable. When I jumped out of the plane, I was 18-years old, only two weeks away from graduating high school, and not enrolling in college until months later. It was the perfect time for me to skydive. Although it is morbid to think of, that would have been the best time for something to go wrong. It would have been a tragedy if there were an accident, but I didn’t have anybody depending on me. I was single and had no family to support. That’s the concern that many people have about jumping, and I can’t say I blame them. Not everybody wants to do the same crazy things that I enjoy doing. There is nothing wrong with that. But I still highly encourage you to get out of your comfort zone.

 

Take a deep breath – and take the jump.

 

 

 

Here are some more pictures to inspire you to jump as well. Enjoy!

Zagreb, Croatia
Zagreb, Croatia

The look of pure joy is not easy to conceal
The look of pure joy is not easy to conceal

It's a bird, it's a plane, it's... oh look it's just ME!
It’s a bird, it’s a plane, it’s… oh look it’s just ME!
All geared up and ready for takeoff!
All geared up and ready for takeoff!

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3 thoughts on “5 Reasons Why You Should Go Skydiving”

  1. I don’t think I have ever heard of skydiving described as relaxing. However, I hadn’t thought about how it feels after the parachute goes out. It is definitely something I would love about it. It is probably like standing at the top of a mountain and looking out, but better.

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