When I started skydiving, I had the impression that skydiving where just a bunch of crazy people falling out the sky. I very quickly learnt during my AFF that there was a lot more to skydiving then I first thought. It dawned on me that I would just have to be very patient until I would be able to do most of what I was seeing the others skydivers do. I was also sad to find out it takes time to start flying with other people. So there I was plodding along in my ISPs deciding if I’m really cut out to be a skydiver, when I got the opportunity to go to do tunnel in Prague with Claire, Dirk and Bailey. So off we went to do tunnel thinking when I came back I would have the basics of skydiving down to a T.
After a major learning curving in the tunnel, I received my Cat II. Then it was off to the Boogie, but I had a problem, I didn’t have my A licence yet! Thankfully after a few emails, I found out I would still be allowed to jump. ‘’Phew”. So all was looking good for what I thought to be a chilled boogie where I would mostly be doing solos and maybe start jumping with one or two other people. Naturally I was excited and this excitement grew and grew.
So what happens when I get to the boogie? First things first, get the admin done and jump the next day, well that was my assumption. I clearing had no idea what I was in for, next thing I know I’m in the plane on an 8-way. At this point I realised rules of boogies definitely don’t work the same as at the dropzone, but these changes were quickly accepted in the name of learning and experience, I was smiling from ear to ear.
Things went great on that first jump and the moment my feet hit the ground, for the first time I felt like a real skydiver
The 8-way quickly became a 10-way which quickly became a 16-way. I was in a dream and everything was going amazingly. Still no major stuff ups, until someone asked me about my CAT III are to which I replied ‘CAT III??’ After quickly doing my exam I finally had my A licence and I was a legal skydiver.
Boogies are not just about skydiving. There is also a very important social side to it that is practiced every day and includes lots of beer. Out of all the sporting communities I’ve come across the skydiving community is definitely my favourite by far. It felt more like family and the support you get from everyone is amazing and incredibly motivating.
At first I thought the boogie was more a place for everyone to be cowboy, a place where the rules don’t apply, so that the skydivers get to do what they want and are not limited by rules.
Looking back over my boogie experience; it is a space where progression can happen very quickly, the amount you can learn is only restricted how much you are willing to learn from everyone around you. The amount I learnt in those first few jumps, and incomparable with anything I’d learnt while skydiving at a normal dropzone. What happens at a boogie exposes you to a huge learning curve, there is loads for you to go try. All you have to do is get involved.
All in all this December boogie was filled with the most fun I’ve had in ages. I plan to use all I have learnt to better me as a skydiver and I’m counting down the days to the next boogie. A big thank you to everyone who help make my first boogie an unforgettable experience. Until next time, stay safe and never stop pushing the limits.
Kyle ‘Wonderboy’ Jones