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Skydiving & Parachuting Experience Days & Gifts

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Skydiving & Parachuting: Everything you need to know

When it comes to being blown about, there’s no better place than the sky. Or perhaps a wind tunnel. But which is better? Pick up a skydiving voucher from and you can try either - or both!

AirKix indoor skydiving involves hovering over a very strong jet of air in a totally nerdy jumpsuit while a man in a helmet laughs at you. It’s brilliant! You could go for the real deal with a tandem skydive instead: there are a range of handy skydiving locations all over the UK (please note: although we can predict where you will take off, but we are unable to predict exactly where you’ll land.

It might be in a tree, or on top of a cowpat if you’re very unlucky). Extreme sports fans who have balls - and enjoy balls - will love Air Sphereing! It’s the equivalent of being in a hamster ball that’s spinning around in mid air, chucking you about and making you look foolish.

Oh yes, did we mention that many indoor skydiving and Air Sphereing experiences are conducted in full view of your family and friends? Those photos will be on Facebook before you can say “look at my daft gurning face”.


Q: Jumping out of an airplane? That’s plane crazy!
A: Yes, you have shouted that at me a number of times already.
Q: So this is it? The big one? The ultimate bucket list crosser-offer?
A: Pretty much, we have a number of skydiving and parachuting experiences to satisfy every palette.
Q: Where does this all happen? Up I suppose?
A: Mainly up with a bit of over. We offer a tandem skydive activity at ten locations around the UK, and an accelerated skydive experience in Suffolk and Nottingham.
Q: What’s an accelerated skydive? Will I actually fall faster?
A: No Sir Isaac Newton, you won’t. You just learn faster. It’s an intensive course consisting of eight skydives (with instructors) over a few days (weather permitting) after which (fingers crossed) you’ll be a qualified skydiver!
Q: That sounds hard, what else you got?
A: With tandem skydiving, you are actually attached to you instructor as you dive, after being fully briefed on all the do’s and do not do’s. You can go as high as 9000, 12000 or even 15000, the highest height possible before you need oxygen!
Q: So should I skim through the Argos catalogue and pick up all the gear?
A: All the safety gear and equipment will be provided on the day.
Q: Age ranges? What’s the skinny?
A: Usually you’ll need to be 16 or older (and may need a parental consent form if under 18). If you are an older person, you may need to answer some health related questions before you leap out of anything and some of the experiences may not be suitable for you.
Q: And my gout?
A: May be an issue, as you can imagine, with this sort of experience. You need to let us know if you have any relevant health issues. There is a great big long list of ailments of the particular experience description page, so spend a fun afternoon having a look through those. If you have any concerns, just ask the supplier or contact us. Or if fancy something a bit mellower, you can go indoors.
Q: Huh?
A: Yes, we offer both indoor skydiving, where you are blown up in the air with a big turbine thing and also a parachute simulator, from a platform 150 feet in the air. Both are great ways to get a feeling for the endeavour before taking the leap. The big leap. Out of a plane.

Fun Facts

  • 1. The word ‘parachute’ comes from the French word paracete meaning to protect against, and chute, the French word for ‘fall’. So nothing to do with parrots then. That’s another tenner I’ve lost to Big Clive at The Ram.
  • 2. The word was first used by French aeronaut François Blanchard in 1785. I hope it wasn’t in the sentence ‘I wish I’d remembered my parachute’.
  • 3. The oldest image of a parachute appears in an anonymous manuscript from 1470’s Renaissance Italy, showing a man clutching a cross bar frame attached to a conical canopy. Though I can’t imagine the 15th Century comic strip ‘Conical Canopy Man’ was all that popular.
  • 4. A more sophisticated parachute was drawn by Leonardo da Vinci in his Codex Atlanticus in 1485. I picture his own particular conical canopy man with a monocle.
  • 5. A drogue parachute is a parachute designed to be deployed from a rapidly moving object in order to slow the object, like a dragster. Or even a fast moving bison, if you fancy strapping a parachute to one.
  • 6. The first recorded public jump with a parachute was made by Louis-Sebastien Lenormand in France in the year 1783. The unpopular French expression ‘Mon Dieu! Mon parachute!’ was invented that same day, I imagine.
  • 7. Though it looks like you fly up into the air when your parachute opens, you actually keep going down, just at a slower rate. If you do start thinking you are going up, you are probably upside down. You may want to fix that.
  • 8. The first parachute jump from an aircraft was thought to be made by Captain Albert Berry in St. Louis, USA, on March 1st 1912. I wonder if he was reluctant to go and they had to eventually chuck Berry from the plane.
  • 9. The youngest skydiver was a four year old who made a tandem jump from an elevation of 10,000 feet. Well kid, it’s all going to be downhill from there.
  • 10. Jay Stokes holds the record for most parachute jumps by completing 640 in a day. Must have been tiring, but think of all the air miles he got.