Indoor skydiving is increasingly becoming popular in the US. It promises the same adrenalin kick as regular skydiving, minus the risks of jumping out of a plane.
Most people agree that indoor skydiving is safer than outdoor skydiving, but is it risk-free?
Read on to find out.
Indoor The Skydiving: The Basics
Before we get into whether indoor skydiving is safe, let’s take a brief look at what indoor skydiving is all about.
Indoor skydiving is an activity that seeks to replicate — and extend — the sensation of freefall in a controlled environment.
Indoor skydiving facilities use a vertical wind tunnel to simulate freefall.
Powered by giant fans at the top or bottom of the flight chamber, the wind tunnel can generate gushes of wind strong enough to keep you ‘floating’ in that hurtling air.
Indoor skydiving is about the closest you’ll get to the outdoor skydiving experience and lasts longer.
When you jump from a plane at 10000 feet, you’ll be in freefall for approximately 30 seconds before the parachute deploys.
The average wind tunnel flight is 60 seconds, sometimes a bit longer.
How Safe Is Indoor Skydiving?
Floating inside a vertical wind tunnel is a lot safer than outdoor skydiving. First, you don’t have to climb two miles above the earth and jump out of a moving aircraft.
A lot could go wrong when you’re hurtling through the atmosphere at 120mph.
Secondly, your indoor skydiving experience will be monitored by experienced, licensed instructors.
These professionals are there for your safety. So, despite what you might have heard, indoor skydiving is an extremely safe sport.
Can You Get Hurt During Indoor Skydiving?
Health and safety risks are a part of life. All risks can’t be eliminated, even in relatively safe activities such as indoor skydiving.
So, yes, you can still get hurt in an indoor skydiving session.
However, the injuries you are most likely to sustain are minor, i.e., not requiring emergency medical attention.
You can expect minor bruises, bumps, scratches, etc., from colliding with the walls of the vertical wind tunnel.
What Makes Indoor Skydiving A Safe Sport?
As you can see, there’s still a risk of minor injuries during a vertical wind tunnel flight.
However, indoor skydiving facilities put in place many precautions to ensure their customers’ safety. Some of these include:
- Qualified instructors. Each flight is monitored by skilled professionals who will be there for your rescue if anything goes wrong.
- Safety training. Expect extended safety and training sessions before each flight to ensure that you are prepared for the flight.
- Safety equipment. You’ll be geared up in a helmet, jumpsuit, and goggles to mitigate the risk of injury — you can also sport elbow and knee pads inside the vertical wind tunnel’s flight chamber.
- Safety net. There’s also a safety net at the bottom so you don’t end up in the way of the powerful fans in the event of a mishap, which is extremely rare.
How To Stay Safe When Indoor Skydiving
The above safety precautions reduce the chances of injury when skydiving significantly. But what can you do on your part?
There are various measures you can take to ensure safety during a vertical wind tunnel flight:
- Follow all the guidelines and safety procedures outlined by your instructor
- Empty your pockets and remove your jewelry during the flight to avoid accidents
- Put on all the safety equipment provided at the indoor skydiving facility, including helmets, body suits, gloves, etc.
- Avoid participating in this activity if you have an injury, as skydiving can exacerbate preexisting injuries, such as dislocations.
- Also, you should not go skydiving if you have back problems, as it can induce severe back pains.
If you have specific health issues, such as heart problems, talk to your doctor before you engage in this activity.
For those worried about motion sickness, falling or getting motion sick is extremely unlikely in the wind tunnel.
Indoor skydiving is a pretty safe activity — especially compared to its outdoor counterpart. Of course, accidents can happen.
However, taking all the necessary precautions and having a licensed instructor by your side significantly reduces the chances of a mishap.
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