Skydiving in Gran Canaria

If you are thinking of booking a vacation, the beautiful island of Gran Canaria with its hot, sunny weather offers everything from sandy beaches, clear sea and water parks to quiet fishing villages with cobbled streets and it is easy to see why it is a popular tourist choice, however that glorious sunny weather also makes it an excellent venue to give skydiving a go.

First time skydiving in Gran Canaria

Because all skydiving facilities, or Drop Zones as they are known, have to follow strict safety protocols, even a first time skydiver can take a skydive in Gran Canaria. You start with a training program to teach you how to make the skydive and this usually consists of a video or walk-through of the procedure, or even a mix of both. Besides providing training on making the skydive you will also learn what to do in the highly unlikely event of the instructor losing consciousness during free fall, as you would then be in control and would need to know how to release the parachute and ensure that you both got back to the ground safely and it is always reassuring to know that you have the knowledge to deal with a situation should it arise.

Next you will be shown the safety equipment and clothing and how to wear it, it is important that you wear it as instructed as it is designed with your safety in mind but can be a little uncomfortable however, so wear loose comfortable clothing which allows freedom of movement underneath. Anything tight or restrictive is to be avoided, so no tight, stiff jeans.

The next step will be to head off to the plane ready to take off and make that first skydive.

Marina in Gran Canaria

Type of first time skydive available in Gran Canaria

First time skydivers are usually offered what is known as a Tandem Jump, this is where the instructor, or Jumpmaster as they are known, is strapped to your back and you skydive together as one. All Jumpmasters are fully trained and qualified and will have made at least 500 prior skydives, they will control the whole skydiving experience and make sure that it is a safe and enjoyable one.

When the plane is at the right altitude it is time for the Jumpmaster to strap themselves to your back to make the skydive, it will feel a bit heavy but once you leave the plane and are in free fall you will be in essence weightless so you won’t notice it any more. It is at the point of being ready to jump that many people experience second thoughts, this perfectly normal reaction is one that the Jumpmaster will be used to and probably even experienced themself, they will be able to help you rationalize those fears and will know whether you just need some extra encouragement or are indeed just too afraid and want to sit it out and go back to the Drop Zone. It is worth mentioning that even if you do decide to sit it out you will still have to pay the same price as you will already have used the time of both the plane and the Jumpmaster, also the Jumpmaster may well decide to make a solo jump and you will then be left to fly back to the Drop Zone alone. These two factors combined can in the end be enough of a motivator to encourage a person to actually go ahead and make the skydive after all.

Once you actually jump from the plane your feelings of anxiety will disappear in the sheer exhilaration of being in free fall, then the Jumpmaster will release the parachute and the descent rate will slow rapidly and allow you the time to really look around you and to appreciate the full beauty and panorama of Gran Canaria spread out beneath you. Once back on the ground, you may find that you enjoyed the experience so much you want to repeat it and indeed this may be possible depending on time and availability of the plane and Jumpmaster, the best thing to do is just ask.

For the more daring and adrenalin rush loving types there is another type of skydive known as a Static line Jump, this type of skydive is as close to a solo skydive as possible. It involves more training and is more expensive as there are two Jumpmasters involved, one who is attached to you by a long rope and one who is on the ground, in communication by Walkie Talkie, monitoring wind speed and direction and who will guide you both safely back to the ground. You have the responsibility of releasing your own parachute at the correct time, but have the Jumpmaster attached to you for backup should you panic in any way or just forget what to do. In this scenario, you would only have to tug on the rope and the Jumpmaster would take over.

What skydiving facilities are available in Gran Canaria

Now that you have read about how exciting an experience skydiving in Gran Canaria can be, you will hopefully be keen to book a vacation and skydive there, but before you do just take a few minutes to check out the safety records of a couple you like the look of. All Drop Zones have to follow strict safety guidelines and any safety breaches must be recorded and can even result in shutdown and reassessment of the facility. Just check that your chosen site has a good safety record, you are after all literally putting your life in their hands.

To start you off here are a couple of sites for you to check out:

Skydiving Gran Canaria

http://www.extremesportscafe.com/brochure/content/skydiving-gran-canaria

Go Skydive

http://paracaidismograncanaria.com/

Take the opportunity to vacation on this beautiful island and include skydiving in your itinerary, the experience you have will enrich your vacation and will make for lasting memories you will want to recall again and again.

Author: Jenny Walker

......... I am a sensible yet crazy girl who loves life. Into anything exciting or adventurous! MWUAH!

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