When people find out that it is possible to skydive with your own parachute without first having done a tandem, they’re often very surprised. A tandem skydive and an AFF skydive, of course, are mighty different. Here, we’ll take a look at the main differences between the two experiences–and help you work out for yourself the one that’s best for you.
AFF Students Get Their Own Parachute.
The biggest difference between an AFF jump and a tandem jump is perhaps the most obvious one: a tandem student shares his/her parachute with a tandem instructor, whereas an AFF student jumps on his/her own.
An AFF Student Jumps With Two Instructors, Not Just One.
An accredited AFF training program like ours puts three pro skydivers on each AFF jump with the student: two licensed, professional, experienced skydiving instructors, one on each side of the student, and a professional skydiving cameraperson. A tandem student enjoys the company of just two pros, not three: the tandem instructor with whom he/she shares a parachute, and the lucky pro jumper who gets to capture it all for posterity.
Tandem Is A Lesser Commitment.
A tandem skydive places the responsibility for the entire process (directing freefall, then opening and steering the parachute) in the hands of the tandem instructor. The tandem student learns the rudimentary workings of the system, but the training is much simplified. Because of that, the time and training commitment for a tandem student is shorter and simpler than that of AFF. Therefore, it can be less stressful.
AFF Students Learn Much More.
An AFF student can expect about six hours of ground school training to begin his/her journey. That time is spent learning about the gear and practicing emergency procedures on the ground until the student and his/her instructor are confident that a solo parachute jump is appropriate.
Tandem Is A Great Stepping Stone.
This much is inarguable: Tandem skydiving is an excellent introduction to the sport. Since it incurs a lower cost and tends to be a less anxious method of introduction to the sky, it’s a lovely taster. If you love it, then, by all means step it up to AFF–which is the clear path for those who wish to begin the process of becoming a skydiver.
Tandem Isn’t For Everyone.
If you’re a high-test, all-out adventurer who likes to go for the gold, you may fast-forward through this whole parachute-sharing business and proceed directly to the AFF part, dear reader. It’s not the commonest route, but it’s well within the realm of possibility–and we’ll high five the heck out of you for it!
Both Are Amazing Experiences.
No matter which path you choose, you’ll love the sky. We’re thrilled at the prospect of taking you there. Choose the one that calls to you and go, go, go!
Learn more about our AFF Skydiving Program or contact a member of our team with questions about which path is right for you.