First Time Skydiving: A Beginner’s Guide

Your first time skydiving is one heck of a challenge! Here, we’ll tackle some burning questions (including “How do you skydive for the first time?” and “Can you skydive by yourself the first time?” among others — but more on that later…) to help you navigate that challenge like a boss.

1. Wrap your head around it (the smart way)

Sure, it’s tempting to let your fear take the wheel and Google as many scary tandem skydiving situations as the Internet is willing to show you. Let us take your hand and walk you away from that decision for a minute — because it’s totally counterproductive. It’s natural to be scared, but deaths in skydiving are so rare as to be statistically insignificant. Don’t believe us? Check out the skydiving safety statistics collected by the United States Parachute Association. They’re eye-opening (and a huge relief, besides)!

We’ve also gone to some lengths to answer any other questions you might have about skydiving in our FAQ. If more come up, ask us! We’re here for you.

2. Dress for success

What to wear on a skydive isn’t just a question of fashion. Indeed, it has a way of making-or-breaking your comfort experience when you do a first-time skydive — so it pays to get it right!
The best plan of attack is to choose close-fitting athletic clothing and lace-up sneakers for your first time skydiving experience. That way, your clothes will fit comfortably under a skydiving jumpsuit without being bulky — or stay comfortably close to your body if you choose not to wear one (instead of flapping wildly all over the place and looking silly in videos).
Word to the wise: Since temperatures at altitude tend to be chilly — even at a beautiful beachside dropzone like ours — our best advice is to wear (or bring with you) several close-fitting thin layers. If needed, they’ll work together to keep you nice and cozy on the way up to altitude (and in freefall).

3. Eat like a first time skydiving champ

Don’t let your nerves cheat your body out of eating nutritiously and staying hydrated! If you don’t, you will notice a difference. Eat a moderate, nutritious meal before you arrive at the dropzone and bring snacks in case you end up waiting for inclement weather to clear.

Pro tip: If you’re super-nervous and don’t feel like eating, pick up a smoothie from the Mugg & Bean at the Langeberg Mall on the way in, and sip on that to keep you energized. You’ll be so glad you did.

4. Don’t go it alone — but do consider going solo

It sounds like a contradiction in terms. Right? Well: It’s not!
The first part of this equation is that skydiving is always better with a friend or two along. Invite along a built-in support system to help you tackle this amazing new challenge: an awesome friend, a family member, a partner (or all of the above!) will reliably boost you up and calm you down.

The second part of the equation is that solo skydiving is totally possible for your first time skydiving experience. You can make your first-ever skydive as the first jump in your solo skydiving certification process. At Skydive Mossel Bay, you have choices: you can learn to skydive through our static line skydiving program or supercharge your learning in our accelerated freefall course. Both are great! To discover which is best for you, give us a call. We’ll be happy to help you decide.

5. Remember to breathe

This might seem obvious, but it’s impossible to rock a skydive if you don’t breathe. Breathing mindfully will help you to grab back your control of the fear and nervousness that come with the territory. Your first skydive is a great reason to breathe deeply and focus on the moment. It’s the first day of the rest of your truly awesome life!