A.K.A how to experience the full spectrum of human emotion in 10 minutes.
Back in 2016, while working for retirement housebuilder McCarthy & Stone, I took on my first skydive with a group of my colleagues to raise money for our chosen charity the Royal Voluntary Service.
Firstly, a skydive is a brilliant experience and one that I think everyone should take on at some point in their lives. Fortunately plane travel is something that I have been lucky enough to experience from holidays at an early age, so I followed the logic that if I’m fine to take flights with no problems, I should be fine to follow the lead of those trained to jump out of them! I soon realised that I was more comfortable with the idea of jumping out of the plane, than I would have been about speaking in front of a meeting room full of people at the time!
The actual journey up into the clouds was an experience in itself; squeezed into a light aircraft with my tandem instructor, and several other people flying with their instructors. It felt like we were in the RAF, but again, strangely I felt completely fine, at least until the doors slid open and you see the fields below.
The free-fall from 10,000ft seems to be over within a minute, but my instructor put me through the full experience of barrel rolls and loop the loops, presumably after seeing me looking relaxed! As you can tell from the next image, the impact of the wind and the speed at 125mph during the barrel rolls is definitely less than relaxing and more like being on the fastest rollercoaster you’ve ever been on!
Finally, the parachute opens up, and you get the rush of exhilaration that comes from the feeling of steadily floating in the air. At this point I was instructed to take over the reins, pulling left or right when instructed to take hold of a swoop below. The airfield we took off from was in Honiton near Exeter, and the views of surrounding Devon were amazing despite the cloudy day.
Our team managed to raise £2,100 overall for the RVS, making a massive difference to the lives of people in later life.
Fast forward 3 years and now I have the chance to make a difference to the lives of young people! This year I am taking on the Bristol 10K, the 50km TrekFest, and the Bristol Half Marathon. If you’d like to support my fundraising efforts you can do so here.
Alternatively, if you fancy having a go at a skydive for Empire Fighting Chance, registration costs just £50 and all jumpers need to raise £395 minimum sponsorship. This covers the cost of the jump and £220 comes directly to Empire Fighting Chance to fund our work with young people. 100% of everything over £395 will also come to Empire Fighting Chance.
Have I sold the challenge? Here’s how to join in:
- Sign up for the challenge on the Go Skydive website
- Receive your Welcome Pack and start fundraising for your jump
- Prepare yourself for the experience of a lifetime in aid of Empire Fighting Chance!
I would definitely do another skydive, so maybe we can dive together in future!
Best of luck,