Do you have it in you to jump off a plane?

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As a child, I always wanted to be able to fly. When I would see videos of people jumping out of a plane on TV, I used to imagine how amazing it must feel to soar like a bird. I still remember reading a beautifully worded waiver before going skydiving “I realize that I could be injured, killed or crippled and that Parachute School of Toronto Limited has no insurance. I accent these conditions and still want to fly and jump.” I paused for a brief second to ponder about my life choices, but then the thought of “Oh well, you only live once! GO FLY” quickly took over.

After a quick training session, I put on the parachute and got on a plane. Around 15 minutes later we reached our desired altitude of 13,500 ft. Before I could get myself mentally prepared for the jump, my instructor opened the airplane door said “Let’s go fly”. I cleared my head, took a deep breath and jumped. He made us do a mid-air back flip as we jumped out of the airplane. I felt free. I was flying. There was nothing holding me up besides the drag force built by air. We were free falling towards the ground at over 200 km/hr.

After a few minutes of flying, my instructor checked our altitude and opened the parachute. It almost felt like we were going back up again since there was a sudden tug that reduced our speed drastically. Once the parachute was open, the experience changed completely from feeling the adrenaline rush of a fast flight to enjoying a slow canopy ride and taking in the beautiful scenery.  It was surprisingly easy to guide the canopy with just a little pull of cable on either side.

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