Accelerated Freefall Training (AFF)

How to learn to skydive solo

What is AFF?

This training discipline is where certified instructors accompany the student in freefall, holding onto the student's harness at first while the student demonstrates certain skills. It can be compared to learning to ride a bike with training wheels. This is the quickest, most effective and common training method used by USPA drop zones in the US. It is a 9 step, 8 jump course. At the bottom of this page is a breakdown of the AFF program and corresponding USPA Category jumps.

 

How does it work? (see photo)

The student exits the aircraft with two USPA AFF Instructors holding onto the student’s parachute harness and they freefall together for 30 to 50 seconds depending on jump altitude, typically 10,000 to 13,000 feet. Instructors maintain grip on the student's harness to provide in-air instruction and assist with stability if necessary. The student opens his/her own parachute by 4,000 feet and pilots it to the landing area.

Des Moines Skydivers AFF program: Each step is required, in order, to complete the AFF program.

Step 1: First Jump Course (FJC)

Ground School

$150

This is a 4-6 hour classroom course to go over the basics of free fall, body position, canopy flight and emergency procedures - all required to skydive. Click button below to see the scheduled FJC's this year and get signed up!

Step 2: Jump #1 - Tandem Category A (This jump is optional)

Tandem Jump

$250

This isn't your standard tandem jump. For this jump you are wearing your own altimeter and it's you job to maintain stability, heading, altitude awareness, the ability to locate the deployment handle and to deploy at the proper altitude.

Step 3: Jump #2 - AFF Category A

Two Instructor Jump

$225

Your category A jump focuses on stability, heading, maintaining altitude awareness and the ability to locate your deployment handle while remaining stable. This is your first jump wearing your own parachute. Price includes your own logbook and goggles. 

Step 4: Jump #3 - AFF Category B

Two Instructor Jump

$225

Your category B jump focuses on stability, heading, altitude awareness, maintaining stability while performing practice touches, forward movement and turns.

Step 5: Jump #4 - AFF Category C1

Two Instructor Jump - Harness-Hold

$225

Your category C1 jump focuses on stability, heading, altitude awareness, and maintaining stability while performing practice touches. Instructors release grips for solo hover control.

Step 6: Jump #5 - AFF Category D1

One Instructor Jump

$175

Your category D1 jump focuses on stability, heading, altitude awareness, and maintaining stability while performing practice touches. Instructor release grips once student is stable for solo hover control and solo 90 turns.

Step 7: Jump #6 - AFF Category D2

One Instructor Jump

$175

Your category D2 jump focuses on stability, heading, altitude awareness, and maintaining stability while deploying. Instructor release grips once student is stable for solo hover control and solo 180 and 360 turns.

Step 8: Jump #7 - AFF Category E1

One Instructor Jump

$175

Your category E1 jump focuses on stability, heading, altitude awareness, and maintaining stability while deploying. Student performs solo exit with no instructor grips and performs barrel rolls.

Jump #8 - AFF Category E2

One Instructor Jump

$175

Your category E2 jump focuses on stability, heading, altitude awareness, and maintaining stability while deploying. Student performs solo exit with no instructor grips and performs front loop and back loop. Congratulations, you have graduated the AFF program! You aren't licensed yet but are released into "self-supervised" status.

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After you complete all 8 steps above, you have graduated the AFF program and you are released into "self-supervised" status. This means that you are able to either jump by yourself or with a coach/instructor (You are not able to jump with other licensed skydivers until you are also licensed). To achieve your license you will need to complete the rest of your A-license progression card which includes completing certain skills in freefall and under canopy. These must be signed off by either a coach or instructor after they are successfully completed. Once your progression card is completely filled out (this can be done in as little as 25 total jumps) then you are now a licensed skydiver! Check out our recent A-License graduates! 

How much does all of this cost?! Skydiving is an expensive sport but does get cheaper after you are licensed and have acquired all of your own gear. Since your training jumps are often spread out over time, the cost burden is not immediate or all at once. Below is a breakdown of typical costs associated with completing the AFF program and achieving your A-license.

 

The total cost of AFF training (FJC and 7 jumps) is $1,525. Buy the entire package up-front and SAVE with a $100 DISCOUNT bringing the total cost of the AFF program down to $1,425.  The total cost to obtain your skydiving license is dependent upon:

  • The number of jumps that are required to complete your  progression card (some do-over jumps may be required)

  • Whether or not you are renting gear or using your own gear

  • Which aircraft you are jumping out of

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Total cost to achieve your A-license is estimated to be around $2,500-2,900.

Typical Skydiving License Costs

First Jump Course + 7 AFF Jumps* (with discount)..................$1425
Log Book & Goggles.................................................................................$25
Coached Skydives - 18 jumps*............................................................$936

Gear Rental - 18 jumps* ......................................................................$450

Cost per jump once licensed (using own gear).......................$17-$26

 

*License can be achieved in as little as 7 AFF jumps and 18 coached jumps.

So now what? How do I get started? Click on the First Jump Course button (FJC) and sign up for the course. This is the very first step and is a prerequisite to the AFF program. This course covers pertinent information on the sport and prepares you for the rigors of your skydives. It is a mixture of classroom training and hands-on practical and participatory training using video, visual aids and skydiving equipment.

We know you have a choice when it comes to your skydive training. We are the only United States Parachute Association (USPA) group member drop zone in Iowa. What does this mean? This means that we pledge to abide by the basic safety requirements set forth by the USPA. The USPA website has A LOT of great information regarding AFF training.  Please feel free to research at www.uspa.org

Please give us a call or send us an email if you have any questions on the FJC or our AFF training program! 515-243-1711 or info@desmoinesskydivers.com

 

Click below to book your First Jump Course or buy a gift certificate!

Des Moines Skydivers, LLC

Winterset-Madison County Airport

3405 N 8th Ave

Winterset, IA 50273

(515) 243-1711 | info@DesMoinesSkydivers.com

Mailing Address:

Des Moines Skydivers

C/O AJ Horrigan

PO Box 5056

Des Moines, IA 50305