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Why is Starting Out Tandem Skydiving a Good Idea?

Skydiving Tips

Wisconsin Skydiving Center Posted by: Wisconsin Skydiving Center 11 months ago

Thinking of trying skydiving but not sure which route to choose? Go for a tandem skydive! How many jumps do you need to be a tandem skydiver? Tandem skydiving requires zero experience, which is why it is the best (and most popular) option for those interested in skydiving for the first time!

Woman skydiving for the first time at Wisconsin Skydiving Center near Milwaukee

Here are our top six reasons why starting out tandem skydiving is a good idea:

1. Tandem Skydiving is Less Risky

Okay, okay … we’re not suggesting that skydiving isn’t risky. Naturally, everything we do in life comes with an inherent risk – especially high-risk sports such as skydiving. But when comparing the statistics of tandem skydiving vs solo skydiving, we’re confident in saying that tandem skydiving has a better track record. According to the United States Parachute Association (USPA), there were 3.9 million jumps made by licensed, USPA-member skydivers in 2022. Of those, 20 fatal skydiving accidents were recorded. This puts the calculated risk for licensed jumpers at 0.51 fatalities per 100,000 jumps.

What is the Risk of Dying in Tandem Skydiving?

In tandem skydiving, the safety rate is even better, with 1 student fatality per 500,000 jumps on average over the past 10 years. This makes the odds of a tandem skydiving death 0.0002%.

Why is Tandem Skydiving Safer?

  • There is a highly-trained tandem instructor performing all parachute operations
  • The parachute/equipment is meticulously maintained by a certified rigger.
  • The jump and landing entails less risky maneuvers.

2. Tandem Skydiving is Rigged for Safety

One of the reasons that makes tandem skydiving safer is the diligent and passionate care of our tandem skydiving equipment. The tandem skydiving rig is a two-parachute system that includes a specifically designed tandem harness, a main parachute, a reserve (back-up) parachute, a cutaway system, and an Automatic Activation Device (AAD). The main tandem parachute can be packed by an FAA-certified parachute rigger or an approved parachute packer under the supervision of an FAA-certified parachute rigger. The FAA (Federal Aviation Administration) – a US government agency that oversees all aviation and parachute operations – requires that a reserve parachute be repacked by an FAA-certified parachute rigger every 180 days to ensure proper inspection.

Skydiving instructor packing a skydiving parachute at Wisconsin Skydiving Center near Milwaukee

What is the Failure Rate of Skydiving Parachutes?

In 2021, the USPA reported that 1 out of 721 skydivers reported using their reserve parachute due to either a partial malfunction or a total malfunction. It’s pretty common to assume that most skydiver deaths are caused by equipment failure – however, this is not the case. In 2022, the USPA reported that 40% (8) of the skydiving deaths were caused by an intentional low turn performed by the skydiver, with 10% (2) of skydiving fatalities caused by an equipment malfunction. To keep that in context, that’s two fatalities in 3.9 million skydives.

3. Tandem Skydiving is Performed by the Pros!

Tandem instructors aren’t just crazed, adrenaline-junkies – tandem instructors are extremely professional, knowledgeable, and dedicated teachers (or spirit guides) who love to share their passion for skydiving. The United States Parachute Association requires tandem instructors to have (and maintain):

  • A minimum of 500 jumps
  • Hold a current USPA D License
  • Hold a current skydiving coach title
  • Have at least 3 years of experience in the sport
  • Pass a tandem certification course
  • Possess a current FAA Class III Flight Medical Certificate

Our tandem instructors guide you on what to expect on your first tandem skydive and are responsible for the safety, comfort, and happiness of each customer who steps foot in our facility. We are dedicated to providing our guests with the most incredible and unforgettable first time skydiving experience.

Is it Awkward to Tandem Skydive?

Tandem skydiving is an up-close and personal experience that might seem a little awkward at first – I mean, you’re literally attached to someone you just met. Our instructors are highly-trained with thousands of jumps under their belt, which means they have a knack for treating our first timers with the utmost respect and making sure they’re comfortable throughout the entire journey. Those who have jumped before, will never forget their tandem instructor – they share an unforgettable bond that will last a lifetime. If you have an awesome experience, feel free to share your gratitude!

4. Tandem Skydiving is Captured

We live in the digital age, baby! We know you want to capture your bravery for the gram and the fam. No need to bring your GoPro or phone for selfies – we offer photos and videos to purchase for all of our tandem skydives (and only tandem skydives). You’ll have full access to your media via USB in order to share with friends and family, or just to relive the most incredible moment of your life! The video will include footage from before your jump, the ride up to altitude, exit, freefall, parachute opening, and even landing! So strike your best skydiving pose and don’t forget to smile big (it’s kind of inevitable)!

Trust fall from an airplane at 10000 feet at Wisconsin Skydiving Center near Milwaukee

5. Tandem Skydiving is Cheaper

When you compare the price of a tandem skydive to all of the costs associated with getting a license to skydive on your own for the first time, you’ll be pleasantly surprised to see the savings! Tandem skydiving prices vary from dropzone to dropzone (and you definitely get what you pay for). At Wisconsin Skydiving Center, a tandem skydive starts at $275. If you’re looking to skydive on your own, you’ll need to consider all of the training that is required to skydive solo. Some dropzone even require a tandem skydive before you even get started – our program, for example. 

6. Tandem Skydiving is FUN!

How fun is tandem skydiving? Super duper fun! Mostly because on a tandem skydive, you won’t have all of the stress and responsibility of operating your own parachute. You’ll have the opportunity to fully embrace the moment and soak up all of the benefits skydiving has to offer.

Ready to get started on your skydiving journey? Book a tandem skydive with the top-rated dropzone in the state – Wisconsin Skydiving Center. Blue skies!