We don't have a lot of travel inspired movies in bollywood, but ZNMD has been quite a blockbuster and I would be lying if I would say that it wasn't something that inspired me to go all out and not just perform a tandem dive, but do a course and carry out a solo dive.
The issue with doing it in India or most countries is that you can only get a tandem jump without taking the full course and the whole course requires a lot of money and time and is not even available at most places. So I looked for a different option while planning my trip to Europe and came across the this incredible opportunity in which if you desire to experience something more adventurous than a tandem jump, but you’re not sure whether you want to attend the whole AFF course, so you go for something known as the IFF (Introduction to free fall).
What is AFF?
AFF, which stands for accelerated freefall, is a method of skydiving instruction which has been developed in the USA to enable people to take full advantage of one to one training and learning during freefall. Accelerated Freefall courses are one of the most popular programs and are a great way to learn how to skydive. AFF is the training program of choice to go from non-skydiver to certified-skydiver.
The AFF training program includes ground school, pre-jump training, seven levels of advancement, and all the required equipment. AFF is a progression course, and advancement to the next level is only upon fulfilment of performance objectives of the previous level.
The AFF program caters not only for the person who wishes to graduate and become a skydiver, but also provides an opportunity for those people who would like to make one freefall descent in a safe and controlled environment – AFF Level 1, also known as IFF in some institutes.
What an IFF program consists of?
1. First, you attend an intense ground school. Here you learn the basics of free fall and flying the canopy.
2. Once you finish the ground school, you attend your first AFF course jump. Assisted by two instructors you perform several movements influencing free fall. Once the parachute opens, an instructor on the ground will advise you how to land via walkie-talkie.
Now personally, I would recommend that you take part in a tandem jump from 4,000 meters before carrying out an IFF jump. Your instructor will show you the basic body movements to control free fall. This helps with your first solo dive because you will know what to expect and it's important to know the feeling of free fall before you carry out a solo.
My personal experience
I did my IFF course from an institute, JUMP TANDEM in Prostejov, Czech Republic. After a lot of research, I have realised these courses are being offered only in certain European countries like England, Spain, Czech Republic, etc.
The jumps were carried out only on the weekends, so we reached the jump school by Thursday morning. Our ground school started on the same day in which we were taught about altitude awareness, stable body position, and deployment. We also had lectures on how to use the equipment, how to carry out proper parachute deployment and landing, etc
We were the only students from outside the country who didn't know the local language, so were given an English speaking instructor, Chris who btw, is awesome. After a grinding session, he treated us with a delicious Carbonara for dinner.