learn to skydive student flies receives hands-on attention from instructor in freefall

How to Become a Skydiving Instructor

Tuesday, October 15, 2019

From the nervous inner space before a first-time tandem skydive, it may seem like an impossible journey to rise to the rank of skydiving instructor. Those confident, smiling faces on the plane, tightening their tandem students’ harnesses — leaning out of the airplane door to check the vehicle’s exact position in the sky — holding on to the handles outside the plane while they calmly count down for the student entrusting them with very much. Every single one of those confident souls started exactly where you are.

At Skydive Paraclete XP, we’re uniquely equipped to get you down that long road. Indeed, there is literally nothing you can’t do in skydiving that you can’t train for right here. If you get hooked on jumping and decide you want to become a skydiving instructor, we can help you slay that goal! Here’s how, step-by-step.

Step 1: Make a tandem skydive

Every skydiving instructor started her career in a chair in that hallowed ground-school classroom, learning the 101’s about procedures and equipment. The first session in the sky will be a tandem skydive, harnessed to an experienced instructor who’s responsible for the operation of the parachuting equipment.

Plenty of people stop right after landing, though. If you want more, tell your instructor. S/he will be more than happy to expound on every detail for you and let you into the rarefied world they are a part of. Our very own team of professional skydivers provides a shining example for the folks who jump with us that see professional skydiving as a potential lifestyle choice. You’ll have a mentor from your very first jump!

student experiences life changing first skydiveStep 2: Become a licensed solo skydiver

You know this already, of course — but it’s definitely step two. You’ll complete your solo skydiving license through our program (utilizing the tried, tested and highly efficient Accelerated Freefall Method). As you grow as a new skydiver, our staff of world-class instructors will progress you through a series of thoroughly instructed skydives. Each one is tailored to add to the lessons before it, so you’ll emerge from the program confidently controlling your body, your parachute and your mind.  

The solo skydiving license you earn at the conclusion of the program (the United States Parachute Association A-License) will allow you to jump solo at dropzones around the world — and will also allow you to start working towards your skydiving instructor ratings.

Step 3: Start earning your instructional ratings

You’ll need at least 500 skydives signed off in your logbook before you can pick up a proper skydiving instructor rating, but the joy of the journey will fill your entire skydiving life along the way! You’ll start at just a hundred jumps, earning your USPA Coach Rating. This assumes that you’re a very new jumper, but it will deepen your understanding of every process, grow your confidence in the plane and, on the ground, and teach you how to instruct others. 

girl tandem skydiving near Raleigh

Four hundred amazing jumps later, you’ll be able to enter a tandem skydiving instructor rating program and — finally! — don a tandem rig for the first time. At that point, you’ll know everything you need to for teaching a daily procession of fresh-faced, starry-eyed newbies with the same nerves you had that first day.

The coolest thing about all this is that you can meet every single one of these skydiving instructor goals without so much as leaving Skydive Paraclete XP. We’re fully equipped with all the coaches and rating schools you need to take the skydiving world by storm — and we’re super proud of that.

Are you ready to make skydiving your everything, just like it is for us? We’d love to have you in our extended family of skydiving instructors. Start your journey by booking your first tandem skydive today!

student in freefall with psp instructor

As a member of the Canadian National 8-way skydiving team, we have trained at many DZs over the years. By far, we have never been treated as well at any other drop zone in the world. This is our new go to DZ. Cannot say enough good things about this operation!!!

Heather Porteous