What's Next?
The Benefits of Getting Your Skydiving License

You’ve taken the leap and now you’re hooked! You’ve told everyone you know about your exhilarating experience and now you’re wondering - What’s next? And when can I jump again? You can jump as often as you’d like and we’ll gladly bring you up for another tandem skydive but are you ready to jump solo? If you’re considering jumping recreationally we recommend you get licensed. It’s not as hard as it sounds, and getting your skydiving license will open up many new opportunities to you (not to mention save you money).


First, in order to get your skydiving license you must be 18 or older and you must weigh less than 230lbs. You should be reasonably fit and in good health. Beyond that, you just need desire, free time and some expendable cash.


Schedule a ground school. The class is about 4-6 hour long depending on the size of the class and the aptitude of the students. In it you’ll learn about the equipment, aircraft procedures, exit & freefall, canopy flight, malfunctions & emergency procedures and landings. The basics. After you have the basics down- you’ll choose the right program for you. Not sure which is best for you? Don’t be afraid to ask your instructor for their expert opinion. Most instructors will either recommend the Accelerated Tandem Progression (ATP) or Accelerated Free Fall (AFF).

Skydive Midwest Ground School - Getting Your Skydiving License


Accelerated Tandem Progression (ATP) is our recommendation for most people. The difference? ATP allows you to become acclimated to freefall under the supervision of a tandem instructor. Both require 25 jumps and a written test before you submit your USPA A License Proficiency Card to get your skydiving license!

Skydive Midwest ATP vs AFF - Getting Your Skydiving License


It’s more cost effective.

You only need one instructor throughout the program instead of two, which makes it less expensive.

You can become licensed faster.

Because you only need one instructor, it’s easier to get you up in the air. We have a lot of students and not a lot of instructors, so the fewer instructors needed, the more and faster you can get in the air.

The hands-on canopy training.

With the instructor right behind you giving detailed instruction from a first-person perspective, learning how to land so much easier, softer and safer.

The pass-rate is higher.

The two tandem skydives take some of the stress off. Knowing there’s an instructor there in case you need help allows students feel less overwhelmed, and they tend to perform better.

Your instructor is there if you have a parachute malfunction.

Having to deal with a parachute malfunction on one of your first 2 skydives is unlikely (1 in 700 jumps results in the need of a reserve parachute deployment) but it could happen. It’s a stressful and tall order for someone who has never jumped out of a plane before. If this happened in ATP, your instructor would do the procedures for you. In AFF you would be responsible for handing the malfunction on your own. You’ll have the proper training and know what to do, but a first skydive is overwhelming without dealing with a malfunction. ATP takes the pressure off on your first 2 skydives while you get acclimated.


A USPA Skydiving License is recognized all over the world. So, you can travel the globe and skydive anywhere you please! And the best part, once you're licensed - skydiving gets a lot more fun and a lot more affordable! Once licensed, you can jump with other licensed jumpers. You can build formations, join a skydiving team and continue to grow within the sport. The best part is, once licensed you can skydive for as little as $29 a jump! This affordability allows you to explore the different activities and disciplines within the sport. There is so much to learn and master when it comes to skydiving, the possibilities are endless and the sky is quite literally our playground.

Learn more about our skydiving licensing programs -- pricing, jump schedules, FAQ and more.

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