How to Fall from the Sky

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Accelerated Free Fall or skydiving is a sport yet to catch on in India due to its prohibitive costs. Now, the Indian Navy is inviting those with a spirit of adventure to join their team. Commander Rajesh Nandagopal, who is putting together a team of women officers from the army and navy for the World Military Games in 2011, says the Navy is keen to open its doors to civilians. The women will participate in two events in the military games—four way and accuracy landing. Four way is where four of them will jump together and have just 35 seconds. “It’s like aerial gymnastics where the four will twist, turn and hold hands... while falling 1,000 feet every five seconds. In accuracy landing, the diver will have to land accurately in a bullseye marked on the ground. Sky divers normally jump off a helicopter from a height of 10,500 feet,’’ Nandagopal says. The sport is extremely safe as there is a dual container system for the main parachute and reserve chute. If the main does not open, the reserve one will. In case a diver passes out, an automatic activation device opens the parachute, says Nandagopal. Interested? Mail sky7_diver2 or [email protected]