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Skydiving


zlessard

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Something that I am definitely interested in doing in my life is going skydiving. Like many other amateur skydiving enthusiasts, I assume that the best way to start my expedition from 10,000 feet would be to understand the physics behind the fall.

Every great skydiving adventure starts with a voluntary jump into the sky. Once having jumped, a skydiver accelerates downwards until they reach terminal velocity, where the force of air resistance prevents the force of gravity from accelerating the subject any further. A subject falling in a spread eagle position will reach terminal velocity faster than someone falling head or feet first. At a certain point, the falling person must open their parachute in order to decelerate themselves in their descent. A parachute works to decelerate a falling human because it increases the cross-sectional area of the falling person, which in turn leads to an increase in air resistance, which should slow the parachute utilizer to a speed that allows them to make contact with the ground with a force that does not break every bone in their body. This device allows for people everywhere to enjoy the sensation of falling to their death without actually falling to their death. Unless of course your parachute fails to open and you have no back up. In that case you should try to land on your feet and hope the damage is small.

 

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Jumping from a perfectly good airplane... seems crazy to me, but my brother, my father, and my grandfather do it together every 10 years (next year grandpa will be 90 and still wants to go!)

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