Believe it or not, many experienced skydivers find skydiving incredibly therapeutic. Aside from the fun and adrenaline rush, skydiving is also beneficial for your physical and mental wellbeing. It’s a sport that requires 100% focus on what you are doing - on being in the present moment - and nothing else. Life’s distractions & worries are forgotten. Keep reading to find out more about the lesser known positive effects skydiving can have on your overall wellbeing.
COMMUNITY & RELATIONSHIPS
People who have close friends are scientifically proven to live healthier, longer lives than people who don’t. An amazing community of people surround the sport of skydiving. Skydivers are some of the most welcoming people you'll ever meet. It’s a sport where people depend on each other. You rely on the support of pilots, instructors, packers, ground crew & other jumpers to progress through the sport. People from all walks of life come together to do the thing they love most. The skydiving community will give you a sense of belonging and give you a new network of people bound together by a single passion.
MENTAL HEALTH BENEFITS
Skydiving improves your mood. When you skydive, you are focused only on the present moment and nothing else. No one gives their worries a second thought while flying at 200km/hour through the sky. It is the ultimate release. This helps you focus and feel mentally cleansed. Mental health-wise, that has some long-lasting & liberating effects The more well-known benefit is the endorphin boost you experience - aka the adrenaline rush - the benefits of which include mental clarity, a slight boost to the immune system & feelings of euphoria. The skydiving community helps compound these effects. You’ll become a part of a fun-loving, adventurous community and make friends that last a lifetime - imperative to a healthy, mentally-balanced life.
Skydiving is a sport that requires physical dexterity, agility and strength to fly your body in the air flow. In freefall, you’ll engage muscles in your glutes, spine and core. After a few jumps, you’ll begin to notice muscles in your back you never knew you had. It’s not just freefall that will improve your physical well-being. The gear you wear weighs around 10kg. That’s 10kgs you’ll carry to the plane, and carry across the field after you land. If you get really into it, you might do that 5-7 times a day, or even more! Over time, you’ll develop the endurance you need to keep things rolling. Due to the immense adrenaline rush & physical nature of the sport, skydiving burns a lot of calories. According to research, a 70kg skydiver burns on average 230 calories per hour.
Skydiving is a great cognitive training ground. Undergoing stress within the context of skydiving’s managed risks helps to keep the brain sharp and supple. When you engage in an activity that requires 100% of your attention & focus, you distract yourself from life’s stresses and shake off negative thoughts. Thus, your stress levels drop and your endorphins spike. That combination of chemicals sets you up for relaxation and optimism. A scientific study on cortisol reactivity, and the coordination of emotional responses to skydiving can be found HERE. Another interesting study on recognising risk; The Fine Line Between The 'Brave' and 'Reckless', can be read HERE.
Once get into skydiving, your perception of the world around you changes. That interview that seemed so daunting? It's nothing compared to stepping out of an airplane by yourself. Learning to skydive will leave you feeling empowered. You’ll start to change the way you view challenges in your day-to-day life. Things that may have once seemed intimidating now seem entirely manageable.