If you want to get an unforgettable experience, admire the world from a bird’s eye view and easily soar in the clouds, then the wingsuit is for you!
Wingsuit can rightfully be called the most “free” of all existing types of sky conquest by man. And just by trying this type of extreme sport, you can believe that people are created to fly!
History of occurrence
The idea to use artificial wings for human flight arose in antiquity, we are reminded of this by the legend of Daedalus and Icarus. However, this idea would have remained just an idea if it had not been finally completed, and the scheme of a special suit was formulated.
According to historical data, more than 75 different inventors tried to modernize and develop the idea of self-guided flight, who risked conquering the sky with their own inventions resembling wings. However, practically all these attempts ended very badly, and most of the inventors crashed, falling from a height. Due to the high mortality rate, the American Parachuting Federation even banned for some time various kinds of tests related to flying on improvised wings.
The first working prototype of a wingsuit (flying suit) was created in the middle of 1990. This invention was claimed by the Frenchman Patrick de Gaillardon and was a special suit with three wings instead of the traditional two. The “prototype” of the invention was an ordinary flying squirrel, which, during its flight, balances and keeps balance with the help of its tail.
In a modern wingsuit suit, control is carried out by changing the position of the body, as well as decreasing or increasing the angle of incidence. Flight suit designs are constantly being refined. This is done so that one suit model can be used in several sports at the same time. For example, combine wingsuit with base jumping (jumping without a parachute from various heights) and skysurfing (jumping with a special board and performing different figures during a free fall).
To date, the most fashionable is the attachment to the suit for a jet engine wingsuit. But this model is still being finalized, so it has not yet received mass distribution.
What is a wingsuit?
Wingsuit — translated from English means “flying squirrel” or “birdman” (man — bird) and is one of the types of parachuting. In this sport, the athlete or amateur puts on a special wingsuit made of airy fabric (two-layer material with air intakes).
During a free fall of an athlete, the material of the suit is inflated with the help of ascending air currents, and creates lift for further movement. Wingsuit during the flight opens three wings in the air: two wings in the area of the arms, and the third — between the legs. With the help of such an interesting suit, the athlete easily controls his body. And in order to avoid falling, a parachute is used in a wingsuit. Thus, a suit and a parachute help a soaring person to achieve maximum freedom in flight, to feel like a bird. The main goal of the skydiver is to reduce the speed of the fall as much as possible and prolong the contemplation of the magical landscapes of the wild.
Types of flights
Wingsuit flights can be carried out both in single and group form. During solo flights, the pilot can simply soar in the sky, perform various acrobatic flips and turns.
In the group form of the wingsuit, pilots can perform various tricks, flips collectively and simultaneously, as well as create whole figures in the air. Such a group flight is called a flock. Unlike other collective flights, the athletes do not hold hands and soar freely, and can also talk to each other. During the competition in the collective type of wingsuit, skydivers compete among themselves for distance, speed, flight time and the number of acrobatic stunts in the air. Such shows are always very colorful and spectacular.
Types of suits for wingsuit
All existing wingsuit models, as a rule, are equipped with special quick-release mechanisms, thanks to which the athlete can choose his own type of descent (flight). There are several types of wingsuit suits:
- Classic (for beginners)
- GTI (for skydivers with an average level of training)
- Skyflyer (for professional athletes).
These models include, for example, PF Prodigy 2, PF Acro 2 and others. These models are quick and easy to put on and easy to control during flight. In these suits, you can make your first dives and turns.
These models include the PF Ghost 2, the versatile PF Phantom 2Z and others. These models are designed for middle class pilots and do not create too high speed during the flight, are obedient in control and reliable. These models of suits are designed for the average level of training of an athlete who can already perform various acrobatic stunts and flips during the flight.
Models are designed for a high level of professionalism in a skydiver. An example of such models can be: PF Vampire 3, PF Stealth 2 and others. They have excellent aerodynamic qualities, thanks to which the athlete can fly and descend with greater speed. And the wing area is designed in such a way that during the descent, the parachutist can descend slowly and measuredly.
In order to fly in a wingsuit, you must have basic training. The formal minimum to start jumping is 200 parachute jumps. Also, many organizations conduct special courses for the training of pilots in wingsuit, briefing.
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