Being a Female Skydiver in a Male Dominated Sport – Toronto
Being a female skydiver in a male-dominated sport is intimidating. You stand out.
Being a female in a male-dominated sport is intimidating. You stand out. In skydiving, sometimes you’re the only woman on the dropzone. More often then not, you’re the only woman in the group you’re jumping with. But skydiving is an inclusive sport. If you like to have fun (the most amount of fun you’ll ever have, to be exact) and you keep safety a priority, you’ll have no trouble bonding with other skydivers at any dropzone you visit. Your jump partners become friends and your friends become family. It’s a small community and we stick together. Making life long friends after spending a couple weekends together, isn’t uncommon. Skydiving isn’t the type of male-dominated sport that makes you feel like you need to suppress your feminine aspects. It’s okay to fly like a girl.
The great thing about sport skydiving is that men and women’s biological differences don’t matter. Men don’t necessarily have the upper hand when it comes to skill/talent, as their naturally larger muscles and athleticism aren’t required. What’s required, depending on the discipline, is often good body awareness and flexibility! Which women typically have by nature.
What’s required, depending on the discipline, is often good body awareness and flexibility!
Skydiving doesn’t require you to be super healthy, you don’t have to work out and be athletic to participate. Every jump is only about 60 seconds. 60 seconds of physical activity is attainable, for almost everyone. Things get a little more difficult if you want to work in the skydiving industry though, – but not impossible. To be a tandem instructor, you need to be quite strong. Pulling on the toggles to turn the canopy, and flaring on landing to slow you and your passenger down, requires strong arms! But like anything else, hard work and dedication pays off. Being a videographer, a parachute packer, or working at manifest, are other options that are attainable for every skydiver.
I say it’s the fear factor.
So why is sport skydiving dominated by men? I’m going to take a guess and say it’s the fear factor. From what I’ve seen amongst my friends, self preservation doesn’t seem to be top priority to men who just want to do fun things and look damn cool doing it. When I protest about them doing risky manouveres, they shrug their shoulders. Women on the other hand tend to be a little more cautious. Not always, but most of the time. There are certain things in skydiving that I never want do, like swooping. To be honest, I’m slightly nervous on every jump I do, no matter what. I think about everything that could go wrong. Yet I don’t think about those things when I drive my car, which is statistically much more dangerous. But with skydiving, once you exit the plane, the fear is forgotten and all you’re thinking about is the exhilaration, the amazing view, and what you and your friends planned (or didn’t plan) for the jump. There’s nothing better.
So if you’re curious about learning to skydive or have already started and dropzones intimidate you, don’t be scared! The community is friendly and you’re probably already a natural. Come jump with us and fly like a girl!