It’s no secret that different sports borrow equipment or tools from each other for their needs. Naturally, the equipment should be used for its intended purpose, because for each direction its own has been developed, with publicity on the features of the application. Did you know that parachutists actively use motorcycle equipment?
Not so long ago, I went to write a report at a large airfield from which both civilian parachutists and state services jump. When it was my turn to get off the plane, I was handed quite familiar motorcycle glasses with an elastic band. Later, when there was time to take a closer look at the equipment of other parachutists, it turned out that probably a third of the athletes had borrowed helmets from a motorcycle store.
What kind of motorcycle equipment do parachutists use?
- Glasses with elastic
- Thermal underwear
Of course, no one says that motorcycle equipment replaces professional parachuting protection. But when it comes to amateurs or universal things, borrowing is considered the norm.
From my own experience, I can say that it is not uncommon for a professional parachuting instructor to have a noticeable love of motorsport and to study equipment with equal interest for the opportunity to use it both there and there. In addition, the characteristics of motorcycle equipment are close to the necessary characteristics in parachuting. The same problems with body-environment heat transfer, the same issues with headwind in the face and protection of hands, as in motorcyclists.
If you have ever jumped with a parachute, then you understand how strong a stream of wind meets a person in the face during a free fall. Glasses with an elastic band, which are used by motorcyclists on the open spaces of public roads, and in some exceptions, even cross options, are in demand for a reason.
It is important to choose models with an elastic band so that the glasses are not blown away by the flow of the headwind. Motorcyclists choose glasses for the same reason. In addition, they can always be worn around the neck outside the bike and not lost.
Regarding the darkening of the glasses – at your discretion, according to the weather. You have to jump in different weather, the light level can change during the day, which means you have to change your glasses. Motorcycle glasses are suitable for parachutists in the selection of materials: no glass or elements that can break and damage a person’s face in a collision.
Another important nuance: glasses should sit so that air does not blow through the gaps.
There are special helmets for professional athletes in parachuting, but sometimes the price for them is not happy or there is no opportunity to try on such a helmet in a store. Then motorcycle shops help out. Beginners choose mostly light and open helmets. In this case, the use of a closed helmet integral is no exception. Models without a visor are selected so that the headwind does not turn and turn the head back.
– Yes, if you fall from such a height, no helmet will save you, someone will say.
Firstly, you can fall not only from a great height, but also during landing on the airfield or in any other conditions. It’s all the same that if you are standing at a traffic light, you don’t bother anyone, when suddenly an obstacle flies in from the right. At the moment of an accident (which is the fault of anyone except you, because you just stood still and waited), when you fall, you hit your head on the asphalt. I am glad if there is a helmet at this moment. To the question that the equipment saves not only at high speeds, but also in any emergency situations, +5 to the protection of one’s own body during unexpected turns of fate.
Secondly, the helmet is a wonderful base for installing an action camera; skydivers also use headsets. Hence the popularity of simple helmets, no bells and whistles.
Many people take off their visors and exchange them for glasses with an elastic band to prevent the wind from blowing their eyes.
Thirdly, not everyone likes the wind in the face, because during free fall it becomes very difficult to breathe. Therefore, the visor makes breathing easier, adding convenience to the skydiver. But this applies to closed helmets with an extremely wide viewing angle. The wider the view the visor can give, the better.
The main characteristics that are important for skydivers:
- Wide viewing angle
The noise of the helmet becomes a problem for users on the road, but not in the sky. The bottom line is that when one parachutist approaches another, to avoid a collision, the first thing you have to do is scream.
– Hindrance to the right, pull to the left!
– I’m flying towards you, pull forward!
And it works. Hearing other skydivers in the sky is a useful bonus to understand your surroundings.
Thermal underwear will come in handy when jumping in inclement weather. The range of clothes in which parachute jumps are made is great. Professionals wear special overalls, and beginners dress according to the situation. However, thermal underwear refers to things that are never superfluous in everyday life, whether you are a parachutist, motorcyclist, tourist.
Gloves allow you to maintain hand motility when the wind at high altitude bites the skin cool. Parachutists themselves are free to choose models of gloves, especially since many take ordinary models or jump without them at all. The main condition is to preserve freedom of movement. Gloves are needed in order to comfortably control the parachute. Short summer models work well here.