Tower Week Day 3 – “Learning to Land”

So to recap: I’m a student at the Army Airborne School. So far, I’ve learned how to get the parachute on, what to do inside the plane and how to jump from the plane. Clearly, the next point of instruction would be the landing. And they have a very efficient way to teach it:

The Swing Landing Trainer

The swing landing trainer is an apparatus that while being used properly will teach a soldier how to properly employ the Parachute Landing Fall technique. The PLF, when used correctly will keep the jumpers from causing injury to themselves when they land.

The apparatus is set up so you begin, in the harness, on a platform about 12 feet above the ground. On command, you fall forward from the platform into the ground and begin swinging in a pendulum motion.  When the jumper is at the equilibrium position (the bottom of the swing), they are about three to four feet from the ground. Once the jumper has assumed the correct landing position, he is abruptly dropped to the ground in order to perform their PLF. In order to better understand, here’s a video:

Unfortunately, we have a short training week. In order to compensate for the lost time, my company will not be participating in any training using the 250 ft. towers. But, because it is an amazing but of training, I’m going to let you all see what I would (should) have done.

I can’t believe that in 5 short days, I’ll be jumping from a C-130 into the great blue. I can’t wait, until then:



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