It used to be in the 1980s that parachute pants were all the rage in hip-hop fashion. If you’re old enough. you can think back to kids wearing MC Hammer parachute pants to school. singing “Can’t Touch This” and dancing down the halls. Those days are long gone. thankfully. And though skydiving pants are still part of some alternative fashion ensembles. such as hippy pants and other baggie gear that twenty-first century hippy types like to wear. they are very much an important part of skydiving gear in general.
And what’s more important to skydivers but their gear? It is their gear that protects their lives. and they in fact put their lives in the hands. so to speak. of their skydiving gear. Now you can see the importance of skydiving pants. Skydivers can wear jeans or shorts underneath their parachute pants depending on the weather. but they sure as heck better have those skydiving pants on over top.
These pants are part of the whole jumpsuit. These aren’t necessary required to leap out of plane. but they can help to control your speed and give you more control when you’re in freefall. These jumpsuits tend to made in two general styles. They can be made of special slippery fabrics and tailored tight around the body for faster speeds. Or they can be designed in that typical MC Hammer baggy fashion with canvas-like material to help slow down fall speeds.
Other clothing that doubles as protective and practical gear for skydivers includes a helmet and goggles. Helmets are mandatory clothing for beginner jumpers. but don’t be embarrassed if you happen to be one. Most experts wear them too. You can even individualize yours. choosing from styles like old leather football helmets to hard. motorcycle-like helmets. Depending on your helmet. you may need to protect your eyes with goggles.
The pants. suits. and helmets are just one aspect of your skydiving equipment. Other gear includes an automatic activation device (or AAD). which helps to safeguard you in case you drop too low in altitude without pulling your cord. The AAD does it automatically for you. Also. there is the reserve static line (or RSL). which is another safety device. The RSL is your lifeline and pull cord for your reserve parachute.