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The Kid Should See This

World Record Group Skydive – 164-Person Formation

This incredible world record video includes 164 hand-picked pro and amateur skydivers, 7 planes, and a remarkable hand-in-hand group formation assembled within 75 seconds of free fall. Event co-organizers Jon DeVore and Mike Swanson explain the work before the dive:

Swanson: We call it “walking it” — we build the formation, as it’s going to be in the sky, on the ground. We mock up all the people who are going to be in the different planes. We have people called floaters who leave early and float up to the formation, and divers who leave late and dive down to the formation.

DeVore: We do 40- and 50-way dives that would be the base of the formation just to make sure everything is working. It’s just a process; if the gears aren’t meshing well, you go to the drawing board and rotate people… It’s a constant game of moving things around until everything just locks in and works.

And about the dive itself:

DeVore: …We’ve had communication devices in the past, but what works so well and is also so organic and magical about the whole thing, is that when you’re in it and the record hits, there’s just this click and this hum and this vibration that goes on where everything’s pretty effortless and people aren’t struggling.

When you start feeling that, you look around at people across from you and they’re smiling and nodding, you know they’re not seeing anybody having trouble and they’re getting the same thing off you. On this record, when everybody landed they were high-fiving without even having to see video.

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Related listening with Vermont Public Radio’s But Why? podcast for curious kids: Where does the sky end?

File under: practice and teamwork.

Watch these next: Jetman Yves Rossy flies over Dubai, the aerobatic paragliding of Théo de Blic, and Felix Baumgartner’s supersonic freefall from 128k’.

via Laughing Squid.

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