USPA PRO Rating Course

The Rating

One of the most rewarding and ambassadorial aspects of skydiving is the 'demo' or exhibition jump. For the jumpers, it is an opportunity to share their colorful and exciting sport with the mainstream public, and perhaps, even receive compensation! Demonstration jumps also serve to bring modern knowledge of our sport to the public, providing the opportunity to educate, entertain, and reinforce a positive image of skydiving and its community.

Of course, with this increased reward, there is an increase in risk. It is common knowledge in the entertainment industry that the performance is different from the rehearsal; this is equally true in exhibition jumping. Although you have jumped hundreds or even thousands of times at several different drop zones you will still find that performance anxiety increases when jumping before live audiences and/or television cameras. Even if the proposed landing zone is completely free of obstacles and larger than the drop zone you normally use, jumping before the public is NOT just another skydive! Mess up a landing at the drop zone, it costs maybe a case of beer. Mess up at a demo, and you will be vulnerable to everything from the ridicule of your peers to litigation.

So being an exhibition jumper is serious business, you not only represent yourself but the skydiving world. Being prepared, knowledgeable, professional and responsible are important tenets to the character of the exhibition jumper. Know your limits, know exactly what and what you cannot offer to your customer. Having an injury to you, one of your team members or to the public trying to do something outside your skill level or against the USPA rules and recommendations would not only be irresponsible, but tragic.

The Xcelskydiving PRO Course helps prepare you to be a professional and Xcel in this arena. This course is geared to providing you with as many tools to help you become an exhibition jumper, but as with any tool it is only as effective as the person using it. So, let our PRO Rating Course help provide you with a good solid foundation of knowledge and skill sets to successfully prepare you to start your PRO rating journey.

Course Specifics

Time frame for the course is typically 3 days, but can be up to 4 days depending on the needs of the candidates (Usually it consists one day of academics and two days of jumping).

The course is designed to help you achieve your PRO rating while at the course. So, every jump is a declared jump. If you already have your jumps completed, then you can focus on the academics that the course provides.  During the course we will actually simulate or jump into a Level one or open field and have candidates do all the necessary ground work, recon, site selection, interview, 7711-2, equipment prep, ground crew and jump crew. The purpose is to simulate as much as possible what an actual demonstration jump would be like.   Our goal is to try and make it as fun as possible and a learning experience at the same time.

Topics Covered

Qualifications
PRO Rating Application
Facts and Recommendations (BSR’s & FARs)
Definitions of Demo Areas (Size and Crowd limits)
Equipment prep - Checklists
Crowd control – ground crew
Jumping Flags
Jumping Smoke
Interview with the sponsor
Site Reconnaissance, Site Selection
Narrator script
FAA Application 7711-2
Filing a NOTAM
Demo insurance

Qualifications

A. An "Exhibition Jump" (Demonstration Jump), is a jump at a location other than an existing drop zone done for the purpose of reward, remuneration, or promotion and principally for the benefit of spectators.  Most exhibition jumps require a PRO Rating, some do not; but it may be a valuable advantage to working with the FAA and adds creditability to you, your team and what you can offer for that jump.  Working with the FAA, the USPA issues Professional Exhibition (PRO) Ratings to any member who has met the current requirements.

1. Initial qualifications for an applicant to obtain a PRO Rating are the following:

a. Be a current member of USPA

b. Possess a USPA D license

c. Have at least 500 jumps on a ram-air canopy

d. Make a series of ten jumps into a circle ten meters in diameter (landing within five meters of the center point) using the same model and size canopy.

(1) The applicant must pre-declare each jump to count toward the requirements for the PRO rating.  Once the applicant has started the series, he or she may make non-declared jumps; however, non-declared jumps may not count toward the accuracy requirements for the rating.

(2) All of the ten pre-declared jumps in the series must be successful for any in the series to count toward the rating; and in the event of an unsuccessful jump, the applicant must start a new series. The canopy used during this qualification will be the smallest size canopy to be used for minimum landing area (Level 2) jumps and the canopy size will be noted on the PRO Rating card.

(3) On each declared jump, the applicant must make the first contact and stop within the ten-meter (32 ft) circle and make all landings standing up.

(4) Have the PRO Rating Proficiency card signed off by an I/E, S&TA, or PRO Rating holder indicating that the PRO Rating applicant has received training in the following areas:

(i) ground crew—and served as a ground crew member on at least one Level 1 or Level 2 demo jump

(ii) flag rigging—and made at least one jump with a flag

(iii) smoke rigging—and made at least one jump with smoke

(iv) NOTAM filing and certificates of authorization

(v) crowd control and post-jump procedures

(5) All declared jumps must be witnessed by either an S&TA, Instructor Examiner, USPA Judge or USPA Regional or National Director. The applicant must obtain signatures of the eligible verifying official for each of the ten jumps.

e. Except for the minimum 500 ram-air jump requirement, all training listed must be made within the previous 12 months of the application. Score at least 75% on the PRO Rating exam

f. Forward the completed application form with rating fee and photo (1"X 1") to his or her USPA Regional Director for his signature. The USPA Regional Director will forward the initial application to the USPA.

g. To requalify on a smaller canopy you must make 3 successive pre-declared jumps, with the first contact and stopping within the ten-meter (32 ft) circle and make all landings standing up. All declared jumps must witnessed and signed an eligible verifying official for each of the 3 jumps.

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