USPA Category E Information for Student Skydivers


Traffic Avoidance

  • Lower canopies have the right of way.
  • It only takes one person to avoid a collision (turn to the right).

Emergency Review: Two Canopies Out

two canopies out

Image is taken from the USPA Skydiver Information Manual

There are three configurations: biplane, side-by-side and downplane

  • Biplane: Leave the brakes stowed on both canopies and gently steer the front canopy with the rear risers.  Do not flare and be prepared to perform a PLF on landing.
  • Side-by-side: Cut away the main canopy if it is not entangled with the reserve. Release the brakes on your reserve canopy and steer as usual.
  • Downplane: Cut away the main canopy.


Watch three YouTube videos to satisfy the open parachute orientation.

Part One:

Part Two:

Part Three:

Spotting and Aircraft

Calculating freefall drift is an important concept to master.  When you are “checking the spot” you need to know where you want to exit the airplane in order to have your canopy open in an appropriate area.  More importantly, you want to know where you do NOT want to exit the plane.  Read our series of posts on how to read the winds aloft forecast and calculate the day’s freefall drift.

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