OEW Skydive student Jonathon Blank receives USPA A-License

We would like to congratulate Jonathon on receiving his USPA A-License. Over the course of several visits, Jonathon has trained with AXIS Flight School at Skydive Arizona. He has been on a custom training program to meet all the USPA standards and we are very proud of him and his success.

Jonathon sporting the traditional USPA A-License stamp on his forehead with his instructors Brianne and Nik. Photo by Steve.

Chasing the Worlds Fastest Man

The 2021 United States Parachute Association National Championships were held October 18-30 at Skydive Arizona. The aim of the event is to:

1) recognize and honor U.S. National Champions in the following disciplines:​ Artistic Events, Canopy Formation, Formation Skydiving, Accuracy Landing, Canopy Piloting, Mixed Formation Skydiving, Vertical Formation Skydiving, Wingsuit Flying, Speed Skydiving, and

2) to select the best competitors in the United States to form representative U.S. Teams from the appropriate disciplines for participation in selected international competitions.

Speed competitor Niklas Daniel at the 2021 USPA Nationals at Skydive AZ.

“Speed Skydiving is a new skydiving discipline with as simple a definition as it gets.  Achieve the fastest speed possible over a given distance. It has developed over the last few years and represents the fastest non-motorized sport on Earth. In essence, speed skydiving is the discipline where only one aspect of skydiving counts – freefall speed. The speed achieved by a human body in free fall is conditioned of two factors, body weight and body orientation. In a stable, belly to earth position, terminal velocity of the human body is about 200 km/h (about 120 mph). A stable, freefly, head down position has a terminal speed of around 240-290 km/h (around 150-180 mph). Further minimizing body drag and streamlining the body position allows the skydiver to reach higher speeds in the vicinity of 480 km/h (300 mph).” – FAI ISC website

Competitors are not allowed to wear weight and can only use standard skydiving equipment. Performance is recorded using a speed measuring device (SMD), a GPS tracker that is attached to each individuals helmet. For more information and rules of the event, please click here.

A new world record was set in round 1 by the current World Champion Kyle Lobpries (USA) with a speed of 512.97km/h (318.74mph)! Kyle broke his own record he had just set a couple of months earlier at the 3rd FAI World Speed Skydiving Championships in Tanay, Russia.

2021 USPA Nationals Speed Skydiving Results posted on SKYDERBY.

AXIS Flight School coach Niklas Daniel claimed second place with an average speed of 486.86 kmh / 302.52mph. Nik’s single highest scoring round was 495.36 kmh / 307.80mph, which occurred in round 4.

Nik reached a top speed of 502km/h (311.92mph), but unfortunately this peak in performance happened after the end of the scoring window. Joining the 500 club will have to wait 😉
Exit weight 100.8kg / 222.22lbs. Photo by Karl Mayer.

Nik’s gear of choice for the competition was a Cookie G3 helmet, Vertical Suits Speed Suit, L&B Optima II, Freefall Data Systems Color Alti, Cypres 2, UPT Micron (V316), PIG gloves, adidas lite racer adapt 4.0 shoes, and some strategically placed gaffers tape 🙂

Nik’s performance earned him a spot on the USA Team to compete and represent the United States at the upcoming World Championships in Eloy Arizona next year.

Silver Medal and USPA Team Patch.
2021 Speed Skydiving Podium. From left to right: Niklas Daniel, Kyle Lobpries, Anthony “TJ” Landgren. Photo by Kay Robinson.

Nik would like to thank his sponsors for their continued support. In no particular order: Skydive Arizona, Skyventure AZ, Cookie Composites, Cypres, L&B Altimeters, Performance Designs, UPT, and Vertical Suits.

AXIS Decennial at Skydive AZ!

November 2020 marks AXIS Flight School‘s 10 year anniversary at Skydive Arizona!

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In celebration of our ‘tin anniversary‘, we reflect on some of our favorite highlights and exploits over the past decade and give thanks to our Students, Sponsors, Team Mates, and Skydive Arizona. Without you, we would not be living the dream.

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AXIS Flight School® Sponsors

We also want to give a special shout out to the various skydiving magazines who have spent many hours editing and publishing our work with the community.

Here is to the next 10 years of Awesomeness!

November 2010AXIS Flight School® sets up shop at Skydive Arizona.

April 2011 – AXIS published its first Foundations of Flight article in Parachutist Magazine.

July 2011 – Nik performs his first canopy burn for the music video 4 years by Kid Savant.

September 2011 – AXIS organizes at MOAB.

October 2011 – Nik makes an appearance in the ESPN Body issue with his team mates on Arizona Arsenal.

March 2012 – Nik wins the 10th Annual Freefly Money Meet.

April 2012 – AXIS coaches and organizes at the Skydive Expo in Deland Florida.

May 2012 – AXIS offers canopy flocking courses at Skydive Arizona.

August 2012 – AXIS coaches and organizes in Europe during the summer. Several more trips follow in the future.

June 2013 – AXIS trains the first Operation Enduring Warrior AFF student Todd Love. Many more wounded veterans join the program to receive their USPA A-License and go beyond.

July 2013 – AXIS releases its first version of a free online DrawGenerator for formation skydiving disciplines. More performance tools are added over the years.

September 2013 – AXIS Flight School’s swoop and slide footage airs on VH1’s 40 greatest viral videos.

September 2013 – Nik wins his first US National title in 4-way VFS while on Arizona Arsenal.

December 2013 – Nik is the primary videographer for the Women’s Vertical World Record 63-way over Skydive Arizona.

December 2013 – Nik performs “The Huckleberry”.

February 2014 – AXIS jumps with Cory Remsburg during the Tee it up for the Troops golf outing in Scottsdale, Arizona.

June 2014 – AXIS skydiving video is featured on the TV show Jeopardy.

September 2014 – Nik wins silver at the 21st FAI World Formation Skydiving Championships in 4-way VFS while on Arizona Arsenal.

September 2014 – Nik wins his second US National title in 4-way VFS while on Arizona Arsenal.

September 2014 Arizona X-FORCE competes at its first USPA Nationals at Skydive Chicago. The team went on to compete and medal (2 silver, 3 bronze) at five consecutive USPA Nationals, in addition to medaling at several indoor skydiving competitions (bronze at USIS). AZ X-FORCE participated in two FAI World Cups, earning bronze in 2019. Peak performances for outdoor included: 17.8 average, 24points single highest scoring round. Peak performances for indoor included: 26.1 average, 46points single highest scoring round.

March 2015 Brianne receives the Chesley H. Judy USPA Safety Award.

March 2015 – AXIS Swoop ‘N Slide video footage is featured on GoPro, and is featured on 60minutes.

March 2015 – AXIS releases YouTube video “A Case of the Mondays”.

July 2015 – Nik captures epic video footage with a RED camera for Rockhouse Motion.

September 2015 – Ben Lowe joins AXIS Flight School under the label X-Ratings to offer rating courses.

October 2015 – Arizona X-FORCE takes 3rd at the USPA Nationals.

November 2015 Brianne’s burning parachute jump video goes viral, reaching more than 1M views.

April 2016 PD’s the Dream of Flight campaign.

April 2016 First 3-way XRW night jump over Skydive Arizona.

May 2016 Performance Designs releases the one-year anniversary Valkyrie ad featuring Brianne swooping her canopy through a wall of fire.

August 2016 – Brianne receives the USPA Regional Achievement Award for her involvement in Operation Enduring Warrior.

October 2016 – Arizona X-FORCE takes 3rd at the USPA Nationals.

December 2016 – Skydive Mag publishes Nik’s Body-flight Theory paper in four installments.

February 2017 – Nik’s aerial photography is featured on FOX 10 News.

March 2017 – Nik receives the Chesley H. Judy USPA Safety Award.

April 2017 – AXIS installs a personal weather station as Skydive Arizona and broadcast info online for locals.

April 2017 – AXIS coaches placed 3rd with their player coach team X-Defy at the iFly Virginia Beach Indoor Nationals in 4-way Formation Skydiving.

August 2017 – Arizona X-FORCE takes 4th at the 21st FAI World Cup in Germany.

September 2017 – Arizona X-FORCE takes 2nd at the USPA Nationals.

September 2017 – Brianne sets World Female Performance Record, as well as North American Female Competition and Performance Records in Speed Skydiving.

February 2018 – Brianne and Nik receive their pilots license (ASEL).

March 2018 – AXIS collaborates with the IBA to produce video tutorials.

March 2018 – Nik receives his IBA Trainer Level 4 sign off.

September 2018 – Arizona X-FORCE takes 2nd at the USPA Nationals.

January 2019 – Arizona X-FORCE takes 3rd at the USIS Nationals.

July 2019 – AXIS published its 100th Foundations of Flight in Parachutist Magazine.

August 2019 – AXIS introduces its Merit System.

September 2019 – Arizona X-FORCE takes 2nd at the USPA Nationals.

October 2019 – Brianne is the first American to medal in FS and VFS at the same World level competition.

October 2019 – Arizona X-FORCE takes 3rd at the 22nd FAI World Cup in Eloy.

December 2019 – AXIS collaborates with Good Goblin Games to produce the AXIS Skydiving App.

September 2020 – AXIS hosts its first Crucible Indoor Tournament.

October 2020 – AXIS builds a home studio to produce high quality educational videos.

November 2020 – AXIS continues to support the OEW Skydiving project.

2019 USPA Nationals Recap

Silver Medal for X-Force in 4-Way VFS Open!

IMG_6660.JPGDuring the 2019 USPA National Skydiving Championships Arizona X-Force came in second in the 4-Way VFS Open event. The vertical formation skydiving event completed all 10 scheduled rounds, with four teams in each of the open and advanced divisions. One team, “Why Not”, competed in the intermediate division.
X-Force — now in its second year with the current line-up — scored a 16.3 points average, a lower score than last year, however flying at a faster pace – 18.9. The team used this years USPA Nationals as a training camp leading up to the World Cup which will take place in the first week of next month in Eloy, AZ at Skydive Arizona. The team plans to peak next month, having a better understanding of what the judges will be looking for and enforcing.
Watch all 10 rounds here.
X-Force did walk away from this years Nationals with a new personal best, a highest scoring round of 24 points in round 9. Unfortunately this round got busted down from a 33.
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SDC Core once again took the gold medal and Arizona Anthem took bronze. To view all scores and competition videos, check out OmniskoreArizona X-Force would like to thank all of its sponsors and supporters for making a successful 2019 season possible, and congratulate its fellow competitors for a great competition!

Niklas Daniel makes USA Speed Skydiving Team!

611.jpgAfter 4-way VFS concluded, Nik tossed his hat in the Speed Skydiving ring. Having previously competed in the discipline two years earlier at Skydive Perris, his main goal was to reach a new personal best – breaking his top speed of 443.32kmh / 275.5mph. Nik accomplished that on six out of the eight rounds, reaching a new top speed of 465.6kmh / 289.3mph in round 3.

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Coming in 5th, Nik’s performance earned him a spot on the USA Team. The 2020 World Championships will be held in Tanay Siberia, Russia.

 

 

4-way Team AZ Shift (player coach)

Brianne Thompson brought a 4-way FS player coach team to the 2019 USPA Nationals; competing in the advanced category with the name AZ Shift. This was the team’s first Nationals, finishing with a 9.5 average over 10 rounds.

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Congratulations Leanne, Bob, Trip, Brianne, and Tom!

Mixed Formation Skydiving Team EagleBear

70513305_2481228832154797_2104329066445275136_n.pngI would like to congratulate Joe, Andre, and Leland of team EagleBear who took 3rd in the MFS open category. After a two year break, the team got together at Skydive Arizona one week before the competition in order to prepare for the Nationals. After around 60 training jumps with AXIS Flight School and several hours of tunnel time, EagleBear got onto the podium with a 13.25 average over eight rounds. Truly giving some of the most experienced and trained teams a run for their money, EagleBear was only 5 points behind the first place team, Flightshop.

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Congratulations EagleBear!

2-Way Mixed Formation Skydiving (MFS) 2019 Competition Updates

The USPA Board of Directors, with guidance from seasoned mixed formation skydiving competitors, approved changes to the MFS event for the 2019 National Skydiving Championships. Based on competitor feedback from the 2018 Nationals, changes were made to allow for closer synergy between the advanced and open classes, as well as to continue to increase national (and hopefully one day international) participation with the addition of an entry-level intermediate class. MFS is one of the fastest-growing disciplines in skydiving and strives to provide a multi-orientation playing field for all levels of freeflyers.

Many randoms and blocks in the dive pool have been edited, and two new open block moves have been added.

All Class Updates

Alternates: All classes of MFS will now allow for an alternate (fourth team member), much like the formation skydiving competitions. Only one member may serve as a videographer in any given round.

Dive pool: These changes are included in the dive pool:

Block 2 (HD STAR)
The auger will change from a single arm grip to a double arm grip (star). The 360 can be performed in any direction.

Block 11 (MOVA-MOVA)

The requirement for the head-down flyer to perform a carve has been removed, but the upright flyer completing a 360º rotation still remains.

Random A (HD SPOCK)
The head-down star will be replaced with the new Head Down Spock.

Random F (TOTEM)
Dock will now be allowed on the top of arm to INCLUDE the shoulders.

 

2-Way MFS Intermediate Test Event
A new class will be tested in 2019. This exciting new addition has been included with the goal of enticing more teams to enter the discipline. The key thing for this class is that for the vertical rounds, only one person needs to be proficient at flying head down. Intermediate will consist of eight rounds with three to four points per round:

Three rounds of belly/back drawn from blocks 7, 8, 10, 12 and randoms G, I, K, L, Q, R.

Five rounds of vertical drawn from blocks 4, 5, 6, 11 and randoms B, C, E, F, H, J, O, P.

An open-class competitor WILL be allowed to shoot video for the intermediate event during the test event of 2019 in order to help boost participation.

 

2-Way MFS Advanced
The biggest change coming to the advanced class is three true mixed rounds have been added; there will no longer be belly/back-only rounds. MFS advanced will now consist of three mixed rounds (combining belly, back, sit and head down) and 5 vertical rounds. The two new approved blocks (13 and 14) will NOT be added to the advanced class.

Another notable change is the addition of some of the randoms not formerly within the class.

Three mixed rounds drawn from blocks 1, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 10, 11, 12 and randoms B, C, E, F, G, H, I, J, K, L, O, P, Q, R.

Five vertical rounds drawn from blocks 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 9, 11 and randoms A, B, C, D, E, F, H, J, M, O, P.

 

2-Way MFS Open: Two NEW blocks are being added to the open dive pool:

Other Important Information

 

Fly Smart. Train Hard.

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Photo by Samantha Schwann

Being competitors at heart, Niklas and Brianne do their best to improve on a daily basis. This applies not only to competitions, but also their business and life’s work – AXIS Flight School. AXIS has gone through an incredible online transformation, which could be called a “Cyber Grand Re-opening”. These changes have been taking place behind the scenes for over two years.

The AXIS website has always been packed with lots of useful tools and information. In order to make the site more user friendly and to keep up with the times more than a facelift was needed. In fact, we started over. Major improvements include a color coded menu system which is easy to navigate, condensed information on every page, and not to be overlooked – The AXIS Skydiving Repository. Here we developed a digital sorting system that categorizes all or our articles and reference materials for faster recall. Now users can search for categories such as solo skills, canopy, camera, and much more to find what you are looking for.

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In addition, AXIS Flight School now uses sig.ma, a platform on which you can keep track of accomplishments, IDs, licenses, merits, etc. in a digital form. This allows us to send merits to students who have demonstrated their proficiency to our AXIS Coaches™ and acknowledge their achievements. Available Merits are displayed at the top of each web page, and their colors correspond to the new menu system.

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Our online tools are still available to all for free. All AXIS dive pool images, Draw Generator, and ChronoPrism have all been updated with the new 2019 formations.

Mixed Formation Skydiving Block Videos

AXIS Flight School has created a YouTube playlist to help demonstrate how the new 2019 MFS blocks can be executed. This recourse is great for competitors learning the new formations, coaches who need a visual aide, and judges who can use the footage as a warm up in formation recognition.

Special thanks to Nate Roth of Arizona X-FORCE for capturing all the action!

AZ X-Force takes 2nd at the 2018 USPA Nationals.

 

IMG_5475After nearly two full days on the ground due to weather, the first events wrapped up at the 2018 USPA National Skydiving Championships at Chicagoland Skydiving Center in Rochelle, Illinois. The vertical formation skydiving event completed five of 10 scheduled rounds, with five teams in each division.

 

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In the open class, SDC Core once again took the gold, 30 points ahead of second place. Arizona X-Force won silver, and Golden Knights VFS took bronze.

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In the advanced division, Skydive Midwest Chemtrails won gold, with Dynasty in second and STF Pickle Ricks in third. This year’s Nationals included an intermediate-class test event, with ECLIPTIK taking the top spot.

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Arizona X-Force would like to thank all of its sponsors and supporters for making a successful 2018 season possible. Placing second, the team finished the USPA Nationals at CSC with a new personal best (17.8 avg).
X-Force would also like to thank and congratulate its fellow competitors for a great competition. A special shout out to all who participated in the intermediate test event. We welcome the new devision and look forward to having increased participation.
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