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Competitions are available in many different disciplines of the sport, which are known as 'disciplines'. The competitions scene is dynamic, with new and emerging disciplines growing in popularity all the time.
The BPA UK Skydiving League (UKSL) in Formation Skydiving and BPA Grand Prix in several other disciplines have meets throughout the season at Centres across the UK. The FS Grand Prix is called BPA UKSL because it's linked with the European Skydiving League (ESL)
BPA UKSL and BPA Grand Pix meets are the ideal way to cut your teeth in competitions. Some of the meets have BPA Skills Coaching Roadshows for Non-Seniors at which top skydivers offer free-of-charge coaching - you just pay for your jumps - courtesy of the BPA. Other BPA Skills Coaching Roadshows take place as stand alone coaching events.
BPA's aim is to encourage more members to take part in the excitement of competitive skydiving, and the skills development that goes with it. Many teams that have enjoyed the competitions experience in BPA UKSL or BPA Grand Prix go on to compete in the BPA Nationals.
What's on where and when? See the diary of events.
And once you're bitten by the competitions bug, there are European competitions such as the European Skydiving League (ESL) in Formation Skydiving, and World meets in all FAI/IPC disciplines: the World Cup and World Parachuting Championships (WPC).
The BPA Competitions Committee looks after the needs of competitors and host Centres. It also co-ordinates the publication of rules and judging through the BPA Judges' Co-ordinator.
Each year, BPA Affiliated Parachute Training Organisations bid to host the BPA British Open Nationals and the BPA UKSL and BPA Grand Prix meets. The Competitions Committee co-ordinates the schedule of skydiving competitions in the UK. It also co-ordinates the British National Delegation to represent the UK at international meets.
As indoor skydiving is emerging as a new discipline/sport, BPA currently has responsibility but there are issues that lie outside BPA's purview. Therefore BPA Council decided, at its August 2018 meeting, that BPA could assist indoor skydivers in establishing their own organisation and delegate to it, by way of a licensing agreement, the power to carry out the selection, administration and organisation of British indoor skydiving delegations. Such an arrangement would be for a fixed period of five years from 2019, with a break clause at (say) three years. Under the terms of this arrangement, BPA would delegate to the new organisation the issue of FAI sporting licences to indoor skydivers. BPA is discussing this way forward with the indoor skydiving competitions community.
FAI Sporting Licences are no longer required to compete at Senior level at BPA Nationals and competitors will therefore no longer be able to apply for a Sporting Licence at a BPA-Affiliated PTO.
You may have heard about the recent Sporting Licence changes for World Records and international competitions. Changes to the recording of Sporting Licence holders now mean that it is not enough just to have the sticker in your BPA Licence book; your details will be checked against the FAI Sporting Licence Database and failure to appear on the FAI Database will mean that you will not be able to take part in your chosen event.
To apply for entry to the FAI Database, may we kindly ask that you send your completed Form 110 together with payment direct to the BPA Office (applications sent through a PTO may result in delay), where we will be happy to process and send your details to RAeC to forward to FAI for upload to the database.
We recommend that this is done at least four weeks before the event in which you wish to take part. See www.fai.org/sporting-licences
There is a whole world of skydiving competitions to explore, from your local Drop Zone all the way to World Championships. There's a great esprit de corps to enjoy!
The UK boasts a number of world class teams, such as our World Cup Gold Frefly team Volare. And Britain has a great track record in the 4-way women's Formation Skydiving, where our team has won the World Championships on several occasions.
There is a fantastic world of competitive skydiving out there, with a tremendous camaraderie and esprit de corps. So what are you waiting for? Take part and enjoy!
Updated 9 November 2018