Skydiving Instructor

Teach thrillseekers how to safely jump, land, and pack a parachute.

Quick Stats

Very Good

Salary Range
$19,000 – $71,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor

What do Skydiving Instructors do?

Most people commute to work by car, bus, or train. A Skydiving Instructor, however, takes an airplane, as their office is located in the sky, approximately 15,000 feet off the ground. A professional adventurer, the Skydiving Instructor teaches people how to skydive.

When you’re a Skydiving Instructor, some of your students are beginners and some are working toward their certification. All of them, however, need your assistance, as only those who’ve gotten their skydiving license — which requires 25 supervised jumps — can skydive without the supervision of a Skydiving Instructor.

Employed by a skydiving school or service, you spend parts of your workday in a classroom, where you teach students about proper body positioning, landing, safety, and parachute packing. The bulk of your day, however, is spent in the earth’s atmosphere. That’s where your job really takes off — literally — as those who lack a skydiving license typically do what’s called a tandem jump, which is a type of jump where the student and Skydiving Instructor jump together.

When it’s “go” time, therefore, you strap yourself to your student and jump along with them, free-falling as a pair at speeds of up to 120 miles per hour. Usually, the student’s just along for the ride, so it’s your job to steer and pull the cord when it’s time to open your shared parachute for landing.

When the weather’s bad, you don’t work at all. When it’s good, however, you might make up to 12 jumps a day, which means your job description is a lot like a bird’s — only without the winter migration!

Should I be a Skydiving Instructor?

You should have an associate's degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Trustworthy: You are known for your personal integrity and honesty.
  • Logical Thinker: You take a step-by-step approach to analyze information and solve problems.
  • Detail Oriented: You pay close attention to all the little details.

  • Also known as: Tandem Instructor

    How to become a Skydiving Instructor

    Most Skydiving Instructors have no higher education and get on-the-job training. Think about earning a Certificate or Bachelor's degree to increase your competitiveness in the field. Chart?chd=s:9xazyp&chl=no+college+%2835%25%29|certificate+%2813%25%29||bachelor%27s+%2829%25%29|master%27s+%2814%25%29|doctorate+%289%25%29&cht=p3&chs=466x180&chxr=0,35,35
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