To eat or not to eat before your skydive, that is the question! Let’s begin by emphasizing that it’s a super important question because it directly affects the enjoyment of your skydive. We wish everyone did their menu planning before making their first jumps! So, kudos to you for doing your homework!
So, should you eat before skydiving? Yes. It is highly recommended that every person planning to skydive eats a healthy meal before their jump. This answer is likely what you thought; who wants to be hangry during one of life’s great adventures? NOBODY! Aside from you being a Grumpy Gus in free fall, there are a few other good reasons to eat before your jump.
Why It’s Important To Eat Before Your Skydive
The number one reason to eat before making your skydive is the very thing you’re most scared of – being sick! Ironically, many of our guests have skipped the meal before their jumps to prevent being ill only to discover that this is the cause for it!
The skydiving experience will cause a massive surge of adrenaline, serotonin, dopamine, and lots of other chemical responses in the body. Not having any food in your gut to support this chemical surge will leave you feeling depleted or in some cases feeling nauseated to the point of vomiting (ewwww).
The worst part of it all is when these stomach-churning feelings occur – almost always under parachute. Instead of enjoying the stunning New England views, you’ll be biting your lip and praying to all that is holy that you don’t throw up. So, that’s not very pleasant. It should be mentioned that your tandem instructor would appreciate you not getting sick on them either.
Pro Tip: While tips are never expected and always appreciated… the expectation of one is heightened if you vomit on your instructor.
We digress. All of these details are unpleasant, but if you eat a balanced meal before your jump everything described above is preventable.
What to Eat Before a Skydive
It’s important to eat a balanced meal before your skydive, but the term “balanced” means different things to different people. Perhaps if you’re from Iceland, some pickled shark is normal, but it’s not advisable (but who knows, maybe we’re wrong on that!).
In our view, a balanced meal is keeping things relatively light and nutritious. If you’re booked for a skydive in the morning, lay off the Denny’s Grand Slam and think more along the lines of a bowl of oatmeal or fruit – essentially the diet your friendly cardiologist would recommend. For example:
- Nutritious Sandwich or Wrap
- Salad with Grilled Chicken
What Not to Eat Before a Skydive
- Fried Foods
- Foods High in Sugar
- Oversized/Undersized Portions
What Food Should You Bring With You?
If you’re a parent then you know not to go anywhere without packing some nibbles. The same holds true when coming to the dropzone. It’s always a good idea to have some snack crackers or fruit within reach because there can be delays due to the weather. It’s not uncommon to feel frustrated or get impatient when experiencing long delays which can lead to you feeling that emotion we all fear so much – hangriness.
What Should I Drink Before a Skydive?
We’re so glad you asked! Staying hydrated is just as important as eating. Be sure to pump the water especially during the heat of summer. Not being hydrated could lead to passing out or dry heaving, and ain’t nobody got time for that!
One thing to definitely avoid is alcohol. Alcohol dehydrates you and if we detect alcohol on your breath before the jump, we won’t permit you to skydive. A good rule of thumb is to not consume any alcohol after midnight the night before (you need to be going to be earlier than midnight anyway, right?).
If you happen to be reading this article on your phone while driving to the dropzone and you’ve not yet eaten, fear not! Skydive New England is one of the few skydiving centers that has a full-service restaurant – The RipCord Café. We know all of these food ground rules, so we’ve got you covered for your snacks or a full-on meal.
- Always eat prior to your skydive
- Eat a balanced meal
- Don’t overeat
- Stay away from fried foods
- Stay hydrated with water
- Avoid alcohol