- 052: VFS and Team Building w/ Team Collective
Join me this week while I chat with Mike Silva and Josh Evans of Team Collective about everything VFS, flight skills, and re-living some of the glory days at SkyVenture Colorado. If you've ever been interested in pursuing competitive skydiving in VFS (or any discipline really), make sure you don't miss this episode. Josh and Mike take me through the nitty gritty phases of building a team, the how tos of learning to fly with a teammate, and how to focus and push through problem solving and accelerating your learning process.
If you like what you hear on this episode, be sure to check out Josh and Mike's new Collective endeavor, the Collective Bodyflight Academy, and Josh's podcast, The Content Clearinghouse.
Collective Bodyflight Academy: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCRGvrIcpTDawC_-iSzK-QhQ
Team Collective Video:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zDRDYVwYbw01h 47m | Feb 22, 2024
- 051: Tales From the Bonfire # 1 - Tiny Broadwick
Join me and a new special guest this week, for a riveting story about a woman named Tiny Broadwick.
It's alright if you've never heard her name before. Up until a year ago, I'd never heard of her either. But don't let her anonymity fool you. She is quite literally the unspoken mother of skydiving as we know it today. Don't miss this glimpse into our sport's history. Sit back and listen to the story of Tiny Broadwick.54m | Feb 6, 2024
- 050: Cameron Haley - DJ Microwave
Cam Haley might genuinely be one of the nicest folks on the dropzone. Don't take my word for it--ask anyone who knows him, and I'd bet money they only ever have kind words to say.
Cam started skydiving in college, during which he inherited control of his college parachuting club, competed at Collegiates, and amassed an obscene amount of tunnel time for a college student. Following that, he made a huge cross-country move to small town WI, where he acquired his instructor ratings, participated in a world record event, went through FITP, and met the love of his life, Nalini.
These days, you'll find Cam living in southern Florida, with his wife and their two cats, skydiving to their hearts' content all year round. He's chased records, canopy piloting events, competitions, and so much more. Don't miss this episode for lots of laughs!1h 43m | Jan 29, 2024
- 049: Next Level Women's Headdown Camp w/ Jen Halvorson
Back for her third time on Fall Risk, Jen Halvorson joins me to talk about her experience hosting and organizing her very first women's HD camp. She explains what the planning process was like, how the camp was structured, and what participants got out of the entire event, including what she wants to do moving forward.39m | Jan 21, 2024
- 048: Flyaway Tennessee with Cameron McMahan
If your skydiving progression has been anything like mine, then you have always been consistently blown away when visiting the larger southern dropzones during your skydiving off season. These dropzones operate like well-oiled machines, and they literally have it all. Multiple aircraft, world class instructors and coaches, daily on-site organizers, gear stores, and events happening around the clock. Not only that, but they had everything for you to be able to live on the dropzone during your stay. Affordable housing space, access to laundry and bathrooms/showers, food options, and so much more.
Now, take that experience, and imagine there was a tunnel exactly like it. If you're having a hard time picturing it, have no fear, because there are two world class tunnel instructors and skydivers who have done all the work for you.
Meet Cameron McMahan and Ray Kubiak, who together have created a vision for the mecca of all wind tunnel facilities. Flyaway Tennessee is a resort-like facility that will meet the needs and demands of skydivers and fliers world-wide. The resort itself will play host to experienced and first time fliers alike, while also creating a space specifically for pro fliers to train and compete by having world class instructors and coaches for all disciplines on hand, membership programs, and access to tunnel time 24/7. It will include a gear store, a fitness center, and food options. Not to mention the not one, but TWO wind tunnels... one for pro fliers, and the other for first timers.
Join me on this episode, as Cameron takes listeners through the thought process behind this endeavor, and explains how every single aspect of the business will work, down to the daily operations of the facility itself. I promise, their vision will not disappoint. Do not miss this episode!
Email Cameron for more info at email@example.com 43m | Jan 8, 2024
- 047: Julie Kleinwort - Most Cheerful of Them All
What a wonderful coincidence, that Julie Kleinwort's episode is being released on Christmas. The most cheerful and inviting time of the year, directly coinciding with one of the happiest and peppiest women on the dropzone. Ask anyone who knows her--Julie is on another level when it comes to being cheerful.
But don't let that bubbly exterior fool you, Julie possesses a razor sharp focus, and an unparalleled determination when it comes to the things she's passionate about. You don't have to take my word for it, just listen in on this episode as she regales us with stories of her experiences with competitive skydiving teams, big ways, and of course, her work as a SIS Event coordinator. Don't miss as Julie takes us through her approach to skydiving, how she got started in the sport, and where she wants to go in the future.1h 20m | Dec 25, 2023
- 046: Daina Tubbs - A Ray of Sunshine
Daina Tubbs is the literal embodiment of a ray of sunshine. Truly, there's nobody on the dropzone with a better attitude and personality than her. That in and of itself is amazing given how long she's worked as a full time skydiving instructor in this incredibly stressful work environment.
This episode goes off the rails in the best way possible, as Tubbs and I get into her backstory, how she built her way to her current position, and we get into the nitty gritty of being a female skydiving instructor in a field dominated by men. Hold onto your butts, cause this one is one helluva ride filled with good times and lots of laughs.1h 49m | Dec 8, 2023
- 045: Leah Levy - Getting Creative with Skydiving
Pairing creativity and innovation with the world of skydiving can sometimes be a tall order. It's hard to stay on top of creative projects that take ages to complete within the ever changing world of the skydiving community. No one knows this better than Leah Levy.
At 28 years old and just under a decade in the sport, Leah's flying resumes boast some very impressive feats, including Project 19's Women's Headdown World Record, and the most recently 200-way World Record attempts. And while those accomplishments are nothing short of amazing, her true mark on skydiving is made with her incredible artistic talents. From creating her own company "Levity," where she repurposes non-airworthy parachutes into hard goods, to assisting the general skydiving community in designing their rigs, to developing her camera flying skills, and to working with her partner on their collaborative production company "Flying Pig Studios," Leah has her hands in a million ongoing creative projects.
Listen in as Leah tells us how she got started in skydiving, and as she lets us take a peek behind the curtain of her creative process when it comes to skydiving.1h 48m | Nov 20, 2023
- 044: Garet Bloodworth - Evolution of Flight
The man, the myth, the legend: Garet Bloodworth. What else needs to be said? In this episode, Garet joins me to discuss his lengthy career in the world of flight, including his time as a tunnel instructor, a skydiving coach, and most recently, as a pilot. But don't let his megastar reputation fool you--Garet is one of the most laid back guys you'll see on the dropzone this episode as evidence to that. Listen in as we discuss some of his greatest achievements, how he got his start in the sport fourteen years ago, what his goals moving forward are, and what you'll see next from him.1h 35m | Nov 6, 2023
- 043: Tamara Bartlett - Chasing Big Ways
On the surface, Tamara Bartlett is a bubbly, charismatic skydiver, one who is eager to engage others in conversation, go on "wahoo" skydives, and generally seems to get along with everyone. Under that exterior though, lies a determined, focused, and goal oriented attitude, one who establishes milestones, and chases relentlessly after them.
Listen into this episode, where we dive into Tam's origin story, and hear more about why she's been chasing the big way circuit for so long now, and where she's planning to take those skills moving forward.1h 37m | Oct 28, 2023
- 042: Richo Butts - The Sky's the Limit
Richo Butts is a man of many talents. The skillset he's acquired over years of skydiving and flying is seriously mindblowing.
Over the last decade, Richo has made a name for himself as one of the world's premier canopy pilots, and in recent times, has added to his skill set by fine tuning his freefly and bigway skills, as well as become a licensed pilot and pursued an aerobatic pilot career. Listen to this truly humble and well spoken skydiver about how he started in the sport, what projects he's currently pursuing, and what the future holds for his flight career.1h 37m | Oct 9, 2023
- 041: Andy Malchiodi - Creation of a Discipline
Andy Malchiodi is a household name in skydiving. The sheer number of years he's been active in the skydiving community would astound even the most diligent and relentless skydivers of today. Over time, he's travelled the world, accumulated countless skydives of all types, and organized more camps and events than can be counted. In addition to all the aforementioned accolades, Andy has also been credited with being part of the birth of MFS as a discipline, sub-disciplines like the Echelon events, the most recent skydiver-made movie "HEX," in cinema history, and so much more.
Tune into this episode to hear about the origins of the MFS discipline, listen as we discuss his movie, and what new adventures he's got planned for the next few years.1h 42m | Sep 30, 2023
- 040: Koemi Valencia - First Competition Year
2023 marks the first year of Koemi Valencia being on an official competitive skydiving team. Ask her yourself, this is a dream she's been chasing since she started skydiving, just a few years ago. Driven and inspired, Koemi takes us through what her journey to this stage has been like so far, and where she wants to go moving forward with her competitive goals in skydiving.
Koemi has a wonderful way of definitively expressing exactly how most of us feel in this sport, and it's a breathe of fresh air to hear it come from someone of her experience. Don't miss this well spoken and intuitive episode!1h 3m | Sep 20, 2023
- 039: Denise and Kory Kruzikas - A Couple's MFS Journey
Have you ever dreamed of sharing a face meltingly awesome adventure with your partner? Surely you've dreamt of what you'd do on said adventure... the sights you'd see, the things you'd talk about, the places you'd go together, the shenanigans you'd get up to? If you've lost yourself daydreaming about this very idea, then look no further than Denise and Kory Kruzikas--these two are every skydiving couples' dream.
Denise met Kory back in 2010 after several years of their individual skydiving careers already under their belt. To say it was love at first sight, is probably an understatement. Truly, in this episode, they share the touching story of how they got together in the first place, and how Kory, quite literally, swept Denise off her feet.
Since those early days, they've come to form SDMW's local MFS team, Ballistix. Along with their camera man, Ben Shafer, this team is headed off to the 2023 USPA Nationals, for yet another run at the podium this year. Listen in as the dynamic duo fill me in on what training with your partner is like, and how it can ultimately enhance the competition experience.1h 4m | Sep 14, 2023
- 038: Matt Congdon - Constant Pursuit
Known as literally the nicest guy on the dropzone, Matt Congdon has made a name for himself through a constant pursuit of knowledge, and then passing that information onto the next generation of skydivers. Truly, there's nothing more exciting for Matt than to either be pursuing his own goals, or helping others achieve their own.
Join us as we discuss what Matt's start in skydiving was like, how he feels about competition skydiving, and what's next for him. This episode is full of laughs and hilarity, so be sure to tune in!1h 41m | Sep 8, 2023
- 037: Sam Stenzel - To Infinity and Beyond
Remember the name Sam Stenzel. Someday, you're gonna hear it on the news or in an article or see him in a video talking about the next big adventure in space exploration. Seriously--this kid is going places.
Sam has been flying in more ways than one, since he was very young. As a gymnast, he spent more than his fair share of time in the air tackling a wide variety of aerial stunts and tricks. As a young teenager, he began tunnel flying--quickly becoming one of the most accomplished flyers at iFly Minneapolis in a few mere months. Not only that, but he also acquired his pilot's license and became a certified scuba diver shortly after. Now, at eighteen years old, Sam has checked off another box--he got his A-license.
Now, he joins Sam to talk about what that particular process was like, what he's enjoying about our community so far, and where he wants to go moving forward. You don't want to miss this episode---Sam is an incredibly bright and kind whiz kid, one with an incredibly promising future in our sport!48m | Sep 2, 2023
- 036: Patrick Kessler - Canopy Pilot Extraordinaire
It's hard not to notice Patrick Kessler on the dropzone. He is after all, almost seven feet tall. But that's not what makes him stand out. No, what really makes Patrick stand out from the crowd is his unusually quiet nature. Truly, Pat is the quietly stoic figure in the room, letting his keen observational skills and soft advice do all the talking for him. Which is probably why he's an exceptionally astute canopy coach.
In this episode, we go over how Patrick got started in the skydiving world, what led him to pursue canopy piloting, and why he's so intent on sharing the knowledge he's gleaned with the rest of the skydiving community. Lots of laughter and hilariously on the nose analogies in this one, folks. Don't miss it!1h 32m | Aug 29, 2023
- 035: Travis Mickle - A Wingsuiter's Delight
Very likely the most laid back guy on the dropzone, Travis Mickle has created a name for himself not only as an incredibly easy going dude, but also as one of the more talented wingsuit pilots of the world.
In this episode, Travis takes listeners through a brief overview of his early skydiving days and what got him started in this sport we all know and love. Listen in, as Travis tells Sam all about his competition days as a wingsuiter, what kinds of competition he's chasing after moving forward, and gives his stark opinion on the world of wingsuiting as we know it today.1h 23m | Aug 26, 2023
- 034: SDMW Chemtrails - Hottest Boy Band in the Upper Midwest
If you've never met the guys of Skydive Midwest Chemtrails, you should immediately get in your car and head to SDMW, because you're missing out on the chance of knowing (and flying with) five incredibly cool people.
Currently known as the biggest 4-Way VFS team (seriously they're almost all over seven feet tall), Chemtrails is comprised of DZO Keith George, lineman Matt Congdon, electrician Colin Conway, business intelligence director Kyle Brady, and podiatrist Nathan Norem. Together they’ve formed a team who probably has the most fun with competing, a fact made incredibly obvious just by watching their daily antics on the dropzone.
Recorded as a send-off for when the team heads to the FAI 2023 World Cup Competition in Voss, Norway this weekend--this episode gets a little weird as we establish who’s who on this team with some "fan-submitted" questions. Laugh along as they regale me with some absolutely hilarious team stories from years past. Don’t miss this episode, and don’t forget to well-wish the team on their way to Norway!
Team instagram: @sdmwchemtrails
Competition updates: www.skydivemidwest.com/blog/44m | Aug 14, 2023
- 033: Elliot Byrd - A Cameraflyer's Journey
Have you ever wondered how the cameraman became the cameraman? Has the thought, "How did he get SO good at that..." ever crossed your mind when leafing through your local cameraman's reel? If so, you should absolutely NOT miss this episode.
In the fourteen years Elliot Byrd has been skydiving, he's amassed thousand of jumps across multiple disciplines--though a large number of them have been devoted specifically to camera flying. Known as THE cameraman at Skydive Midwest, and the prolific owner of Byrd's Eye Studio, Elliot has had his hands in multiple video and camera projects, primarily big-way events, records, and team skydiving. Though most recently, he's taken on the role of SDMW's media manager, which puts him front and center, creating content on a daily basis.
In this episode, we get a look behind the curtain of how Elliot has gotten to this point in his skydiving career, what projects he's looking to tackle in the future, and we get a vast breakdown on how to approach camera flying safely and what to prepare for as you're pondering the idea of adding cameraflying to your skillset.
Elliot's website: www.byrdseyestudio.com1h 37m | Aug 12, 2023