Things to do in freefall
When a Bludger comes within inches of knocking you off your broom whilst in freefall, you know something odd is going on. That’s right: the wizarding sport of Quidditch created in JK Rowling’s world of Harry Potter is no longer an impossible dream – well, not if you’re willing to take gravity head on.
In the UK there are around 25 Quidditch teams from universities and in the US more than 200, with the game growing in popularity all the time and even having its own World Cup. But the game is limited to the ground and not at all what we were promised by the books and films. Until now.
That’s thanks to a group of insane Potter fans who showed off their Beater skills in freefall. In the promo for a Colombian phone company, the group of skydivers leapt out of a plane in their uniforms, with broomsticks between their legs and started one hell of a game of Quidditch.
It looks absolutely authentic and you could be forgiven for thinking someone is about to pull a wand out any second. It’s not the maddest thing you can do in freefall though, not when you get up to these antics:
Miles Daisher, a member of the Red Bull team of pilots, was looking for a way to make his hobby even more extreme. What he came up with was skyak jumps, or skyaking, a bizarre sight that has entertained spectators around the world. When your plan is to land directly on water, this choice makes a lot of sense.
A Swede named Jonas allegedly holds the world record for the first skydiving tattoo, which he got whilst falling from a height of 4,000 metres over his homeland. He had the letters WFFT done, which stands for World’s First Freefall Tattoo, and since then he’s had his share of imitators: Canadian daredevil Nadine Elaine got inked from 3,800 metres with the letters AHHH on her wrist, and musician Zeke Galt from Surefire Machine got SFM tattooed on his arm, for obvious reasons.
Meeting people on the ground doesn’t seem as fun when you compare it to how this group of fellow skydiving enthusiasts got together and broke a world record. In the summer of 2015 over the sky of Chicago, the 164 amateur and professional divers joined hand-in-hand in a group formation during total freefall, and the rest is history.
If you have to do the housework, you might as well make it as fun as you can. That’s what Mike Frost and Steve Scott did when they jumped from a plane with an ironing board and a shirt and smoothed out the creases in freefall. Who said chores had to be boring?