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Sit Fly Side Slide

The Sit Flying Side Slide is a skill in itself that will be used in conjunction with other Sit Fly skills especially for moving around other flyers and positioning yourself within a group. Unlike the other basic Sit Flying moves, it is unlikely that you will have learned the basics of this skill during your progression.

Before you begin to learn Sit Fly Side Sliding, you will first need to be very comfortable in your neutral Sit Fly position, off the net at moderate to fast wind speeds, with controlled turns, and with forward/backward, and up/downward movements completed. At this point, it is likely you will already know how to enter and exit the tunnel while Sit Flying, but it is not required.

sit-fly, sideslide&nbsp;&mdash;&nbsp;by <a href='' class='captionLink'>The International Bodyflight Association</a>
sit-fly, sideslide — by The International Bodyflight Association


The primary objective is to be able to safely and successfully side slide from one side of the wind tunnel to the other, under control the entire time, maintaining a consistent altitude and heading, without contacting the wall at any time.


You will begin by Sit Flying off of the net, at approximately waist level. You should be close to one side of the tunnel and positioned so there is no doorway in the flight path of your side slide as this can present an obstacle.

  • Begin this maneuver on one side of the tunnel leaving space to complete a side-sliding maneuver
  • The side-slide maneuver needs to be created by combining upper and lower body inputs. This will help to keep a balanced slide throughout
  • Initiate the side-slide by bending your leading arm and pressing your leading elbow down in to the wind; this will create a “pull” type feel against the airflow
  • Your trailing arm will need to be slightly extended and raised to “release” the airflow to initiate the movement
  • At the same time that you initiate with your upper body, you will need to create drive with your lower body, first by lowering your leading leg, pressing the foot down in to the wind
  • As you lower your leading leg, you will also need to angle that leg, sliding your leading foot outward, which will expose your inner thigh of that leading leg to the wind. This “rudder” effect will create drive for your lower body
  • Keep your spine straight throughout the slide, avoid leaning in to the wind
  • Maintain balanced upper and lower body inputs at all times to ensure a straight slide that does not turn
  • To stop the side slide, you will need to initiate a slide in the opposite direction to create a braking action
  • Once the movement has stopped, return to a neutral Sit Flying body position

Check In

After you flight session review these questions with your tunnel Instructor and Coach:

  • Were you able to maintain stability throughout each side slide?
  • What techniques did you feel comfortable with and what can you improve on during the next session?
  • Did you have a preferred direction to slide? What can you do differently to be proficient going both directions?

Visit the IBA Skills page to download the full lesson plan and to find post-flight evaluation questions and suggestions.

More Tutorial Videos

Previous Tutorial, Sit-fly, Fall Rate Control

Next tutorial, 2-way VFS Dive Pool (intermediate)

IBA Sit Fly Tutorials HERE

IBA Back Fly Tutorials HERE

IBA Dynamic Progression Tutorials HERE