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Foot Fetish 4 Stands Out In Australia

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Downunder Dynamics shows they’ve got a foothold on head up movement

Foot Fetish, over Byron Bay
Photo by Cameron Puttee

The 4th edition of Foot Fetish 4 was held once again back at Skydive Byron Bay. We had access to a fast plane and plenty of loads. The support this DZ has given lately to the Australian skydive community and me has been second to none!

Theory

Day one started with some weather holds, which gave the camp the opportunity to focus on theory and ground training. We gathered all the participants and coaches around in an open forum format and we delved deeper on various advanced control techniques, exit and break-off procedures. This unlucky but lucky day of weather gave us a chance to discuss the way we were going to run it openly and get all coaches and participants on the exact same page so the rest of the event could run smoothly with each jump progressing better than the last and using the same information camp-wide.

Stunning view
Photo by Cameron Puttee

Focus

This camp’s focus was a little different than the others. With this being the fourth edition, we had already worked out a fair bit of kinks on how to fly head up movement, from exits to break-off. Australian static flying lately hasn’t been the strongest, so I really wanted to work on this part of head up flying for the event. Head up exits being the name of the game for day one and once exited from the aircraft, we attempted to either build another point or start to move. We found this was a great way to keep the whole group together initially rather than seeing people falling out of their slot and having to catch up to the group from the get-go.

Flying tight
Photo by Cameron Puttee

Head Up or Beer!

As always, the signature rule still stood: if you transition to head down to get back to the formation you had to buy beer. Happily, no beer penalties happened. This meant that participants worked to get back to the formation head up, and those skills they’d normally neglect by going to their head were built. When we all first start learning to track in groups, many times we sink out or get left behind; only by going through the struggle do we eventually learn to fly and get there and hold our slot with confidence. This practice sticking it out head up is the same. 

Flying tighter!
Photo by Cameron Puttee

Head Down to Head Up

The other focus for the event was not to try completely new unseen formations, but to do things we can already do head down and convert them now learning how to do them in the head up orientation. This way, once our head down and head up flying is at an equal level, we can truly start to fly proper dynamic and mixed formations with each other without it spreading out and looking messy. The basics of all need to be down pat before we move on.  Overall, the event was great, with 6-way head up round exits becoming the common thing, as well as one 7-way head up round exit being achieved from the side door of a Caravan — a first for all of us on the camp and a lot of fun.

Linked head up 6-way exit
Photo by Cameron Puttee

Thank you!

Massive thank you to all the participants as the event would not have happened if it weren’t for you. Thanks also to the coaches and cameramen: Oliver Fong, Jimmy Cooper, Matt Boag, Cam Puttee and Paddy Dunne from All Beef Productions, delivering the goods with the editing as always. A huge thank you to Skydive Byron Bay and the staff there for helping make the event run so smoothly (Dan and DK especially), XRG (iFly Downunder), and SQPC (South East QLD Parachute Council).

I’m really looking forward to the next Foot Fetish already in 2024. Stay tuned for more events coming up soon and hope to see you on one of them!

Photo by Cameron Puttee (aka Outside Cam)

Here’s what the jumpers had to say:

Foot fetish is the peak of head up flying in Australia. Getting to spend a whole week rinse and repeating head up jumps was the best way to really test ourselves and progress our flying. Watching what all four groups could achieve by the end of the week was inspiring and a credit to the amazing coaches we had. Thanks Mason, Boags, Fong and Jimmy! Head up forever!

Amy Jamieson

Foot Fetish, where you need to put your best foot forward on every jump. Mason has developed something very special here by creating a safe and deliberate space to push head up flying in Australia forward in a big way. All our coaches were top of their game, bringing quality briefs/debriefs, innovative jump and creative in the moment navigation in challenging conditions. It’s fair to say that head up flying advantages tunnel instructors who spend most of their time in that orientation, but the beauty of this event is that we are all learning how to make this work in the sky where very few of us can claim to have figured it all out. I’m really looking for more in the future!

Simon Colmer

Foot Fetish 4 was an amazing event to be a part of. The coaching was next level, as was the calibre of flyer who attended. Rocking up to the camp and saying I was nervous, would be an understatement. Everything I thought I knew about head up flying had changed so much in such a short amount of time. Learning the new skills of 6-way linked exits to big way moving formations was awesome. It’s made me excited about skydiving more than ever, and I can’t wait until the next Foot Fetish.

David Shlatter (Flossy)

The jumps were so good! Every single one of them!! I re-learnt that the most important thing is to shift your mindset from wanting to get it right to just wanting to get better! It was incredible to see the progression of everyone over the 5 days of jumping. The coaches were learning, everyone in my group was learning, and I was learning. That is what these skills-based events are for! That is what Mason from Downunder Dynamics is so good at encouraging in our skydiving community. Massive thanks to Mason, all the coaches, the Skydive Byron Bay crew, all the sponsors and of course all the participants for bringing a beautiful energy to the week and some seriously high levels of froth! Can’t wait for the next one!

Mike Brigg

Check out the event edit by All Beef Productions

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Meet: Mason Corby

All about self progression and the progression of others, the more people I progress the more I can learn and progress.

Skydiving since 2006 with experience in the sport as a Tandem master, Aff instructor, Tunnel instructor/coach, Military FF, Static line and tandems, night/day - land/water, Currently a Full time freelance coach world wide and event organiser in Australia.

Fell in love with freeflying early on, I was always welcomed and taught by those above me and just wanted to pass that favor on to the next generation.

Currently running tunnel camps at IFly downunder in Sydney Australia, a Freefly School at Byron Bay Skydive in Australia and providing educational Skydiving content on the Downunder Dynamics Youtube Channel.

Happy to be sponsored by Deem Flywear, Job Connect, NZ Aerosports, Aerodyne, LVN, Dekunu, Mee loft and Ifly Downunder.

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