Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
ISSN: 1303 - 2968   
Ios-APP Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
Androit-APP Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
©Journal of Sports Science and Medicine (2015) 14, 340 - 346

Research article
The Situated Management of Safety during Risky Sport: Learning from Skydivers’ Courses of Experience
Sara Mohamed, Vincent Favrod, Roberta Antonini Philippe, Denis Hauw 
Author Information
Group of Research of the Institute of Sport Science of the University of Lausanne (GRISSUL), Switzerland

Denis Hauw
✉ Institut des Sciences du Sport, Faculté des Sciences Sociales et Politiques, Université de Lausanne, Quartier UNIL-Mouline, Bâtiment Géopolis, bureau 5441, 1015 Lausanne, CH, Switzerland
Publish Date
Received: 18-07-2014
Accepted: 04-02-2015
Published (online): 01-06-2015
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The aim of this study was to determine how risks associated with skydiving can be managed within acceptable limits. Using “Course-of-Action” theory described by Theureau, four experienced skydivers viewed recordings of their jumps, from preparation to landing, to elicit their perceptions of these experiences. The sequences dealing with safety concerns were then extracted. Data analysis revealed seven typical sequences of activity to manage safety, labeled “To check the material during preparation,” “To feel prepared and safe for the jump as the plane gains altitude,” “To use the time of freefall,” “To deploy the parachute,” “To fly safely,” “To ensure a safe landing” and “To organize the structured packing of the parachute.” These results showed how the skydivers mitigated safety risks through a heightened awareness of critical elements in the unfolding jump activity and sequences of distributed and timed concerns and actions. The implications for accident analysis, prevention and education for training in risky sports activity are provided.

Key words: Skydiving, situated action, activity, meaning, training, involvement, subjective experience, education

           Key Points
  • The skydivers’ activity could be broken down into seven safety sequences.
  • Each safety sequence was defined by specific involvements and directions at the very moment of the situation.
  • Skydivers’ safety concerns are embedded in the succession of two types of temporal horizon organization: immediate and short-term.
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