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"...In flying I have learned that carelessness and overconfidence are usually far more dangerous than deliberately accepted risks..."
Wilbur Wright

With the rise of social networks and YouTube even those who had never heard about skydiving and extreme sports in general, have long discovered BASE jumping. In BASE, unlike skydiving, you do not jump from planes but from fixed objects such as mountains, antennas, skyscrapers, bridges and any structure suitable for jumping. Some sort of “skydiving” but without a plane!
Precisely this aspect has drawn the attention of a growing number of skydivers intrigued by this sport.

Before this media boom, the very few skydivers who wanted to properly approach BASE had to confront themselves with a small and very closed community. Base jumpers are not always very keen to share their expertise, let alone the spots where they practice this activity. Up until a few years ago, it could have taken months for a would-be BASE jumper just to get in a expert teacher or mentor’s good side. At this point it was up to the would-be jumper to win the mentor’s trust and have him pass over all the experience and knowledge gained in the years, a path that would have probably taken the new jumper a lot of time before the first longed-for jump.

Such attitude has always been as a filter for BASE, limiting the number of people to whom was really motivated and determined to learn the art of jumping from fixed objects. We could open an endless debate on whether this approach is right or wrong, but there’s no denying that today BASE, or at least a part of it, has radically changed into something different. On one hand it is now easier to approach BASE, but on the other hand it is also easier to underestimate its risks. With the increased number of jumpers also the security systems and information that go with it have increased, but unfortunately so has the number of accidents, too. BASE has advanced with time, but it remains a potentially dangerous activity. These days it is easy to find “pseudo-mentors” who have limited knowledge and cannot give the right and necessary information to practice this sport in security and that, on the contrary, could put the jumper in a false safety situation - a highly dangerous scenery.

I decided to start the Brentobaseschool to give to all those parachutists who are seriously motivated to learn the art of base Jumping the opportunity to attend a well-structured course that covers all the basic issues to practice this discipline and, most importantly, taught by one of the most competent people in the world on the subject. Someone who can transmit his experience and take the would-be jumper to that level of self- sufficiency that is to be expected from a serious BASE course.

Over the years I’ve had the opportunity to come across the most different situations, and what I noticed is that sometimes people take decisions that may have very serious consequences all too lightly. I have decided to make the experience I have gained over time available to people also for this reason. I believe that in a BASE jumper training there must be no doubts or uncertainties left. Each topic and each jump should be considered and analyzed carefully to ensure that the foundations built during the course are solid and long-lasting. Only by building strong technical and especially mental basis to deal with this sport, valid results can be achieved.

Growing as a jumper, having fun and always remaining in a range of acceptable risk. The BASE courses I offer are structured with a maximum ratio of 1 instructor with 2 two learners. This enables to create the right alchemy between who gives the information and who receives it, with the best results. My end goal is to train base jumpers, not to let people try base jumping. I think base jumping is not an activity that can be tried, as a tandem jump or bungee jumping. I believe that people should prepare for base jumping as if they were to practice it their whole life. That is to say, keep informed, trained and up to date in every stage of one’s career. We must never forget that in a relatively young discipline like BASE, every jumper will automatically become an ambassador of this activity and his actions can help or harm the whole BASE community.

Maurizio di Palma - -