Docking techniques vary depending on what type of
formation you are joining, the flying characteristics of the formation, and the
flying characteristics of the parachutist making the dock. There are many ways
of docking. We will be discussing each type of dock and its technique in this
section. The two main categories of docking are vertical and offset docks.
Vertical formations occur when the grips are on the centre
cell or centre A lines. The main types are:
Offset docking occurs when some or all of the grips are on the end cells. The main categories are:
Offset formation docks require greater skill and
experience than vertical /centre docks because their margin for error is less
and the consequence is greater. Hence, they should be taught later.
skill should include foot first grips when appropriate, not pinching off
upward momentum, collecting in "bad docks" and making them work.
Being comfortable with "line or slider" docks.
good echelon discipline. Know when to plug a gap if needed and when NOT to
plug a gap.
able to explain the use of basic maneuvers to a novice (when to sashay vs.
when to spiral, etc.).
able to set up and dock in a timely fashion on any size vertical. Never off-center
or off-angle (sideways).
able to make timely lockup docks without much side-to-side motion behind the
and fly 2 and 3-wide wing slots with fairly good success (75%).
high base-pin success with other intermediate flyers. Have medium success
with a novice.
able to properly pilot any vertical. In the latter stages, be able to pilot
able to fly pieces relative (end cell bump with bi-planes).
Top docks and piece flying with good success.
basic CRW to novices.
high success with any base-pin combination.
docks should be smooth, quick (small split) no momentum, on target, no
angle into any vertical or lockup slot.
very high success with 2 and 3 wide wings. Fine tuning skills on all
high degree of control over the canopy. A measure of this is being able
to "park" in a slot or alongside a formation.
discipline should be outstanding and very tight.
able to design basic canopy combinations for successful formations.
open tops on offset formations.