Skydiving is an excitement seekers dream. Free-falling from thousands of feet and then pulling a chute brings a whole perspective to the world we don’t normally see. The crucial part to any skydive is safety, and since humans can’t fly, daredevils either use parachutes or wingsuits. But imagine not only jumping from a plane at 25,000 feet, but doing so without a chute or wingsuit. Enter Luke Aikins.
Luke Aikins, an American, recently plummeted nearly 25,000 feet without the aid of a parachute or wingsuit and glided his way onto a giant 100 ft net. And he did so at 120 mph setting a new world record and being the first to complete this daring freefall.
Just before he hit the net, he tucked and rolled onto his back, the safest landing position for such an extreme stunt. Aikins is no stranger to jumps, with over 18,000 under his belt in just 42 years on this planet. He is a stuntman working on movies like Iron Man 3, he is a member of the Red Bull Air Force, a professional skydiver, a BASE diver, and a pilot. He is also married and has a 4 year old child. Atkins also worked with Felix Baumgartner, the Austrian skydiver who set a world record for skydiving from space, a feat that had Felix falling 128,000 feet.
To train for the event, dubbed Heaven Sent, Aikins performed jumps with a parachute he would open at 1000 feet. He needed special permissions to do so, and it allowed him to train to perform such a dangerous stunt. The hardest part, according to Aikins, was getting the timing right for the landing, which sounds like the understatement of the year. The feat was caught on video, so be sure to check it out (it’s awe inspiring). Aikins said that this was only the next inevitable step in his career.