The Colorful Camp is a group of local skydivers from Empuriabrava. We want to jump, learn, and innovate inside our community and the skydiving world. Our aim as the Colorful Team is to help each other improve skills and also to inspire other skydivers to keep training, evolving, and continuing forward in the sport. The Colorful Jerseys is the brand that allows me to organize the Colorful Camp events. A considerable part of the profit from Colorful Jerseys sales goes towards these events. The Colorful Team only needs to share a per-event fee between each other, which affords to pay the group coaches’ jump tickets and packing jobs.
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The main goal on the Colorful Team is to have as much fun as we can and enjoy the opportunities to learn from some of the world’s best coaches in the world. We want to build a real relationship with each other as local skydivers and to increase a pleasant vibe atmosphere in our drop zone. Ultimately, we aim to share our passion for skydiving and inspire and motivate other skydivers around the world to do the same.
Since I started skydiving, I have always wanted to do great things for the sport, and I work very hard to make my ideas become a reality. Doing my best to help the sport grow and motivate people is a personal goal. It’s the way I found most successful in fulfilling my need to give back to a community that already gave me so much. At the same time, I am able to do my part to contribute to spreading skydiving as far as I possibly can.
Jumping with friends
The Colorful Camp team will work together to make this project real. Helping others to evolve in the sport has always been my intention. After having a long chat with Marco Maluf from Brazil, it opened my eyes to new jumpers’ attention needs. Unfortunately, there is a big gap between ‘‘A’ licensed skydivers and advanced jumpers.
Keeping it safe by having rigorous requirements to join our jumping meetings and, regularly working with mentors, we want to help beginner and intermediate skydivers. We will create small communities of skydivers with similar levels during our jumping meetings, helping them to meet new people with a similar skill level to jump with. We also want to increase their fun while jumping and raise their motivation to stick in the sport. Bridging this gap in skills and encouraging jumpers to have little reason to leave this fantastic sport behind.
We have a very talented crew. Each person in our group has impressive and different skills. It can be ranging from abilities as a flyer, as a group leader, as a coach, or on safety or even on building communities to reach long term goals.
Our leading coach for this event is Will Penny. Will is one of the most talented skydivers that I know. Originally from South Africa, he has been a local in Empuriabrava for 17 years. Will has competed in freefly and freestyle, is a world class skydiving and tunnel coach, as well as a complete badass canopy pilot. The knowledge he has in the sport is simply remarkable. As a result of his experience and dedication, Will is very precise on instructions and has impressive and clear flying skills. For this combination and so many other reasons, the team elected him as our leading coach. We are pleased to now have Will as part of our team.
In the future, we also hope to have other coaches joining us during events. Indeed, we are very blessed to have so many talented skydivers around. Lucky us!
Who are we – meet the Colorful Team 2020
Currently, we have 10 local skydivers on the Colorful Team. It is my pleasure to quickly introduce our team members.
- Joshua ODonoghue is a professional tunnel competitor and athlete. Josh is a multi-time tunnel champion, world-renowned coach and tunnel examiner. Sponsored by Turbolenza, Sonic Flywear, Sky Helmet, and Windoor Realfly, where he works as a tunnel instructor and coach.
- Cesar Rico is a tunnel ninja, coach, and chief instructor at Windoor. He is a very well known competitor in the tunnel world and holds countless medals. Cesar may not have a lot of jumps, but his flying skills are crazy impressive due to his very high level as a tunnel flyer. He is really amazing to fly with in the sky! Fun fact about Cesar, he helped to create tunnel flying discipline solo speed!
- Dani Gallego Prieto is a natural skydiver. He discovered body flight at Windoor, were he works as an instructor and is a sponsored athlete. Dani and Cesar fly together as Spain’s national team. As well as being a fantastic multi-discipline tunnel competitor and coach, this Tonfly sponsored athlete recently joined the elusive Fly Warriors skydiving team. Dani is always super stoked inside the tunnel and in the sky and has such a good vibe to fly with.
- Federico Rawa is a professional skydiver and wind tunnel coach. Fede is an extremely experienced tunnel coach with over 10 years of experience instructing and coaching, with well over 5000+ hours in the wind tunnel. He is able to train his students within the tunnel and transfer their skills over to the sky with ease. He is also a tunnel competitor, winning many competitions and championships.
- Julian Barthel is a multi-rated professional skydiver and Flight-1 instructor. He is a tunnel and freefly coach and co-founder of XFlightlab. Julian is an extremely educated and knowledgeable skydiver and canopy pilot who is always happy to help educate and chat with others about the sport. We are lucky to have him as a local here in Empuriabrava!
- Mauro Jasmin is another multi-rated skydiver and tunnel athlete on our team. He is a rated skydiving and tunnel coach, and has over 21 years of experience in the sport. Also, has a passion for physical education and athletics, having decades of experience working in this industry. Mauro knows his stuff, and he is always welcoming and encouraging to flyers from all levels.
- Seba Giannecchini is a multi-rated professional skydiver and wind tunnel coach. You will always find him coaching his students both in the tunnel and integrating their skills into the sky. Seba is co-founder of XFlightlab, a tunnel and skydiving coaching project. Clearly, you can see he has a passion for building the skills of flyers in our sport.
- Cori Sirois is the only female on our team at the moment. Cori is proud to be a tunnel instructor at Windoor, which has always been her dream job. She is a passionate and dedicated skydiver and tunnel flyer who works hard to build her flying and instructing skills.
- Max Heidenfelder is an all-around sports athlete. He is a skydiving instructor, tandem instructor, and rated tunnel instructor. You will continuously find Max pursuing outdoor activities with his family. He truly makes the best of living in beautiful Spain. Always ready to jump and participate in local flying to contribute to and build the community and skydiving vibe here in Empuriabrava.
- Augusto Bartelle is the mastermind behind the Colorful Camp project. A passionate, multi-sponsored skydiver and tunnel flyer. He is always working hard towards making the sport more inclusive, safe, and accessible for all flyers. Augusto is a well-known skydiver on social media, has a skydiving blog, and created the Colorful Jerseys project.
In-depth review: Colorful Camp Numero Uno
The first event was on July 4th, and it was on point. The groups jumped six times, and it was a great day to start knowing each other in the sky. Although a few people from this group have already jumped together, it was not with our goal in mind. The first Colorful Camp was quite interesting to help our lead coach and teammates to find out each other’s individual skill level. Now we will set directions for each person in the group based on our leading coach’s innovative ideas and long term goals for our team.
An essential point in this first event was that we focus on build confidence between the group and also get familiar with ourselves. I feel terrific about this project. However, it is a very personal project, so I prefer to ask a Colorful Team member to write about what we have done on the Colorful Camp Numero Uno. Find out how Cori’s experience with our first Colorful Camp event went!
Cori’s experience and feedback
Alright, so I won’t lie, I was extremely nervous for the Colorful Camp event. In the past I have participated in boogies and load organized events—however, hardly any skill camps. Maybe one or two head down camps with local flyers from my small drop zone back in Canada. Nothing too serious. And so the idea of jumping with all these very experienced flyers was really causing me a lot of stress. Although it’s an absolute honour, I was questioning myself. Would I be able to keep up? Would I mess up? I am so happy to share that after the day, I left feeling renewed confidence in my flying and a lot less anxiety!
When we arrived in the morning, our coach Will gave us a chat and told us what to focus on today. At this point, I was still questioning if I should fake sick and go home. Just kidding. Anyway, Will came and spoke with me individually after the briefing, because it was clearly visible I was not confident. After giving me a pep talk, I could agree with him a lot of my problems were in my own head. Next up, we had to make the first jump, nine of us in total to before splitting into two groups. This was not a great jump for me, but it was not negative or bad in any way. Actually, it was great because it gave Will a chance to see what was up with my flying and from here he could give me advice.
Breaking into smaller groups
Once we were split into groups, the pressure was off a bit for me, as now we would only be 5 in the jump together. Before the jump, Will spoke to me about what I need to do in order to be tighter in the group. Our second jump was so different than the first for me. Each jump he gave me something else to work with. By the third jump, I was nice and tight in the formation, in my slot, and super happy to be “part” of the jump. Amazing! How could that be?? I spent so many jumps working for this, and now after a bit of coaching on my body position, I was exactly where I wanted to be! I was fucking stoked. Actually, I still am.
Takeaway from the day
For me, the best part of the experience was letting go of my anxiety. During a lot of my jumps, I am super tense and full of anxiety. Often I feel scared to mess up, more worried about what I did wrong in a jump than the positives. Each jump during the event, I left more of that behind. The feeling was so different to not have that heavy feeling of anxiety in my chest. Once again I was finally smiling and confident in my jumps. Why did I spend so much time doubting myself when I should have just taken some coaching to help me work on my skills? Anyway, I feel the doors have opened for me because of this Colorful Camp event. Now I am looking forward to the next event to progress more.
Keep coming back
Hopefully this article and event review can illustrate how important it is to find the right guidance to progress in the sport. There are many different ways to put a group together to start improving skills. I strongly recommend participating in skills camps and skydiving events. Still, it is also a great idea is to work with locals and to build up some long-term goals in the sport. Training with local friends from our home drop zone and having significant engagement within our own community can bring another level to enjoying the beauty of this fantastic extreme sport.
If you like the article, please let me know, send me an email or a message on Instagram. I want to know about your experience and thoughts!
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