Luke Aikins had made over 18,000 skydives in his life but in 2016 he made his first jump without a parachute.
He reached speeds of 150 mph as he plummetted for two minutes, always keeping an eye out for the tiny square of net that he needed to land on.
The daredevil jumper was accompanied by a team of skydivers who kept him on track. He had an earpiece giving him up to date information on his speed and trajectory. His heart rate and vital statistics were carefully monitored in case anything went wrong.
The event was filmed for Fox TV. Aikens was ordered by the Screen Actors Guild to wear a parachute just in case, but Aikens said that it would impair his ability to land in the net safely. At the last minute the order was cancelled and he didn’t wear a parachute.
A cheering crowd watched from beside the landing point, including Aikens’ family. His mother was the only one who couldn’t watch. One of the skydiving team wore a smoke canister so that the crowd could see his approach from afar.
Skydiving runs in the Aikins family, with both his father and grandfather being skydivers. Aikins himself has been skydiving since he was 12 years old. The family owns Skydive Kapowsin in Washington and Aikins teaches skydiving to Navy Seals and other members of Elite forces.
Faster than the speed of Sound
Felix Baumgartner made skydiving history when he jumped from 24.2 miles and broke the speed of sound on his descent, reaching speeds of 846mph. He nearly passed out after getting in a tail spin and experiencing extreme G forces.