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wingsuit flying

Wingsuit flying is the art of flying the human body through the air using a special wearable jumpsuit, called a wingsuit, that shapes the human body into an airfoil to create lift. The wingsuit creates the airfoil shape with fabric sewn between the legs and under the arms. It is also called a birdman suit or squirrel suit.

Even though wingsuit flying may look futuristic, versions of it have been around since the early 1900s, when suits were made of canvas or silk, wood and whalebone. The modern wingsuit, with its durable, lightweight materials, was born in 1999, when Jari Kuosma of Finland and Robert Pecnik of Croatia developed the first commercially available suit.

A wingsuit flight is normally completed with a parachute landing. It can be safely flown from any point that provides sufficient altitude for flight and parachute deployment, normally a skydiving drop aircraft or BASE (building, antenna, span and earth) jump exit point. The wingsuit flier wears parachute equipment designed for skydiving or BASE jumping. The parachute flight is normal, but the wingsuit pilot typically unzips the arm wings after deployment to be able to reach the steering toggles and control the parachute descent.

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