Cliff jumping

« Back to Glossary Index

Major Variants:
– Tombstoning is a popular form of cliff jumping in the United Kingdom
– Tombstoning involves a vertical body position resembling a tombstone
– Platform jumping is an alternative to cliff jumping, often from human-made structures like bridges
– Jumping platforms can be purpose-built or improvised
– Repurposed infrastructure like railway bridges can also serve as launch points

Dangers:
– In the UK from 2004 to 2008, tombstoning led to 139 incidents requiring emergency response
– 20% of these incidents resulted in spinal injuries
– 12 fatalities were reported during this period
– Recent years have seen an increase in injuries and deaths related to cliff jumping
– Local authorities and emergency services have responded by closing off dangerous areas

Impact with Water:
– Water resistance increases with entry speed
– High-velocity dives can lead to rapid and dangerous deceleration
– Jumping from different heights results in varying impact speeds
– A 20-foot jump can lead to hitting the water at 25mph
– Horizontal velocity from a running jump can add to impact speed

Cold Water Shock:
– Cold water shock can impair divers’ abilities in very cold water
– Cold water shock is a phenomenon that can affect divers
– Entering very cold water can trigger cold water shock
– Divers should be aware of the risks associated with cold water shock
– Cold water shock can be dangerous for cliff jumpers

Impact with Submerged Objects or Terrain:
– Submerged objects pose a direct risk to jumpers
– Colliding with submerged objects can cause severe physical trauma
– Jumpers risk entanglement and being unable to surface
– Shallow lakebeds or seabeds can cause impact injuries
– Tides can significantly affect water depth

Currents:
– Strong currents can make exiting the water difficult
– Timely exit from the water may be impossible in strong currents
– Jumpers need to be cautious of water currents
– Currents can pose risks to cliff jumpers
– Awareness of water currents is essential for safe cliff jumping.

Cliff jumping (Wikipedia)

Cliff jumping is the leaping off a cliff edge, usually into a body of water, as a form of sport. It may be done as part of the sport of coastal exploration or as a standalone activity. Particular variations on cliff jumping may specify the angle of entry into the water or the inclusion or exclusion of human-made platforms or other equipment. Cliff diving and its close relative tombstoning are specific to water landing (with diving usually implying a head-first entry and tombstoning implying a feet-first entry). Cliff jumping with the use of a parachute would typically be classified as a form of BASE jumping.

Man jumping off cliff in Arizona.

Cliff jumping has inherent dangers due to the high velocity that can be attained during a long fall. Multiple cliff-jumping fatalities are reported every year.

In 2015 a world record for cliff jumping was set by Laso Schaller, with a jump of 58.8 m (193 ft).

« Back to Glossary Index