Jonathan Tagle

Jonathan passed away on 27th June in 2012 doing what he loved best - flying the mountains in Norway. He was a founding member of Flight-1 and was a major contributor to the curriculum that we have today. While his presence, talent and energy will be greatly missed, his legacy lives on in many ways, no more so than in the courses we teach and the results they produce.  We leave his profile and words here for you to enjoy. 


Age: 42

Nationality: USA
First Jump: November 2000
Total Jumps: 7000
Home DZ: Skydive Dubai

Occupation: Performance Designs Factory Pilot, High Performance Canopy Coach, AFF and Tandem Instructor, and Aerial Photographer and Videographer
Education: AS in Multimedia Communications, Master's Institute
Hobbies: Movies, Travel, Flying, Ground Launching, RC Planes, Long Boarding, Swimming, Photography, SCUBA Diving, Wake Boarding, Snowboarding, Poker Tournaments

Licenses/Ratings: D-24341, Tandem Instructor, AFF Instructor, PRO Exhibition Rating, BASE #1159, Private Pilot, Instrument Rating

Total # of jumps:  7000
Freefly: 1800
RW/FS: 600
Hop & Pops: 1500
Camera: 2500
Other: 600 (Wingsuit, Demos, CREW, AFF, Tandems, Skysurf)
BASE Jumps: 150
Cutaways: 7 Intentional, 9 Emergency
Main Canopy: PD Velocity 90/84/79/71
Container: Javelin Odyssey
Reserve Canopy: PD 113 / Optimum 126
AAD: Speed Cypres
Helmet: Bonehead Mindwarp
Jumpsuit: Liquid Sky
Altimeter: N3 Audible and Visual
Eyewear: Oakley Designs 


1st CP Team USA, Dubai Parachuting Championships, Dubai, UAE (January 2011)
1st CP Overall U.S. National Championships, Houston, TX (September 2010)
1st CP Overall Pink Skyvan Swoop Open, Klatovy, Czech (August 2010)
1st CP Overall Dubai Parachuting Championships, Dubai, UAE (January 2010)
1st CP Overall Pink SkyVan Swoop Open, Klatovy, Czech (August 2009)
1st CP Overall Italian Swoop Tour, Molinella, IT (August 2008)
1st Distance World Championships of Canopy Piloting, Austria (August 2006)
1st CP Overall King of Swoop, Spain (July 2006)
1st CP Overall European Swoop Tour - Extreme Week, Norway (June 2006)
1st CP Overall Pro Swoop Tour, Lake Wales, FL (April 2006)
1st CP Overall U.S. National Championships, Perris, CA (September 2005)
1st Distance World Cup of Canopy Piloting, Austria (August 2005)
1st CP Overall European Swoop Tour, France (August 2005)
1st CP Overall World Skydiving Championships, Lake Wales, FL (February 2005)


World Records
2009 Wingsuit Formation: 68-way
2009 Vertical Formation: 108-way
2011 Distance (CP): 641ft (195.65m)
2005 Distance (CP): 502ft
2005 Distance (CP): 494ft
2005 Distance (CP): 479ft

TV Apperances

Desafio Estado De Mexico (September 2009)
Discovery Channel's “Stunt Junkies” (May 2007)
NBC's Today Show (May 2005)
Brazil: QuedaLivre (April 2005)

HP Canopy Expeditions

2005, 2006 Norway – Fjords
2006 France - Mt. Blanc
2006 Italy – Dolomites
2007 Arizona - Grand Canyon
2010 Switzerland - Swiss Alps


I started skydiving in November 2000, and was instantly addicted to the sport. I did over 1600 jumps in the first 2 years, and tried to learn everything I could about the sport with an emphasis on canopy piloting. I got coaching from several of the top competitive swoopers which lead to a successful year of top-5 finishes in 2004. In 2005, after being asked to join the PD Factoy Team, I won my first swoop competition at the World Cup of Canopy Piloting in Lake Wales, FL.  

I worked hard to learn the Flight-1 curriculum and was soon on the road teaching students along side the rest of the team. I've been teaching Flight-1 courses for about 6 years now. It is by far the most comprehensive curriculum out there for canopy control, and I'm proud to be Flight-1 Instructor.

What kind of progress would you hope for from someone going through your full offering of courses?

I try to recommend a more conservative approach to downsizing while pushing the envelope more aggressively on each canopy type flown. In other words, exploring the full capacity and limits of a larger canopy can provide a much healthier learning curve than having to throttle back and build consistency on a smaller canopy that is less forgiving. I recommend taking your time to understand each exercise and it's purpose in order to get more in touch with your current canopy. My hope is that students will embrace a steep learning curve that will give the best results in the shortest amount of time. That's what Flight-1 is all about.



PD 230 ~ 7 jumps
Spectre 190 ~ 60 jumps
Spectre 170 ~ 15 jumps
Spectre 150 ~ 15 jumps
Sabre 150 ~ 500 jumps
Stiletto 120 ~ 225 jumps
Velocity 103 ~ 725 jumps
Velocity 90 ~ 700 jumps
Extreme VX 75 ~ 525 jumps
Extreme VX 83 ~ 425 jumps
Velocity 84 and 79 ~ 4,000 jumps

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