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Created in 1985, the Ecole de Parachutisme de Château d'Oex (EPCO) was the third professional school in Switzerland. It is recognized by Swiss Skydive and is also a "foreign group member" of the United States Parachute Association (USPA).

Since 1995, EPCO teaches at the "Aérodrome de la Gruyère" in Epagny. We also propose training courses abroad several times a year (see our Jump Agenda)

EPCO teaches skydiving following the most modern methods and with top quality and leading edge equipment.

AFF (Accelerated FreeFall) Training Course
In this course, you can learn how to skydive alone through a series of seven jumps. At the end of the training, you will know how to: exit the plane, freefall in a stable position for one minute, perform a number of basic figures, open the parachute at the correct altitude, pilot the parachute, land and fold the parachute.

The course begins with two sessions of theory, then on to the plane. For the first three jumps you are accompanied by two instructors. Begining from the first jump you have your own parachute (contrary to tandem) and are held during freefall by the instructors. You are taught how to open the parachute and are coached through the landing by radio assistance.

As the course leads you progressively towards freefall alone, in the second jump you are only held by one instructor. For the third jump, both instructors release you and they simply remain by your side.

For the remaining four jumps, you are accompanied by only one instructor and begin to discover the various movements (barrel rolls, back loops, front loops, etc…) that freefall allows.

Based on the good results obtain previous years, all our AFF camp would include 15' in a wind tunnel.

And then?
At the end of the AFF training course, you have acquired the basic knowledge allowing you to jump alone safely. After that, you work on your technique individually towards completing the various examinations required by Swiss Skydive. When all the tests are passed, you can go for your license examination. This examination includes a practical and a theoretical part. For the theoretical part, you can register for free on the Swiss Skydive website to train.

Schedule of AFF Courses 2023

All of our AFF courses are organized in a week's training or over long week ends.

No Dates Location Comments Theoretical course  
1 Apr. 7th-10th Piscina (I) Easter Course Mar 4-5 19h00-23h00  
2 May 18th-21th Piscina (I) Ascension Course June 1-2 19h00-23h00  
3 May 27th-29th Gruyères Pentecost Course May 25-26 19h00-23h00  
4 July 8th-14th Gruyères Summer Course 1 July 6-7 19h00-23h00  
5 August 5th-11th Gruyères Summer Course 2 Aug 3-4 19h00-23h00  

AFF Course (seven jumps) : 2,900.- CHF (Expect for USA: 5,900.-)

Note :
For courses in Italy, travel, accommodation and subsistence are not included in the price!

Contact us for more informations ...

Conditions of participation

  • The minimum age to start an AFF course is 15 years old.
  • The maximum age is 55. For candidates over 55, please contact the secretariat to see if a "waiver" can be granted.
  • The candidate must be in good health. The following are mainly excluded: injuries (present or recent) to joints, inner ear problems, balance problems, etc. If in doubt, call the secretariat.

To sign up now, download our registration form in PDF (in French), fill it and mail it back to us: :
AFF Training Course (168 K)

"Gruyère is the best place to complete the AFF course in Suisse Romande. The site is ideally located, offering unique scenery. Why not do things all the way? At EPCO you jump at 4000 meters (and not 2500 as it can be the case elsewhere). You land at a safe drop zone, away from highways and high-tension lines: ideal for beginners. The quality of the course is perfect, with top-level instructors and good spirits! Same goes for the equipment and supervision. Many thanks for the moist grand finale!"
- Rea Kalavasis, AFF Summer 2001

"EPCO is the place to go if you have decided to take the plunge - learn how to skydive that is! The instructors are friendly, eager to share their experience, knowledgeable and saftey conscious. The location is amazing, tucked into the swiss alps with views of mountains, lakes and forests. And the course can be completed at your own comfort level: fast, slow or somewhere in between. I guess my favorite part about EPCO, is the family atmosphere that you find on the DZ each weekend - people are welcoming and really just enjoying the blue skies."
- Amy Maines, AFF Summer 2001

         Acknowledgements       © 2003 Ecole de parachutisme de Château-d'Oex Sàrl, Les Grand-Prés, "Chalet Parenthex", 1660 Château-d'Oex