Paragliding Tuition

Paragliding is the simplest and most basic form of flight available. The necessary equipment fits into a single rucksack and can be made ready for flight in a few minutes. There are four basic parts to the equipment; the glider (a rectangular area of cloth which looks a bit like a square parachute but is fundamentally quite different), a harness which you sit in, a helmet, and an emergency parachute system which the vast majority of pilots will never use (but you should still have for that one in a million chance).

Once you have prepared your equipment, you can launch yourself from a hillside and soar the sky like a bird, controlling your glider by a combination of moving yourself (weight shift) as well as via the control handles. If you fly into an area where the air is rising faster than your glider is sinking, you will also rise. It is by using areas of rising air that it is possible to make flights of several hours.

The landing is straightforward and gentle. Sometimes we land at the bottom of the hill, sometimes back on top where we took off from, and sometimes we fly for many miles over the countryside and land somewhere completely new.

Your first day – (Taster Days)

On your first day we’ll start by explaining how a flying site works and what we look for. We’ll then introduce you to the equipment and teach you how to inspect it before moving on to a couple of basic exercises. You’ll then move on to inflating your glider and controlling it on the ground. Inflating your glider is quite a complex set of motor skills and it does take several hours for most people to get the hang of it.

After this you’ll be ready to make your first flight. Initially your flights will be small; maybe three or four feet above the ground and we’ll gradually increase the size. By the end of your first day you could be making flights where you’re 50 ft above the ground.

Cost: £160.00 for the day
(All equipment will be provided)

Getting Started – Elementary Pilot (EP) syllabus

The Elementary Pilot will take you from being a complete beginner to the point where you are able (in a limited range of conditions) to arrive at a hill, prepare your equipment, take off, and fly down to a landing field at the bottom of the hill. You will be able to link left and right turns and to land under full control at a landing point of your choosing. In order to achieve this you will have come up with a flight plan, which you will have discussed with your instructor.

For your first session, you will begin with an explanation and practice at reading the site, followed by a some basic exercises. We’ll then move on to looking at the equipment and inspecting it before learning how to get into it. There is a theory test and we for we’ll prepare you with a lecture and will supply you with a set of study notes.

It usually takes two or three days from beginner to complete the Elementary Pilot syllabus.

Cost: £160.00 for your first day, £140.00 for subsequent days
(Glider and harness will be provided)

Moving on – Club Pilot (CP) syllabus

The next step is working towards your Club Pilot qualification which will allow you to fly unsupervised. The main part of this training is to teach you to fly using lifting air (soaring). You’ll learn a whole range of skills to improve your flying including; top landing, slope landing, rapid decent techniques, how to accelerate your glider, as well as improving your general control of your glider.

We’ll teach you a number of different ways to initiate turns and explain the benefits of each. Again, there is a written exam that we will help you to prepare for; you’ll be given a set of Flight Culture study notes as well as a number of lectures.

Once you’ve completed the Elementary Pilot course, the Club Pilot syllabus usually takes another three or four days.

Cost: £160.00 for your first day, £140.00 for subsequent days
(Glider and harness will be provided)

Coaching

If you’re already qualified but feel that you need a little more help; maybe it’s just been a while since you flew and you’re a bit rusty or perhaps you’re trying to gain your Pilot or Advanced Pilot rating and would like to work your way through some of the syllabus, then coaching is the answer for you. We’ll get you to the right site and give you a site briefing. We’ll discuss your goals or perhaps help you set some if you’re looking for direction. Coaching sessions aren’t run using radios but rather by briefing and debriefing.

£65.00 per day
(This does not include equipment, although we have some for hire if you wish)

Advanced glider control course – SIV

SIV (simulation de incidence en vol) is a manoeuvres course designed to acquaint the pilot with unstable flight regimes; what initiates them, how to recognise them, and how to exit them safely. Our SIV course is aimed to accommodate a wide range of pilots, is suitable for all qualified pilots (CP) and should be regarded as an essential step in the development of your piloting skills.

We begin with basic pitch control and then move on to wing-overs and big ears. The next stage covers collapses, both symmetric and asymmetric. Finally we practice stalls and spins; we begin with A-line and B-line stalls before moving on to spin recognition. We then practice spins into full stall recovery. This is practiced so that you learn to exit facing in the desired direction. The final stage is entering full stall from normal flight.

If you master all of these skills we can go on to practice spirals and SATs; we can teach you to offset them if they come easily to you. We also can teach helicopters. If you’d like to practice reserve deployment, we can do this too.

All flights are filmed for debriefing.

We have a dedicated rescue boat which can get us to you in seconds if you do land in the lake. Everyone will be issued with auto-inflation life jackets and radios. This course venue is Lugano, Switzerland and the Course is run over four days although we have a fifth day in case of bad weather. You’ll be able to make three flights each day and will have about 1000m above the lake when you begin your manoeuvres.

£630.00 for the course
(This does not include equipment, although we have some for hire if you wish)

Tandem Training course

You must be Pilot rated, have at least 100 hours of airtime and, be very good at ground handling. Your flying skills should be tidy and confident.

If you are missing ay of these pre-requisites, we can teach you but you’ll need to master them all before undertaking your tandem pilot training. You’ll be taught a whole range of practical skills and theory. You’ll make 10 flights as the pilot. You’ll learn the differences between flying a tandem and solo glider and how your solo techniques need to be modified. We’ll provide you with a set of notes to help you pass you examination.

£300.00 for the two day course including training and examination, £170.00 for the examination only (Equipment will be provided if required)

Tow Endorsement on a Hill Licence

If you’re already an experienced hill pilot with at least a Club Pilot qualification you can try towing and gain your tow endorsement. It is definitely a way to have more flyable days and a lot of fun. The course lasts for two days and you and by the end you’ll have done at least ten tows.

£295 for the two day course
(This does not include equipment, although we have some for hire if you wish)

Paramotoring

If you want to experience powered flight, paramotoring is the most convenient, easiest and most basic option. On a warm summer evening you can take your equipment from the boot of your car and lay it out on a flat field. After just a few moments of preparation you will be ready to take off and to effortlessly climb hundreds or even thousands of feet into the sky. Your flight could take you for many miles over the countryside. Unlike a conventional aircraft, once you switch the engine off you revert to being a glider and retain complete control.

In order to paramotor safely you will need to first learn basic paragliding skills. This will include the full BHPA Elementary Pilot course as well as a shortened Club Pilot course (you won’t learn the soaring skills). Your paramotor training will cover two sections; ground school, which covers equipment, weather and theory, then the practical section covering pre-motorized flights, motor unit ground work, and finally powered flight. For a complete beginner the training usually takes about five or six days although an experienced Club Pilot can do a conversion course in two days. This will give you a BHPA restricted qualification and allow you to fly in the vicinity of your take off point. For the full qualification you’ll need to come back for another two days training which will teach you how to fly cross country.

£160.00 for your first day, £140.00 for subsequent days
(This does not include equipment, although we have some for hire if you wish and we will require a deposit)