Syllabus

ELEMENTARY PARAGLIDING SYLLABUS 

GROUND TRAINING THEORY

AIM: to ensure that the student has a basic understanding of paragliding and fully understands the risks, has a basic understanding of the equipment and site environment and understands how to avoid or reduce the risk of injury should there be an incident. The student must complete a separate consent form “Waiver & Disclaimer”. They should understand that there is no Personal Accident insurance unless they have purchased their own.  

1.       Introductory briefing - instructors and school, risk warnings, student’s fitness and health/ medical conditions. Basic aerodynamic theory, rules of the air, principles of flight. BHPC pilot rating scheme, clothing and protective footwear. Waiver & Disclaimer.

2.       Site Assessment briefing - hazards, obstructions, airflow hazards, weather assessment.

3.       Injury avoidance/ reduction – Parachute Landing Falls demonstrated and explained, practiced with competence and understood.

4.       Introduction to equipment – familiarisation with parts and functions of paraglider, harness, helmet. How the wing works. Daily inspections demonstrated and explained, practiced and understood. This may include simulator practice, where appropriate.

 GROUND HANDLING PRACTICAL (BASIC)

AIM: Thorough flat or near flat ground based training. Students should work in pairs to reinforce the check procedure and also to learn and practice back up safety procedures such as drag back arrest. The student should reach a good and consistent level of competence in preparing the equipment for flight, launch assistant duties, inflating the canopy in reverse and forward modes, depending on wind strength, walking/ running with the paraglider overhead, whilst being able to look ahead and steer the paraglider in the correct direction, stalling and collapsing the paraglider. 

5.       Briefing – pre-flight checks (SHOWER) highlighting the importance of a symmetrical wall and of starting and stopping facing in to wind. Airspeed control and flare out/ collapsing the paraglider. Launch Assistant duties.

6.       Preparation – fitting helmet correctly, laying out paraglider pre-flight checks (SHOWER). The student should be asked to speak out loud when doing these checks EVERY time. 

7.       Inflation – initial reverse then forward inflations and collapse and post flight control. Gathering up and carrying paraglider.

8.       Directional control – initiating and stopping turns. How controls work, keeping body central to the paraglider, turning using hands, importance of running in the same direction as the paraglider.

GROUND HANDLING (ADVANCED)

AIM: To attain a higher level of skill to ensure consistent and safe take offs and post landing control

9.       Reverse launch (Advanced level) - Reverse launch on flat ground will initially be done without the brakes crossed over. At the appropriate stage, usually during the higher flights the student will progress onto reverse cross brake launches. This will depend on factors such as the weather & student ability.

FLIGHTS

AIM: The skills learned on the ground in Modules 1 and 2 should be combined and using a very shallow slope the student can progress at a suitable pace to complete straight ground skimming flights of no less than ONE metre and no more than 5 metres above the ground. 

10.     Emergency procedures - plans to deal with the unexpected, preparation before take off, awareness of potential risks

11.     Commands and communications briefing – to include hand signals, radio, key words and commands

12.     Responsibilities briefing – The student must now become the pilot-in-command and demonstrate that he/she can establish his/ her own flight plan. The student must have a clear understanding of the level of their responsibility to maximise the safety of their flight and of others around and be confident of their ability to undertake this step.

13.     First hops: The student should reach a reasonable and consistent level of competence and take off and in flight controls with good body posture, airspeed, controlled landing flare, controlled landings, collapse and post landing control of paraglider. The student must be able to follow a simple flight plan that has been agreed, prior to the attempt, with the Instructor. 

These exercises must be completed in the order below: At this stage the student must be capable of acting as PILOT-IN-COMMAND 

14.     First Low flights – maintain direction and airspeed. The student should reach a reasonable and consistent level of proficiency flying a higher ground clearance (typically 10 – 15 metres above the ground) and demonstrate directional control inputs to maintain a straight course. At least 4 successful flights - appropriate landings and post flight control should be achieved. 

15.     Medium Flights – first shallow turns. The student should reach a reasonable and consistent level of proficiency and confidence flying a higher ground clearance (typically 15 – 30 metres above the ground), maintaining good airspeed control whilst making shallow turns. The student will understand the implications of turning out of wind and the relationship between increased bank angle and increased sink rate of the glider. The student should be briefed on the need to avoid low turns and to look before the turn. The turns will be no more than 45º from directly into wind and no more than 90º change in direction at any one time. At least 4 successful flights with appropriate landings and post flight control should be achieved. 

16.     Higher Flights – completing a flight plan. The student should reach a reasonable and consistent level of proficiency and confidence flying a higher ground clearance (typically minimum 30 metres to 100 metres above the ground), maintaining good airspeed control whilst making shallow turns. Flights should be with unassisted launches involving turns of 90º or more but not more than 120º from being straight into wind. Student should be briefed and observed performing these turns with good lookout, coordination and airspeed control. Landing should be in a defined area. At least 4 successful flights with appropriate landings and post flight control should be achieved. 

THEORY & EXAMINATION 

Aim: Through seminars, lessons, ongoing briefings and private study the student should achieve the required knowledge in the following subject areas:

17.     Meteorology

18.     Principles of flight

19.     Rules of the air, air law and airmanship

20.     Elementary Examination – completed, passed and all incorrect answers discussed and understood.

21.     Final Assessment by the CFI. The student has the appropriate attitude to flying and has reached the required standard of airmanship to continue training towards Club Pilot.

CLUB PILOT PARAGLIDING TRAINING COURSE SYLLABUS

MODULE 7:  Pre-soaring

AIM: to prepare the student for soaring flight 

22      Introductory briefing – During initial theory, The student should be briefed/ refreshed and educated regarding site assessment, hazards, emergency procedures such as being blown back, turbulence, rotor, weather assessment (which should include wind strength measurement, wind gradient, wind shear and venture effects. Flight planning should encourage the principle of building in contingency plans and options. Rules of the air, ridge soaring protocols and soaring patterns lift bands. Turns away from the hill and importance of good lookout. Student should fully understand the principles of turns, the effect and risks of not being into wind.

23      Turns of more than 90º up 180º - The first turns should be progressive starting at 90º and eventually up 180º. The student should reach a good and consistent level of ability, with unassisted launches. Instructor supervision should be in the form of briefs and debriefs. Turns away from or parallel to the hill.

24      Turns of more than 180º
These are often referred to as “figure 8” turns. These turns should be practiced at altitude or before making a landing approach.          These turns should show good coordination and control.
               

25      Flight planning & Landing Approaches.
A good and consistent level of competence and understanding must be demonstrated by making controlled landing within a 10m designated “spot”. At least 4 “stand up spot” landings should be achieved demonstrating “figure 8” turns. 

MODULE 8: Soaring

AIM: The student should be able top demonstrate good and consistent ability to ridge soar and to top/ side land and be able to make and to carry out a flight plan of their own.

26      Ridge soaring
 The student should demonstrate good and consistent ability to devise and carry out at least 4 soaring flights on at least 2 different sites or on two different   days.  The flights should incorporate “beats” or “figure 8 turns” along a ridge, demonstrating good airspace awareness and good lookout.          

27      Top Landings
The student should demonstrate the ability to safely and accurately top land using the correct approach procedure, with good airspeed control, good flight planning and post landing control. A minimum of 4 top landings on at least two different sites or on two separate days

28      Shared airspace
 The student should demonstrate the ability to fly with good competence with others. The student should show awareness of others and have a clear  understanding of collision avoidance.             

MODULE 9: Developing skills

29      Speed Range –The student should be briefed and understand the inherent risks with slow and fast flight.  Be familiar with the symptoms and recognition of a stall. Be familiar with the notion of the “correct” speed to fly. Be confident in using the full normal speed range of the paraglider. Approaching the stall or deliberate in flight stalls must not be carried out except on the ground.

30      Forward launching
The student should be competent and consistent at forward launching in a wind of less than 3mph with good control throughout                         

31      Reverse launching
The student should achieve a good and consistent standard of reverse launching with the controls in the “cross” position followed by consistent good launches

32      Weight shift turns
 
The student should achieve a good and consistent standard weight shift controlled turns with good and consistent pitch inputs as required.            

33      Accelerator system
The student should be practiced at using the foot speed system appropriately and should understand the risks when using it in turbulent air. The student should be aware that this device is not intended as an aid to fly in strong winds, but as an aid to get out of trouble if the wind strength increases during a flight or as an aid to leave sink quickly.

34      Slope landing
The student should be proficient at slope and cross wind landings and understand the dangers involved and understand when such manoeuvres are appropriate. 

MODULE 10: Emergencies and Instability

AIM: To understand techniques for avoidance of and recovery from unstable flight and correct emergency procedures  

35      Theory Emergencies - Use of and dangers associated with emergency parachute systems, uses and limitations of rear riser or weight shift in the event of brake line failure, PLF’s, Instability – the student should be familiar with the avoidance of and the correct recovery technique for spins, stalls, closures and spiral dives.  

36      Active Flying 
The student should be able to demonstrate a good knowledge of & ability to actively deal with turbulence and understand the importance of brake pressure  to “feel” the air.

37      Rapid descent techniques
 The student should have good knowledge of how and when as well as the limitations of “big ears” as a method of descending rapidly. This will include  closing the wing tips (not at the same time), weight shift steering control and re-inflating, avoiding pumping the brakes. This should be carried out at the  appropriate altitude in smooth conditions with radio communication.
This MUST be practiced on the ground first.

38      Asymmetric tuck recovery (ground)
 The student should reach a good standard in recovery from an asymmetric tuck of more than 20% but less than 35% of the wing. This should be done in  the same manner as big ears and should be practiced on the ground first.

39       Asymmetric tuck recovery (in flight)
           The student should reach a good standard in recovery from an asymmetric tuck of more than 20% but less than 35% of the wing.    
           This should be done in  the same manner as big ears and MUST be practiced on the ground first.

MODULE 11: Theory & Examination

AIM: Through the use of private study material, discussions and ongoing talks, the student should reach Club Pilot standard in his understanding of the following subjects:

40      Principles of Flight                          

41      Rules of the air and ANO               

42      Meteorology                                      

43      Airmanship and general knowledge
The student should have a thorough understanding of the requirements to fly at Club Pilot standard – 3rd Party Insurance, membership of Club, flying abroad, kit maintenance and correct servicing, certifications and the BHPC recommendations for pilot standards for each certification.

44      Club Pilot Examination and all incorrect answers discussed and understood   (NOTE student must be a Full Club member before sitting the examination)

 

45      FINAL ASSESSMENT & Declaration by the Senior Instructor that the student is of the correct attitude and airmanship.