Advice for Student Pilots – Top 10 List

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Sporty’s Pilot Shop is also home to Sporty’s Academy, a world renowned flight school. With more than a dozen aircraft and nearly 30 instructors, we have a lot of flight training activity. Oftentimes one of our 100+ student pilots will ask for some advice from the more seasoned veterans. The replies vary, but these seem to be the tips you hear most.

  1. GOPR0016You will not land perfectly every time.  In fact, you’re going to have bad landings.  It’s OK.  Everyone goes through it.  Don’t give up.
  2. Pull back, houses get smaller.  Push forward, houses get bigger.
  3. The plane will fly without you touching it.  When you find yourself jerking the controls trying to get it to fly straight and level, try letting everything go (with an instructor sitting next to you).  You’ll be surprised how nicely the airplane can fly without human interference.
  4. If flying were easy, everyone would do it.  You’ll get it, but not overnight.
  5. Immerse yourself in aviation.  Spend time hanging out at the airport.  Talk to other pilots and listen to their advice.  We’ve all been there.
  6. Listen to the CTAF or Tower frequencies while flight planning.  Hearing other pilots make mistakes on the radio will help keep you from making the same mistakes.
  7. Just because you haven’t vomited in an airplane yet doesn’t mean you won’t.  Carry sic-sacs.  If not for you, for your passengers.
  8. Don’t force the airplane on the ground.  Eventually, it will come down.
  9. Bored with turns around a point?  Fly to grab a meal somewhere.  Finding utility in aviation will make training much more fun.
  10. Start watching the movies Airplane and Top Gun repeatedly.  When other pilots throw out a movie quote, you need to be prepared to either complete it, or trump it with another one.

Maybe one of these tips will help build your confidence after a hot day trying to master eights on pylons.  Whatever the trials and tribulations, flying is one of the most rewarding experiences you’ll have in your lifetime.  Getting that license is worth all the pain and suffering.

Care to add to our list?

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Doug grew up off the end of a runway and has wanted to fly before he could ride a bike. As the catalog manager for Sporty's Pilot Shop, he takes pride in developing products that make flying easier for pilots. After spending a short time in the military including a year in Iraq, his standards are abnormally high for pilot products. A private pilot with an instrument rating, he enjoys small prop planes more than any jet. You'll normally find him in a Cessna 172 or Skycatcher while on a mission to find the finest biscuits and gravy at an airport cafe.

6 COMMENTS

  1. There are two types of student pilots. Those that complete training and those that do not. The ones that finish we call private pilots. It’s that simple… Because you don’t fail till you quit

  2. […] Advice for Student Pilots – Top 10 List – Learn to Fly Here! http://learntoflyhere.com/Sporty's Pilot Shop is also home to Sporty's Academy, a world renowned flight school. With more than a dozen aircraft and nearly 30 instructors, we have a lot of flight training activity. Oftentimes one of our 100+ student pilots … […]

  3. There is fundamentally one skill that will improve all your flying 10 fold: Being able to perceive your pitch setting so clearly that you immediately recognize the slightest deviations and correct for them.

  4. You will know you are getting it when you don’t need to look at the needle/ball to know if you are skidding or slipping. When you feel you are sliding in your seat to the opposite side of your turn you are skidding; when you slide into the side of the turn you are slipping. The more subtle of these occurrences you can feel, the more accomplished pilot you have become.
    From an old pilot who has been flying since WWI -AND STILL AT IT AT 90!

  5. Bravo Captain Gibson! That settles an argument I’ve had with myself and several others! It’s a little like the big mouth full that tells how to taxi in a wind, “dive into a wind and climb away from a wind”
    Thanks for the wisdom and stay with it!!

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