Is Paragliding hard to Learn?

It doesn’t matter what you want to fly; flight training is exciting, physically demanding, and mentally taxing. Flying can be challenging because it requires learning a new skill set, vocabulary, and muscle memory—but the reward is well worth the effort! Enjoying yourself while learning is the most important aspect of beginning any learning endeavour.

Having said that, flying can be a simple and relatively simple process.

Ground handling, on the other hand, is something that takes up a significant amount of time.

The next thing you should concentrate on is making good landing approaches and learning how to flare for the current weather. Today’s paragliding equipment is extremely durable, and the vast majority of those who are injured do so as a result of their own negligence.

The sport of paragliding is easier to learn if you are flying in light winds and smooth conditions. Hang gliders are orders of magnitude safer than parachutes if you want to fly in winds greater than 10mph and midday thermal conditions. However, they are more difficult to launch and land in light winds.

Is it dangerous to learn paragliding -Statistically

From a statistical standpoint, it is not dangerous at any time. Even with that being said, do you believe that every accident is entered into a global database?

In the United States, the USPHA, the national organisation that issues paragliding licences, is in charge of keeping track of accidents.

According to statistics, riding a motorcycle or skiing is more dangerous than driving a car. However, I should point out that almost every pilot I’ve known over the years has been involved in some sort of accident.

Some of them occur for the most insignificant and stupid of reasons.

The question arises as to how you can make flying a safe experience for yourself. As you learn to fly, you must first learn the rules of the game. If you follow those rules, you can be assured that things will become safer. I have some additional guidelines.

  1. Don’t fly alone, especially at a new site.
  2. If feel off that day (tired, dehydrated or hungover) don’t fly.
  3. Check the weather, Check the weather.
  4. Read books, watch videos and take additional training. A SIV course in addition to a your national licensing.

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The Main Dangers of Paragliding:

Most of Paraglide accidents are mainly due to Pilot error

Yes, there are things like freak accidents in anything we do, but 99% of paragliding accidents are because of pilot error. Errors like:

  • Not checking your equipment
  • Not minding the weather conditions
  • Not following the rules
  • Not doing what you’ve been taught
  • Not listening to your instructor
  • Not listening to more experienced pilots
  • Not listening to yourself
  • Not using common sense
  • Not minding your environment
  • Being over-confident
  • Becoming impatient

All the pilots I knew personally who died in Paragliding accidents Most of them died because they were flying in weather conditions they were not supposed to fly in.

Some pilots I knew who got injured during Paragliding accidents, got injured because they didn’t listen to their instructors.

Is paragliding safe to learn ?

Statistically, about 1 in 1,000 registered paraglider pilots die while paragliding each year (source). 

However, many accidents are not reported, so the danger may be greater. 

The big question I ask myself is whether the deaths are random, or whether I can be above average.

  1. Poor judgment about weather – strong wind, unstable air such as thermals or rotor
  2. Poor judgment about your abilities – flying when tired, flying very “active” air or an advanced wing without the skills to reinflate the glider if it collapses, not being able to land in small landing zones or to kite well on windy launches
  3. Errors while launching – not preventing collapses, not noticing knots in the lines (kravats)
  4. Errors while flying – turning into a ridge, miscalculating altitude, miscalculating horizontal wind, pulling the wrong lines, braking too much and stalling the glider, not checking the glider when it surges forwards, using speed bar in turbulent air
  5. Not taking care of gear – broken lines, holes in glider, old reserve parachute that doesn’t open
  6. Other pilots’ errors – a person flies into you or pushes you into a ridge
  7. Health incident while flying, such as a heart attack or blacking out

This all probably sounds pretty scary, but you’ll notice that the people who wrote answers to your question are all pilots…So why do we do it? 

Because for us, the rewards outweigh the risks.

Flying is the most freeing experience I’ve ever had, challenges me to be a stronger person each day, comes with an amazing community, and can be breathtakingly beautiful.

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Every action we take carries some risk, and we take precautions to reduce those risks as much as is reasonably possible.

Make sure you have good equipment and that you take good care of it.

Get your training from a reputable instructor, and take advantage of the opportunities to learn from those around you.

Some people demonstrate what not to do, and we can learn from their mistakes as well.

Practice. A good understanding of ground handling is essential. It is critical to get outside on a regular basis. SIV courses are extremely beneficial.

Learn about the weather and the physics of flight in this lesson plan. It is critical for our safety that we understand the how and why of what we do, as well as what to expect when we are in the air. If there is something you don’t understand, don’t be afraid to ask questions.

Recognize your own limitations and follow your instincts. It is acceptable to choose not to fly for any reason or for no reason at all.

Top tips to help you get into the world of paragliding

 Buy the Right Equipment

The wrong equipment can put people off the sport very quickly. Drill your instructors for advice and listen to it – they’ll be able to steer you towards the right kit for you.

 As a minimum, you will need a paraglider, harness, a reserve and a helmet that meets the EN966 standard. A complete kit can cost around $3,000 new, or less than $1,500 second hand. 

If you’re buying second hand, make sure to ask if the kit has a recent service record, which indicates airworthiness. The right kit can be the difference between a long flying career or never wanting to get the paraglider out of the bag again.

Join the local Flying club

You’ll be able to safely fly within a club environment once you’ve qualified through a local school’s Club Pilot course. Of course, this implies that you’ll need to join a club. 

This is most likely the one closest to your home or the club in which your paragliding school is involved. Joining a club will allow you to interact with and learn from other pilots. 

I joined the Pennine Soaring Club in 2014, and it’s been a fantastic source of information that has greatly aided my development.

Make Like Minded Friends and Fly with them

When you’re fresh out of flight school, it can be very intimidating, so it’s critical that you make friends, whose (hopefully many) years of experience you can absorb to help you progress. 

When you first start out, it can be difficult to decide which paragliding site to fly at and on which day. Your friends will be able to get you to the correct location at the correct time. 

Attending club nights will put you in touch with local pilots and club coaches who are there to help low-airtime pilots advance.

Final Remarks

Paragliding has evolved as a sport over the course of time. The equipment and training methodology have improved the overall safety of the sport; 

I would say that it is no longer considered an extreme adventure sport unless you specifically want it to be.

Flight training can be the most forgiving sport if you are cautious and avoid flying in challenging environments and weather conditions.

The dangers of paragliding can be directly associated with pilot error – this can be either of the many factors such as not getting trained properly, not understanding the limitations of wind and weather conditions, not understanding the limitation of equipment or skill level. 

Choosing the incorrect equipment, being overconfident, and so on.

I suppose there are inherent dangers when participating in any activity, including paragliding. 

Knowledge and skill can help to reduce the dangers, but they cannot completely eliminate them.


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A blog site of family outdoor adventures, Sports including Golfing, skiing, surfing, running , plus gear reviews and Fitness by Manny and Div, offering tips and information, photos, gear reviews, and expert tips-planning advice on outdoor adventure & Fitness.

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