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There are different types and methods of instruction offered, and most instructors use several different methods in combination.

Tandem Instruction:
Tandem instruction is when you go up with an instructor in a specially glider built to carry two people. Since the instructor is always there with you, this is the easiest, and most comfortable way to get a taste of what it’s like to fly. For your first lesson, the instructor will do the take off, and landing, and will take the controls whenever it’s necessary, but you can usually fly the glider yourself for a good portion of the flight. It’s a great way to see just how easy it is. On more advanced lessons, you’ll learn techniques for turning the glider, controlling your speed, and setting up a landing approach.

Launch Methods - Foot Launching and Towing:
In areas where there are hills and mountains, the most common way to launch a hang glider is to run down a hill until the wing lifts you away from the ground. In the flatlands, where there are no suitable hills, people launch by being towed aloft. You can tow up behind an ultralight airplane, or behind a boat or a car, or by being pulled by a stationary winch. Each method has its own specific techniques - worked out from years of experience to ensure the highest level of safety. In many hang gliding tow launch methods it’s possible to launch without any need to run - the glider is mounted on wheels, and you simply roll into the air. With some types of gliders, you can land the same way - on the wheels.

Ground School:
Once you start flying, you’ll want to learn more about the wind, the weather, and how the wing works. One of the great things about flying is that you can understand the basics of how it all works pretty quickly, and yet you can spend a lifetime learning about it and never run out of new discoveries. Your instructor will get you started, and then there are books, your fellow pilots, and your own experience to be sources of lifelong learning.

 

 
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