5 Top tips about how to do paragliding for the first time
At Overfly Tenerife, we offer you the best paragliding flights. That is the reason why we want to tell you everything you need to know about how to do paragliding for the first time. Paragliding is undoubtedly one of the best things to do in Tenerife. Haven’t you tried it yet? There is no problem at all. Today we will tell you some top tips and secrets that you need to know — you will also have the chance to see some pictures, so you will see how fun it is!
We want to provide you the best paragliding experience that you could ever imagine — and that will be possible if you come to visit us in Costa Adeje, in the south of Tenerife. That is why today we are writing about how to do paragliding for the first time, in order to improve your experience as much as possible.
We think that doing paragliding at least once in a lifetime is compulsory. So the time is now! Take the chance to do it with us during your holidays in Tenerife. There are plenty of different flights — you just have to choose which one is the perfect one for you! What about a tandem paragliding flight? Read carefully, we will provide tips about how to do paragliding for the first time. Later we will give you a brief description of each of our flights. Let’s conquer the heavens of Tenerife!
- 1 What is paragliding and how to do paragliding for the first time?
- 2 Top 5 tips on how to do paragliding for beginners the first time
- 3 Paragliding equipment and gear
What is paragliding and how to do paragliding for the first time?
Before giving you our tips about how to do paragliding for the first time, you should know what’s paragliding. Paragliding is, by definition, “the sport of cross-country gliding using a specially designed parachute shaped like flexible wings”. But paragliding is so much more. We could say that it is the closest that a human being can get to the feeling of flying like a bird. It is a fun, safe way to experience flight in its simplest form.
Top 5 tips on how to do paragliding for beginners the first time
Have you ever dreamt about flying like a bird? Remember that the sky is the only limit, but in this case, the infinite sky is our ally. Let us be your pilot and we will reveal you how to do paragliding for the first time and learn to paraglide with our paragliding lessons.
Book a tandem flight
You may like the look of paragliding, but being up in the air you will probably feel that it is a very different experience of what you expected. Don’t worry, you will enjoy it anyway. The point is that you should book a tandem flight, above all if you wonder how to do paragliding for the first time or if you are still a beginner.
A tandem flight will give you the chance to fly with a professional. He or she will show you what it is like to fly with the birds minus the added stress of controlling the giant banana-shaped piece of fabric above your head.
Sign up for a course
If you already know how it feels to do paragliding for the first time and you consider that the experience was really worth it during your tandem flight, maybe you want to take it further and become a pilot. Yes, it sounds a bit crazy if you haven’t tried yet! But if you really want to become a pilot, you have to sign up for a paragliding course with certified professionals.
You will probably think that the paragliding course cost may be a bit expensive at the beginning. Nevertheless, you have to bear in mind that once you are set up with a license and equipment, you will only have to pay the cost of getting to the spots where you can fly. Dreaming is priceless!
Join a paragliding club
Once that you can explain to others how to do paragliding for the first time because you have your license through the Club Pilot course, you will be able to fly within a club environment. As you can guess, this means that you will have to join a paragliding club.
It will be better for you if you join the club that is closest to your home or even the club your paragliding school is involved in. If you join a club, you will have the chance to interact with other pilots —moreover, you will take advice from them and you will share your experiences.
Make paragliding friends and fly with them!
As we have just mentioned, if you want to find people who share your passion for paragliding, the best option is to join a paragliding club. It can be a bit overwhelming at the beginning, so it is compulsory to join a paragliding club and make friends. Hopefully, many of them will have years of experience that you can learn from, and that will help you to progress and improve your skills.
When you start your paragliding life, it can be difficult to make the right decision about which paragliding site to fly, on which day and so on. But don’t worry, because if you have paragliding friends, you will be able to get to the right place at the right time.
Find and buy the right equipment for you
Now that you are almost sure about how to do paragliding for the first time, are you wondering what to wear when you practice paragliding? It is very important to bear in mind that the wrong equipment can put you off this sport very quickly. You can ask us for advice and listen carefully – we will help you to find the perfect kit for you.
At the very least, you will need a paraglider, a harness and a helmet that meets the EN 966 standard. If you buy a new complete kit, its price will be more expensive. But if you want to buy a cheaper one, you can buy a second-hand kit for less money.
But be careful! If you are buying second-hand equipment, make sure to ask if the kit has a recent service record — this indicates airworthiness. We assure you that if you buy the right kit for you, you will have a long flying career — if no, you won’t probably want to get the paraglider out of its bag never again.
Paragliding equipment and gear
Now that we have told you all the tips you need to know about how to do paragliding for the first time, you are ready to discover all the equipment that you will need for your paragliding adventure. If you plan your equipment properly, that will undoubtedly help you with your progress — moreover, it will be more quickly and cheaper.
But don’t worry, if you practice paragliding in the south of Tenerife with us, you won’t need to buy any of these things! You will just need to wear comfortable clothes, a sweater or jacket just in case it is cold, and sports shoes. Well, there is something else… it is essential to come wanting to have fun!
Anyway, if you want to buy your own paragliding equipment and gear, you must know that finding cheap paragliding gears is not so difficult — but remember that the quality of your paragliding equipment should be your biggest priority.
Bear in mind that safety is the main thing to consider while paragliding, the other factors are secondary. So, if you buy your paragliding gears from unreliable stores, it is very likely that their quality is not the best, or at least not as you wish. So you have to think that it is not just about wasting money, it is about your own security.
The paraglider wing
How to choose the best glider to do paragliding for the first time? Gliders are rated for their ability to recover from collapses without resistance while flying. In general, paragliders that have an EN “A” rating are thought for beginners, due to they are generally easier to recover automatically from collapses. Gliders with higher EN letter (B, C, D) ratings require more pilot input to recover.
Collapses happen when you are flying in the air that has turbulence caused by thermals. Flying early or late in the day reduces the chances to suffer from turbulences, but flights will be shorter. This is not really important for you if you are still wondering how to do paragliding for the first time. But pilots normally choose wings, which need more input to fix problems. Why? It is due to this kind of wings generally has a higher performance.
Depending on its performance and quality, the price of your glider will vary. What class of paraglider should you choose to fly? It depends on the area where you are going to fly habitually. On the one hand, if you are going to fly just on the coasts, you will seldom experience turbulent air. On the other hand, if you want to fly over the mountainous desert, you can experience the most turbulent air in the world.
If you are the second type of pilot, your training will probably be more critical. That is the reason why we strongly recommend you to fly on the coast with us. But if you want to buy your own equipment, we recommend you to buy your paraglider according to the area where you want to fly, regardless of money.
Although paragliding is a quite simple sport, even for those who are wondering how to do paragliding for the first time, there is a wide variety of choices when it comes to paragliding helmets. So, which helmet should you buy? We want to help you choose the best option — therefore, let’s pay attention to a few crucial factors.
- Open face or full face?
In terms of helmets, there are only two types — the open face helmet and the full face helmet. On the one hand, the open face helmets are basically the same as the traditional bike or motorcycle helmets. On the other hand, the full face helmets have an extra bar across the chin.
The good and the bad news are that there are pros and cons to each shape. There are people who prefer open face helmets because they say that they give a wider range of vision and create less burden.
Other people say that full face helmet offers more protection to your head and face in case of collision, although they are heavier. Full face helmets also tend to reduce a bit more the noise of the wind. This can be really useful if you need to use the radio during your flight.
In conclusion, the shape is a matter of preference. But whatever shape you finally pick, make sure that it has a good quality and it doesn’t reduce your peripheral vision excessively. The capability of seeing is extremely important to do paragliding.
The size is probably the most important factor when you are choosing a helmet. It is simple —if it is too small, it will be extremely uncomfortable. If it is too big, it will be moving during the flight and it may interfere in your vision. Moreover, having the wrong size helmet means that you won’t be as safe as you should.
If you want to make sure that the helmet is the right size, the first things that you have to do is to put it on and fasten the chin strap. Once you do it, if you feel a continuous pressure on your head, it means the helmet is too small.
If you don’t feel that pressure, you have to move your head around in all directions. If the helmet falls over your eyes and you can feel it sliding or if it begins to slip off when you look down, then that means that it is too big.
If none of these two things happen, then it is the right helmet for you! Bear in mind that some helmets have a removable filler that will help you to adjust and customize the size of the helmet to your head.
As we have mentioned before, you must make sure that any helmet you buy conforms to EN 966 standards. These are the European standards that specify how flight helmets should stand up to impacts and how to test for that.
EN 966 applies specifically to flight helmets — there are other standards for different sports. But you have to bear in mind that if you are going to do paragliding, you should buy a paragliding helmet.
It sounds logical, and it is — but sometimes people are tempted to buy a motorcycle or ski helmet because they are easier to find. Nevertheless, it can be very dangerous, because they won’t protect you properly in a paragliding accident.
The helmet should have two hard coatings — an inner and outer shell. On the one hand, the inner one is designed for absorbing the biggest part of the shock if you have an accident. It is normally more fragile, and it is usually made of expanded polystyrene. On the other hand, the outer one is frequently made of thermoplastic, composite fiber, or Kevlar, combined with carbon fiber.
How to choose a harness if you are doing paragliding for the first time? The harness is much like sitting in a recliner. It has a small handle used to deploy the reserve parachute stored under the seat of the harness. The paraglider is attached to the two karabiners in the upper center. The back of the harness contains stiff foam used to protect the back of the pilot in case of collision. The modern harnesses normally include an airbag to increase the pilots’ protection.
There is also a large zippered storage area along the back of the harness for stowing gear, like the glider packing bag and anything else. Their price may vary between 390 and 1 300 euros. The vast majority of pilots spend around 750 euros on a harness.
By now, this is all that we can tell you about how to do paragliding for the first time. We will have the chance to show you when you come to visit us, we will be here waiting for you with our arms wide open! If you have any doubt or any question that we can answer, don’t hesitate to contact us! We will be here to help you anytime.