As you probably know, paragliding is an extreme aerial sport in which paragliding pilots fly propelled only by wind and gravity. Paragliding is not a sport that you can learn overnight on your own. You must learn how to paraglide under the supervision of a professional — a certified instructor. You will work towards achieving the five different ratings along the whole process of learning how to paraglide.
So if you want to learn how to paraglide, these are the five ratings according to the USHPA:
Now, we will explain how to reach all these ratings step by step. Furthermore, if you are interested in paragliding information, you can take a look at other posts of our blog, such as:
Try tandem paragliding with an accredited instructor
The first step towards proficiency paragliding is to try tandem paragliding with an accredited instructor. If you have a successful flying experience, that will qualify you to receive your Student Paragliding P-0 rating. Once you get this rating, you will have the chance to fly under the direct supervision of a certified instructor. If you want to schedule a tandem flight, you need to contact a qualified paragliding school.
Acquire and demonstrate a basic understanding of what paragliding is
If you want to obtain a P-0 rating, you must demonstrate to your instructor that you have acquired a basic understanding of what paragliding is, together with basic knowledge and understanding of paragliding equipment, skills and techniques. Understanding:
You must cooperate with your instructor during the tandem flight. You must:
In order to receive a Beginner Paragliding Rating (P-1), you must enroll in a basic ground school — which courses are offered by certified paragliding schools. There, you will acquire knowledge enough to pass a written exam, as well as the skills required to determine wind and weather conditions.
You have to demonstrate your capability to manage the paraglider wing. You must show your ability to:
You have to demonstrate your capability to launch, fly, and land a paraglider on your own.
P-1 rating allows you to fly under the supervision of a certified instructor in winds of 12 mph or less. Your flights’ paths must be straight and as free of obstructions as possible.
If you want to obtain your Novice Paragliding Rating (P-2), you must enroll in a complete ground school theory courses (at least 8 hours). These will prepare you to take the written Novice exam. There, you will acquire practical and theoretical information about the following subjects:
You must demonstrate that you are able to lower your wing between flights. Your registration will be proof of your capability to do it. You must present the registration of at least 25 flights.
Demonstrate your mastery of 26 individual skills
You must demonstrate your capability to complete 26 different skills. These include:
P-2 rating allows you to fly without the supervision of a certified instructor. Nevertheless, you must observe strict performing limitations. These limitations include:
Not to fly when:
If you want to obtain an Intermediate Paragliding Rating (P-3), you must count on at least:
You must be proficient in many different paragliding theories, protocols, and skills. Aside from demonstrating your abilities, you have to pass the Intermediate Paragliding written exam too. You must prove your ability to:
P-3 rating means that you are able to assess sites and determine if your training has equipped you to fly. This rating still has operating limitations, such as avoiding steep turns near the ground.
Advanced Paragliding Rating (P-4) allows you to perform technically challenging flights. You must meet these requirements:
You must pass the Advanced Paragliding written exam and sign a statement assuming the risk for advanced paragliding. You must also exhibit the ability to:
P-4 rating means that you have the skills and the knowledge necessary to assess and fly technically demanding sites. The limits for a P-4 paragliding pilot include remaining 9 metres away from another paraglider in soft air conditions and approximately 30 metres feet from another paraglider in turbulent air conditions.
We hope that this information about how to paraglide has been useful. If you have any doubts or you need more information or if you are interested in our flights, don’t hesitate to contact us. We will be pleased to help you! You can also take a look at our paragliding guide and learn more about how to paraglide!
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