Beginner paragliding course
Following the BHPA syllabus. Suitable for a complete beginner.
Welcome to Fly Sussex Paragliding, we are truly passionate about giving you the best paragliding experience! The five day elementary pilot paragliding course is the first flying qualification. Think of it as stage one on the BHPA rating scheme. Over the course of five days we focus on mastering the basic skills required to paraglide safely. Your progress is plotted in your personal BHPA training log book. The five paragliding lessons do not have to be done consecutively but can be spread out over a few months (the paragliding course is valid for a year). We do recommend that you come regularly in order for you to progress through the syllabus.
EP confirms you have a clear understanding of the basics for flying a paraglider. The licence, whilst enabling you to fly a paraglider solo, does not qualify you to fly outside of the school. The Club pilot is the next rating you need to fly unsupervised anywhere in the world. You can save money by opting for the ten day combined EP and CP course.
WHEN YOU CAN FLY:
Here at Fly Sussex Paragliding we pride ourselves on being the only full time paragliding school in the UK who flies all year round 7 days a week (weather depending). We have even been know to fly on Christmas day! The ideal weather conditions are light winds (12mph max) with no persistent rain. We recommend you do your paragliding training regularly in order to progress through the syllabus. You don’t have to do the days consecutively but you will be a better pilot if you don’t have gaps in your training. The course is valid for one year from the date of purchase.
WHO YOU FLY WITH:
We have a team of full time BHPA qualified paragliding instructors who have your safety an enjoyment as number one priority. All our instructors are experienced paragliding pilots who have flown all over the world and are rather obsessed with paragliding! Our chief flying instructor Tim Cox was awarded the Royal Aero club lifetime achievement award for his contribution towards paragliding. Feel free to call or pop in and meet the team and have a chat with one of our instructors.
WHERE YOU FLY:
A massive advantage of learning to paraglide with Fly Sussex is we have all our own private training sites dotted around the beautiful south downs national park. This enables you to fly in much safer uncrowded airspace on beginner friendly sites. We do also use public sites on the club pilot course.
We are one of the UK’s longest running paragliding schools, established for 25 years. Our paragliding shop is based on the A27 outside Lewes, 20 minutes from Brighton and 1 hour from London.
There is one small exam to sit on the EP course. Don’t worry – our carefully planned lectures will equip you with the theoretical knowledge required to pass.
We are a British Hang Gliding and Paragliding Association (BHPA) approved and regulated school, therefore all students must be a member of the BHPA whilst training. BHPA membership gives you third party insurance and allows you to gain any BHPA ratings. The cost of this is not included in the course and will need to be paid for by you. The BHPA fees are £15 per day, £99 for annual or £55 for three month training membership. We can organise BHPA paperwork when you sign in at the shop on your first lesson.
IMPORTANT BOOKING INFORMATION
When do we start?
Don’t forget to call 01273 858170 after 7.30pm the evening before your booking and listen to the voicemail message for confirmation and start time for the following days flying. We will specify a time to meet at our shop which varies according to the weather forecast. If the weather prevents us from flying then just rebook. Please be aware the start and finish times vary according to the weather on the day.
What do I bring?
Paperwork: Please bring your voucher and completed booking form. We will need to check your voucher reference number off our records so it is important you bring the voucher with you on the day.
Attire: Comfortable clothing and suitable footwear (ie walking boots). Gloves and layers are a must on cold days. Suncream and sunhat are also a good idea.
Lunch: We also recommend bringing plenty to eat and drink, you’ll need at least a litre of water and plenty of snacks as learning to fly is physically demanding. Please note there are no shops near our base or on the flying sites so you will need to bring something from home.
Can’t make it?
You must give us at least 48 hours notice to cancel your booking. Failure to show up will result in you losing your day with us as your instructor will be waiting for you.
British Hang gliding and Paragliding association:
The flyer will need to join the BHPA
on the first day of the course. The BHPA provide third party insurance which is mandatory. If you are already a member please bring your membership card so we can take a note in your training log book.
If you would like to take out personal accident
cover then you will need to organise this on the morning of your course. Feel free to enquire with an instructor while signing in.
Been there and got the T-shirt!
When ordering your paragliding voucher you have the choice to add a Fly Sussex T-shirt
for a reduced price. When you come to fly on the day you can pick your perfect tee!
PHASE 1: Ground Training
Site Assessment Briefing
Introduction to canopy and equipment
Parachute landing roll
PHASE 2: Ground Handling
Pre flight checks
Getting into the glider
Launching the glider
PHASE 3: First Hops
Getting Airborne at low level
PHASE 4: Flight Exercises
Communications (radio, bat signals etc)
Responsibility briefing – you are the pilot in command!
Basic flight plans
PHASE 5: Theory and Exam
Theory lecture on meteorology, principles of flight, anti collision and airlaw
EP 30 minute exam – (70% pass rate)
BHPA CLUB PILOT SYLLABUS:
Before undertaking the Club Pilot you must have successfully complete the BHPA Elementary Stage Paragliding (Hill). A check flight may be required in circumstances where there has been a significant interruption in the training program.
PHASE 6: Pre-Soaring
180 degree turns
PHASE 7: Soaring
Flying with others
PHASE 8: Improving your skills
Ground handling in light and strong winds
Exploring the speed range
Accelerated flight, speed bar
Forward launch technique
Weight shift and pitch control
PHASE 9: Instability and emergencies
Theory of collapses, spin, stall, spirals, tree landings, PLF, line failure
Rapid descent technique
Dealing with tucks
PHASE 10: Theory and examinations
Principles of flight
Rules of the air
Sit the Hill environment exam (25 questions)
Sit the CP exam (56 questions)
Final assessment for club pilot:
If you have successfully reached the standard of airmanship required to fly safely and competently and have the right attitude to flying then you are given the BHPA Club Pilot Rating by our CFI.