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Learning to Fly — This is Going to Require Some Work

By January 27, 2015Aviation

[This post was written back in October and I’m just getting around to posting it]

Three flying lessons in and two things are clear: it is very fun and it is challenging. I am not sure how many people get into airplanes and are “naturals” but I don’t feel like I’m among them them!  Clearly, developing this skill is going to require some work. And it doesn’t appear to have any shortcuts.

Each lesson has the same structure: A fifteen minute ground briefing in the classroom where we review some aeronautical principles and how we are going to demonstrate them in the air. I inspect the aircraft and run through various checklists with Nico observing. The 45–60 minute air lesson itself. And then a quick ground debriefing of what went by in a blur. It goes by fast.

Say what you will about the cost of flight training (and my credit card bill will say plenty) but there is something great about a one-to-one learning environment. When my instructor asks a question in the briefing or in the air, there is no hiding place. You better at least take a stab at it. I have probably been doing a better job pre-reading materials than in any degree courses but it is still challenging to recall a fact on the spot with the instructor waiting. And of course, sometimes I’m just wildly wrong. I have a patient teacher in Nico so far. The whole thing forces you to learn concepts quickly and then get in the airplane and use them. It’s great fun.