We hope that this is the start of a long, safe and enjoyable time as a pilot. This section of the website is aimed at new pilots who have recently attained their Club Pilot rating from a BHPA school - or are just about to. It may also be a useful resource for BHPA members who have gained a rating through the alternative entry scheme, and for non-current pilots who need motivation or reassurance to get out flying again. Getting your CP does not mean that you are sufficiently "qualified" and can stop learning. At this point you can choose to continue your education in a club environment, instead of through instruction at your flying school.
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From its head office in Leicester the BHPA supports a country-wide network of recreational clubs and registered schools , and provides the infrastructure within which hang gliding and paragliding in the United Kingdom UK thrive. The BHPA oversees pilot and instructor training standards, and provides technical support such as airworthiness standards, and coaching courses for qualified hang gliding and paragliding pilots.
Initial hang gliding or paragliding training must be undertaken at a BHPA registered school. The Learn to Fly section of this web site explains the relative merits of each discipline, the types of flying involved, and provides an insight into the training methods used.
Obtaining your Club Pilot rating marks the end of your formal instruction and qualifies you to leave the school and fly within a BHPA recreational club.
The BHPA supports a network of UK hang gliding and paragliding recreational clubs who are able to offer the supportive flying and social environment vital to the safe development of your flying skills, as you join other recreational flyers on the hill, and continue your progression through the BHPA Pilot Rating Scheme PRS.
As your accumulated airtime increases and your flying skills improve, you will probably start to think about your long term goals and aspirations, and working towards your Pilot Rating, the next rung on the PRS ladder. Club coaches can offer advice and support with the flying tasks that need to be completed, and the theory exam you will need to sit.
This will allow you to test your current knowledge and help you to understand the subject areas you will need to revise before sitting the real exam. However, it is well known that pilots make safer more efficient progress when they are given particular tasks to undertake. This offers an alternative to the more formal Pilot Rating System, and for newly qualified pilots aims to: encourage interaction between new pilots, their club and its coaches provide a structured way to progress, acquire knowledge and build skills through attainable goals reduce flying related incidents and promote safe flying The BHPA also has a disability initiative called Flyability.
This glossy full colour magazine is distributed by mail to around 6, BHPA members each month as part of their membership package. Skywings magazine is also read by countless more hang gliding and paragliding pilots and organisations around the world who have purchased an International Skywings magazine subscription from our on-line shop. BHPA members and Skywings subscribers can also download a password protected electronic vesrion of the magazine on our Skywings page.
Issues of Skywings magazine with a cover date more than 6 months old are made freely available, and can therefore be downloaded or viewed on-line without the need to login. Back issues of Skywings magazine can also be purchased from our on-line shop.
But if you require personal or travel insurance, this should be obtained from an independent insurance broker. Whilst Skywings magazine frequently includes lively and thought provoking articles and letters about our sport, there are numerous alternative sources of advice, information and debate on the internet, and the following list is just a small selection of those available:.
Pilot Handbook BHPA
British Hang Gliding & Paragliding Association