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COMMON QUESTIONS ABOUT BASIC TRAINING

Paramotor Training

What is Paramotor "basic training"?

Our "basic training" course will teach you all the basics in about 10 days. Most students will leave our program as confident novice pilots capable of flying independently. Think of it like Driver's Ed, where you can learn to drive, but are still very much a novice for those first several months of driving. Our program will teach you the basics (aerodynamics, airspace, regulations, ground handling, takeoffs/landings, flying, etc) but more importantly, it will equip you with the tools and knowledge to continue learning and growing your circle of skills long after training.

During the 10-day course, you can expect to acquire the skills and knowledge for PPG 1 and PPG 2 ratings. After basic training, we will continue to work with you for however many months or years it takes to get you the PPG 3 rating. Learn more about USPPA ratings here: USPPA Ratings

If/when you're ready (usually takes years), you can take our "advanced training" course to obtain an Instructor or Tandem rating. Click here to learn more about our advanced training.

Are tandem flights part of the training?

Yes! We use tandem flights as part of our curriculum. Before you fly solo, you’ll do a tandem flight with an experienced Tandem Instructor where you will learn basic flight maneuvers and how to cancel oscillations. The tandem flight is a useful tool to help you feel more prepared to fly solo!

How much is the basic training course?

Our basic training course is $2500. This covers the training and use of our school gear (you don't need to purchase any gear for training). In general, we recommend you hold off on purchasing gear until you've mastered the basics and you know for sure if this is the right sport for you. It's a big investment and it might be more difficult to learn than you think.

Some people know they are going to be 100% committed to this sport. If that's you, and you're sure you want to purchase a paramotor and wing ahead of time, we are happy to offer a $1000 discount on the cost of new gear (wing + paramotor) when you purchase it from us. Please call us to discuss the pros and cons of buying equipment before training.

What is included with the Basic Training course?

When you sign up for basic training, the journey starts right away:

As soon as you sign up...

We will mail you a welcome kit that includes a copy of the "Powered Paragliding Bible" by Jeff Goin. We will also give you access to Andre Bandarra's Ground Handling Course so you can view all 20 modules before you arrive for training (you will have access about 1 month prior to training).

You'll get started with: 320 pages (32 chapters) + 20 videos of exclusive content to help you understand the essentials all BEFORE you even show up to start training.

What to expect during training...

During the 10 days, we'll spend together, you will master all the basics including ground handling, tandem flight, ground school (weather, airspace, aerodynamics, regulations, etc), and of course solo flying! The tandem flight will prepare you to be more ready to fly solo. Many students will be ready to fly solo by day 4 of our course.
Click here to view the USPPA Skills and Knowledge Checklist (this shows all the skills and topics you can expect to learn with us). Whether you train with us or someone else, we HIGHLY recommend you use this list to ensure you learn about all the topics covered in this checklist (print a copy for your records).

What to expect after training...

Basic training is just the beginning. Now that you have the skills and confidence to fly independently, you'll need to put in the time and effort to transition from novice to expert. It takes time! Fly as often as you can until your technique gets dialed in. Continue learning by re-reading the PPG Bible and watching the online Ground Handling course. It will all make more sense now that you've learned the basics. Join our Epic Paramotor Alumni & Friends FB Group and stay in touch. We would love to have you join us at fly-ins or on flying trips.

Who is the ideal student for this "bootcamp" approach?

Our training program is rigorous and intense. That's why we call it "Bootcamp". The ideal student for this training style must be physically fit, eager to learn, and have the stamina to endure long days and physically demanding conditions. In our experience, students under the age of 50* are typically more likely to succeed with this intense style of training. If you are not sure about your physical ability, give us a call or reach out to us to discuss. Virtually ANYONE can learn to fly a paramotor, but we recommend a different format of training for those who may not be able to complete our "Bootcamp" style of training.

*We have had students over 50 perform much better than their younger class members. We know it's possible, but you'll want to be honest about your physical ability and strength. It really is hard work!

How do I know if paramotoring is for me?

If you have ever dreamt of flying or been involved with aviation, odds are you will love paramotoring. If you enjoy riding a motorcycle, you'll probably like the feeling of flying a paramotor (sometimes called the dirtbike of the sky). We have trained students who were simply curious about this sport and were just looking for a new hobby or a change of pace in their life (midlife crisis?), and after learning to fly, they didn't fly as often as they thought they would, and they eventually fizzled out of this sport.

We want to be clear about this...paramotoring is incredibly fun and rewarding, but it's not as easy as it may seem. When you watch experienced pilots (like you may have seen on youtube), just know that they have put in a considerable amount of time, effort, blood, sweat, and tears to master these skills. Like any sport/hobby, it takes time and effort to become proficient (don't expect to master this in 10 days).

THE GOOD NEWS IS THAT IF YOU'RE WILLING TO SPEND THE TIME AND PUT IN THE EFFORT, PARAMOTORING CAN QUICKLY BECOME ONE OF THE MOST REWARDING AND FULFILLING THINGS THAT YOU DO!

I can't do a 10-day course. Are there other options?

Our primary training method is the 10-day training course. We occasionally offer individual session training to students who can't attend one of our courses. If you are committed to training with us, and you plan on purchasing new gear from us, we may be able to train you outside of our scheduled courses. For more information, please contact us individually. For session training in Arizona, call/text Nik at 480-293-4883. For session training in Utah, call/text Noah at 435-571-1942.

Where do you do the bootcamp training courses?

From November - April we do our training courses in Arizona (usually a field within an hour of Phoenix).
From May - October we do our training courses in Utah at an airport near Eagle Mountain, UT.
Coming Soon - We are building a private 70-acre paramotor flight park in New Mexico.

Logistics - Both of our training locations allow for camping. Students are welcome to bring camp trailers (dry camping) and stay on-site for the course duration. Alternatively, students can stay at nearby hotels or Airbnbs and commute daily. If you have questions about logistics, please contact us.

Do you offer private group training?

In general, we travel during the months that we are not running courses. However, if you have a group of 3 or more people AND at least 2 plan on purchasing new gear, we may be able to schedule a private 10-day training course for your group at any location that's convenient for you. For private group training, please call/text Noah at 435-571-1942.

Video Testimonials...

Check out the following videos of our recent students who completed their first flights with us.

Matt Hollinger - 1st Flight

Neil Norton - 1st Flight

Brad Hintze - 1st Flight

COMMON QUESTIONS ABOUT GEAR

Do I need to buy new gear for training?

No. Our training program includes rental gear for you to learn on. We will provide the paramotor, wing, helmet, and anything else you may need for flying. We are proud to be a Parajet-affiliated school, and we use the incredibly popular Parajet Maverick for training. We have the gear to accommodate any pilot from 100 lbs to 250 lbs. If you weigh less than 100lbs or more than 250 lbs, you may need to purchase the appropriate wing size and motor suitable for your weight.

I want to purchase new gear. What brands do you sell?

We are happy to offer many of the top brands in the sport. If you want to purchase new gear, we will help you in the selection process to ensure you have the right gear for your specific weight, skill level, and desired flying style. Call us to discuss!

We can sell the following paramotor brands: Adventure Pluma, Air Conception, Fly Products, Kangook, Miniplane, Moment, Parajet (our preferred brand), Power2Fly, ProPulse, Limitless, and Scout.

We sell the following wing brands: APCO, BGD (our preferred brand), ITV, Niviuk, and Ozone (our preferred brand)

Do you sell used gear?

Yes. We have some limited options on used gear, including our school gear. All of our school gear is available to purchase during/after training. You can see our list of available used gear by clicking the button below.

New vs Used Gear - When you purchase new gear, you'll know the full history of what it's been through and what it hasn't been through. If you want to feel confident in your gear, you can't beat new gear. If you're looking to save money, used gear can be a great way to do it. The key is to avoid buying something used without consulting with an instructor or a seasoned paramotor pilot first. You don't want to buy something that won't work well for you. Your weight, skill level, and flying style are all factors that need to be considered when purchasing gear. We're happy to help you with that process (even if you don't buy from us or train with us).

I'M READY TO DO IT! NOW WHAT?

How do I sign up?

In the menu at the top of the website (three-striped lines if you're on your mobile device), click on "Available Training Dates", then click on the dates that work best for you. That will take you to the registration page where you can select the dates for the course. Once you apply to secure your spot in our training program, we will call you to interview over the phone to ensure we will be a good fit for your specific training needs. Once that is done, we will email you to confirm that you have secured a spot in our training program. If you prefer, you can call us beforehand for this interview, and then you can register and pay for the course or the deposit once you've been given the green light that we have a spot available for you.

Let's make the dream a reality!

OTHER FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Check out the FAQ's below and feel free to contact us if you still have questions.

Frequently Asked Questions

There are inherent risks associated with all forms of aviation but these risks are mitigated by operating your Paramotor and wing within the guidelines outlined in the owners manual and within your skills and limitations. The short answer is YES (honestly, it’s as safe as YOU make it to be)…It’s one of the easiest and safest forms of flight. The #1 key to safely enjoying this sport is good decisions making skills. You need to understand the glider and it’s limitations and your skills and their limitations as well. A good training program will help you to develop the skills and habits to enjoy this hobby for many years to come.

Fortunately, you are flying a glider…so you just glide down and land. During training, all of your landings are done with the motor off, so you will be used to coming down and landing without your motor. As long as you fly within gliding range of a safe landing spot, engine failures are nothing more than an inconvenience.

Yes and No. There are two forms of Paramotor flying: foot launch and wheel launch. Foot launch is where you use your feet as the landing gear to run and takeoff and also to land. You must be able to run with the weight of your motor on your back until you takeoff. Paramotors generally weigh between 45 - 80 lbs depending on the brand and size.
Wheeled launch is where you use wheels, like on a trike or quad. This is a great alternative to foot launch depending on your age and physical abilities. Wheeled launch units can weigh much more but since you’re using wheels, it doesn’t matter as much.
We only train foot launch pilots since we only sell foot launch gear.

No. Paramotoring in the United States falls under Federal Aviation Regulations (FARs) part 103. It states that no license, medical certificate, registration, or training is required to fly. You are required to fly during daylight hours (sunrise - sunset) and stay away from congested areas and you can’t carry passengers without a waiver. Your ground school training will go in-depth on general regulations and airspace rules.

This is one of the most important decisions you will make. Let someone help you! The right motor and wing will depend on your weight, the altitude where you takeoff from (sea level is easier than up in the mountains), and of course your budget. Don’t just buy something you find on the internet. Talk to other pilots, or to an instructor and get their advice and opinions. Some pilots and instructors will feel like used car salesmen when it comes to talking about Paramotors. They will swear that their brand is the best and all the others are trash. The truth is that there are A LOT of good brands and models out there.
Motors: Don’t make the mistake of thinking that the stronger the better. You want the motor that is strong enough for you and that’s it. If your motor is too strong, you will battle with unnecessary weight and unwanted torque (you’ll learn about this in training). We're happy to help you choose something, even if it’s not something we sell, like something used or a brand we don’t carry. Our main goal is to help you get into this sport so you can enjoy the miracle of flight that we enjoy so much!
Wings: Wings come in various sizes and styles. You want to make sure you get a wing that is just the right size for you, not too big and not too small. This is all based on weight. You also want to start on a beginner or intermediate wing and not on an expert wing. Wing are generally rated A, B, C, and D where an A wing is for beginners and generally slower and safer to learn on. Again, please talk to other pilots or to an instructor to ensure you get the right wing. Don’t just pick a random wing cause you found a good deal on the internet.
In short, reach out to us and we’ll help you, even if it’s just giving advice about a wing you are buying from somewhere/someone else (used or new). We just want to make sure you don’t regret what you buy.

The good news is that there are A LOT of good schools and instructors out there. The usppa.org website is a good place to start in your search for an instructor or school. Keep in mind that a good pilot doesn't necessarily mean they'll be a good instructor and vice versa. You want to talk to your potential instructor and get a feel for their style and approach. You don't need a Nascar driver to teach you how to drive a car and you don't need a daredevil pilot to teach you how to fly. If you want to learn crazy acrobatic tricks, then pick an instructor who can eventually teach you those tricks. if you want to fly calm and slow, pick someone who can teach you just that. In the end, the instructor/school will only get you to the point of flying confidently alone. After that, you develop your skills on your own and you can attend further training like SIV courses but it's mostly you alone with time developing your own skills. The search for a school/instructor can feel frustrating at first because some places feel very pushy or belittling of other brands or schools. Keep looking! There are lots of good instructors and lots of good options out there. Search for local facebook groups of paramotor pilots in your area and talk to them, go watch them fly and try to meet people in person before you make a decision. If you have any questions at all, feel free to reach out to us. Even if you don't train with us, we'll give you our honest opinions about used gear or tips for picking wings or things like that, even the brands we don't sell because the truth is that almost all the brands of wings and motors are good. Good luck with the search and we hope see you soon in the air!

Almost anywhere…avoid congested areas, busier airports (don’t fly within 5 miles of an airport with a control tower), and you can’t takeoff/land in national parks and some state parks. You will learn all the details in ground school. There are many Facebook groups of local pilots who can indicate where the best local launch sites are and where to fly locally. Be courteous to neighbors and land owners to minimize complaints.

We generally fly in the morning and the evening when conditions are calm. Experienced pilots can fly in stronger conditions. Weather and wind limitations also depend on where you are. Coastal winds coming off the water are smooth and stable while winds in the mountains or over land may be turbulent and unpleasant to fly in. You will learn about weather and wind conditions in ground school.

We cover all the basics in 8 full days of training (weather permitting). Most people will be ready to fly on the 3rd or 4th day of training. After your training, you’ll continue to learn and develop your skills on your own.

In mild conditions, you will generally do a forward launch. You run facing forward while pulling the wing up behind you. You’ll generally run 5 - 15 feet before you are in the air.
In stronger winds, you will do a reverse launch, where you face the wing and your weight to inflate the wing, then spin around and take off.
Forward Launch
Reverse Launch

Yes. Paragliding or free flying is when you fly with your same wing but a different harness (without the motor). It can be a lot of fun! You’ll need a mountain to launch from or some kind of ridge where you can get lift. Check out the video of several of us free flying in California.

No. Routine seasonal maintenance like cleaning/changing the spark plug will keep your Paramotor running smoothly for a long time. Most of us end up learning as we go. There are vast resources in each community and online to assist with any mechanical or maintenance issues. Learning these things is part of the fun, but if you don’t want to learn it at all, there is always someone who can do it for you if you’re willing to pay, just like with your own car.

Generally, the same type of gas you use in your car but mixed with 2-stroke oil. It’s recommended to use the highest octane possible, like premium. We use 91 Octane Ethanol Free in our school motors. Several gas stations have the right gas. You just mix it with the oil that is available online or at most motorcycle or recreation shops. It’s really easy!

A truck is convenient but certainly not necessary. Many people transport their Paramotor using a cargo trailer hitch as pictured below. Others use a trailer.

Paramotors burn just under 1 gallon of gas per hour, so you can average the cost with oil at about $5/hour. Other maintenance costs would include new belts, spark plugs, and other minor things at 25, 50, or 100 hours of flight. Paramotoring is one of the most cost-effective ways to enjoy a flight. The initial cost of training is $1500 - $2500 (depends on if you buy gear or rent), new gear motor+wing will range between $8000 - $12,000. Used gear will range between $6000 - $9,000. The only other expenses to factor in are helmet ($100 - $400 with comms), reserve parachute ($500+ highly recommended), gloves ($15), radio to communicate with other pilots ($35), GoPro or other cameras to capture your epic adventures ($200+).

Taking a passenger or "tandem" fliying is possible with the correct equipment and training. A special license is required.

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