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  • Andy B

How to become a better pilot

Happy new year!

As every year passes by, it gives you the possibility to formulate your goals for the new year. Inspired by Adél Honti and Chrigel Maurer I made my own little algorithm, which is adapted to my needs.

First, my goal is to stay safe. So every time I take off, my main goal is: don't do anything stupid.

Then I divide the skills needed into 4 categories:

  1. Technical This is flying skills. Everything that has to do with wing-control. It starts with carving/thermaling, ground-handling, acro, stalling, wing-overs etc. Where do you want to become better?

  2. Tactical This is a huge category: Everything from XC-decisions to instrument setups to geographical knowledge to meteo. An almost endless field. Probably the one we'll never run out of teaching lessons.

  3. Mental Probably the most important. Once you mastered the basic skills like thermaling you'll need a super strong mental side. Do you have tricks how to slow your breathing when you're nervous? Do you have a mantra? Can you always visualize the positives? This field as well is endless and probably the main reason why I fly. You have to be brutally honest to yourself.

  4. Physical Often forgotten but super important even if you don't do hike and fly. How can you fly for 8 hours with poor food and little water? Do you really have the stamina? And if you crash, do you have some muscles holding your pieces together? Do you really know what to eat the evening before the super day?

When a new year begins, I try to verbalize my goals and even write them down on a paper just to make sure I can look them up regularly.

Chose for every category 3 key points that you want to become better in.

Write down what is necessary to achieve the goal.

And then do it. You'll have 12 points to work on. More than enough! :-)

Try to avoid negative formulations like:

" I'm bad in XXX"

Better: "I can be better in XXX"

I have learned this in emergency medicine. Don't address what went wrong or was bad. Adress your opportunities!

Do a debriefing after every flight. You might use this model:

And when it's just a bad day, I try to remember what I have heard in Gavin McGlurgs podcast: If you fly a lot, there is no way that you don't get better!

In another blog, I will show you how I do my debriefings after the flight. So stay tuned or subscribe to the newsletter.

So enjoy what you're doing! It's supposed to be fun! Keep on smiling!

See you in the air!

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