What’s involved in taking paragliding lessons, and how much does it cost?
In order for you to buy equipment you need a rating. A P2 is what would be required to fly on your own off of a mountain.
After you can pre flight the glider, ground handle, launch and land the glider yourself (and neatly fold it and put it away) you can get a P1 (usually in 4 to 6 gliding lessons with p2 ground school).
Then you can fly from higher hills, anywhere from 300 to 1000 feet high, where you can practice turning the hang glider and setting up a landing approach, which gets you ready for a P 2!
Once you have a rating you can buy equipment. All mountain footlaunch Paragliding sites are a p 2 or higher rated site.
So, if you want to fly and have never done so, your best bet would to read Dennis Pagan’s Paragliding Training Manual, and come out to the Point of the Mountain. There you can meet up with Birdman Academy. Get your training and your gear, and leave (or stay!) with the equipment and knowledge to let you fly and keep you safe.
Paragliding lessons (students average 10 or 15) @ 100 each: around $1200
P2 package (some restrictions apply) $1200
Then you need a harness, parachute, glider, and a vario.
There is also used equipment, please email for information.
Here at the Point of the Mountain (Point), we have an outstanding environment in which to safely and quickly learn and master the art of flying modern hang gliders and paragliders!
With Birdman Academy, you have a chance to learn Paragliding at one of the best places in the world, by some very experienced instructors. We use small steps : first starting out low, and then working higher, all the time with the instructor telling you exactly what to do on the radio which makes learning to fly faster and easier!
Birdman Academy specializes in foot launch solo hang gliding and paragliding instruction and ratings certification, as well as helping you get the gear that you need to fly on your own.
For your first lesson, after a beginners ground school and flight demonstration, students will first run on flat ground with the glider floating over their heads. They must understand the basic radio instructions (left, right, trim, and light brake) before they are allowed to move up to the training hill. The first lesson gets most students ready to be flying approximately 15 feet high for about 150 feet or so, depending on both the student progress and the wind conditions.
Birdman Academy Instructor experience
We take your flight training seriously at Birdman Academy. Our founder, Kevin Koonce, had taught thousands of beginner Hang Gliding lessons while working for a few years as an instructor at Kitty Hawk Kites. Over thousands of lessons, he has seen many different people make the same beginner mistakes while learning how to Hang Glide, and has many helpfull techniques to help beginning students that have been learned from spending many years travelling around the U.S. and talking to many different Hang Gliding instructors.
While working at Kitty Hawk Kites, “the Birdman” oversaw the first Hang Gliding lessons of approximately 8,000 first time Hang Gliding students.
As well as teaching Hang Gliding, “the Birdman” was not only privlidged to fly a 1902 Wright Brothers Glider replica, but was key in the “figuring out” of how to fly, launch and land the glider replica; not only with the fellow Hang Gliding instructors, but also in working with the team of hot shots (an F-18 test pilot, a, astronaut, an Apache attack helicopter instructor, and others) that were trying to learn how to fly the glider replica in order to help them learn how the 1902 powered Wright Brothers glider will fly!
After moving to the Point of the Mountain, the Birdman started paragliding, and started offering lessons and tandems for paragliding as well as hang gliding. It’s a good way to keep all your bases covered.
The local weather conditions at the Point are legendary for producing consistent smooth training winds, which provide maximum potential for flying a hang glider or a paraglider during the lesson. Many different training locations will familiarize students with the act of ‘hang waiting’, which is defined as waiting on launch until the wind blows in a favorable, sustained cycle.
Hang gliding and Paragliding lessons at the Point do sometimes involve hang waiting, but the amount of time spent waiting for wind at the Point is much less than anywhere else. The wind at the Point really loves to blow in at the south side almost every morning, which makes your job of learning to fly much easier and faster!