Private Flying LAA/BMAA/BGA/BPA The sheer pleasure of flight.

Intensive PPL

Old 23rd Jan 2021, 22:51
  #21 (permalink)  
Join Date: Oct 2017
Location: Bressuire
Posts: 385
Well, one undoubted fact is that: "ignorance is bliss"
Fl1ingfrog is offline  
Old 23rd Jan 2021, 23:44
  #22 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jan 2020
Location: Melbourne
Posts: 21
Step 1. get medical
Step 2. pass theory
Step 3. go flying whenever your wallet permits

Bosi72 is offline  
Old 24th Jan 2021, 07:59
  #23 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Wherever I lay my hat
Age: 43
Posts: 513
Flying is a skill - learned by practice and tested by examination to a required standard.

Why on earth do some people keep insisting that a PPL done over 8 months is somehow better/safer/ more desirable than one done over 4 weeks?!

​​​​​It's just flying a plane guys. Up/down/left/right and a bit of knowledge. You get tested and your logbook checked. They want to know how many hours you have because that's how we measure flying, no one cares how many hours you have sat on the ground.
rudestuff is offline  
Old 24th Jan 2021, 09:09
  #24 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Wherever I lay my hat
Age: 43
Posts: 513
Originally Posted by Pilot DAR View Post
My experience in instructing has shown me that the instruction is like the flowing water, and the student is the sponge. It's the instructor's job to pour water onto the sponge only at a rate at which it's not flowing off, and running down uselessly. The student's job is to grow the sponge, so it can absorb more and more water, without wasting any. This means that the student arrives for the instruction with their sponge well wrung out of all of life's other distractions, and both ready to absorb, and, knowing how much it can absorb (having good questions).
​​​​​​A Great analogy. So for someone keen to get trained ASAP to take advantage of weather/time off etc, their optimal should be to train at the fastest rate that keeps them below saturation point. Which of course will be different for everyone. I remember primary flight training, I was doing 2 flights a day of around 1 hour. And it still felt like I had too much time sat on the ground waiting!
rudestuff is offline  
Old 24th Jan 2021, 09:52
  #25 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Sheffield
Posts: 109
I obtained my PPL in 4 weeks at a school in Florida 10 years ago. The main reason I did it this way was my age, and that I didn't want to commit my weekends to the vagaries of the UK weather for up to twelve months. In the preceeding year, I did all of the exams I could, confirmed I could get a medical, and did half a dozen lessons in the UK. I got my licence in Florida, and I continue to learn to fly in the UK. On my return to the UK, I did another few lessons to get used to the USA/UK differences. I found I enjoyed the learning experience, so twelve months after my return, I carried on in the UK for my IMC.
On a practical level, one of the best things I did during the training was pal up with another couple of students I shared a house with, as we also shared our experiences. The School also allowed us to back seat on each others training, and it is amazing the amount you learn when you don't have to fly the aircraft at the same time. The 45 hours in my log book equated to at least double in my head.
To the OP, if you wish to follow a blow by blow account of my training ( and you are an insomniac), I have left my blog of it online at new Website

BobD is offline  
Old 24th Jan 2021, 10:33
  #26 (permalink)  
Join Date: Oct 2017
Location: Bressuire
Posts: 385
I was doing 2 flights a day of around 1 hour. And it still felt like I had too much time sat on the ground waiting!
This reminds of the valuable cliche "better to be sat on the ground wishing you were flying than up there and wishing you were on the ground."

Whenever a new student requested that they flew say 4 hours per day I would always agree to it but with the advice that they were likely to become overwhelmed quite quickly In the vast majority of cases this happened and the student would cut back to the recommended two flights per day. Of course, different phases of the course require different approaches. The general handling elements can easily become overwhelming when covered intensively. The navigation exercises at 3-4 hours per day is unlikely to be overwhelming.

Fl1ingfrog is offline  
Old 24th Jan 2021, 16:11
  #27 (permalink)  
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: near an airplane
Posts: 1,891
Then again, the navigation exercises require extensive preparation! If I did one in the afternoon, I found it quite a task to have the complete preparation done before flying another one the next morning.
Jhieminga is offline  
Old 24th Jan 2021, 16:18
  #28 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: West Coast Canada
Posts: 3,969
Originally Posted by Maoraigh1 View Post
"For example the forced approach is taught at a few "favorite fields" and instead of learning flight path judgment the students learns if they turn final over the red house they will get a good mark on their fligth test."
That is bad.
"The goal of ab initio flight training should not be "get a PPL", it should be "become a safe pilot". This sounds rather obvious but I would suggest that too often the point is lost. I see a lot of flight training that is completely designed to pass the flight test. This is accomplished with a lot of canned lesson plans."
Have you any accident/incident statistics to support your opinion that passing the flight test is not enough to make a safe pilot?
Extra hours will not change the pilots personality, but will provide extra income for the school.
Perhaps many of the schools you criticise are in fact good.
Cause and effect are hard to prove, however every time I read GA accident report summaries there always seem to be reports on airplanes flown by PPL's that went off the end of the runway after floating 2/3 rds of the way down the runway, hit nose wheel first hard enough to break the airplane, had a loss of control on a crosswind takeoff , engine failure due to carb ice etc etc. These are gross handling errors and speak to a fundamental lack of flying skill. They all passed the PPL flight test but then went out and crashed a perfectly serviceable airplane. I get the issue of maintaining proficiency after the skills test but I would suggest the shallower the skill set the less likely an acceptable skill level to handle all reasonable conditions will be attained and maintained.
Big Pistons Forever is offline  
Old 24th Jan 2021, 19:32
  #29 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jan 2021
Location: MAN
Posts: 2
I'm very glad to have trained over a full year to experience different seasons and how is affects flying. Learning to fly is a luxury and privilege and corners should not be cut in order to get the training done as fast as possible.
markd77 is offline  
Old 25th Jan 2021, 05:52
  #30 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Wherever I lay my hat
Age: 43
Posts: 513
I wouldn't say that a PPL is a luxury or a privilege, a PPL is a licence to learn, and should be held with a great deal of humility. Anyone who thinks that they somehow have received superior training is an accident waiting to happen.

Flight training should be as comprehensive as it needs to be, and I agree corners should not be cut. So can someone please tell me - if I choose to fly 45 hours over 6 weeks instead of 45 hours over 12 months - what corners are being cut??
rudestuff is offline  
Old 25th Jan 2021, 10:34
  #31 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: West Sussex, England
Posts: 466
I suspect like most humanoid activities it requires repetition and time for one's motor skills to develop.
mikehallam is offline  
Old 25th Jan 2021, 11:26
  #32 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jan 2021
Location: MAN
Posts: 2
Rudestuff - I dont think any reputable ATO offering an intensive PPL over a short span of time would cut corners. There are indeed advantages of doing it that way. For me personally I wanted to space the training out over a year because that's the pace I wanted to learn at.

However, I know of several people who attended PPL groundschool courses that sat all the exams in one day without opening a book. I think this is primarily why the CAA has chosen to conduct the PPL exams on a computer now, with a centralised bank of questions just like the ATPL's.
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Old 25th Jan 2021, 12:05
  #33 (permalink)  
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Ontario, Canada
Age: 60
Posts: 4,796
So can someone please tell me - if I choose to fly 45 hours over 6 weeks instead of 45 hours over 12 months - what corners are being cut??
'Perhaps none, perhaps some, it depends upon the capacity of the student to absorb and retain the training. If the student is coming to each next lesson with the previous lesson material well retained, and reviewed, and the instructor is considering and confirming this, then no corners are being cut. But many students would be challenged to retain a good basis of the instruction if it comes at them too fast. For a dedicated student with ground school complete, and few life distractions, 45 hours in six weeks is probably fine. As long as the school will detect those few students who cannot keep up with even that pace.

Some students have gone through, and obtained a PPL without retaining the required basic skills and precision in flying. Worse, is that they don't realize that they really should have some additional training to reach the minimum safe standard - I've flown with a couple for the purpose of more advanced training, which I could not complete with them.
Pilot DAR is offline  
Old 25th Jan 2021, 12:42
  #34 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: UK
Posts: 1,460
Originally Posted by mikehallam View Post
I suspect like most humanoid activities it requires repetition and time for one's motor skills to develop.
It does, but when I started flying again last summer after a long break what really was a struggle was having other gliders around, not the motor skills for a co-ordinated turn etc. Landing was a challenge as well. Just got to feeling the rust on it's way out and we are back in lockdown.

cats_five is offline  
Old 26th Jan 2021, 10:42
  #35 (permalink)  
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: England
Age: 62
Posts: 292
Analagy about water and sponge is very good, I learned the theory side at a fast pace but it went in and stayed there.

Time frame gaining any licence varies according to ability, just that aviation has more financial constraints.
I found an intensive course worked for me because I went in with a positive mindset , had a goal and was prepared to be flexible to achieve the goal; taking a residential course also eliminates potential distractions, I lived and breathed aviation for 22 days and even on the (thankfully few) non flying days I revised and got up damn early on flying days to maximise potential. Doing the same thing in once or twice weekly lessons would have been a struggle for me as regards memory retention and focus.

Does it make a difference to becoming a better pilot, hard to answer in retrospect, you don't know what you don't know, I was fortunate enough to keep flying regularly until I had sufficient hours to join an Auster group. Experience is the best teacher and the training I had was good enough to get my licence and then allow me to then gain my own experience; at no point did I feel that I was being pushed faster than I could run but I accept that this is a possibility on intensive courses.
Thinking back, I had a couple of moments but I can put those down to p!ss poor planning on my part, one of which was resolved by a tip whilst training, timed run from a known VRP, thankfully I'd practiced this and knew the time/air speed and only had to allow for wind variables.
Momoe is offline  
Old 28th Jan 2021, 16:14
  #36 (permalink)  
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: UK,Twighlight Zone
Posts: 72
Originally Posted by Porteous Loopy View Post
Two questions here, building on the information already given by many contributors:
  1. Which flight schools are offering intensive EASA training to PPL? (Just curious really) and, more importantly:
  2. Who is offering intensive EASA PPL(A) groundschool online with no contact time?
Thank you!
We are on both counts.
S-Works is offline  
Old 29th Jan 2021, 13:07
  #37 (permalink)  
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: River Thames & Surrey
Age: 72
Posts: 8,908
Part of my ATCO training included a PPL course and to prepare us for this our 4 weekInitial Training Course included subjects like Met, Navigation and Air Law which were part of the syllabus for both ATCO and PPL training. Of course our ATCO Medicals also covered us for PPL training.
We were allowed (5 or 6 at a time) 6 weeks mon - fri in October/November to complete our PPL courses and naturally at that time of year, many days were 'lost' due to bad weather (sometimes as many as 3 days a week)
I had a slight advantage over my colleagues having some 500 glider launches to my credit (= 500 landings) so not surprisingly, I soloed first and actually completed the syllabus in 31 hours flying instruction, the requirement for an 'approved' course then (1971) being a minimum of 35 hours instruction as I had not achieved Bronze or Silver C gliding badges, my flying having been all in Air Cadet gliders.
All of us, even those who had no previous experience, completed the PPL course in the allotted 6 weeks.
chevvron is offline  

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