INTRODUCTION - PURPOSE OF FLIGHT TRAINING
Before you begin flight training, it is
important to have a basic understanding of the responsibilities,
safety regulations, and issues applicable to such an endeavor.
This includes the choice of a flight school, selected study
materials, study habits, and the role of the instructor,
student, and Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).
The overall purpose of primary and intermediate flight training,
as outlined in this handbook, is the acquisition and honing
of basic airmanship skills. Airmanship can be defined as:
A sound acquaintance with the principles of flight, The
ability to operate an airplane with competence and precision
both on the ground and in the air, and The exercise of sound
judgment that results in optimal operational safety and
efficiency. Learning to fly an airplane has often been likened
to learning to drive an automobile. This analogy is misleading.
Since an airplane operates in a different environment, three
dimensional, it requires a type of motor skill development
that is more sensitive to this situation such as:
Coordination - The ability to use the hands and feet together
subconsciously and in the proper relationship to produce
desired results in the air-plane.
Timing - The application of muscular coordination at the
proper instant to make flight, and all maneuvers incident
thereto, a constant smooth process.
Control touch - The ability to sense the action of the airplane
and its probable actions in the immediate future, with regard
to attitude and speed variations, by the sensing and evaluation
of varying pressures and resistance of the control surfaces
transmitted through the cockpit flight controls.
Speed sense - The ability to sense instantly and react to
any reasonable variation of airspeed.
An airman becomes one with the airplane rather than machine
operator. An accomplished airman demonstrates the ability
to assess a situation quickly and accurately and deduce
the correct procedure to be followed under the circumstance;
to analyze accurately the probable results of a given set
of circumstances or of a proposed procedure; to exercise
care and due regard for safety; to gauge accurately the
performance of the airplane; and to recognize personal limitations
and limitations of the airplane and avoid approaching the
critical points of each.
The development of airmanship skills requires effort and
dedication on the part of both the student pilot and the
flight instructor, beginning with the very first training
flight where proper habit formation begins with the student
being introduced to good operating practices. Every airplane
has its own particular flight characteristics.
The purpose of primary and intermediate flight training,
however, is not to learn how to fly a particular make and
model airplane. The underlying purpose of flight training
is to develop skills and safe habits that are transferable
to any airplane. Basic airmanship skills serve as a firm
foundation for this. The pilot who has acquired necessary
airmanship skills during training, and demonstrates these
skills by flying training-type airplanes with precision
and safe flying habits, will be able to easily transition
to more complex and higher performance airplanes. It should
also be remembered that the goal of flight training is a
safe and competent pilot, and that passing required practical
tests for pilot certification is only incidental to this