Is there any doubt that flying is cool? Whether flying a Boeing Dreamliner, a J-3 Cub or a DJI quadcopter, flying can put you in places that are impossible to reach otherwise.
“Because flying is cool” is my best explanation for why I fly. Sure I can talk about efficiency and performance, but those justify what my gut already tells me.
But when I look beyond the cool factor, I quickly see a mountain of rules and regulations. These are the what’s and how’s of flying.
What do we need to know to fly safely? How does the plane react in certain situations? The questions are as numerous as the page count of the FAR/AIM.
Making certain our new brothers and sisters are learning all they need, so they can safely experience the coolness of flying, falls primarily to the instructor community.
The professional segment of aviation — airlines, corporate and military — have an acute need for pilots. As a result, enrollment at flight training schools across the country is sky high (pun intended).
For many pilots, the path to the cockpit is learning to fly, then learning how to teach others to fly. The quicker a pilot learns to fly and then to teach flying, the quicker they’ll accumulate the required hours they’ll need to fulfill their ultimate goal.
Quick does not always equal great. You’ve likely heard something along the lines of “Quick Turnaround. Cheap Price. Great Quality. Pick any two.”
Loss of Control
A couple of decades ago, the Orlando Flight Standards District Office (FSDO) “was able to reduce instructional accidents by 60%.”
How? They created a CFI Special Emphasis Program (SEP). The SEP was created because the Orlando FSDO found “common weak areas” among newly minted flight instructors in their region.
Some of those weaknesses included:
- Explanation of spin entries, spins, and spin recovery techniques
- Steep turns
- Power on stalls
- Power off stalls
- Effective demonstration of cross control stalls and spin recovery
You know, those skills that help prevent Loss of Control–Inflight (LOC-I) accidents.
A SAFEr way
That Orlando FSDO SEP is the original inspiration for the Society of Aviation and Flight Educators (SAFE) new CFI-PROficiency Workshop.
CFI-PRO will take place Oct. 2-3, 2019, at the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association headquarters in Frederick, Maryland.
While the workshop includes topics related to becoming a more well-rounded instructor, the driving force is teaching today’s instructors more about LOC-I and “student-focused instruction.”
“The average pilot spends all their time in only 5% of the flight envelope,” said SAFE Executive Director David St George. “Basically, SAFE’s CFI PROficiency program is offering CFIs a way to expand their skills into the less-often visited corners of that envelope. We’ll be taking good CFIs and making them great CFIs.”
Leading the workshops will be Master Instructors Rich Stowell, Doug Stewart, and Hobie Tomlinson. Cost is $375.
Flying is cool. And properly incorporating all the what’s and how’s of flying is cooler yet. If you are a flight instructor with a desire to teach your students to get the most out of why they’re learning to fly, the CFI-PROficiency Workshop looks to be a worthwhile investment.
How cool is that?!