Frequently asked questions
What is Powered Paragliding (Paramotoring)?
Powered Paragliding, PPG and Paramotoring are the same thing. In the United States and the UK, traditionally the sport is referred to as Powered Paragliding or PPG. It is known as Paramotoring in Australia and other countries but is quickly becoming known in the US as well. The sport of paramotoring was popularized in France in the late 80s.
Paramotoring has evolved from the popular sports of hang gliding and paragliding. While a paraglider (no motor) is reliant on uplift and thermals, and launching must be done from a hill or by winch tow, by adding a motor, take off can be done in a few short steps on any suitable flat area.
Is Powered Paragliding Safe?
Powered Paragliding Pilots (PPG) are essentially light aircraft pilots. The equipment used in PPG flying has advanced at an incredible speed since it was developed in the late 80s. As with all forms of aviation, there are risks involved. These risk should be considered very small if you operate your equipment as you have been taught and inline with the guidelines of operation under the USPPA regulations.
The USPPA has spent years creating a quality control system that encompasses pilot rating systems. Most injuries and fatalities in the sport over the years are preventable.
Age + Weight + Fitness
From the young to the old – powered paragliding is a sport that is easily picked up and you’ll see yourself mastering the motor in no time.
There is no upper age limit, however, Powered Paragliding does require a certain amount of physical activity. Anyone with a moderate level of fitness should more than able to carry out the training. But with the advancements of wheeled trikes, all can fly! Please let us know if you have any pre-existing injuries or disabilities so we can custom tailor your training.
Can the equipment fail?
The paramotor is used to get you off the ground and into the air, helping you maintain your altitude. At any given time, you can shut the engine off and fly the glider as you would a paraglider and safely glide back down to a safe landing option.
Motors that you will train on have both manual and electric start options. Learning how to safely stop your engine mid-flight and then restart again is an integral part of your training.
Superior designed Paramotoring Wings have an impressive Glide ratio of 8:1. This means the glider will travel 8 feet forward for every 1 foot down. Beginner wings are designed with safety and training in mind. They stay fully pressurized and have a natural tendency in the design to fly straight. They are also considered to be forgiving on pilot input.
Buying 2nd Hand Equipment
ADVICE ON BUYING USED OR SECOND-HAND MOTORS AND GLIDERS:
Paramotors are not cheap (or if you find one that is, perhaps question it!) but they do represent the most inexpensive way to get airborne.
When looking to buy new or used, it will benefit you to know what to look for within your budget. If you are looking to save some money, buying a used paramotor can be a good option. You won’t get the latest and greatest, but is that what important?
Buying equipment off the internet or from another pilot could end up costing you more money in the long run if you don’t ask the right questions. We always (and that’s always) offer unbiased advice on used motor options. Most are great, and represent excellent value for money and can save you a lot of money, others not so, so if you’re thinking of buying a used motor, please ask for our advice or the advice of a very experienced motor pilot that knows that particular motor.
Use your instructor to help you pick the most suitable equipment for your weight and experience level, whether it’s new or 2nd hand.
How Does Powered Paragliding Work?
A paramotor is a light-aircraft frame consisting of a motor weighing between 40-60lbs, a propeller, a harness with an integrated seat, and a cage. It’s then attached to the riser points of the wing.
A paramotor can be assembled and dissembled in a matter of minutes fitting into even the smallest of motor vehicles. It is this ease of transportation, size and quick set-up that makes Paramotoring one of the easiest and most compact aircraft’s available.
Unlike a paraglider, you can take off with a motor in both light and no wind. The pilot walks or runs holding the brake handles or toggles to steer the wing and the throttle in one hand. The forward motion created from the motor will inflate the wing as you walk or run forward.
The throttle controls how fast you go up or down, and the brake handles to control the left-right direction. A paramotor has no clutch, only four inputs that you need to worry about. Left, right or up and down. Once the canopy takes the weight, and with a bit of throttle, the wing lifts off the ground, and you are flying!
How High Can I Fly?
The United States and the FAA have restricted airspace rulings that every Powered Paramotor pilot must follow and guidelines for flying in high-density areas. Outside of controlled airspace, you are free to fly anywhere you like. Currently, the US has a legal height limit for flying PPG which is 17,999 feet!