Flight Training - May 2021 - 37

What's holding you back?

Reasons pilots' skills are not what they should be
The main reasons pilots make mistakes or don't fly up to their capabilities include, but are not limited to:
* We don't know any better. Students may go all the way through training
without understanding something basic, like P-factor or adverse yaw.
Whether because they were taught something wrong or misunderstood a
lesson, students often carry that misunderstanding with them for the rest
of their careers unless that lack of knowledge is corrected.
* Precision was not emphasized. One of the factors that separate good
pilots from really good pilots is exactitude. However, that is not a skill.
It is actually a mental attitude in which the pilot decides what kind of
aviator she's going to be: precise or so-so.
* We've gotten lazy. Because there are no telephone poles, highway
stripes, or oncoming traffic zipping by only 15 feet away, there's a much
wider latitude in flying that encourages being lazy.
* We aren't scanning. The necessity of continually scanning wing tip
to wing tip, which includes dipping down into the panel to monitor
speeds, altitude, headings, and more, can't be over-emphasized. The
moment we fixate on one thing, something else will drift off.
* We spend too much time with our eyes on the panel. Just about
everything that's presented on the panel, except the engine information, is
historical information. Changes in altitude and airspeed take time to register
on the gauges so pilots will be behind in making corrections if they rely on
the instruments. Control the nose and everything else will fall into place.
* Our visual perception isn't what it should be. Visual perception is more
than just looking out the window to see where we're going. If we aren't
constantly being hypercritical to what we're seeing in terms of attitude,
glide slope, course, ground track, and more, we'll always be just a little
late in making corrections. We can't fix what we can't see, and the sooner
we fix something the smaller the corrections will be.
* Our butts are under-educated. In aviation, " flying by the seat of their
pants " isn't a personal insult. The sensitivity of your posterior to sideways movements (yaw) is a direct correlation to your ability to keep the
ball in the center of the inclinometer. Long before your eyes pick up the
skid ball sneaking off center, your butt is telling you what's happening.
* It has been too long since getting dual time. Flight reviews are two
years apart. For some pilots that's too long. A good investment is
buying an hour or so of CFI time once a year to work out the kinks in
crosswind landings, short-field work, or some other area of focus.
* Not planning ahead and crisis management. There's an old saying,
" Don't take your airplane anywhere that your brain hasn't already been
to. " By visualizing well ahead of the airplane we know what needs to be
done and when, instead of constantly playing catch up.
* Situational awareness is lacking. Essentially an airplane is a ship sailing
through a three-dimensional sea, and its captain has to constantly be aware
of where he is in relation to his course, his destination, and other ships in his
area. Far too many pilots don't keep track of where they are in relation to
the airport or other aircraft that are inbound to that same airport. -BD

Looking for guidance to get the most out of training
in a specific area? The AOPA Air Safety Institute's
Focused Flight Review profiles offer guidance for
brushing up on weather, mountain flying, takeoffs
and landings, aircraft systems, and more.
airsafetyinstitute.org/focusedflightreview

AOPA.ORG/FT  37


http://www.airsafetyinstitute.org/focusedflightreview http://www.AOPA.ORG/FT

Flight Training - May 2021

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Flight Training - May 2021

Contents
Flight Training - May 2021 - Intro
Flight Training - May 2021 - Cover1
Flight Training - May 2021 - Cover2
Flight Training - May 2021 - Contents
Flight Training - May 2021 - 2
Flight Training - May 2021 - 3
Flight Training - May 2021 - 4
Flight Training - May 2021 - 5
Flight Training - May 2021 - 6
Flight Training - May 2021 - 7
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Flight Training - May 2021 - Cover3
Flight Training - May 2021 - Cover4
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https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/aopa/ft_201301
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/aopa/ft_201212
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