Powered Paragliding Frequently Asked Questions
I receive alot of emails and sometimes phone calls asking me questions
about Powered Paragliding. Here are a few frequently asked questions about this
What is powered paragliding?
Powered paragliding also called paramotoring or PPG is exciting new sport
that allows people to fly with the least amount of training, equipment and money required.
If you want to fly like a bird this type of aviation is for you is for you. A powered
paraglider can be foot-launched or you can add wheels (Trike) to make your take-off
paraglider itself has no rigid structure and the pilot is suspended by lines. The pilot is
clipped into a harness, which is quite comfortable. The motor is a backpack unit with
propeller to give thrust allowing you to climb and fly level at your own will. You
take-off from level ground and do not require wind to get into the air. In fact the
less wind, the more smoother the ride.
Is powered paragliding safe?
Just like any other sport, there is some risk involved. The amount
of risk associated with PPG is about as much a one takes riding motorcycle. Proper
instruction and training will ensure safe and pleasurable flights.
Do I need a license to fly powered paragliders?
Yes, in Canada a license
is necessary. You must write an PSTAR exam and be issued a Student Pilot Permit
before can take your first solo flights. Once your course is completed you'll
write a final exam with Transport Canada and be issued an Ultralight Pilot Permit to fly
legally in Canada. You can be fined up to 5,000.00 per faction if you are
caught flying without a Permit and unregistered paramotor or without Insurance.
How long does it take to get PPG trained?
We recommend 7 days depending on the weather. It usually takes 3 - 4
days of ground school training . Only 5 hours of flight time with 30 take offs and
landing are required. Since I'm retired, the courses are scheduled to the
I already have a private pilot license. Do I have to take the
90 % our ground school deals with PPG specific issues. Therefore it is
necessary to complete it before proceeding to ground handling and flying. However, you do
not have to rewrite your PSTAR exam.
Can I take-off on a flat surface ?
Yes. Any large grass field will do for powered paragliding flights. Just a few steps
will be necessary in a 5 -10 km breeze. However, in a calm wind condition, 10 to 50 steps
may be necessary depending on your weight and equipment. See video
Can I take-off on my own?
Yes. Once trained you can easily launch and fly without any
What distance do I need to take-off and land?
Usually between 5 to 50 feet for take-off and about 3 feet for spot
landing. It is easy to launch and land. See video
At what altitude can I fly?
You can fly you powered paraglider one foot off the ground or at 12000
feet. It is up to you, but make sure you comply with local air traffic regulations.
How fast powered paraglider flies?
Up to 45 km/h if there is no wind.
What is the maximum winds I can fly in?
Winds should not exceed 25 km/h when flying powered paragliders.
How far can I go on powered paraglider?
It depends on your paramotor model. You can easily exceed 2 hours on
a tank of gas approximately 70 km or 140 km if you fly down wind.
At what ground speed does the paramotor fly?
This depends on you paraglider. Anywhere from 20 km/h - 45 km/h if
there is no wind and anywhere from 5 km/h to 60 km/h with 25 km/h winds.
How do I inflate paraglider?
A run or wind if there is any forces air into the open frontal cells of
the paraglider, which in turn pressurizes the wing, giving it it's shape. See video
What do I do if the motor stops?
It's a paraglider! You will coast slowly
downhill and in full control of direction. The glider flies about 6 feet forward
for every foot decent a 6 to 1 glide ratio). So you will be descendin a about
3 mph while gliding forward at about 20 mph and you can land in a space smaller than the
average yard. A motor failure is rarely more that an incovenience. Most
landings are done without power for safety reasons anyway.
How long can I fly my paramotor with a full tank of gas ?
Approximately 2 to 2.5 hours. You can fly up to six hours with additional
What if I am not strong enough to carry a paramotor on my
You can attach the paramotor to a light weight trike (chassis with 3
wheels) and instead of carrying the weight you will sit in the aircraft on take off.
Can I fly powered paraglider during winter months?
Yes you can, but you must bundle up, it is cold. Pilots can attach
ski's to their trikes and with proper clothing you can enjoy winter flying. You can also foot launch in the winter but you must find a
hard surface to launch and land.
Is the paramotor easy to transport?
cages are designed to be dismantled into 3 or 4 parts in approximately 3 minutes. You can
easily transport your paramotor in the trunk or back seat of your car.
Do I need airport to store my personal aircraft?
basement or any closet will do.
What is the cost of equipment and training?
is approximately $ 2800.00 Canadian. These cost differ due to choices of the type of
equipment you train on and if you are buying or renting equipment. PPGNB provides a
wide range of equipment starting from complete packages from $6295.00 US and up depending
on equipment choice.
Fear of heights?
Ask just about any polot if they're
aftraid of climbing ladders and the answer will be yes, Human nature is to be afraid of
heights, as healthy response to obvious risk, Nearly everybody stars with the fear
and they overcome it after a few flights. Once you internalize how secure the
harness and wing is, there is little to fear.
Can I take people up?
Unfortunately in Canada it is
illegal to fly Tandem unless you are Instructor qualified and teaching student's for
lesson's or Introductory flight's only. However, you can fly Tandem if both pilot's are
qualified to fly the same aircraft. Examlpe - If a Husband and Wife would like to fly
together they can both take PPG Training Course. Once completed they can then fly legally
together with a Tandem unit.
What is the risk?
Powered paragliding is probably the
safest form of aviation ever devised. Pay attentin to your instructor and respect
the prop to miniize most of the risk. Like any recreation with humans in motion,
there is a risk. Training and the fist few hours of flight are the most
critical. We estimate the overall risk is less tan motorcyle riding or or free
flying (paragliding with no motor) or flying small airplaines, bit it's more than driving
a car. Of the minimal risk, most come from pilot error, not equpiment
malifuction. A conscientious pilot with a good instruction can make this sport
Where can I get trained?
Right here in
Sussex, New Brunswick! Powered Paragliding New
Brunswick (PPGNB) is the only Powered Paragliding School in the Maritimes. PPGNB is
Transport Canada regulated school that has excellent training facilities as well as a wide
range of equipment options for you to choose from.
Can I get trained in the USA or other Counties?
Yes you can,
however the training standard for the USA does not cover the required info you need to fly
legally in Canada. Example, there is no licensing requirements needed in the USA,
therefore they do not cover the CARS (Canadian Aviation Regulations) nor can they
give you the required documentation for your PPG license. Also there are no minimum
flight's required to complete their basic course. I personnally have seen many new
pilot's take training in the USA with minimum flight's leaving them with a lack of
knowledge and confidence to safely fly.
you take training in the USA you will still have to conduct flight training with a
Canadian Approved Flight School here in Canada to fly legally. Make sure you ask
these questions before commiting training in the USA. Even qualified Canadian PPG
Instructors residing in the USA during winter months cannot legally train Canadian
students in the USA. Should you get your training in the USA and not bother with your
license, consider this!! Would you fly a full size aircraft without proper
documentation? In the eyes of Transport Canada the fines and the severity of
the offences are identical with a $5000.00 fine per infraction!! Something to think
New pilots shoulds not buy gear
from manufacturers that have no dealer network or products that you can go see flying in
the field! They frequently use questionable business tactics and sell completely
inappropriate gear. The most common method is using E-Bay or web sites to snag the
uninformed. If they do not display on their web site the Instructor teaching with
their advertised equipment, beware. I have had several potential students who had
purchased incorrect PPG equipment from other suppliers that were unsuitable for their
physical condition or safe flight.
Find a good Instructor!
Luckily in Canada most transport
approved PPG Schools are very reputable and have good Instructor's. However, there are
some Paragliding School's (No Paramotor) that selll Powered Paragliding equipment on the
side that say they can teach PPG but have minimum experience with paramotors. I would
question their experience on teaching paramotor. Instructor's should have an
explaination on their web site detailing their PPG experience to include testimonials from
We have a one bedroom fully
finished appartment downstairs for students during ground school training and local pilots
to relax during flights. I also provided a list of places to stay here in the local
area under the Accommodation link.