Paragliding today is the most accessible and popular activity for those who want to soar in the clouds and enjoy free flight.
People have always wanted to fly. Surely everyone knows the ancient Greek myth of Daedalus and Icarus. Historians believe that it is more than 3 thousand years old. For many centuries, the desire of people to “soar into the sky and soar there like a bird” remained a dream, 300 years ago they could only dream of flying. But soon everything changed. The first hot air balloons appeared, followed by controlled airships, planes, helicopters… humanity was rapidly conquering the skies.
The desire to fly freely and lightly, like a bird, faded into the background for a while, but by no means disappeared.
And in the last century, thanks to the development of science, and the emergence of new materials and technologies, significant progress in this direction has become possible. Like mushrooms after rain, skydiving, paragliding and hang gliding appeared one after another, and an old dream finally came true.
Paragliding or “how to take off quickly and conveniently?”
Mankind has come up with quite simple ways to take off without using complex equipment and without spending a lot of resources and time. To date, for short flights are used:
Paragliders and paragliders. The lightest aircraft. Their weight is only about 6 kg with a surface area of 25–29 square meters. m, and when folded, the paraglider fits into a small backpack. Despite such a modest weight, this little one, after 5–10 minutes of preparation, is able to lift you into the air and reach speeds of up to 60 km / h. Soft, without rigid bearing elements, the wing with lines and a seat for the pilot consists of two shells that are filled with air through the air intakes. Structurally, the wing tapers towards the trailing edge, due to which there is a lifting force sufficient for the flight of the apparatus itself and the person in it.
Planner. It has a rigid shape and a small, streamlined body with long wings. The glider is launched from a tow and is the most efficient aircraft for long-haul flights, although of all it is the most complex and expensive.
The flight speed of the glider may well exceed 100 km / h.
Hang glider. This is an aircraft in which the basis is a folding wing with rigid carriers. The pilot, after takeoff and takeoff, hangs under it and controls the flight with the movement of his body. The weight of hang gliders is usually about 30 kg with a length of 5–6 m when folded. Those. they can be easily transported by car or carried over short distances, say, to the launch site.
The maximum speed of the hang glider is up to 150 km/h with a good wind.
In the future, speaking of aircraft devices used in paragliding, we will mean paragliders or paragliders. Flights on gliders are called gliding, and on hang gliders, by analogy — hang gliding.
Gone are the days when paragliders for the pilot were not an aircraft, but rather a flying machine. Today, paragliding, subject to safety precautions and basic precautions, guarantees high safety for the pilot.
A high level of safety, in comparison with other related sports, is achieved due to the relatively low flight speed and the ability of the paraglider to enter a stationary flight mode in case of pilot errors.
Despite the absence of any serious age or other restrictions for paragliding, you need to understand that paragliding is an extreme sport and a pilot can find himself in an “abnormal” situation at any time. When everything will depend only on his ability to correctly assess the situation and make the right decision. Will you succumb to panic or cold-bloodedly make the right decision? No one will say this but you. So, it’s up to you to decide whether you are ready to fly or not. Of course, such a dilemma takes place only after passing a full briefing.
Given all of the above, we can summarize that the main enemies of paragliding, apart from yourself, have been and remain only power lines and changeable weather.
Paragliding clubs will help you learn how to fly a paraglider. The price will be 20–30 euros for the first flight with an instructor, and if you wish to fly a paraglider on your own, then the price will be different: from 400 euros for a pilot training course. In the process of learning, you will learn about the design of a paraglider, air currents, the influence of weather, the theory of launch, flight and landing, control of the device, emerging “extraordinary” situations and much more, and then you will be able to consolidate the acquired skills in practice. You can take a paragliding training course in Kyiv, Kharkov, the Carpathians and, of course, in the Crimea on Mount Klementyev and in the Quiet Bay.
The desire to buy your own paraglider and a set of equipment (reserve parachute, helmet, instruments, etc.) will cost you 2–3 thousand euros.
It is interesting
The distance record for paragliding is 461.6 km
The maximum height conquered by paragliding is 4500 m
The longest ever paragliding pilot was in Hawaii — in the coastal breeze, he stayed in the air for more than 36 hours!
Author: Vladimir Selivanov
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