Educational by Chapter of the Powered Paragliding Bible

I: First Flight

01 Training Process

02 Gearing Up

03 Handling the Wing

04 Prep For 1st Flight

05 The Flight

06 Flying With Wheels 

II: Spreading Wings

07 Weather Basics

08 The Law

09 Airspace   

10 Flying Anywhere

11 Controlled Airports

12 Setup & Mx

13 Flying Cross Country

14 Flying With Others

III: Mastery

15 Adv Ground Handling

16 Precision Flying

17 Challenging Sites

18 Advanced Maneuvers

19 Risk Management

20 Competition

21 Free Flight Transition

IV: Theory

22 Aerodynamics

23 Motor & Propeller

24 Weather & Wind

25 Roots: Our History

V: Choosing Gear

26 The Wing

27 The Motor Unit

28 Accessories

29 Home Building

VI: Getting the Most

30 Other Uses

31 Traveling With Gear

32 Photography

--- Not in book ---

33 Organizing Fly-Ins

34 Places To Fly

35 Preserving the Sport

36 Tandem

Perfect Paraglider Training Simulator

In pursuit of improving content for both the Instructor book and the PPG Bible, we bought the best simulator available and tried it out today; the "Zuba Fly Paraglider Simulator". Our mission is to 1) show how good simulation can get for those instructors willing to spend the money/energy, and 2) have a tool to get better pictures of things that might be hard to get otherwise.

We bought it without risers and put a set of reflex risers on it. It's made for a 3-riser system but is trivially easy to accomodate a 4-riser system which is what we did. We also added tip steering on one side using thin bungee material to simulate a glider with tip steering.

The Zuba Simulator

The secret sauce is a hang point that swivels and a bungee/line connection behind the pilot allowing it to turn when brake is pulled on one side. You have to let up on the left brake and pull right brake to affect a turn. Just like in a real life. Plus, it has a response rate that mimics the natural swing rate of a glider. If an instructor wanted, he could use that to teach how to do a turn without swinging back and forth. That's huge. Students in training, and even after, crash a lot because of that swing thing.

It has other elements that make it good, especially given the new predominance of low hook-in weight shift machines. There's a bungee for the outer A riser of split-A systems and we added another bungee for the D-riser common on motor wings (any wing with trimmers). That allows students to practice big ears and rear riser turns.

This is a nicely finished, professional looking solution for $475. If you're teaching paramotor, treat your students to this kind of capability. If you're looking to learn, ask if your instructor has this capability--most good schools have something similar. And it's easy to build for anyone wanting to spend the time (see below).

Buy it by searching "Zuba Fly Simulator." We don't sell them but feel that wide adoption of sound simulator training will reduce accidents during early student flights.

This is important. Insuring that new students have proper reacts BEFORE they go flying is paramount. This knowledge is written in bone and blood: if your school selection doesn't ensure automatic reactions to certain situations your are risking your life and your ability to ambulate.


Zuba Fly Simulator


This is one idea on how to build it with dimensions that work based on the ZUBA. You must figure out how to make it strong enough but, thankfully, the biggest loads on the frame are in compression. Hanging with rope this way allows freedom to pivot. PVC degrades quickly in sunshine and a fall from this could be bad. If you're not knowledgeable enough about materials, load paths, and so forth, buy one. The frame should hang about 12 inches below the hang point.


Ultimate Visual Simulator

The best training aid for powered paragliding is a good simulator

When you get training, among the most important tools is rehearsing reactions to various situations, and the best way to do that is with a sufficiently realistic simulator. Ideally it would have working brakes and moving risers but, unfortunately, few instructors have such an advanced tool.

The reason for such a simulator is so you can rehearse doing D-riser turns, big ears, feeling brake pull, knowing where the A's are and a dozen other things. Of course it's even less likely that you'll have anything to look at besides your instructor's mug as he talks you through various maneuvers and you show your proper responses.

Now, though, there is more to see.

Canadian Christian Bultman, who speaks fluent German, found this tidbit about a fellow who built a visual PPG simulator. He's got a harness, frame and computer running flight simulator software flying a PPG. Of course his web page is in German but you'll get the idea. Here is a YouTube video.

Much closer to home, Michigan pilot Mark Deseck of  has done the same thing and is now selling some parts to ease the process for anybody else wanting to build one. It may not be as fun as the real thing but it sure will be a lot warmer in winter!

I have to say, Mark's project looks really cool and could be a great training aid. Can't wait to try it sometime.

Creator Mark Deseck shows off the flying position.

© 2016 Jeff Goin & Tim Kaiser   Remember: If there's air there, it should be flown in!