So you’re ready to get your pilot’s license and join the exciting world of aviation. Congratulations! Few things in life equal the thrill of flying. Whether you’re pursuing a career as a commercial pilot, or just getting your private license for leisure, there are some things you should do before you start your training. They aren’t must-dos, but they can help you be more prepared and confident once you begin your flight school training.
Review Your Math and Physics
The math involved in flight training is basic and easy for the most part. However, it’s not instinctual unless you practice it for a while. Go online and find videos and practice questions for mental arithmetic, trigonometry, and center of mass calculations. Just going through the motions and getting your mind’s muscle memory used to it will give you confidence once you start doing it more often during your training.
Get a Desktop Flight Simulator
Desktop flight simulators don’t come close to the flight simulators you’ll be using on campus, but they will get you familiar with how simulators work. You’ll have fun and learn a lot. Read and learn all the pre-flight lessons and you’ll come out with a lot of useful information. Make sure to get a joystick and rudder pedals to get the most out of your desktop flight simulator.
Learn the Phonetic Alphabet
The phonetic alphabet is easier to learn than you think. You will need to memorize every letter, and get to the point where you can say them instinctively. You’ll need to get comfortable with saying “Bravo 4” and “Hotel Echo Foxtrot.” Print it out, memorize all 26 phonetic letters, and then start reading everything that way. Your friends will love it!
Get a Flight Journal
Your flight journal is as important as your logbook. It will become a part of your daily routine to write into your journal after every flight. When you actively recall your performance you’re receiving feedback that leads to improvement for future performance.
Write Out Your Schedule
Flight training can be intensive and time-consuming depending on what your goals are. If you’re going to be a full-time student you can’t expect to do one or two flights a week and quickly get your private pilot certificate (link). It’s hard work and you’ll need to schedule time to study and review lessons. You will want to study, because it reinforces lessons, and give you confidence. The more organized you are the better you’re going to perform. This goes for most pursuits in life, but even more when you’re in flight school.
Ready for Flight School?
CTI has two campuses to choose from. We have one in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida and another in Memphis, Tennessee. Schedule a tour and see in person what we have to offer. There’s nothing more exciting than a career in aviation!