An Overview For Before Your First Flight Training Session

Posted on: 24 November 2020

After you have spent a few sessions in what's known as "ground training," you will be ready for your first flight lesson. Some student pilots are surprised that this lesson does not always proceed as they expected. As such, you will have a better experience and probably also learn a lot more if you know what to expect.

Expect to spend a lot of time on the pre-flight checklist

Your lesson will not start with you going up into the air. You will first spend roughly 15 - 20 minutes going through the pre-flight checklist with your instructor. You are probably familiar with the elements of this checklist from your ground classes, but seeing the checklist actually gone through will further your understanding of the elements and their importance.

Expect your instructor to do a lot of the flying

Once the checklist is complete, your pilot will get you into the passenger's seat — the left seat. There will be controls on your side of the plane and on the instructor's side of the plane. They will guide the plane through takeoff, telling you what they are doing. They will also do most of the flying, explaining what they are doing all along. They'll have you "take the wheel" for a few minutes once you are at altitude. This gives you a chance to actually get a feel for what it's like to fly a plane.

Expect to listen along with air traffic control

You will generally have a set of headphones on during your first flight lesson. This will enable you to listen in to air traffic control along with your flight instructor. At times, your instructor will probably clarify what various calls and phrases mean after air traffic control says them. You will probably remember some things from your ground lessons. This is a really important, but often overlooked, element of flight lessons.

Expect a post-flight debriefing

Once your instructor brings the plane down, the lesson is not over! You will then have a debriefing session. Your instructor review aspects of the flight, mistakes you may have made when you had control of the plane, different decisions the two of you could have made, and so forth. This will ensure you know what to expect and work on at your next flight lesson.

Hopefully, you now have a better idea of what to expect on your first flight lesson! It can be a really enjoyable experience as long as you know what is coming. Talk to a flight training school if you would like to learn how to fly.