How To Prepare For Tandem Hang Gliding

Before strapping into a hang glider and soaring off into the sky, you'll want to know how to prepare for tandem hang gliding. Tandem hang gliding — two people sharing a glider — lets your instructor do the flying while you take in the sights. It prepares you for your own solo hang gliding flights and lets you enjoy a magnificent view of the rolling landscape without worrying about how to steer.

  1. Choose the best instructor. Before scheduling your tandem hang gliding flight, check into your instructor's background. Ensure she's certified and has lots of previous experience with tandem flying. Read reviews from other fliers, if possible, to get a feel for how hard or easy she is to work with. You want a tandem hang gliding instructor that makes you feel calm and comfortable, not jittery.
  2. Fly in warm weather. Clear skies and warm temperatures make for the best hang gliding days. Your instructor will know when the winds are the best for smooth sailing, so make sure to call the day before and see if the weather forecast has changed. Don't worry if you need to reschedule. It's a common occurrence but you'll be glad you waited for the perfect day to fly.
  3. Dress comfortably and eat light. Keeping a snack on hand and some water is a great idea, but don't drink too much. There are no bathrooms when you're tandem hang gliding. Choose your clothes based on what feels comfortable to wear for a long period of time and wear shoes that won't fly off while you're soaring around.
  4. Try on your equipment beforehand. Ask your instructor to help you try on your harness and practice what you need to do for a smooth takeoff. Try on your helmet and other gear to ensure a comfortable fit. It shouldn't feel loose, but it shouldn't dig into your chin either. The goal of any tandem hang gliding flight is to have fun and enjoy the ride, not worry if your helmet's cutting of your circulation.
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