How long will it take to become a sport pilot and learn to fly a trike?
The minimum requirements are covered in the previous section “Getting Your Sport Pilot License”, but there are many factors that can extend the intense/accelerated advertised training time of 7 to 10 days to get a license to months or more. For intense/accelerated training time you may be able to solo in as little as five days. It all depends on your ability to learn the techniques involved in takeoff, flying and landing.
How many hours you are allowed to fly in a day can depend on weather and your endurance
More than three hours per day is quite a bit of flying and is usually a limit for most students to be effective. How long it takes also depends on your background. If you already have other aviation training, you may progress more quickly in certain parts of your training, since there are areas in your training that may be very similar. People who fly with their friends already or practice on a flight simulator will progress faster and take less time to learn.
Four to five days of flight training may be adequate to solo
It should be noted that you typically will need your own trike to solo. Most schools do not have a trike to rent. So what happens many times is you train in your instructors trike and get to the point where you are ready to solo. Now you are more educated to buy a trike and more informed for this important purchase. You buy your trike to solo in. Industry averages say the minimum required dual training time typically needed for solo in calm conditions is about 15 hours, however, there are large variations to this rule of thumb. You should have experience flying in bumpy conditions so if it turns bumpy during your solo flight you are prepared for this. There should be no hurry to solo. Keep the instructor as long as practical so you can have the backup if you need it. It is money well spent.
Your first solo flights will be under very controlled conditions
Your instructor will be making most decisions for you. You will gradually begin to develop your confidence and skills as you progress in your flights. You will also begin to make more decisions about your flights yourself. By the time you finish training and are ready for your checkride, you should be able to takeoff and land without assistance in windy and bumpy conditions, as well as make most of your own decisions about flying. Industry average flight time for a sport pilot license are about 30 hours.
You should have experience flying in bumpy conditions so if it turns bumpy during your solo flight you are prepared for this. There should be no hurry to solo. Keep the instructor as long as practical so you can have the backup if you need it. It is money well spent.
An optimum training schedule is to fly 3 to 4 days per week. This allows the learning to sink in and you will have time to do your homework/groundschool, which helps you understand the flying process.
After your checkride, you are on your own
This is the beginning of a new learning experience of flying as ‘Pilot in Command’ on your own without any instructor supervision. When you get your license it is “a license to learn”.