Paragliding start

The correct, safe start with the paraglider is divided into four phases in coarse. The respective phases are closed into each other, so that a continuous movement sequence is created. The full concentration and responsiveness of the pilot is required, so that this procedure should be trained over and over again in order to guarantee maximum safety – for example also in the case of Groundhandling.

Phase 1: Start-up preparation

This is about mental preparation for the starting process. This includes the exploration of the starting place, possible obstacles, special features, the starting line and possibilities for starting off. This step is especially important because there is no time to work out a plan B during a problem during the boot process. It also helps to imagine the starting sequence and to go through it once in the head. Especially in unknown flight areas, all this can take a little more time.

When this is done, the equipment can be continued. Should there be a lot of traffic at the starting place, it is advisable to prepare a little off-road, to lay out the paraglider and to check the lines and to lay the harness. With the screen to the rosette can thus be moved to the start.

Now begins the hot phase of the start preparation – the pre-flight check. In addition to the start check, preflight check is one of the most important points. The following steps are to be taken into consideration.

preflight check

  • Weather: Make sure that no dangerous weather is expected.
  • Harness and rescue: Close, if not already done, straps and chest straps, control the setting. Check the PIN, release handle and the safe closure of the rescue unit.
  • Cap: Place the paraglider in a curved shape so that all the chambers are open and the inlet edge can catch air well.
  • Straps and leashes: pick up and untangle straps, control line locks, accelerator system, brake lines and brake line knots. Now separate the individual linen planes from each other, starting with the brake lines and working up to the A-lines. Do not forget the sturdy linen (bun danger!).

If the preflight check is completed, the risers can be taken and carefully hooked. Do not forget to connect the hooks of the accelerator and check the system for a smoothness. The pilot then sets off in the basic posture in front of the paraglider and starts with the 5-point check, or also called the start check. This applies to beginners as well as to experienced pilots: No start without a start check! If the start does not follow immediately after the start check, this is to be repeated completely.

Start check

  • Pilot: Leg and chest strap (e) closed, carabiner closed, helmet set and closed?
  • Linen: Leashes free-running, carrying straps untwisted, mounted accelerator system and free?
  • Cap: bow-shaped and all chambers open? Pilot position appropriately aligned?
  • Airspace: Free on all sides?
  • Wind: Suitable? (Wind direction, also backward; Gusts etc.)

Phase 2: Tightening phase

Starting in the basic posture, the entire retracting phase follows from the feeling. With the help of the linen pressures it is possible to determine whether the screen breaks out or where and how it must be countersteered. At this stage, the gaze is always directed forward, in order to be able to see the running-in and possible obstacles or tripping traps.

Divided into filling and climbing phases, the feeding phase extends to the control phase.


  • The hands remain behind the body and should be kept longer than short. This contributes to stability and should be maintained until the climbing phase, at least until the filling screen makes a noticeable resistance perceptible.
  • The pressure on the screen comes exclusively from the legs and the body template.

Climbing phase:

  • As soon as the pressure of the paraglider decreases significantly, this means that the cap will continue to rise, reduce the tempo and let it rise.
  • Release the straps. The screen breaks off, or leaves the intended starting direction, undergoing the correction and additionally braking on one side.
  • Now keep the paragliding feeling fully on track. Slow down quickly and clearly when the preshooting tendency continues.

Phase 3: Control phase

The fundamentally important control phase ends with the decision: Start or start abort. At the same time, the pressure on the paraglider should be kept at a forward motion and the control view must be carried out. Here, the pilot's gaze goes from one side of the cap to the other to identify any line hangers, knots or other problems. At best it takes several seconds, but with fast, steep starts or more difficult conditions it can also criminally short.

Now the important decision is made whether the start is continued or canceled.

Phase 4: Accelerate and lift

The decision to start has fallen. Now it is again looking straight ahead and control over the feeling. The acceleration phase differs from shallow to steep starting positions a little.

For flat starting positions, the speed built up from the rearing phase must be maintained and increased. The small angle of the starting line requires a higher start-up speed, which results in higher buoyancy. This means: Look at the starting track and upper body. Now the brakes have to be loosened slowly and continuously accelerated until the starting speed is reached. Then slow down and continue running until the final steps in the air are made.

In a steep starting area the pilot will do the following. The mostly low-down brake lines due to the higher pre-firing tendency from the rearing phase are released dosed, but not completely solved, and continuously accelerated. Due to the steep angle of the starting line, but the lower speed, the necessary buoyancy will be lifted for lifting at small running speeds and higher control Leinenzug.

As soon as the air under your feet more will remain braked. In free airspace can now be taken up metered ride. With sufficient safety distance, the final seat position is only now taken.