The sport of flying in lightweight unpowered aircraft which can be carried by the pilot.
An Overview of Hang Gliding
Hang glider pilots are suspended from their gliders by a special harness, and launch from hills facing into wind. The objective is to stay airborne in lifting currents of air. Some pilots are content to soar the hill they launched from, whilst others prefer to search out rising pockets of air, known as thermals, and use these to undertake long cross country flights.
- Reduces stress
- Improves mental alertness
- Strengthens arm muscles
- Able to see the landscape from a different perspective
A new top-of-the range competition hang glider can cost over £6,000, although sports machines with only slightly less performance are available for around £3,500 - £4,500. Suitable second hand intermediate hang gliders usually start in the region of £1,000 - £1,500, and club members and schools often have good quality second hand gliders for sale.
You will need a hang glider, harness, helmet, flying suit, and boots. Later, as you become more experienced, you may also want to purchase additional items, such as an emergency parachute, and a GPS.
The UK record for distance currently stands at 338km, (210 miles), and was set by Carl Wallbank on a flight from SE Wales to Norfolk. The current UK record for altitude stands at an astonishing 16,000ft.