Paragliders are not just aircraft; they are time machines. They take us into a world driven not by the laws of man, but by the laws of nature. Despite not using an engine, paraglider flights can last many hours and cover many hundreds of kilometers. By skilful exploitation of sources of lift, the pilot may gain height, often climbing to altitudes of a few thousand meters.
In flatter countryside without mountains like in Dubai, pilots will be launched with a towing boat or dropped from an helicopter to compete in both cateogires Aerobatics and Accuracy Landing.
Aerobatic competitions demand the participants to perform certain manoeuvres. Competitions are held for individual pilots as well as for pairs that show synchronous performances. This form is the most spectacular for spectators on the ground to watch.
Accuracy competitions see who can land closest to the target over a number of competitive rounds. The competitor who scores the lowest number of points/measurement is the winner. One of the first lessons that Accuracy pilots learn is to fly your foot to the dead centre, not your eye! It is easy to overshoot. Similarly, if you set up too ‘cold’, only a very lucky thermic glide will skim you into the scoring zone!