Paragliding is a recreational and competitive flying sport.A paraglider is a free-flying, foot-launched aircraft. The pilot sits in a harness suspended below a fabric wing, whose shape is formed by the pressure of air entering vents in the front of the wing. A paraglider is small enough to be stowed in an oversized backpack and light enough to carry on your shoulders.
Although they somewhat resemble rectangular skydiving parachutes, paragliders are now designed to keep you aloft for the extended flights, soaring, climbing and sinking with the current of the air. You can launch your paraglider from shallow slopes or on steep hills. In areas without high launch points, paragliders may be towed aloft by a ground vehicle after which they are released, creating much the same effect as a mountain launch.
With the steering toggles, you can easily control the direction of flight. After gaining some experience, you can begin to use the upward movement of the air,(thermal or ridge lift), to stay aloft for hours. With the proper training, you can become a well-educated, safety-conscious pilot capable of choosing flights ranging from peaceful and serene, to extended thermal climbs and cross-country experiences. The safety of the sport is directly proportional to the skill and sense of the pilot.
General safety precautions include preflight checks, helmets, harnesses with back protection(foam or airbag), reserve parachutes, and careful pre-launch observation of other pilots in the air to evaluate condition.
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