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how to control nerves when flying

Old 07-07-2015, 05:19 AM
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cubkadet
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Default how to control nerves when flying

does anyone have any suggestions on how to control the shaking when flying? I'm not exactly a beginner but I have a real hard time trying to control my shaking when flying. anyone have any suggestions on how to control this?
Old 07-07-2015, 05:30 AM
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sensei
 
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This is a hobby not an investment, so relax and have fun while you fly. All our airplanes have an expiration date anyway and we can't do anything about that.

Bob
Old 07-07-2015, 06:17 AM
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Some years back, I had a tremor in my right hand, bad enough to affect flying (now cured: beta blocker). Using a transmitter tray (homemade) helped a lot.
Old 07-07-2015, 07:42 AM
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Its usually just a bad case of nerves. Have you tried flying with an instructor using a buddy box? If you don't have to worry about crashing, it will give you a chance to relax, fly the plane, and build your confidence as to what you are capable of. A few flights like that on the same plane should give you enough confidence to go it alone and keep the nerves at bay. Even experienced flyers still get the nerves when it comes to maidening a brand new plane or the first flight at a contest.
Old 07-07-2015, 07:57 AM
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I have the shakes on the first flight of everyday. I think of it as my way of knowing I still love what I am doing even after 40ish years.

Last edited by acerc; 07-07-2015 at 12:27 PM.
Old 07-07-2015, 09:11 AM
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I would suggest that you pick up or aquire a really cheap airplane that you dont really care about....a foamie or a simple glow or electric that if you dorked it....you wouldn't be too broken up about Fly this airplane your first flight of the day to get your "fingers warmed up". I find when I want to learn something new....do it with the cheapo airplane first...then move to the bigger more expensive airframes that I actually care about. Right now my "cheapo airplane" is a used Hanger 9 Carden Yak that I threw together with parts layin around the shop.....I fly it almost exclusively because it's way more fun than my 170cc Dalton....and if I kill it...I'm only out a few bucks. It'll probably last forever...


CB
Old 07-07-2015, 10:28 AM
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Fly fly and fly, fly out of your comfort zone a bit. But fly and fly with others in the air. Pretty soon the shakes will be gone
Old 07-07-2015, 10:52 AM
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Originally Posted by cubkadet View Post
does anyone have any suggestions on how to control the shaking when flying? I'm not exactly a beginner but I have a real hard time trying to control my shaking when flying. anyone have any suggestions on how to control this?
Land. And take off again in 20 minutes. Seriously, I always felt flying was 6-10 minutes of terror followed by 20 minutes of ecstacy. The terror reduced as the day went on and the number of flights increased but was still there. And the next week it was back. Over the years of regular flying the first flight of the day terror went down a little but if I took some time off that first flaight was just like the first time.
Old 07-07-2015, 11:00 AM
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Lot of good ideas have been shared already. I would also suggest getting a simulator. Fly using it every day you can. Do stuff that you would consider risky with a real plane and learn how to get out of tough situations. It definitely has helped my confidence and I fly alot better and calmer now.
Old 07-07-2015, 11:07 AM
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edh13
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Originally Posted by cubkadet View Post
does anyone have any suggestions on how to control the shaking when flying? I'm not exactly a beginner but I have a real hard time trying to control my shaking when flying. anyone have any suggestions on how to control this?
A frosty beverage usually helps...
Old 07-07-2015, 12:11 PM
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A solid preflight inspection calms me down prior to departure. Try to have a look at everything and anything that may compromise your fun time before you take flight.

Check the aircraft thoroughly and radio programming.
I inspect the runway for foreign objects, holes, mole hills, etc.
Have a flight plan including approximate speeds, altitudes, attitudes and flight times.
Check your environment (sun location, wind).
DON'T RUSH YOUR PREFLIGHT! Remove all doubt about your equipment and environment before you get airborne.

I avoid crowded skies. In my early years, I avoided crowds altogether. I was nervous someone would watch me crash. Since then, all the people I was worried about watching me deploy a lawn dart...already did it themselves.

Try not to worry about anyone or anything while flying. Once you spend enough time with your equipment, it will become an extension of you. PRACTICE, PRACTICE, PRACTICE.

Flight simulation and lower cost aircraft may also help keep you calm.


Everyone is different. Maybe you only need to avoid coffee for the day

Clear skies and the best of luck!

-PD
Old 07-07-2015, 12:33 PM
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VALIUM and Jack Daniels works for me !
Old 07-07-2015, 01:08 PM
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If I'm not a little nervous the first flight,I quit the hobby.Love the rush.jeffo
Old 07-07-2015, 02:10 PM
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porcia83
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Lots of good advice already noted in the thread OP. Repetition helps, so fly as much as you can. Use a sim if available. Fly with a buddy, perhaps someone you trust, just to stand next to you and give you moral support, if nothing else. I used to maiden planes by myself in case I crashed, didn't want others to see. Now I will only maiden if I can have some of the guys around I really trust. Not the ones that just say go up, let her rip, but the ones who will tell me NOT to fly if everything isn't perfect. They know me better than I do sometimes, I'm impatient. It's saved me more than once in making silly errors (reversed throws, no wingtube in a glider). Although I think your question was more of a mental thing, I also found dialing a little expo in when I'm nervous helps out a bit. The sticks don't seem to be as responsive when my fingers are jumping around.

Good luck
Old 07-07-2015, 03:40 PM
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I haven't been flying a lot the last couple of years so I shake a bit with every first flight or two of the day before it goes away. When I was flying a lot I never had the shakes at all so it's just a mater of flying more often for me.
Old 07-07-2015, 04:14 PM
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SeaJay
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I have to agree with CastleBravo..

I used to shake quite a bit, especially when I was flying a Larger or more expensive Airplane.. to help with building my flying skills and confidence, I Actually purchased a used ugly stick that was soo ugly that I actually named it "the Double Ugly stick!" but I didn't care one little bit if I ever crashed that plane, so I did some really stupid/crazy stuff with it, I.E. Full throttle Touch and goes, low level loops, low level inverted passes down the runway, etc. The fact that I didn't care if I crashed it, allowed me to advance my flying skills fairly quickly. I now fly an 80" w/s Edge 540 powered by a Moki 210 with no jitters, although I still wouldn't do some of the things with the Edge, that I would with that old Ugly stick.. as far as that old double ugly stick is concerned??? Yes, I still have it, and it is still in flying condition, because we all know that we never seem to crash the ugliest / most unwanted plane that we have, only the most treasured one!! although, I have contemplated doing a "Figure 9" with it, just for fun, but I will keep it till it expires from "Normal" Crazy/stupid stuff!!

Craig.

Last edited by SeaJay; 07-07-2015 at 06:54 PM.
Old 07-07-2015, 05:14 PM
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I have only been flying since last fall and my nerves went away for the most part. However what gives me stress is when the "old timers" are at the field watching and critiquing my every move. That makes me nervous, not the actual flying because after all I do this for fun. Plus I don't like flying when other guys are in the air as it just adds to the stress factor especially for a new pilot. Ideally I prefer to go to the field when nobody else is there but that is not an option since I only have the weekends off and that's when everyone is at the field.

Last edited by AllModesR/C; 07-07-2015 at 05:17 PM.
Old 07-07-2015, 05:19 PM
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Originally Posted by cubkadet View Post
does anyone have any suggestions on how to control the shaking when flying? I'm not exactly a beginner but I have a real hard time trying to control my shaking when flying. anyone have any suggestions on how to control this?

Is this a Loaded question
Old 07-07-2015, 05:57 PM
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I totally agree with both castlebravo and Seajay.You need to have a security blanket airplane that you don't care about crashing. And fly it till you're totally comfortable in just about any situation. I mean fly the heck out it, spend one day just taking off and landing doing nothing else till your bored to tears (touch and goes), Try all maneuvers even if the plane isn't completely capable of doing them, of course make sure you have plenty of altitude. Do be afraid to push the envelope with it. Then hopefully if it survives use it to warm up with before you move to planes you're more nervous about.
Old 07-07-2015, 06:46 PM
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Might want to check out some of the martial arts and zen methods of mind clearing. Some breathing exercises and better concentration really helps.

It's the same problem some people have with target panic or buck fever in bowhunting or firearm hunting. Takes practice and confidence to get over it.
Old 07-07-2015, 08:34 PM
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I'm surprised more people don't have warm-up planes, as mentioned.
Also, a slow and deliberate pre-flight helps you "become the airplane."
I think that helps you "own" your space and concentrate. Have at least a simple plan of what you are going to do.
Logbook/Journal??? Maybe.
Old 07-07-2015, 09:14 PM
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The first heat of a warbird race and I am shaking head to toe, my hands seem to just handle it but the legs can get out of control. What I do is I stand with my feet apart on the side, the more I shake the further I put my feet, it helps to make me stable. I call it birthing a hippo stance.

James
Old 07-07-2015, 09:32 PM
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When I was young I asked an expert angler that I greatly admired for his fish catching abilities "what it took to become a good fisherman?", his reply was simple "fish more". To be a good pilot, "fly more".
Old 07-08-2015, 12:11 AM
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Learn to fly a helicopter niro powered. Once you can hover, transition into and out of forward flight you will never have the shakes flying a fixed wing aircraft. This may be odd advice but it worked for me.
Old 07-08-2015, 02:21 AM
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The first flight of the day I called the confidence flight.
i take off with a known to me plane and fly circles around the pattern only high up. This serves to calm my nerves and warm my fingers.
the rest of the day im fine

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