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November 15, 2022
For most pilots, communicating with ATC is not a skill that comes naturally or comfortably at first.
Rather, communication skills are gained through hands-on experience and countless hours of practice. Traditionally, a good bulk of that training takes place during flight lessons, but if you want to get over your radio nerves faster, there is a secret: do yourself a big favor and schedule in some dedicated comms training.
This dedicated comms learning & training is important for several reasons; read on to see the top four.
Effective flight radio communication is a safety necessity.
In a high-stress emergency, time and details matter. It is vitally important to have the ability to quickly and effectively communicate with ATC.
Through practice, pilots can develop “muscle memory” with their flight communication skills so that even in an emergency, their training takes over. They can simply, efficiently, and effectively communicate with ATC without stressing about what to say and how to say it.
A solid grasp on the particulars of aviation radio comms is also important because misunderstandings or miscommunication with ATC has resulted in pilots taking a dangerous action, like inadvertently landing on an incorrect runway or making an unauthorized (and sometimes fatal) turn into the path of an unseen aircraft.
A dedicated comms training course and practice will help to make radio use second nature and mitigate these communications safety concerns.
Who wants to be “that guy” always having to ask ATC to “say again” because we cannot keep up. No one.
That said, when you first start learning, the pace at which comms traffic takes place can feel far too fast to grasp.
There may also be certain comms scenarios that do not come up during your flight lessons. If you have not been devoting dedicated time to comms training, you could be caught off-guard and unsure what to say when you encounter such a situation in real life.
It takes a lot of flight time and practice to build up a pilot’s competence in comms, so speed up that process by logging some extra hours of dedicated comms training in between flights.
Learning one new skill at a time is challenging enough. Add multiple new skill sets layered on top of one another, and it becomes harder to really focus on and perfect the details of each.
When you are up in the air doing your flight training, much of your focus is on flying the airplane, as it should be. Comms may take a backseat.
Investing time dedicated solely to sharpening your radio comms skills allows pilots to put all their focus on learning the ins and outs of communications without also juggling flying at the same time. The next time you are back in the cockpit, your on-air traffic will be that much smoother for having spent dedicated training time polishing it.
There is a saying that “confidence comes after,” and that certainly proves true when it comes to radio communications.
When they are first starting out, many pilots are uncertain, tentative, and even apprehensive about the need to communicate with ATC. The more practice and experience you have, the more comfortable and confident you will feel about getting on the radio.
Employing a dedicated ground-based comms practice plan helps to take you from a nervous new pilot to a confident, seasoned professional much faster.
Great, we identified that having some extra comms training is beneficial to both newbie pilots and veterans, but where can you go from here?
PlaneEnglish is ready to help you gain the comms confidence you may have no known you could achieve.
We have VFR, IFR, and combined VFR+IFR app access pricing plans providing everything from one to twelve months of access to our ARSim app so you can choose the plan that fits your needs. In fact, plans start as low as $4.99 per month.
Our companion manual, The Easy Route to Aviation Radio Proficiency, is also available either in PDF or hard copy format. Use it in conjunction with the app to get the most out of both tools and get ready to just be able to focus on the flying part of being a pilot.
September 22, 2023
You aren’t the first, and you won’t be the last, but knowing that you’re not alone probably does little to help you feel any less nauseous as you reach for the infamous “barf bag” mid-flight.
We’re sorry you’re suffering from airsickness, but it is not hopeless - far from it. Let’s talk about airsickness & motion sickness in pilot training.
June 21, 2023
When you close your eyes and imagine the career of your dreams, what does that life look like?
For many pilots, the perfect job is sliding behind the controls as a pilot in command of a scheduled airline flight or charter.
March 22, 2023
You’ve made the bold leap and are chasing your dream of becoming a pilot. Congratulations – we know how it feels to count down the days to earning your wings.
Today we’re talking about the timeline from starting training to earning your certification, plus ways to shave time off that journey while maximizing learning. So, how hard is it to become a pilot? Read on to find out.
Are you ready? Let’s get you up in the air!
PlaneEnglish created this blog to provide aspiring and current pilots a resource for all things related to aviation radio communication.
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