Biannual Flight Review

Pilot Proficiency

In the Air Force and most other groups of professional pilots, recurrent training is the name of the game. The skills you practice and perfect during your initial pilot training begin to deteriorate unless you have a disciplined recurrent training program. What does this mean? Well in simple terms it just means you regularly go out and practice things you don't normally do. The purpose of the BFR is to give you a structured setting to sit down with a CFI and discuss things you learned in your initial training then go out and actually practice them. We will focus on things you probably haven't done for a while like slow flight, stalls, and spin awareness.

The FAA produces a very good guide that I use to conduct a flight review found here:
Conducting a Flight Review

The FAA's Advisory Circular (AC) on flight reviews can be found here:
AC 61-98B

When you schedule your flight review with me I will want you to come with the following documents filled out and be ready to discuss them.

Wings Program

Several years ago the FAA started the WINGS Pilot Proficiency Program. The purpose of WINGS is to reduce the number of accidents in General Aviation by assisting airmen to find educational opportunities designed to help them apply the principles of risk assessment and risk management (RM).

The FAA spells out the incentives of using the WINGS program here:

AC 61-91J

Airmen who participate in the program and satisfactorily complete a current phase of WINGS will not have to complete the flight review requirements of 14 CFR part 61, ยง 61.56. Section 61.56(e) states that participating airmen do not need to accomplish the flight review requirements of part 61 if, since the beginning of the 24th calendar-month before the month in which that pilot acts as pilot-in-command (PIC), he or she has satisfactorily accomplished one or more phases of an FAA-sponsored pilot proficiency award program. Each time a pilot earns a new phase of WINGS, it satisfies the flight review requirement regardless of how frequently or closely spaced the phase or award.

I highly encourage all airman to participate in the WINGS program. For one, it is a great way to "keep your head in the game" when it comes to aviation. Although most GA pilots are not professional pilots, they should approach their training and currency as though they were and the WINGS program is a step in the right direction. In addition to online training, each WINGS course requires you to attend a seminar of some sort (which there are quite a few to choose from around the state) where you will meet other pilots and instructors who will, undoubtedly, end up sharing their individual 'war' stories with you and in the process everyone will learn. This informal hangar talk in addition to the seminar topic itself makes these events invaluable in your overall airmanship.

The last section of each WINGS phase includes a list of maneuvers to be completed under the supervision of an instructor. This is where you get some real value with the WINGS program. Instead of paying me $180 for a BFR (not including gas or airplane rental) you can just practice the maneuvers on your own until you are comfortable with all of them and then just have me go up with you at my normal instructional rate of $40/hr to sign you off. All of the WINGS phases can be completed in about 2 hours so you can save yourself around $100. For most pilots, thats a whole weekend's worth of fuel!

Below is a link to the WINGS program website and the WINGS User Guide.