How long will it take to become a sport pilot and learn to fly a light-sport aircraft?
The minimum requirements are covered in the previous section “Getting Your Sport Pilot License”, but there are many factors that can extend the intense/accelerated training time of 7 to 10 days to get a license to months or more. For intense/accelerated training time you may be able to solo in as little as three days (PPC), or five days (airplane / weight-shift control trike). It all depends on your ability to learn the techniques involved in takeoff, flying and landing.
How many hours you are allowed to fly in a day can depend on weather and your endurance. More than three hours per day is quite a bit of flying and is usually a limit for most students to be effective. How long it takes, also depends on your background. If you already have other aviation training, you may progress more quickly in certain parts of your training, since there are areas in your training that may be very similar. People who fly with their friends already or practice on a flight simulator will progress faster and take less time to learn.
Four to five days of flight training may be adequate to solo. Industry averages say the minimum required dual training time is what typically is needed for solo in calm conditions, however, there are large variations to this rule of thumb.
Your first solo flights will be under very controlled conditions. Your instructor will be making most decisions for you. You will gradually begin to develop your confidence and skills, as you progress in your flights. You will also begin to make more decisions about your flights yourself. By the time you finish training and ready for your checkride, you should be able to takeoff and land without assistance in windy and bumpy conditions, as well as, make most of your own decisions about flying.
After your checkride, you are on your own, and it is the beginning of a new learning experience of flying as pilot in command on your own without any instructor supervision.