There are many reasons why a lot of people dream of becoming commercial airline pilots. Not only does the aviation industry pay their pilots well, but the job also lets you fly a state-of-the-art aircraft and travel around the world. From an outsider’s perspective, working in the aviation sector is an illustrious career. However, what many don’t know is that being a co-pilot or a pilot captain of a commercial airline is a demanding job.
When aspiring pilots enroll in their chosen pilot school, the school will prepare them for the responsibilities commercial airline pilots have to oversee. Some of these obligations include conducting complete pre-flight checkups, ensuring the usability of aircraft instruments, analyzing flight plans, and determining which route is the safest to take for their flights. The students are also trained to navigate through the skies under various weather conditions, from bright sunny days to powerful storms. What’s more, aviation schools make sure that their students are ready to bear the responsibility of transporting their future passengers to their destinations as safely as possible.
Learning about the many roles a pilot has to perform can be overwhelming. And as someone who’s preparing for their pilot training, you can get stressed just thinking about what to expect during your sessions. Nevertheless, if your passion to becoming a commercial airline pilot is stronger than your doubts, then you’ll be able to pass your training with flying colors. To help strengthen your resolve, here are five things you can do to mentally and physically prepare yourself for pilot training.
Pilots need to stay alert when taking to the skies, so to help keep their memories and reflexes sharp, they need to make it a point to exercise regularly. Adding more physical activity to your lifestyle will strengthen your body and improve your brain function. It can also give you more energy and boost your mood significantly, so you’ll feel less sluggish and irritable after sitting in the cockpit for hours. You don’t have to do strenuous exercise to stay in shape for your pilot training. A light workout, a quick run or walk around the park, as well as a short bike ride are enough to keep you physically and mentally fit.
Eat Healthier Meals
To ensure that you have the energy to get through all your pilot training sessions, you have to start eating healthier foods. Avoiding unhealthy meals and incorporating more healthy foods (e.g., fruits and vegetables) into your diet is an excellent way to keep your mind and body strong. Eating the right foods can also lower your risk of developing health problems like coronary heart disease, myocardial infarction, and diabetes. Medical conditions such as these can disqualify you from being a pilot.
Quit Your Vices
There’s a reason why doctors say that smoking and drinking are bad for your health. Not only can nicotine and alcohol leave irreparable damage to your body, but they can also be a detriment to your mental health. Even if a lot of people say that smoking and drinking help lower their stress levels, the relief they receive is temporary. This is because studies show that smoking and drinking increase stress and psychological distress after consumption.
If you’re the type of person who turns to smoking and drinking to help you stay calm, it’s the perfect time to quit your vices. Smoking and drinking regularly may impair your judgment and affect your performance during pilot training. If you’re having trouble coping with stress, there are healthier ways to manage it. Some of these examples include meditation, taking enough breaks, and making time for your hobbies.
Get Enough Rest
Getting enough sleep is invaluable whether you’re a student pilot or a full-fledged pilot. When your mind and body are fully rested, you’ll be able to process information better and make fewer mistakes during your training. Lack of sleep can make you lose focus, so you’ll have difficulty paying attention during your training. Being sleep-deprived also makes you less aware of your actions, putting your life, as well as your instructor’s life, in danger.
Talk about Your Concerns with Your Instructor
It’s normal to feel nervous when you’re preparing for your flight training exercises, especially if it’s your first time. However, if you let your nerves get to you, you’ll worry more about your performance and lose focus on your training. Anxiety can increase your breathing and heart rate, which can place a lot of stress on your body. It can also give you feelings of dread, causing you to start questioning your capabilities as a student pilot.
When you feel anxious and worried about your training, it’s good to share your concerns with your flight instructor, who can sympathize and understand your situation. Your instructor has been in your shoes once before, so they know what it’s like to feel nervous before going into flight training. Being open about your worries can make your instructor aware of your current physical, mental, and emotional state. This way, your instructor can give you words of support and tips on how to do well in your training to help shake your anxieties away.
Doing well in your flight exercises is a crucial part of earning your pilot license. However, there are a lot of factors that can affect your physical and mental well-being when preparing for your pilot training. Fortunately, these five tips can help keep you calm and healthy, so you can be ready to crush your pilot training sessions.