Maintaining Aircraft Control

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A pilot’s most fundamental and important responsibility is to maintain aircraft control. Initial flight training thus provides skills to operate an airplane in a safe manner, generally within normal “expected” environments, with the addition of some instruction in upset and stall situations.

This category discusses the elements of basic aircraft control, with emphasis on AOA. It offers a discussion of circumstances and scenarios that can lead to LOC-I, including stalls and airplane upsets. It discusses the importance of developing proficiency in slow flight, stalls, and stall recoveries, spin awareness and recovery, upset prevention and recovery, and spiral dive recovery.

Pilots need to understand that primary training cannot cover all possible contingencies that an airplane or pilot may encounter, and therefore they should seek recurrent/additional training for their normal areas of operation, as well as to seek appropriate training that develops the aeronautical skill set beyond the requirements for initial certification.


Additional advisory circular (AC) guidance is available at


Rod Machado’s Private Pilot Handbook – If you want to learn to fly, or even just learn about what makes a plane fly, you’ll find this lavishly illustrated, fast-paced book to be the best available guide. Written in a clear and witty style, the Private Pilot Handbooks contains more than 1,200 illustrations and photos that are a standalone education about why we can fly.



Rod Machado’s How to Fly an Airplane Handbook – Many of today’s pilots rely excessively on their panel instruments to control their airplanes in visual conditions. Unfortunately, “panel pilots” never learn to fly the by the seat of their pants, which involves flying skills that primarily depend on sights, sounds and tactile sensations. Simply stated, relying primarily on your panel instruments to fly an airplane won’t make you a confident pilot nor will it make you a safe pilot. That’s why this handbook focuses on the basics of “attitude flying” and developing practical “stick and rudder” flying skills. These are the skills that give you complete control of your airplane and allow you to predict what it will do, can do and cannot do.

Rod Machado’s Plane Talk – Plane Talk covers aviation’s most critical human factor issues. Since about 85% of all accidents are due to pilot error, this book is important to anyone who flies an aircraft. These 442 pages contain some of the most important skills you absolutely must learn to become a safe, capable pilot. Machado makes these skills easy to learn and easy to recall by using his trademark humor throughout this thought-provoking book.