Episode 63- Adél Honti and what makes a successful pilot

Adel crushing in Colombia- Photo Trey Hackney

 

What makes a successful pilot? Is it just talent and hours or something anyone can learn with training and application? Sports psychology gives us the answer if we break it down into three dimensions: technical, physical and mental. In this episode Adél Honti explains how her analytical approach and study of human psychology has helped her understand how to operate more adeptly in our invisible world. Adél explains why “races are won and lost in the mind.” How do we get into the “Flow”? How should we approach training? How should we deal with failure? How can we learn to focus for longer periods? How can we radically accelerate our own learning and ability? How can we pay more attention to the technical aspects of the sport to improve our speed? Why fear is so important in not only keeping us safe but making flying enjoyable, and how we can learn to deal with it in a healthy way. How physical training is so critical to flying long XC flights and for maintaining stamina in competitions. We all agree that confidence and the mental side of flying is critical to flying well and staying safe, but if we aren’t naturally confident people how can we build this skill? Adél describes how to set achievable goals and how to identify weaknesses and mistakes (not just in flying, but in your life) in order to tackle them head-on which leads to flying farther and faster and may make some surprisingly positive changes in your life as well. And finally Adél presents some theories that I hadn’t heard before regarding the lack of women in the sport.

This honest frank talk is packed with the most actionable advice of any of the talks we’ve yet had on the Mayhem. This one is urgent and powerful and absolutely packed with incredible advice- ENJOY and please please share!  And don’t skip the Show Notes- there’s a LOT there.

More information about Adél:

“I am a cross country guide and instructor and tandem pilot: I teach in a tandem how to fly fast and long xc, but I don’t do commercial flights and I don’t teach beginners. Teaching is a hobby, a way to give back to my local community as my best friend and club owner taught me all the basics and more, so this is the least I can do.
I started flying in 2004, made my instructor license in 2013, the same year I entered my very first comp as well. Currently I have about 800 flight hours.
I have been sportwoman of the year in xc pg for 3 years in a row. My current world ranking is 172 overall, 8th woman.
Last year at the world championship I was 6th in the female ranking.
I am:
-a sport diplomat in the CIVL and member of the Hungarian paragliding committee of our National Aeroclub member of the national team, 4th in our overall ranking
-admin of the biggest female paragliding and hanggliding community, close to 1000 members on facebook.
-the first Hungarian female pilot ever flying the Worlds or Europeans or ever making it to the national overall podium
I have rewritten our sport codex and harmonized it with the FAI rules plus created a female national team
I organized the last 2 national championships
In my civil life i am an entrepreneur and business developer. I have built so far 3 businesses and sold successfully the first. I have a degree in Law, but I also did 4 years of international relations in the faculty of Economics (no degree there, I skipped as my first business kept me super busy). When I started flying I gave up the international tax law career and switched to entrepreneurship to be my own slaveowner:)”

 

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Show Notes:

First if you’re looking for the “Pilot needs ride to car” sign I mention in the episode go here.

  1. What makes a successful pilot: physically, technically and mentally?

Sport psychology has the answer:

Break down your sport to 3 dimensions:

Physical

Why do we need to be fit for paragliding? Isn’t it a technical sport?

  • for endurance and ability to concentrate long: records, big comps are often 2 weeks long
  • for safety
  • ability to stall the glider even after a 5 hour long flight and B riser control – not to have tired shoulder muscles
  • being able to land with a 30 km heavy equipment in turbulent conditions require strong ligaments – a lot of balancing exercises are there for it
  • pilots often land near the road so they do not have to carry their equipment
  • more precise glider control – I often feel like sitting on a fitball and balancing all the time in strong conditions. The more aggression I feel from my equipment, I react with the same level of input sometimes moving all the time with my whole upper body from my hips

I work out 3-4 times a week: 1 hour building muscles, 30 minutes cardio (running)

I love food and I have a sweet tooth, so without this I would probably be able to fly an XL size glider very fast J I already have way more built in ballast then necessary J

Also my personal preference is to sit in the middle of my weight range and be able to ballast up or dump the ballast if the weather turns super weak, so for optimal performance I have to keep my body weight at a certain number

Technical

  • get to know your instruments and understand maximum capacity
  • get to know the capacity of the glider at SIV training – after a certain point in development Acro is mandatory
  • learn to take off with even 33 kg equipment even in gentle back wind
  • learn a lot of meteorology – understand the sky not just now but predict what will happen in some hours on a comp course route
  • learn to deploy your reserve parachute in the gym, practice landing with a parachute by jumping off a high table to a gym mat with your harness on and roll off the energy
  • g force trainer will teach you to understand the G force in a spiral dive – I started to loose consciousness at 7G

 

Psychological elements

As I said I believe this is 80% of the success. For me it is certainly true. There are many pilots out there, who are more athletic, or have better glider control. The key of my performance is my ability to enjoy what I do, as it is just a game, and the fact that I am not afraid of the maze of my psyche. To admit my weaknesses is not a weakness but a strength.

Goal is to get in the Flow

(theory from Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi Hungarian psychologist). NOTE: one of our listeners, Paul Boneo wrote up a really great summary of flow, check it out here:  https://hastyreader.com/flow-psychology-mihaly-csikszentmihalyi/

Y axis: the level of challenge

X axis : level of skill /experience

Confucius: The tiger has to be killed in our mind first, the rest is just formality.

 

My methods:

  • Modelling: if i have to fly for 10 hours, but i am not sure i can do it, i should sit in a car and drive 10 hours without stopping

if i am afraid of freefall, i can learn skydiving etc

 

Visualization: imagining the task before taking off, imagining during flight how the thermal we are in looks like (is it a raindrop or a fried egg) i imagine the air a s a river flowing over objects to understand the movement of it

 

Using a mantra :

hohoho ho, the sea is rough today,

I have done it before, I am a kickass pilot

Huh I am in bad company, this coffee is already brewed, lets just speed up or slow down

 

  • learning to deal with fear:

lets go back to the flow theory chart:

Fear is always present when one is outside of one’s comfort zone, it is important to understand that it is NOT something that will ever go away.

I often feel that pilots treat it as a macho thing and would never admit being scared at certain situations.

 

Very few people can actually lose the feeling of fear all-together, but that is a ticket to a body bag. It has the same dangers as a person whose skin looses all feelings and cannot tell when he is freezing or burning.

 

Jeb Corlis, a top wingsuit pilot said after his near fatal crash that: “I made a big mistake, I lost fear. Fear is a super important thing, man. Without fear… you will die.”

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1hKhofOF_zo

 

THE KEY IS NOT TO TRY TO LOSE FEAR BUT TO LEARN TO DEAL WITH IT.

 

I use many tips from Seven Steps to Dealing with Fear in Paragliding written by Heike Hamann

http://7steps2dealingwithfear.com/

 

I imagine myself from one of the best photos where I look cool

mini goal setting: I allow myself to land after 10 more minutes of flight

 

other things I do to deal with my fears:

Siv training, mental training, listening to deep house

  • goal setting:

set not result type of goals but performance goals

eg: not that I want to be 1st in this comp, but take apart the requirements what is needed to get in goal fast: eg get the start right, how to choose the best and strongest climbs, be the best climber in a thermal, optimize the equipment well, chose the best lines to glide, learn to rule the gaggle, when is it the right time to start the final glide on full speed

work on one goal only at a time and learn to perfect that one element before you move on to the next – write down in a bullet point diary what you do well and what mistakes you have done during a task, and you will see a pattern – mistakes you often repeat.

  • dealing with failure:

there is always a next task, a next comp, every single comp is just a training for the next one. Comp flying is not a destination, it is a constant journey of learning and getting better. As long as I can learn to do things I never believed myself capable, I am proud and happy.

  • self confidence: essential for success

it does not matter who is under the helmet, even if you fly with the world champion, do not get intimidated, you have full rights to be in the air just as anybody else. Do not let the better pilots cut in in front of you at take off or in a thermal, don’t let yourself be bullied

  • meditation: 15 minutes worth with a couple hours of sleep helps to focus

 

focusing: learn to concentrate long on many things at the same time (instruments, weather, other pilots around you, birds, clouds, dust etc)

from the same level pilots the person who can concentrate longest to most changing factors during a task will probably be the winner

 

exercise: Fit4Race type of training for racecar drivers where one has to do several times at the same time eg kneel on a fitball and throw with each hand a different size of small ball to a wall and catch it. It feels like training for the circus, but it is highly effective J

 

By mental training performance can be raised by 40%

according to a study where the brain functions of expert formula 1 drivers and the general public were compared in a high speed high focus driving exercise.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fG4DO22bWLo

 

  • choosing a mentor

the right mentor is not necessarily the best pilot, but a pilot with the ability to analyze one’s patterns and offer progression advice

  • objective self analysis: ego has no place here, one needs to be brutally honest with oneself to understand that sometimes even a mentally healthy person can suffer from forgotten trauma, blocks or fear of failure

 

Final thought: we fly exactly as we feel. Races can be won or lost in the mind.

 

  1. Do we need a female category in comps? Why are there so few women in freeflight? What are the psychological, technical and physical challenges of a healthy female athlete in this sport?

 

It is a difficult question to answer and since I have been flying comps I went around a full circle. First I was all for it, then in the rush for gender equality I though it is not necessary anymore, we should have weight classes, then I arrived back to the beginning, saying yes, we do need it, at least as long as certain criteria aren’t met.

 

Lets start with the obvious:

 

What is an average female pilot profile? (based on a survey with 290 pilots I made)

30-40 year olds, fly EN B wings, 80% of them has a take off weight of 60-95 kgs, 70 % of them live in Europe, 23 % lives in the US or Canada.

 

When asked the question if they ever experienced any disadvantages of being female in paragliding, 37% replied with a yes.

 

We have less time to build a career than men:

To get to overall podium on a smaller cat2 one needs to compete in average for 5 years 4-5 comps a year. Most people start paragliding in their late 20s early 30s, then after a couple of years of cross coutry they start to compete. By this time women are at home with kids, and have zero time for the sport not to mention comp flying.

 

If you check the average age of a PWC, then you will not be surprised to see many people over the age or 40 or around the age of 50 there. To be that good one needs experience that builds up in decades and not mere years. A woman who wishes to have 2 kids does not have 10 years in paragliding to build a career before she retires to start a family.

 

Are there any technical disadvantages for women?

Absolutely no. We can thermal, take off, land, push the bar, read the weather or our instruments just as good as any man can do.

 

Psychological:

  • Women have a different risk taking profile from men in general, especially after childbirth. Not many women are interested in adventure sports to start with
  • Societal pressure to fit in with a gender role: adventure sports are considered sexy if men do it, but the exact opposite for women: reckless, too masculine, these women are not feminine. In many countries racing paragliders as a woman while one has kids are seriously frown upon, and the family puts pressure on a woman to stop.

–    Being part of a minority is challenging: bullying, sexism, being weaker

women don’t win comps in overall, so women often do not have enough confidence to see themselves on an overall podium

 

There is no male podium. Why? Many comp organizers I asked said that they never considered making a male podium as it is pointless, only men win overalls, and why should they give 2 trophies for the same 3 guys for being the best man and best overall? It is a waste of money. As a comp organizer myself I get that. As a woman I feel it is very discouraging to women, it sends the wrong message: that we won’t ever make overall podiums. What if we do? I have stood on the overall podium twice already, and it was unfair to my fellow male pilots not to be on male podium.

 

The odds are against us. The female and male brain is working differently, but there is absolutely no evidence that women have a different IQ from men. Why are there less female top pilots then men?

The answer is easy: there are 130.000 pilots wordwhide from which only 10 % are female. If we say that most pilots are average in skills, but there are a few exceptionally good ones, lets say 1 from 10 thousand is a genius with the exact same ability as any other genius, then statistically speaking we end up having 11 genius male pilots fighting wor world champion status and 1 genius female pilot….is is simply 10 times more likely that that woman won’t make it to overall podium, based on stats only.

 

total no. of pilots 130000 geniuses
men 117000 11,7
women 13000 1,3

 

 

  • Gender equality differs from country to country. Pilots are often very independent people, able to afford the equipment and travel alone. Women in many countries still do not enjoy the same salaries as men do and simply cannot afford as much money on the sport as their male counterparts

 

Physical:

  • Not a gender issue, but certainly more women are smaller than men Smaller size results in worse performing gliders, also more dangerous ones, an XS CCC glider is not something anyone would be happy to fly as it is more aggressive than the M or L size

80% of Female take off weight is 60-95 Kg:

So do we need a female podium?

YES.

Why?

  • It is a form of positive discrimination that supposed to balance the effect of belonging to a minority
  • it is encouraging to see successful female athletes on podium and helps new female pilots to set role models and learn the yes you can attitude
  • it is great tool for pushing the sport to the next level: most sport ministries regard sports with grants and financial support that can produce athletes that are in top 5 or 10 in world championships or continentals. For men it is very hard to achieve but for women not so. I was the first pilot in Hungary who could be in top 6 at a cross country world championship. Again, stats.

The money was not given to me but to our paragliding committee that spends the money on moving the competition scene forward.

 

  1. Is Fear our biggest adversary or best friend?

 

Definitly best friend! A friend who has an edge, shows us fun times, great adventures, a friend who makes us grow up to our full potential.

 

I sold my shares in the company I had been building for 12 years last spring then all summer long I had a lot of uncertainty and anxiety about what I will do next. I started to build a new venture and I remember often having sleepless nights and lots of fear about succeeding. I realized that the feeling was very familiar to me: I often felt the same before some big sport or business transformations that were followed with success and happiness. I had the same experience before an SIV for example recently. Now if I feel fear, I know that it normally means change, and that is not necessarily a bad thing, depending on situation, it normally signals that an opportunity of growth is here right now, I have to either take it or retreat.

I do not like being scared or being anxious, but I do not fear “fear” anymore.

 

Topics for next time:

 

  1. What is the social evolutional explanation for wanderlust? Do all pilots suffer from it? Is this normal?
  2. How does adventure sport transform one’s personality? How does it affect business success, goal setting, risk taking and overall happiness?
  3. Is team spirit really the secret for world success?
  4. Are paragliding comps just a game for adults who fight for virtual points? What happens if one takes it too seriously? Can a too big Ego be the biggest obstacle for an athlete?

 

 

Mentioned in this episode: Josh Heater, Brad Gunnuscio, Krisha Berlinger, Trey Hackney, Chrigel Maurer, Yassen Savoy, Michal Gerlach, Fabien Blanco, Bill Belcourt, Jeb corliss, Tao Berman, Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, Dave Snowden, Brian Webb, Nicole Fedele, Klaudia Bulgakow, Laurie Genovesie

 



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Transcript

Speaker 1: 00:00:12 Hi there everybody. Welcome to another episode of the cloud based mayhem. Really psyched to bring you this show for a long time. People have been asking me to get ADL haunty on the show. She just got third overall, not in the women's, but overall, uh, down at the Colombian open. She's only been flying comps for about five years, uh, but has been flying since 2004 and in all those times between 2004 and the comp years, maybe got like a hundred hours, just, you know, didn't really get it. You don't understand, understand what all the fuss was about and you know, loved flying but didn't really understand cross country. So she's got this amazing kind of a bridge between, you know, the kind of the newbies and the expert and she's also super analytical. So we get into all kinds of real deep stuff on what makes a really good pilot and training.
Speaker 1: 00:01:03 Uh, the kind of physical, technical and mental aspects of it. Uh, talk a lot about team spirit and you know, what the French and the Swiss and the Germans are doing. And compared to other teams that don't have the funding for that, is that our kind of a requisite for success, uh, all kinds of technical stuff on how to fly fast and how to score well and um, but just also how to enjoy it. And I, I got all the conversations we have on the mayhem and have just made me a better pilot. I love every one of my cherish, every one of them, but I think I got more out of this talk than any of the others. So you're really going to enjoy it before we get to it. A few little things, a housekeeping, um, Josh heater sent me these really cool, super, super, super lightweight science cross country magazines making them as well, but they're these, uh, little things you can stuff in your bag that pop out and they're made to these real thin but durable fabric that just says pilot needs to ride to car.
Speaker 1: 00:01:57 Uh, you don't need too many of those in the Alps, but for those of you that fly in really remote places, uh, I find that that goes a long way rather than just hitchhiking. So I've got a few extra those to give away to you, our listeners, uh, in the past we've done all kinds of fun challenges and that kind of thing or reviews or sharing it. Um, I don't have a way to, to single it out. So just do something cool with this podcast, share it with your friends or, uh, share it with a group or do a review and just make sure I've seen it. And, uh, you'll be in to win one of those shift one off and then the next month or something. So get started right with the season. Uh, the other bit of housekeeping is just, it's spring for those of us in the Northern hemisphere, uh, things are going to start turning on here again.
Speaker 1: 00:02:41 And this is always a time of the year where we see typically statistically a lot of accidents cause we're, uh, you know, we're not real tuned up. We've been skiing or doing other stuff for the winter and spring thermals can be pretty sharp. So, uh, just, you know, make sure he got, and you've gotten all your reserve and rescue gear totally in order. Uh, take it easy in the beginning. Take it slow, take your time. Uh, get your SIVs under your belt. Make sure you get those stalls dialed before you really go for it. Just, uh, you know, the season is long, but it's really short if you go out and get hurt right off the bat. So take it easy folks. Uh, be conservative. Dial it up as a cause. You know how, but don't, don't over overstep how far you know where to go. So, uh, yeah. Anyway, just a quick reminder to be careful. It's spring. That's when things go wrong. Auto haunty this is just an awesome talk. A little bit longer than some of the ones we do. That's just cause I didn't want to stop it. It was just fantastic. There is a lot here. Uh, so without further delay, please enjoy this conversation with our Dell haunty
Speaker 2: 00:03:53 [inaudible]
Speaker 1: 00:03:53 Adele, so great to have you on the show. I've been dying to talk to you. We've had [inaudible]
Speaker 3: 00:03:56 many, many, many requests. And it was kind of timely because when I was down in Australia, uh, hanging out with Chris and some of your vans, I guess you'd call them, uh, you were crushing down in Columbia. And so usually I would ask, uh, our guests to give a little bit of their history and paragliding, we're going to get to that. But I thought we might, uh, start at a different way this time with you and just have you tell the listeners a great paragliding story, whether that's something that you did yourself or you saw or you heard or you know, what's kind of the craziest, coolest, wildest, neatest thing you've done in the sky.
Speaker 4: 00:04:33 Um, yeah, I'm very, very honored to be here, so thank you so much for inviting me. I really love this podcast. So it's absolutely great to, to be in it. And I was thinking when you asked that, uh, I have a recent story. It's actually from Rhoda, this competition a couple of weeks back. I heard so many stories about, uh, fires and you know, how the interest they can be, but I never actually experienced that myself. And in this competition, uh, it was not, uh, prohibited to, to fly in the fires and we had some days. So there was this, uh, this day, which I think decided, uh, for me that I ended up on, on the overall podium, which was really surprising. I was really elated to, to fly so well. And uh, I think if I have to put my finger on it's, what was the deciding factor then I would say that that one single decision when we went into that fire, one of the last days and it just started as, as like a normal 1.5 maybe.
Speaker 4: 00:05:37 And we went through it once already. We did a turn point, the final one. And on the way back we stopped there again because the whole weather was just really dying. It was all shaded out everywhere and we had like 15 or 20 more case to go. So we saw it as really the last opportunity to, to raise a or get some Heights. And it was very mellow at the beginning, but I guess I just didn't see how quickly turned out to be something very dangerous. Well, I was in, in the leading get-go with Brad [inaudible] with uh, Krisha Berlinger and we had collegiate from, from Columbia or some local pilot there and myself. And, uh, I think there were a big group behind us just coming into that fire as well. And I saw Krisha Berlinger coming up with maybe a five or a six meters per sec, uh, you know, lift and it looked also steady.
Speaker 4: 00:06:35 So I remember pushing the bar with all I had going in it. And I was already in the lift, but the moment did just hit me. I was elated. I was shouting to crucial like, yeah, that's it. We are going to make it to go. And then we are going up. We have like two or three turns. And what I didn't see because it was so dark in the smoke already and we had black things flying all around, I didn't see that he was writing this bubble. It was like writing away if they'd behind him. This very frightening and scary black smoke was brewing because the, the Pacific wind just speaked up and the fire started to burn like crazy. So I didn't see this bubble coming up below him. But after a couple of seconds it hit us and it was like a washing machine. I remember.
Speaker 4: 00:07:26 Thanks God. I did an SIV already on this wing because I had everything you can imagine all the collapses to the left and the right going behind me in front of me and, and I, I even installed the open side in a collapsed once. So I had a spin, I did everything. So I was sending myself with all I had. I've done this before, I've done this before, I'm still in control. But I was so scared and there was one moment when the neither just disappeared. I don't know where the twins, but I remember having that doubt, you know, Oh, this might be trouble. And next thing what went through my mind is what happens if I throw a reserve in the middle of a fire? I mean, it's silly.
Speaker 5: 00:08:13 Nope. You got a Beamer then. Oh,
Speaker 4: 00:08:16 I have, I have a square and a Beamer.
Speaker 5: 00:08:22 Well,
Speaker 4: 00:08:23 I think, I think not necessarily skill was what saved me there, but the bubble was really a bubble and we just fell to the side of it. So we just slid to the side in the tour balloons and when we were already on the side and, and, and the glider just rearranged itself somehow. Then I could, I could manage that and I could fly out of this fire. And I remember not hearing anything except my own heartbeat. It was like beating so fast and so loud that I had to actually put some mental effort to call my mind and looked around and I saw [inaudible], I saw bread coming out. I saw, I saw Chris shies wa and that I look back and everybody landed. Like everybody decided, okay, this is too much. Or are they, when went out then it was only the four of us, no one else.
Speaker 4: 00:09:15 And we had a very gentle slight to the goal. I mean, it was not FUBAR anymore. It was just survival. And we had to, had to stop twice with birds so low that we were really thinking that, you know, we might not make it, but I had a very, very strong conviction that four of us were just make it to go and I was repeating, repeating this and we crossed the goal line so low that we couldn't even turn into the wind to land for, we were lending right. Crossing the top of the trees and just hit the goal line and wowed it. Happiness, the four of us on the retreat car. It was not the, it was just one one shape taking the four of us back and wow. It was absolutely amazing.
Speaker 3: 00:10:05 That is amazing. I have a more S, more somber fire story. Uh, many people will probably remember this or heard about it on the Forbes or that kind of thing, but I, I'm kinda surprised they, uh, they still allow fire flying because they, in 2012, uh, that was all very much still allowed in, in the super final in 2012. It was one of the last days and the, the leading gaggle, uh, came up on like a proper Inferno. It wasn't one of these just, you know, fires that's kind of milking along. It sounds like kind of what you got into it. But it was just really, really going off. And, uh, a bunch of guys were low and it was like a proper column, you know, like the, the definition between clear sky and black was just like a line. And uh, and Kriegel went into it and a bunch of guys did it, but you, Austin went in like 50 feet off the ground.
Speaker 3: 00:10:57 You know, he was really low classic Yassin out in front and pushing hard and uh, just completely lost his glider. And he ended up 2000 feet above cloud base. And, uh, his, he broken a whole bunch of lines at that point in his glider was wrapped up so many times and twist if he figured over a dozen times that it was like a rope over his head. And so as soon as he kinda came out of this insane lift, it Kriegel caught it. He had to full stall three times and Kriegel had it on his instrument. It went online, a picture of it. He was in 20 meter climb. It was scary. And, uh, anyway, you, Austin went to throw his reserve and realized, Oh my God, I can't throw it now. I might land back down to the fire. And just like you, he just kind of waited for a couple of minutes, you know, under this kind of rope over his head.
Speaker 3: 00:11:46 And then finally he threw and, uh, the next day at the, you know, the task briefing, the next morning, uh, Luke Armand got up and he was almost like in tears, just really upset. And he just like, listen, I don't come to these things to watch my friends die. We're not, we're not doing that anymore. We're not going to be cloud flying anymore and that's it. Or I'm going home. So I'm surprised, you know, is it such a, I mean, it, it happens every day. They light those fields up this time of year. I'm surprised that they, they still allow it, but that, that's a happy fire story. I liked that one.
Speaker 4: 00:12:17 Yeah. But you know, on the other hand, I have to mention that once we got back to headquarters, we met me hard. You're like, who won this competition? And he is absolutely a stunning example of a very, very uh, controlled amazing pilot. And he told us that he was, he was leading this whole con, but at that point when we went into the fire, for some reason he was a little bit behind us and not by much, maybe like half a minute. But that was already enough that he saw how crazy it was all turning out and he decided not to fly into it. And when we met him back into headquarters, Steenland at LA did state, you know, he, he just told us in the, in the comb a voice of his that I think that was the rescue, you know, responsible. So I decided to lend because at the end of the day, this is just a game and you know, it, it is so true that this is just a game and we are fighting for vitro points. You know, we are not getting anything out of it. We are not going to gain fame or money or there's nothing gets steak. And we are really playing this game with our friends and thinking it too seriously. It's not just good for the ego, but it's terrible for the health as well.
Speaker 3: 00:13:32 Couldn't agree more. I mean that's a, that's a common theme on the show. And what I try when I give talks on the road and that kind of thing, I constantly remind me, no one will remember who the super final winner is two years from now. You know, it just doesn't matter. It's, it's just a game. It's supposed to be for fun. And when you, you know, you do something stupid, then it's no fun.
Speaker 4: 00:13:51 Yeah. Yeah. So it was an awesome story, but I think it reminded me that sometimes a terrible story. And then also some story is it's just a hairline difference, you know? So, yeah, exactly. So where somebody asked me, do you recommend Firefly? No, I do not recommend it.
Speaker 3: 00:14:11 Definitely not yet. Um, so that, that's a good junction though. So now let's, let's jump to your, your history because as I understand it, you've been flying for quite a while, but you've only been flying comps, um, you know, pretty recently, like the last five years. So take us through that a little bit and then I'd like to hear about, you know, how you've had some success.
Speaker 4: 00:14:31 Um, well I, I satisfying in 2004 and, uh, and, uh, I was really just concentrating on, on work at the first couple of years. So vying was mostly with soaring morning, just enjoying myself with my friends, going on tours, flying maybe 10 hours a year or so. So, um, when in 2013, uh, I had maybe 100 hours, um, in that nine years. So, uh, I was relatively, you know, unexperienced and not much cross-country flying at all. So my mentor and best friend [inaudible] that it's a ASMI, why I'm not so into flying anymore. And I just said, well, I don't know. I mean, I, I'm not sure I really understand what's so great about it and, and I just can't figure out this invisible mass of air. I'm not sure I understand. And I'm sure there is a science which is behind it, but I'm just not possibly, I'm not really cracking this gold here.
Speaker 4: 00:15:31 I'm not really so good in it. And he told me, well, the best way to to learn is to come to a competition. And he used to compete when he was, uh, between 14 and 18. He already peaked in his [inaudible] career. I know it's crazy, but this guy is that good. And he flew already like words and Europeans. He was Hungary and champion and he just lots motivation by the year of 18. And he stopped. And uh, he told me that, listen, if you don't find competitions, you never gonna really improve and learn. And my approach, I remember my response was, you are crazy. I can't really fly. Well I, I, how can I even go to a competition and, and you know, you should be good first and that's when you go. And he, he just signed us up, both of us in 2013 to the Syria cup.
Speaker 4: 00:16:21 I remember that he was the Hungarian national championship at the same time. And we went and I had a blast. I sucked so badly, I was so bad. I never, I realize they can throw more, I can even pick how to take good line and nothing. I thought I learned in that 100 hours of flying. Everything was basically wrong somehow. And I'm the kind of person who is really analytical and if I, if I find something, which I don't really understand, I started to take it apart and I look at every single piece and I learned how I can improve every single little building block. And that's how I basically build businesses or that's how I, I work as a business developer and business coach. So it just really a pig, you know, it irritated me that I, I sucked so badly and then I decided okay, because it's, it seemed like a great fun and a lots of good friends were there that I didn't think about it.
Speaker 4: 00:17:21 Uh, I mean I got to sit down and really think about it and that's what I did. And I went to a couple of comps the next year, but I was still kind of busy with work, but I got very lucky afterwards that, uh, work was going in a great direction. I had more free time. So in the last three, four years, let's say three years, I could attend maybe six comps a year or something. I really don't have much time to fly free fly during the year, but all holidays I try to organize around competitions and, uh, I think I worked out a method which really worked well for me. And now I, I just have a great time every, every single time I go. Like now in girl Dannijo I learned so much and uh, it's, it's, it's amazing how, how well I can benefit from, from paragliding, not just in a flying sense, but you know, it's, it's integrated. I'm changing as a person. I see the development in my business, how I'm assessing risk, how I look at, um, at, uh, opportunities and also my personal life. So it's, I think the luckiest decision I've ever made.
Speaker 3: 00:18:34 So let's let that, that's, that's, I'd like to apply your analytical thinking to, um, how you've approached training you. You mentioned before we started recording that you kind of broke it down into three categories, physical, technical and mental. Um, talk about that because it's only been five years, but what we often hear is that, you know, one competition, so one week of comp flying is really worth one year of free flying in terms of the training and what you're going to learn and just having all those different pilots and mentors. But we've heard that. So how, how have you, how have you kind of applied, you know, how you live your life, how you, how you attack business to flying?
Speaker 4: 00:19:16 Well, um, I remember attending this course two years ago. It was about, um, business development and, and how successful business people use, um, sports psychology and, uh, and the methods in, in a sports psychology. What Olympic athletes also, uh, use. And it's really fascinated me. And I decided to, to look up, uh, books about it. And then it just, one thing led to another. And I ended up talking to this amazing woman who wrote a book about mental trainings and then through strength. And she told me to S you mentioned break this sport down to physical, technical and mental areas. And uh, the first exercise she gave me was sit down and write down a couple of points for each category, which I think is very essential to be successful. And then ask my fellow pilots, my national team members or other pilots I really look up to, to also write their own categories.
Speaker 4: 00:20:20 And finally to rate me from one to 10. Well, that was super scary, but, um, I went ahead and I, I made this leap of faith to ask my friends to give me points and they gave me a very honest, um, but I was so grateful for the, for the ratings because, uh, for these honest opinions, I could see the areas where I really needed to, um, improve more where I had to deeper into some areas. And, um, what I put together and they put together was quite similar. Although I had to, I couldn't have, but notice that most pilots in the mentor area didn't know what to put. Some of the great ones had some very good insights, but most of the pilots, even the very uh, success sorts for once put lot of technical points into the mentor, um, bracket. And, uh, and it just made me realize how under valued that area is.
Speaker 4: 00:21:23 And I really didn't really understand it the beginning way, but, um, the more I learned and the more we started to discuss openly, you know, mental trainings, feelings, fears, all this areas, I realized that, um, maybe because it's so attractive, this, uh, adventure sports or sweater active to two men, maybe there is some kind of trouble about talking about fears, controlling our emotions, what type of trainings we use. And, and some pilots are amazingly good in it. Some people are very instinctive about it, but there are lots of people like, like, like me maybe who, who need a structure. And once I see a structure, I can work with it, then I can improve there. What does that look like? So basically what, how we went along, I first started to look into the physical category because, uh, I always looked at paragliding as a very technical sport and I was not sure how much, um, you know, the physical aspect comes into the picture.
Speaker 4: 00:22:29 Obviously in the red Bullock SOPs it's very easy to tap the physical elements, how necessary they are or at the high can fly. But in my type of flying I was not really valuing it much until that point. And then I realized that endurance and the ability to concentrate long is very strongly correlated with each other. So if I wanted to be able to fly a batter or even to improve more, I had to start to look into bigger flights or longer competitions like FII category one, like Europeans or worlds. And uh, I attended so far one Europeans, one worlds and one PWC. And when I noticed that after a couple of days I was just unable to wake up, uh, happily or energetically in the, in the mornings because I was just so tired sometimes. I, I flew six hours or five hours a day and after like five days, I was fretting the, the upcoming six more tasks, you know, and I realized, okay, that's definitely one reason why I have to start working out more.
Speaker 4: 00:23:45 And uh, now I also see that uh, if I check, uh, the performance of a race car driver for example, uh, I'm very lucky because the gym I go to, uh, the ordinary is a race car driver and they have special training concentrate, uh, concentrating, uh, try trainings for race car drivers, formula one go-kart tensilon and uh, they call it fit for race. And what you do there is in one hour they give you so many things to do. At the same time, it feels like a circus. Like there is a huge football, you are kneeling on it, you have a small ball in your hand and another bigger bowl in another one. And why are you are balancing on top of these football, kneeling there you are throwing these two balls to the wall and because they are different sizes they are going to react different way.
Speaker 4: 00:24:34 So one is flying back to you faster, the other one is slower and once you are able to do this and it's, I'm telling you I, I've done it and it really feels like a circus. Then your trainer starts to ask you mathematical questions or questions about your day messing up your concentration. So it's, it's very, uh, very complex and you can work on concentration in these type of trainings as well. So another aspect why it's so important to be fit is definitely safety for me. When I started to fly two liners two years ago, um, and I went to my very first SIV with a mantra six. And ever since I've done it also with the Xeno, I realized that um, I can be very compromised. My safety can be compromised after a couple of days flying at the competition. Um, if, if it's super sortable and I need to store my glider out, which happened to me in real life before that I had to store my glider out in a, in a cascade.
Speaker 4: 00:25:36 Then if I was not fit enough to to do that after five hours of flying dead day and like let's say 30, 40 hours of flying in the previous three days all together, if I had pain in my shoulders or I was not, you know, up to the task, then it can be dangerous. So, um, it's very needed. And also if even if they're not gone get to that point of stalling it later, well, I've working the bees for, you know, four hours in a very turbulent air. It's not so easy sometimes. And another thing is that I used to fly, um, now I fly a B component, so I don't find this, that important anymore. But when I was flying a smaller a harness, I always felt that I was sitting on a top of a football using my whole opera, body and hips, uh, controlling my glider.
Speaker 4: 00:26:32 And sometimes I, I fell, but after some days are flying every day for five hours that I had muscle pain everywhere in my, my stomach, my back, everywhere in my legs. And it's not just the harness set up necessarily, but you know, that little balancing movements. So that's also another thing. And then, uh, when, when I was not so fit, um, my, my whole equipment now is about 30 kilos, sometimes 33. So depending on my own body weight, but, um, I was making stupid decision based on comfort that if I was low then sometimes it would be easy, easy way out, not even consciously just unconsciously concentrating on a village or a bus stop or something, you know? And ever since, I don't care if I have to walk two hours with this equipment, uh, I'm just more confident, uh, letting myself be, um, you know, lessen my SIS to tryst more into areas where there is no, no lending option or nor, or there is a lending option, but then no roads or no villages. So it makes me overall a better pilot also just by not having that pressure, you know,
Speaker 3: 00:27:49 that's a really a really critical point that you make. And I, I think we think of it more in areas like where I fly in the Rockies cause there are no roads, you know, that we, we talk about that quite a bit, you know, as opposed to the Alps where you've got, you know, bus stations and train stations and it's, you know, there's just more infrastructure so you don't have to think about it as much. But it's still, it's still even like you said, even if it's unconscious, I think it really affects the decisions that you make. And if you look at like Cree goals, track logs and the ex Alps, he's often completely abandoning course line. Um, because it's the move that makes sense. If it doesn't work, it's gonna put him way deeper and a much, much harder walk. Uh, which I think the rest, you know, for the most part, the rest of us in the X Alps, just as much as we say, we're going to ignore that we don't when it, when the race happens, not because we're not fit, we really are, but we're constantly thinking about God, if this move doesn't work, then that's going to add two hours on the ground and now I'm just going to keep going straight and hopefully I'll make it work.
Speaker 3: 00:28:53 And then I've never bubbly you end up on the ground because that's not the XC move to make. And I think that that, you know, that fitness level, it doesn't, like you said, it doesn't have to be the X Alps is just for good flying, you know, to start flying big lines. You just have to be totally comfortable with landing deep with whatever you have on your back and walking out. That has to be a non a nonissue.
Speaker 4: 00:29:14 Yeah, definitely. So now I work out three, four times a week. Normally one hour is uh, with weights, uh, and how for an hour or 40 minutes running. So I tried to put it together and I, I really don't enjoy the gym. I'm not that kind of person who would normally just do it. But I broke my leg, uh, three years ago and a yearning, that period of, of, uh, recovery I put on like 10 kilos, most probably because I'm, I'm a, I wasn't really not moving and, and I tend to eat when I get, um, stressed. So that was the moment which really changed my, my workout schedule. So before it was just, um, casually going for like aerobic type of things, um, you know, this common things, what woman in prefer to do and at that point, uh, and it really needed special help, um, because I just couldn't do anything with, with the broken leg.
Speaker 4: 00:30:13 I needed physiotherapy, special type of pre training program and so on. So we're super lucky to, to meet a grief trainer. And then she had me to lose, uh, even more than what I put on during those periods. And then I just stick to it. And, uh, because of that, I noticed how it was influencing my flying in a very favorable way. So now I feel weight, we might weigh much more healthier and I have a better understanding, you know, about, as you said, decisions. You're not that I, I never have the pressure anymore and it feels great. So I really recommend it to, to anybody to consider working out, not just, you know, for health, but it's great for flying too.
Speaker 3: 00:30:56 Yeah. I think, I think often underrated in our sport because we don't think of it as a very physical activity, but I think it really, it massively impacts your flying, especially like you said, when you start taking longer and longer flights. You know, I think a lot of people, you know, when they bomb out in three or four hours, don't attribute it to that. They just think they made a mistake. While that's a mistake that you probably wouldn't have made if you have that endurance training and that focus, and there's no real way to get that except by draining. Um, so let's, let's switch. So what about the, we've talked about the physical, what about the technical and the mental,
Speaker 4: 00:31:30 uh, technical? I, I think it's, it's something what most pilots absolutely. Um, uh, most probably they would put all these things on the, on the list S I did. It's very easy because this is what we all talk about. This is what we really concentrate on. So it's, uh, understanding the instruments, you know, the maximum capacity. Uh, what the next [inaudible] boxes mean. Our, what they call the data they gather and then understanding the capacity of our gliders. So Sid trainings are, should be mandatory, although in many countries they are not, uh, after a way or for example, in my country we have to do it once to pass the pilot exam and never again, it's not mandatory, it's optional. And if I really look deep into, um, you know, the type of flying I studied to do, then I think it's very reckless to, to assume that, um, I can learn everything about my glider just by flying it.
Speaker 4: 00:32:32 Uh, because yeah, the polar curve, the positive aspect of it from minimum to maximum. Yeah. Normally if I pushed a lot, I can understand it, but you know, stalling it and the negative aspects, I mean going flying backwards and stuff, it's not gonna happen unless I go over a Lake and really train. So I think that, uh, now I'm flying a Xeno and uh, I'm considering moving up in, in the future, but I think that I will have to really start doing some acro. Although if I'm not an acro pilot and it never interested me, I mean I, I look up to pilots who do it, but I'm not the type of very adventurous person to be attracted to this aspect of flying. But I feel that this is getting mandatory. I cannot ignore it anymore just for safety.
Speaker 3: 00:33:24 I think like climate change, you know, the whole magic three 50 number, that's the, that's the number I hear from the acro guys and gals all the time. As you, you've got to do 300 stalls before you consider that you, you know, how to do stalls and that's a lot of stalls, you know, that's way had and went one SIV, you know, where you're going to maybe get three or four on the last day, you know, that's really actively working on it. Where it becomes something that's as easy as a, as your most basic maneuver that you just don't even think about. It doesn't raise your blood pressure. It's a, um, I recently gave a little talk down in Mexico and you know, of the whole audience, no one had done 300 dolls. And so, I mean, I think it's, you know, and pretty much everybody in the room were fine comp gliders, you know, so I think it's a real hole in our sport, regardless of the country, regardless of the certification.
Speaker 4: 00:34:14 Yeah. Last year I was very lucky to join the DPRA, the British program in grade SIG Academy in ANSI, and we had a great trainer, Fabienne man called farmer [inaudible]. And he told us that, um, that just doing it once a year, it's, it's better than nothing, but it's very close to massing. So he recommends us to, to get a, a maybe a older Begleiter or something and, and start pushing our boundaries and whatever we already know to do, we can thermal our PI and start doing some stalls and even over the ground starts practicing because um, it should be something that whenever they wake us up in the middle of the night, we can do it. You know, it's, it's like changing gears. It should be that natural and that's what all the French team is doing and many of the other great teams are doing. I'm practicing all year round, so I think this is the next step for me in my, my personal development for sure.
Speaker 3: 00:35:15 Yeah. We're, we're having Fabian on the show next week. I can't wait to talk to him. I've been trying to painters. I, we gave a, a film, I did a film, I think 500 miles to nowhere at his shop in, in Annecy a few years back. So I've been friends with him for awhile, but that's going to be terrific. He's got some great thoughts on not just SIV but vole Bev and everything. So he, he's a, he's a great personality. I'm to talk to him. Um,
Speaker 4: 00:35:38 Oh, I remember this last year that I had, um, we were practicing rapid exits from a three 60, which is the, the maneuver you do before start stalling the glider. So I remember doing it in one direction. It was okay and he told me, okay, now switch to the other direction, do a three 60 to the left and then a rapid exit. And he teaches people not to catch the dive too fast because if you do it, it's not the point. The point is you let the glider shoot forward so aggressively that it's nearly too much for you. And I was practicing that and I had messed it up so badly that I had the giant collapse, twist and hoof. It looked very bad. But then if I could somehow manage it, open it, and I heard him on the radio and it's its own video. So whenever I think about him, then I hear this sound like, woo, let's do it again.
Speaker 3: 00:36:34 Yeah. He's always smiling. It's good. I love his, his energy. Um, okay. So the, the, the mental side, maybe, you know, we don't have time to go through all of the little boxes that you had to tick when you, you know, you went through, you made that list and then you had your friends make that list. I mean, I just think that'd be something that would be terrific that we all had to deal, you know, like I didn't, how scary that must have been to go to all your mentors who go, you know, what am I good at and what do I suck at? But what, what were some of the kind of real big takeaways there?
Speaker 4: 00:37:05 Uh, well definitely I, I realized that, um, I didn't have enough self confidence. That was one of the issues many of them told me that I needed to work on. Because whenever I went to a takeoff, for example, my first European, I was there at, at takeoff with my glider in the sheets in Macedonia. And I was thinking, Oh wow, this Seiko is coming. So, so yeah, she, she can take off your front of me and then, Oh wow, this is, look, I'm on. Okay, he's going in front of me. And I was just letting everybody pass because I was thinking, what happens if I fall on my face in front of this crowd? You know, what happens if, if my ballast is too heavy and I just roll down to the bottom of the take off and you know, I dunno, I had all these, uh, all these thoughts in my head and I was ready.
Speaker 4: 00:37:56 I wanted to take off, but then I was just stalling and waiting and I was not confident enough. And then when in the air, uh, before the pilot, it is just so intense and can be very aggressive that people touch your glider. And whenever I'm, I'm, I'm experiencing, it's a lot now these, but now I learned to react it in a different way, but I had this problem that I was in a thermal and people would coming in and they were cutting me off. I noticed that they were not flying to the end of my pod, but you know, behind me. But they were aiming to my feet. They were coming to cut me out and if I, if I turned my face and I showed them, I'm seeing you, I'm going to slow down so you can cut in front of me. They did.
Speaker 4: 00:38:42 And I was so sure that if I don't do it, they're going to fly in to me and we're going to crush. And then I just, after some training and after realizing what's happening, I learned to deal with this and what I do now, I sign all them that I see you, but I'm going to ignore you. So I keep, I keep on my right. Yeah. Yeah. I mean I'm not turning away completely and, and not watching them, you know, I just give them a sign on. I really clearly turned my head there. Uh, sometimes they even signal with my hand that I'm going straight so I'm not going to do anything. You know, you can make your decision if lying to me or you fly behind me, but I'm not doing anything else. And it changes how if your self confidence, it changes how people see you in there, how they react to you. And, and there is, I'm not saying it's bullying, but it's some, if somebody is very sensitive to these kinds of things and very polite or unconfident, then it can happen that people cut somebody out of Thermo.
Speaker 3: 00:39:45 So I think, I mean I think lack of confidence is as, um, like the major difference in, in the folks who do really well in flying and not, I mean, if you're not majorly confident, you don't have that whole kind of bill Belcourt concept of bringing it when things get rough and, and unstable and sketchy and, and, and you go land, you know, versus the pilots that just are like, yeah, man, I got this and let's keep going. So how do you, how do you train that though? How did you, how did you kind of, okay, everybody says I had lacked self-confidence. Um, you know, the, I'm imagining you didn't just start being more aggressive in a thermal, you probably had to do some, you know, meditation or what, what did you do to, what did you do to start kind of changing that aspect of your inner self?
Speaker 4: 00:40:32 Well, um, first I, I read a couple of books about sports psychology because this is really, you'd never resort for all sports. Uh, there are a lot of advices to learn and because we don't have the type of training methods like in Hungary, the Olympic swimming team or the water polo team, they all have their sports psychologists learning, pollinating. We are kind of self-teaching ourselves. So I, during the wards, all this material which is already out there and accessible, um, we were just not, I would, I was personally not using it before and, and I realized that providing is not an 80% technical sport, but it's an 80% mental sport. I mean for me personally, I'm talking about my persona experience and um, uh, whatever I could improve in the technical aspects like, uh, learning, uh, you know, um, to, to um, take off better with the heavy ballast learning methodology instruments kept the city of the glider throwing the reserve parachute, G-Force trainer, all these things I did to technically improve myself and physically the trainings I've done, it was only improving that 20%.
Speaker 4: 00:41:41 So even if I was already quite okay, it just made a very small difference. It did a difference, but it didn't make a huge difference. But once I, I started to really do the technical trainings, I learned about modeling visualization using a mantra, learning to deal with fears, uh, how to set the goals right. Um, dealing with failure, uh, working on my, uh, self confidence, meditation, focusing, choosing a mentor and stuff, analyzes all these things I studied to learn and practice more and just realize that my flying got way better. I like the leaps when I already, I only had 600 hours when I was about 200 and the world ranking or something. So, I mean it's, it's not something I really, uh, check. But three years ago I had to do, um, they asked me to do a speech for, for the Hungarian flying community about competitions because I was the newest member of the paragliding, uh, national team in Hungary.
Speaker 4: 00:42:50 And my, my views were quite fresh and, and it was, you know, people were interested in S there was never a woman in our team, so they thought that it's a fresh perspective. And I sat down and they really did the math and I did a lot of statistics. Um, what I learned and how I could translate this down to numbers, which most people understand very easily. So I checked my for drinking and I checked the trainings I've done. And I don't know if 600 hours is much or not much, but for me as I'm a completely average, I mean, I'm not a very athletic person. I'm not, um, I don't know, uh, you know, anything special or an accrual pilot or anything. My point was at this lecture that regardless of your age, your sex, your weight, anything, everybody can do this. Everyone. So part of learning is for everyone.
Speaker 4: 00:43:43 I think it's a sport where we've got a huge diversity and uh, if you start using the methods I personally learned and they work for me, maybe there's something for you as well to take away and, and, and do. Um, that's, that's what I, I noticed that psychology is, is huge in this sport. And how, one thing I started with was, uh, reading about the flow theory, uh, from cheek send me, hi Amy. Hi was the Hungarian psychologist and I think many people know this theory but they not necessarily translate it down to two paragliding. Um, so what I did was I was looking at this, um, this chart and for people who know this or not familiar with it, there are two excesses. The Epsilon is challenges and the X is skills. And when somebody learns for gliding or any adventure sport, then normally the skill level is very low.
Speaker 4: 00:44:48 But the challenge is high. So the anxiety level is also very high and the fear is there. But once we start improving and our skill level is improving as well, um, we can set higher and higher challenges and once we reach a right amount of scales and challenges, uh, we enter a flow channel. What sheiks send me, how he calls flow. That mental state when time just doesn't exist, time is, is not the factor anymore. We can work weekend play with our kids, we can do adventure sports, uh, weekend, uh, paint paintings, composed music. It doesn't matter what we do. So the important point is that we focus so high that even if five hour passes, which is don't realize that time is gone because we are so intensely in that moment of doing something, of creating something, of solving a problem. And if we don't set the challenge high enough, but our skill level is high already, then we experienced time.
Speaker 4: 00:45:59 We experience because of boredom we experienced. Every minute is just so slow. Um, it's dragging its feet. It's, it's never gonna end. But on the other end, if we set, uh, the challenge is too high, which is not in proportion to our skills, then we experienced that time is running so fast that we can't even put our finger where it went. We can't recall what happened. For example, great example is an accident. I'm sure many people already had that moment in their life. Maybe it was a car crash, maybe it was paragliding accident or they just slipped down, fell on the, on the floor. But when somebody asks, so tell me from second to second what happened there. If you are in the high challenge but low skill level, then it's, it's very hard to recall. So I remember in one of my pro gliding accidents, I pulled down 500 meters before I could manage the situation and I was falling for four for half a minutes already in a complete shock.
Speaker 4: 00:47:08 I had no idea what's happening. I don't even remember how I got that kind of cascade. Aye. Aye. Aye. Aye. People saw it so they could tell me. Now, I can also tell you, I just said a giant, uh, I'm half side collapsed and I over control the opposite side. I stole the opposite side. I got to spin and I just didn't recognize the configurations for some form for some reason. And then when I, I tried to manage that, it just became worse and worse that reacted slow to this and that. And I ended up with a bad cascade and I wanted to throw my reserve and that's when I realized, uh, that okay, this is the moment where I throw it and I have to look down where am I going to end up? And they look down and I see a giant power line under me.
Speaker 4: 00:47:53 So my whole mind cleared in that second. I lost it. Penny key feeling because I realized I going to die here most probably if I keep this up. So I remember every single second from that decision that I need to control this moment or I really just going to stop existing. And I look down at my instrument, I check the wind speed, the wind direction. I check where if I'm in this height, if I saw the reserve, where I going to end up with my reserve, I look around and there is another power line there. So my chances of throwing a parachute and ending up alive not, you know, being electrocuted was very low. So I decided to store my glider and I never stole it. I in a real life situation until then and they just started to fly the MCX I had maybe 10 hours on it or, or 15.
Speaker 4: 00:48:44 So I was a newbie in the, in the the liner category and I just stole it, managed to, to open it back up 150 meters above the ground. And, uh, just over the power line, I flew away. And I can tell you every second after, as I said, after I realized that this is going to be yet. So if, if, if somebody is, is not in the moment, in the right skillset or mindset with the right amount of skills, then uh, it can be very dangerous and even it can lead to, to death. So once I figured out this theory and what it really meant, I realized that my goal for the future and not just in one single day to stay in the flow, but try to stay in the flow in my life to balance, you know, my, my skills and challenges in the right way.
Speaker 4: 00:49:39 And once I also realized that anxiety is not something I can get rid off, it's always, always going to be there. I accepted it and I now my Volcom it because I know that, uh, if I'm, if I'm advancing, if I'm moving out of the flow because I'm learning something, then it's going to be normal that he, that anxiety will hit me and fear will hit me as well. And for that I just need to learn some exercises, how to, how to deal with it. But it's not something I should be afraid of because it's, it's a good thing to, to have, it's like an innate immune system or if it's like sensitivity sensitivity in the skin, just imagine how terrible it would be if I could just switch off sensitivity in my skin in a cold weather. And my fingers could freeze because I would never realize what's happening and I would never put on a glove or in a, in the, for example, working in the kitchen, I could just put my hand on the stove and burn myself crazy.
Speaker 4: 00:50:38 Uh, so all these kinds of things can happen without fear as well. And, uh, uh, any, an example, what I can name here is Jeb Corliss top wingsuit pilot who was talking about his fatal crash, uh, not so long ago near yeah. Near fatal crash. He survived. Yeah, yeah, yeah. It's his, he's amazing. And he's on the top of his game. His, uh, his, one of the absolute best wingsuit pilots in the world. And he said to himself, and I caught him now because it's really resonated with me when I watched this video of his, about that near fatal crush. He said, I made a big mistake. I lost fear. Zero is super important because without fear you will die.
Speaker 3: 00:51:25 Yeah. Let's, let's talk about fear similar. I, as soon as you talked about jab, I used to do a lot of whitewater kayaking, so very, very extreme, steep, creaky type stuff and big waterfalls and that kind of thing. And what my partner for a long time was a guy named tail Burman who went on to be a big red bull kayaker and he literally, we, they, we did it kind of a study on the two of us at one point. He literally did not experience fear. So for him it was all, you know, he wasn't doing it for the adrenaline rush and for the excitement of that. And for him it was all very technical. It's about nailing really difficult moves and he would visualize it and he was incredibly gifted as an athlete. Um, but I, yeah, I haven't talked to him about this. I don't know this for sure, but I, I think he quit kayaking also because it became, you can imagine it wouldn't be very fun either without fear. I mean, it adds, it adds that zest. It adds what we need to, to be excited about something. But it also as you so definitely point out, it's also what keeps us alive. You know, without it we would make very stupid decisions.
Speaker 4: 00:52:31 Yeah, definitely. I think that most people cannot mentally switch fear off or you cannot train your brain to deal with it in that way that even in the dangerous situations it's not going to go away. I mean that's what sports psychology says that it just your S your skill set improves and the higher challenges you give yourself, if you set that amount right, then you're going to experience the flow. But if you set the bar too high or something, uh, you know, on unexpected comes in then fear or not, maybe some, some very expert, a sportsman, they don't call these fear. They call it anxiety. Like now I noticed many times that if my, my body is reacting in a certain way, my, my breathing speeds up. I sit up in a harness a little bit. So my, my, my shoulders are closer to my, my, uh, uh, my risers.
Speaker 4: 00:53:29 Then there is something going on. I, I noticed that I'm getting anxious. So it's not necessarily freezing fear, but, um, um, and it can happen for many reason. It can happen because the air is very bumpy or because I just got a collapse or something. But it can also happen, uh, because I'm very low, for example, and I'm close to bombing out and it's not the best type of fear and not afraid of dying at that moment. But I'm very afraid I going to Bombay out. And that also affects how I make my decisions. So
Speaker 3: 00:54:03 they not in the flow. If you're in that state of mind, are you, it's, you know, when your sentence suddenly really tense, that's about the worst you can possibly fly.
Speaker 4: 00:54:11 Yeah. So I, I do many mental exercising and I listen to, to music to, to conquer these situations. And they really helped me to, uh, to uh, equalize my feelings and, and switch off these, uh, these emotions, which can really bother me in certain, certain situations. And what I noticed that, um, in in one simple flight during the day at the competition, I'm okay, let's say 60 70% of the time. And I'm anxious maybe in, in the rest of the time, not all the way, but let's say if it's 70%. Okay and 20% anxious, sometimes the 10% is actual fear or spikes, um, in my poor. So it's going to happen. And I'm actually aiming to keep this, uh, this ratio up because I think this is how I, I keep improving. Um, I'm pushing myself to learn new things. Otherwise I'm just, uh, finding my comfort zone and, and not learning much.
Speaker 4: 00:55:17 And there's nothing wrong for me to be scared sometimes. And I'm very often am, I'm not ashamed to admit that. Sometimes I'm shit scared. But, um, I learned to deal with it. I manage it and I, I overcome it. And as a person, this mental training's really changed me and they noticed that in business, I'm not, so I'm not struggling so much with the what ifs and what's happening. If I make this decision, am I going to lose much money or, or you know, these kinds of fears I have. I'm learning to manage these way better ever since I'm training in sports. So it has a great effect. Also my personal life. Sometimes I have anxious nights or I can't sleep for a week because I'm dealing with a big question and now I take it as a good sign because normally when I'm experiencing so much difficulty in, in life, um, I know that I will start working on it very hard to seek out the solution and work on it.
Speaker 4: 00:56:22 And, uh, sooner or later it will turn out to be to the beginning of something great and something new. So if I have a difficult period, I keep telling myself, you've been this before, you know what it means. So just take charge, take control. And instead of, uh, feeling this anxiety and, and uncertainty, just start doing things one by one. Just concentrate on the next little mini goal. Only tomorrow what you're going to do. And I'm so, so grateful for, for programming because it's really made my life so much more exciting and it keeps teaching me new things. So I'm excited, you know, for the next couple of years. What are they going to bring
Speaker 3: 00:57:06 listeners? If you're as intrigued by all of this as I am, uh, I can tell you that Adele has graciously provided, uh, an an a very elaborate email with tons of links and drawings to the Epsilon graph that she talked about and some of the books. And so all of that will be in the show notes. So when you get done with this podcast and listened to it again and then go back into the show notes and if you want to check some more of these resources out, I can tell you some of the things she's already talked about are some of the things we've been studying for the XL and it does make a ton of difference. Switching gears here a little bit, well actually I want to come back briefly to the technical side. When you and I talked before, before we were recording, um, you, you had kind of an interesting experience with a very good friend of ours, Trey Hackney down in Columbia with gear and, uh, I think he would admit that he's a bit of a gear head.
Speaker 3: 00:57:56 I'm on the opposite end of the spectrum. I was dealing with a harness down in Menorca and I had to ask him all kinds of, probably very infantile questions because I just don't pay attention to that stuff very much. Just briefly touch on that technical side you already have, but the, we we didn't mention like gliders and tuning and because where I want to go with this as females in the sport, you know, one of the, you know, one real very real disadvantage is if you're not a big person, um, you know, your light, you have to fly a smaller wing, they just flat out don't go as well. So, um, but talk about first talk about Trey and then we'll get to that.
Speaker 4: 00:58:32 Yeah. Okay. So, uh, let's start with, um, how, how this whole thing, you know, happened. We, I, I met Trey two years ago and he was the superior pilot. No question, absolutely find way much better than me smashing it at a time. But then he had an accident after that and the recovery was not easy at all. And he did a great job because, uh, now watching him, carrying his equipment and, and, and flying this amazing two liner, it's, it's great to see him back. And at the beginning, because he just got the, the Xeno recently, uh, at the beginning, he was struggling a bit with the newness of this later, although these type of lighters are not new to him and he had experience with them, just this specific one was, uh, you know, not so familiar. And I flew the scene already for a season.
Speaker 4: 00:59:26 So as I'm, uh, I'm, uh, like you can go on air with men and he absolutely adores, you know, going into the small technical details and tuning it to the maximum effect. We had, uh, had a lot of great conversations about it, about harnesses and what to do with as you know, and where the first day he just approached me saying about, I have to admit there's something with my glider because you would just pass me by on the long glide. And I was just staying behind and I don't understand what's happening, what, what, what do I do wrong or can you look at my staff? So we went into the details and then these two liners are super, super sensitive. And, um, I, I, as I said, I don't normally fly much, um, like free flight. But I, I go to comms, I hear, hear other pilots talking a lot about it and they told me, uh, so much information and the, one of the most valuable information I got away with is, uh, even the smallest assymetry between the lines can really cause a, a big difference in performance.
Speaker 4: 01:00:35 So I take my glider in every 40, 50 hours for checkups and tunings and the guy in Hungary, Gabor story, who is the awesome dealer, he, he has a very good approach. He's not just checking the lines, but he's really, really looking at the whole picture, checking the angle of attack and if you find some irregularity or anything, which she doesn't really comprehend and it's not, uh, not according to the book. Then he contacts us on, uh, directly and he sends the measurement data and they discuss what is the best setting, which is the closest to the factory setting for this glider and how they can really take the maximum effect of, of, of this equipment. And uh, I took my glider to him last year complaining that on full bar I have to touch, um, my glider and I have to always control the right side a little bit because my, my glider is just turning to one direction always.
Speaker 4: 01:01:31 So I need to always break the right side a bit and I don't know what's happening, but sometimes I get a little, you're collapse on the right side. And I would be very grateful if he could check my, my stuff. And when I went back to him a week later, he told me that there was one centimeter difference between my left and right side, but I shouldn't be overly concerned because it's impossible to feel that one sense. He knew through, I think he just forgot that I took my glider to him with a complaint. So, um, it is possible to, to feel even a slight little difference in one centimeter is not small. I mean for me it's not, and how I like to fly this glider, but it's very personal. It's my preference is that when I'm on our glides and I'm pushing the full bar, I'm really aiming to lean back as much as possible and move my, my toes, uh, up a little bit.
Speaker 4: 01:02:23 So my harness is not leaning down and I don't ruin the, the, uh, aerodynamic, uh, um, you know, um, and remain a me of, of, of this, this, this harness. And then, um, I'm not resting my hands on, on the wooden handles, on the these. I mean, my hand is there and I'm touching constantly the risers, but I rather push a little bit then poor. And I think since I start stopped resting my hand on long life because it's very comfortable and I used to just keep my hands down, not controlling necessarily, but resting the own body weight of my hands. And that slow down my, my gladder maybe one or two kilometers per an hour depending on conditions, but it's very, very small. But it is a, it is a difference. Yeah. So I, I don't touch it, but I keep my hands, uh, I mean I don't pull it, but I touch it.
Speaker 4: 01:03:26 I keep my hands there. I even, uh, push it a little bit and whenever anything is coming, I'm ready to catch it. I'm ready to act. And the more aggression I feel from the, or the more aggression I give back. So I'm really, really doing, um, you know, display boards for balance with the glider. But when it doesn't require any aggression or any, any, anything from my, my end that I'm not hanging on it with, you know, with, uh, my hands. And, um, I think that in this way I can feel everything if in, if there is a very small estimate tree, I can feel it. And, uh, if the glider is a symmetric only out of trim, that's not a big issue. I mean it's not good. Obviously it's not good thing, but it's not so bad if it's a symmetric and if, uh, if somebody does a lot of spiral dives at the end of the task, then it can also make the glider look like a propeller, like a helicopter, you know, so it's not very good.
Speaker 4: 01:04:27 So I was checking the tray stuff. If a first I checked the fear, release the BS because with the Xeno after 40, 50 hours a angle off the tech changes and the factory recommends to release the beelines and I, I asked him if his stubby lows, uh, were not shrinking up a little bit because that also can happen that the tips of that leather starts to pull down a little bit. And it also changes the overall performance. So, um, much can be changed, um, with, uh, with a good expert. By the, I mean you can loop, uh, some, some lines, but there's not much to change if one is shrank. So you have to change the stability if they aren't just too short and these things. I, I checked with him and we, we, we started with the glider because I was first, my first thought and feeling was that it must be the tree, but then it turned out that three moved up a glider size I was not aware of.
Speaker 4: 01:05:25 He started to fly XL size. And once he told me, I was asking, okay, so what size, what is your take of weight? And he said, the amazing thing about the Xeno, everybody, everybody thought him fight on the top, but he flies anL size, which the top is 125 kilograms. But uh, in, in um, in the U S where he flies, he, he experimented with it and he realized that it's a great gliders without the whole weight range. And he prefers when it's lighter so he can really feel the air, get the nuances. Even when he's low, close to bomb, he can really sniff out the air better and find that there are malls which in his type of flying because he normally flies by himself and he takes amazing lines and he plays so well. It's, it's a great uh, attribute. But uh, income flying, uh, having a two lights, uh, glider is not, um, not favorable.
Speaker 4: 01:06:26 I personally very preferred to, to fly at the very top and um, I, I like it. This, uh, my take off weight, uh, is, is in the middle and I can play with the water. I can ball up if I want, but I can also dump it. It's very, very rare. I decide to dump, dump the water because who knows if I run into some headwind and, and, and something at the end of the task, you know, so I prefer to keep it even in different situations, but I have the option to get rid of it. Now. Three, he has a great option to get through it off tons of water because he now is flying his ladder and 100 and sort of teen kilograms. So 12 kilos under the weight, a maximum. So I gave him my balanced bog and thought him fill it up with water and just try flying with it. And uh, I think it was these three or the four, um, find or glide of four or five pilots. We were just, uh, uh, pushing it towards school and they see Trey and his smiling face over passing me
Speaker 5: 01:07:36 your secret till the very end of the comp and then told them, Oh no, no, no way. I mean it's, I'm not kidding. That's great.
Speaker 4: 01:07:45 No, it's really about, you know, competition in that fear. [inaudible]
Speaker 5: 01:07:52 absolutely. It's all, we're all there to support each other. And
Speaker 4: 01:07:54 when we were, when we were traveling down to robo, there were some, some problems with sanctioning the event. Everything was figured out that the answer, it was all happy or feelings and stuff at the end. But at the beginning there was some uncertainty and I was talking to many top pilots in the, in the, in the town, you know, are coming, are you coming? And they will, um, you're not sure if you would do it because there's probably not going to be points. And I was telling them, you have to come, you know, it's going to be fun. It's why we are here and this is our holiday and who cares? You know, just let's have fun, enjoy ourselves. And somebody said something, which I don't know who it was, but I really stick to me and it's still true. A pilot told me, yeah, they'll, I see your point now.
Speaker 4: 01:08:39 It's not so fun playing in your little sandbox all by yourself. Is it? And it's still true. You know, it's, it's, it doesn't matter where I end up at the competition, it's more important that I fly with people I can learn from and I can have great fun with because it's boring otherwise. I mean, we are doing it all to have fun. That's the ultimate goal, to have fun and to learn. So I don't mind because, uh, I, I ended up, uh, just a couple of points in front of stray, but I'm pretty sure that if he could fly more than he's, he's the better pilot. So we don't, we, we don't care for these ranking because deep down we all know who flies, how well, and we had a great flight after the comp, a stream three of us, crystal, Trey and mine myself.
Speaker 4: 01:09:34 And we flew for six hours of down in the Valley and Beck deserves that. And it was amazing. And you know, it was never about who pushes out front and how much do you lead. It was working in a team and in this competition, this last one, I felt several times that, uh, we were just a bunch of friends on an excursion exploring this beautiful Valley and flying. And when it was difficult, who were low in deer Valley and it was cheating out, we all gather together and we were helping each other finding the core coming up. And yes, it's a competition, but, uh, in another hand, you know, it's, it's, again, it's a great game. So I was very, very happy that, uh, he could figure a figure out because this was just a very small thing. The, the Vainglory thing us back so he could figure it out. And then we moved on to geek on, uh, the oldie and instruments set up the next day. Yeah, we were just talking there boxes for two more days.
Speaker 3: 01:10:40 I love it. Well, I'm sure that that gave him a big smile for the rest of the week. Uh, I'm sure he appreciates that very much. Uh, Dow, tell me, tell me a little bit about team spirit because there's, I've had some interesting talks lately. I was just down in Australia, uh, hanging out with Dave Snowden and he's been real instrumental. Him and Brian Webb about kind of putting together all the Australia Australian squad and the Australia team. They put, uh, put together a great team for this year year's worlds. Um, but you know, it's something that a lot of the countries that don't have the financial backing, uh, you know, that France and Switzerland and do and also the, just the numbers of pilots really struggle with, we all, you know, like in the U S we kind of have to do it on her own and we don't have a coach. We don't have a really any kind of even a club that, you know, that that really gets behind those kinds of efforts. It's a very independent thing here. Um, so talk about team spirit cause I know that's something you've invested some time in.
Speaker 4: 01:11:37 Um, yes because Hungary is very similar, uh, in, in aspects, um, as, as you said in the U S that we don't have much money for, for the sport. And everybody is, is a learning individual. The, and we have a national team, but we can't really talk about the real team spirit or, or coaching. And although we have amazing pilots here, somehow sharing the knowledge and coaching each other is not our strong, uh, uh, point. So, uh, I, I was at the CIO via conference in the beginning of February in, in portal because, uh, I'm, um, uh, the sport deployment of Hungary there. So there is a yearly plenary meeting and we travel very once a year and, and, and talk about, um, um, rules of paragliding and how to improve the sport then and such things. And the, the DMI, my Turin, I hope I pronounced his, his surname.
Speaker 4: 01:12:34 Right. Um, so did you, is uh, is there as a representative or friends with another pilot and he's also the, the team coach of France since 2008. And then I was very lucky to travel with him one hour to the airport this last time. So we had a lengthy discussion about the success of France and I asked him this question, you know, and I was asking him, how does he, how does he look at, at, um, the advancements of, of pilots, what is the success of friends? And he, because I was thinking, yeah, money, you know, you've got so many pilots, they're over a thousand, maybe even more. And, and obviously if there is so much money and they have even a high school and in university you can choose paragliding us as a your faculty. So that is is agreed base. And the, I read in some years back one of the interviews he gave and he said that, uh, we have a big perimeter of pilots in France, but it's one thing to have a lot of pilots at a good level and it's another to develop pilots to the world class level.
Speaker 4: 01:13:44 So I asked him, how did you do it? What's your secret? And he said, building a team. And uh, I didn't really understand that the beginning, what he was talking about, but then he went on and he said, once you break down the Eagle off pilots that uh, they are afraid to share their knowledge because they are afraid of, I'm the best one now, but if I share my secrets, then you're going to overtake me. You're going to learn more or you're going to do it better than I do. And, uh, and the beginning pilots are, are not so happy to work together, but that's once they realize that there is a, in the natural curve or progression, there is a plotter, which everybody hits once a sooner or later and you just, uh, struggle, you can struggle to, to move from that level. So you reached a very good pilot level, but the world class level, it rests in that point.
Speaker 4: 01:14:36 If you get another couple of good pilots around you, a great coach, and you start sharing the information, you start learning from each other, learn from each other's mistakes or successes and uh, work together, not just because you are so altruistic or because you love society and you want to help, but because that's the key for your individual improvement. And I was thinking about it and then I said, yeah, yeah, but don't tell me that, uh, you know, the fact that you are there full time and you are employed, therefore time, you know, it doesn't help some money is required. And then he just said, okay, uh, explain to me the Slovenian team now. He was thinking, Oh wow, okay. So Slovenia, Hungary has 10,000 people in inhabitants. Romaine Slovenia has 2 million, sorry, Hungary has stemmed million. Slovenia is way much smaller. They have 2 million and they have world class pilots were absolutely amazing and smashing it at every competition.
Speaker 4: 01:15:41 And they don't have a huge backing either. But what they figured out is being friendly, being a group of friends, sharing the information, having a good time is the key to success. And we could do that as well. I mean, technically in any country you can do that and you don't need money for it. You just need one or two motivated pilots who will take their egos and put it in the backseat and say, okay, let's sit down and let's talk. Or we just think our, we think our calendars. You know, we, we go together and we think together because, um, I what, why I'm so active recently in the, in the backstage and, and, and in the, um, you know, organization levels in product lighting is not because I'm such a busy board. By the end, I have so much time because, uh, I'm very busy with, um, with my work.
Speaker 4: 01:16:41 But I realized when I started complying that there are so many obstacles and lots of them are pointless. And the good thing about, uh, Hungary that it's so small that, uh, the bureaucrats we have, um, they don't really care, you know, if they, if you take some free work of their shoulders. So by rewriting the Hungarian sport codex, uh, creating a new rules for record flying, harmonizing our, our structure to the FII rules, uh, creating a female national team, it just created so much more opportunities. And even yesterday I had this, um, please him to experience going to, um, um, there was an award ceremony, um, where we have word record flyers and, and you know, we give the, uh, sports woman or sport men of the year award. And there were several members of my national team there and, and I, I respect them a lot.
Speaker 4: 01:17:46 I really look up to them as they are amazing pilots. But when I was asking them, would you like to, to participate more in, in, in this concept? You know, I'm working on the, on the regulations more to smooth it out. Uh, they were saying no, and it's just too much work and, and nobody's thanking us for it or why you should we do it. And, uh, uh, it hurt my feelings in a way, but I realized that, um, it's not that for me, the right approach is not to get hurt and just move back to the backseat and say, okay, I'm not going to do it anymore. If nobody's caring, I'm not going to do it. Now. I think the, the right approach should be to be more insistent a little bit and, and just, just show to a bigger group of people that, um, you know, by contributing just a little bit.
Speaker 4: 01:18:38 You don't need to put your whole life up to that. But if, if, if you want to have fun and we are all paying our own money. I mean in, in, in my country, nobody sponsors us. I'm not sponsored. I pay from my hard earned money to enjoy myself. And this is my heart, this is my hobby. I'm not the full time pilot. So for me it's really matters how I spend my free time. I want to have great fun because that's the free time I have and the rest I'm spending my time on, on other things. So for me, the quality of my free time really matters. And I think the good approach is what did the pointed out that we should change? We should shift perception. Uh, I should not give up and, and push on to show more people, especially the newcomers in, in our national team that working together is essential. Uh, it's the key for all of us to advance more. And uh, it's, it's a struggle, but we can do it. And the good example is already there, Luke at Slovenia, and they are doing it in a great way. So I'm really hoping that sooner or later we will also get there.
Speaker 3: 01:19:49 Hmm. A lot of it's just pressing the start button and it's just, you know, it's, it's getting people moving in the right direction and then it all kind of coalesces and goes the right way. It's like a snowball.
Speaker 4: 01:19:59 Yes. But it's not easy because, uh, uh, because being a first, it doesn't matter what area in life it is, it's sometimes very challenging and emotionally challenging, not just technically, you know. And, um, I think it's, it's another challenge in my personal life. How am I gonna how am I going to take this in the future if I can, I can really rise above because I'm experiencing a lot of, and I don't understand why many negative emotions about it, uh, from, from people when I said there is absolutely no stake here. Nobody's being anybody to volunteering to doing some work. But, um, I'm very, very positive that by doing a good example, more and more people where will get on board, then it will help me also. Um, if I'm seeing from one egg, I always stick, we point, it will also help me, not just others, but we have to all move together into the same direction. So I'm working towards it and I already see a lot of efforts. I'm starting to, to, uh, have a results. So I'm very excited. I think in a couple of years we should, if, if, uh, if we talk about it later then I hope that I would be able to say that the nice we are,
Speaker 3: 01:21:28 we'll have a nice, we'll have a nice follow up women in sport. So we've had some, some women on the show in the last kind of year and there's been some really interesting perspectives on this. Uh, I'd love to get yours cause you, you talked to that, that was one of the things he kind of would love to talk about. Um, there are so few of you in this sport and, uh, the, the big question of course is, was why I think you have a unique perspective on this.
Speaker 4: 01:21:57 Um, yeah, I think that, uh, it's very easy to grasp that, uh, adventure sports don't attract that much of women. Uh, everybody knows this statistics that in providing we have about 10% women, uh, actually a little bit less. I think it's 8%, but it's easier to do the math with, with them percent. So let's use that number. And, um, there are many reasons why we are not that many in competition. I, I get this question all the time. So I gave it some, some thoughts, um, in the last couple of years. And I think that if we go back to the three characteristics, what we talked about, what makes a very successful pilot, then we talk about the technical aspect. I don't think that there is any disadvantage being a woman because everybody can learn to use the instruments and capacity of the glider take off methodology, uh, you know, all these things.
Speaker 4: 01:22:56 So I think that here it's not a gender issue. It's more like, you know, personal woo hoo, how high your IQ is. Uh, how much, uh, you analyze things, how much thought you put into it, how much, how many hours you learned your methodology, and um, you know, all these things. So the technical thing, it's, it's not gender related. I mean, we, I don't see any issues there for women. And in the, in the mental aspect, uh, when we talk about these methods, uh, dealing with fear, modeling of his realization, learning Montrose, uh, goal setting, dealing with failure, self-confidence, meditation, learning to focus. I don't think that women have here any issue either. It's, again, it's not a gender thing, it's more like, um, you know, how your brain works and it's very personal. One person can really, uh, learn a lot, uh, in these trainings. And another one who is not so adventurous, maybe less.
Speaker 3: 01:24:02 I think. I think we can also prove that theory or hypothesis, I guess. Because you know, we look at Lori Genevese who just got six than the super final and Seiko and Claudia and Nicole and you know, there's been, you know, if you, if like you said, if it's less than 10% are even participating, um, and you've got those, those women and more doing really well, you know, winning, winning PWC tasks, uh, doing, you know, a sixth overall in a super final. I mean, that is unbelievable. Um,
Speaker 4: 01:24:35 yeah,
Speaker 3: 01:24:35 so I, you know, I th I think, yeah, okay. Continue cause that that's kind of terrible than I think.
Speaker 4: 01:24:41 Yeah. I think a, what everybody knows that we struggle with is physical size, that uh, 80% of female pilots, according to statistics fly a glider which has a fecal freed between 65 to 95. So my take off weight is very unique. I belong to the 4% of women who can fly on am size glider. So, uh, it's, it's true that there is some disadvantage there, but it's again, it's this advantage of small pilots, you know, which is more, uh, more female belonged to this category. But you know, also small male pilots have the exact same challenge that if you find an excess Anzel or boom or whatever CCC glider, that's going to be more aggressive and it's going to have a worst performance. It doesn't matter what brand it is, it's just the facts. It's not passive possible. Even if glider manufacturers would love to do a very safe access site and a very, uh, like brilliant one which outperforms, or it's just physically not possible.
Speaker 4: 01:25:54 So if we, if we are there and then, then you could ask why the hell do we need the female category at all? I mean, if you have any disadvantages and then we are exactly all the same, then why do we need this? And, and I have to tell you, I went the full circle on this because when I studied paragliding, uh, and, and sort of displaying competitions, I was super inspired watching women succeed and uh, just by not being buried in the, in the numbers, having that spotlight for the female podium was very, uh, inspirational for me. And then later on when I studied, uh, having some success, uh, and, and, uh, I could experience tending on the Porritt podium myself, then I started question because as I said, I fly an M size, I'm 185 a centimeter thought, which for Americans is six point wines one.
Speaker 4: 01:26:49 So I'm not an every size of one at all. And by seeing that it doesn't really feel right to me when I'm standing on the podium on the top and there are two girls standing next to me who, who are like 50 kilos together. So, you know, it's just, um, I have a, a problem with that also. And I was thinking about more weight categories that maybe that's uh, or more fair and it's better. And then, uh, the more I traveled, the more I saw I studied to go back for being absolutely for the, the female podium. And my reason is that I realized that there are some issues what we don't really discuss, um, it's, it's a numbers game again that if there are only 10% women, then uh, if you check the odds of, of, of uh, brilliant that if you check that that are 130,000 pilots worldwide, from which 10% are female, then we have 117,000 men and we have sort of 10,000 women.
Speaker 4: 01:27:56 And if we assume that there is one exceptional from 10,000 who is a genius, was very, very good in what the person does, then we end up with 11 men and we have one woman. So fighting for a super final podium. Um, yeah, it's just an ended. It amazes me that there are even two women in that 10, you know? So I think what you are saying is very true. That it's, it's, um, it's a, it's just a numbers, you know, that it's very hard to, to, to put, they're exceptionally good ones from a waist, smaller crowd. So this one, one reason which, uh, which, which, um, I would say that, um, what's the reason why behind why we need the female or the almond? Another one is, um, is that in many societies, especially in mine, I see that we are not there yet.
Speaker 4: 01:29:04 We are not completely, uh, there where genderly quality is, is not an issue anymore because we are just so equal. And we still have some, some, some differences with salary and, and when a man are already able to have the type of freedom to travel, uh, women might start it a couple of years later and it's not something I'm judging. I'm just seeing this is a fact. So if you look at at a success rate in paragliding that we discussed this very mental, but obviously it needs technical learning. It takes time. So by the time somebody reaches the level to fly a super final, uh, I have never immediate to that level. So it's just my observation. It's not my personal experience, but what I see there, uh, or what I saw when I flew, um, the worlds that the average age was around 40 to 50. So if we take this into consideration, that woman can start, uh, come flying lit late in their 20s or early thirties, or even later, later, later, then, um, it's already a trade beer engaged.
Speaker 4: 01:30:13 And if they want to have a family, then they only have a couple of years to, to try out the comm scene or the ever never even make it there because before they just advanced to that level that they're going to be that good. They are, they have children. And um, I don't know if uh, if, uh, the, the risk profile is, is much different for women. Some people argue that yes. Uh, we mean are not that adventurous. I don't like to, to uh, think this way. I think it's again, very personal because there are some men who are super careful and that there are some women who are absolutely, uh, adventurous and amazing. Uh, so it's not a gender issue, but I think it's a family issue that once you become a family man or, or, or a mother or a woman, then you just don't necessarily want to take those type of risks anymore because, um, if you have two small babies at home, then racing a CCC next to rocks or that type of flying, we discuss that it's a big game.
Speaker 4: 01:31:22 We do it for four. We don't even get a bunch of money doing this. We all do it for personal gain, benefit for the level fit. So why would somebody want to take the risks when, uh, you know, there are, there are small kids at home salts. I think it's a, it's a valid issue to discuss that, uh, that uh, um, women don't have that much time, uh, to, to succeed. So our career carrier curve or carrier path is way shorter. So I think that's a good reason to, uh, to say that uh, positive discrimination in this area is not necessarily a bad thing. It's actually something which inspires a lot of people and not just the women. It's inspires men as well to push more. Because, uh, I talk to many of my friends and who I started to fly with and they see that sometimes when we go to on events together and uh, we, we all like are in the, we formed our little team and we fly together. I also inspire them that they see that it's so rare for women to, to, uh, to fly and they see it as a challenge for themselves. And in a good way. So we really enjoy flying together and it's a healthy challenge and competition between France and also it's, it's something which, uh, is an opportunity and this is how I would like to look at it.
Speaker 3: 01:32:51 I love it. Yeah. And I think that's a good way to look at it and think it's pretty, um, insightful. Adele, final question. [inaudible] and you, you, you gave this to me, I can't claim credit for this, but you want to talk about wanderlust and I want to talk about it just because I love that word so much. Uh, talk to me about wanderlust and then I know you've, we've, uh, we've been working at this for quite awhile, so I'll be, uh, be mindful of your time.
Speaker 4: 01:33:19 Um, yeah, we, we discussed it a little bit before we recorded it because, uh, um, it was always something which, uh, fascinated me. You know, why some people are so drawn to, to travel or, or adventures or adventure sports and some aren't. And, uh, some of my, my friends, longtime friends started to call me the crazy one, or you know, the adventurous one. And all these labels. I didn't really, uh, like in a way, and I asked them, I don't understand, you enjoy seeing the world as well. So what, what do you think is the difference between us? And the more we dived into that topic, the more I realized, uh, that uh, in, in a society as a whole, we have different type of roles for people and many, many people are, are inspired or they are happy and they feel comfortable if their future seems stable.
Speaker 4: 01:34:18 And that's a very normal feeling. That's what I can totally relate to. But there is a smaller group who, who feels restless. If everything is too stable, everything is too, uh, uh, you can call college your future four years ahead, you can see where you're going to be. Um, for me because I belong to this group, if I, if I feel a bit uncomfortable, not suffocating, that's not the right word. Although I heard some pilots saying that more like I feel, ah, there is no challenge there. There is no fun there. It's too easy. And, uh, I think that, um, uh, that small group of who can really go from the extreme to to the average, uh, traveler and, and, and there is a, a big Vera variety there. Uh, this moves the society forward. We need a lot of, we need a big group of people who can keep the society stable, but we need a smaller group of people who are willing to jump off cliffs, are willing to go to the moon, willing to explore new lands and they are always curious.
Speaker 4: 01:35:24 But the mortality rate of these people is way much higher. So it's a good thing that they are the minority in the society. But for health or for society, it's very important to have these group of people and it's, it's, it's no judging. Both of the groups are essential to have and uh, uh, whether you belong to one or the other, both of them are great. Just figure out where you belong. Because if you stuck into your nine to five jobs and you hate what you do because you keep dreaming about doing something more, doing a big travels or experiencing some, some adventures, then don't be afraid to make a change because by the, by the sleep, uh, you can find fulfillment and happiness and there's nothing wrong with you if, if you keep feeling restless and, and, and you don't understand, why is it that I always need to go, uh, you know, and, and, and, and at wandering around.
Speaker 3: 01:36:24 Hmm. Adele, what an absolutely thrilling conversation. I feel like I, I just got to inhabit your mind for a little while and I would like to do that more. I'm not sure you have the space. There's a lot of really neat things going on in there, but I just learned a ton. Um, thank you so much for sharing all that. I think we're going to have to do a an episode to a part due to this at some point after I get to fly with you somewhere, Chris promised me Chris Banford a very good mutual friend of ours and he promised me that this would be enlightening and a lot of fun and he was dead on. Um, thank you so much. I really appreciate it.
Speaker 4: 01:37:01 Thank you so much for being here. I really enjoyed it and I'm looking forward to finding you soon. In the, in the U S or in in Europe, if you're coming over,
Speaker 1: 01:37:09 there's a, there's an open invitation. We've got a cabin in the back that I think sun Valley is one of the greatest places to fly in the world. That's why I'm here. So yes, please let's do that. Thanks Saadella.
Speaker 4: 01:37:21 Thank you so much.
Speaker 1: 01:37:30 Yeah, I hope you enjoyed that. As always, if you got something out of this, we learned something, treat it like a magazine subscription or something else. All we've ever asked for is a buck a show. You can find the links to do that either through a PayPal or Patrion on the website, cloud-based mayhem.com and just got a whole new shipment in from recaps. My friend Anika Herdon, uh, just sent me a 50 new hats, cloud-based may. I'm at every single one of them. Totally individual. They're super cool, all sustainably made and stuff. They're pretty neat. Uh, so you can find out how you can get your hands on one of those through if you support us through Patrion. That's patrion.com forward slash forward slash cloud-based mayhem that I mentioned at the top of the show. The signs that Josh heater sent me, that pilot needs ride to car.
Speaker 1: 01:38:13 They're really cool. Uh, if you want to just go ahead and circumnavigate, uh, trying to win one, you want to buy one? There's a link up in the show notes for this show on Del haunty. Just go to the cloud base, ma'am dot com find her show. There's a link there to Etsy where you can buy them for, I think they're 17 bucks a online on Etsy and a Jostle send you on there. Very cool. This is the listener sports show. We're not doing it with sponsors. This is all just made possible by you. So thanks for supporting us and we'll see on the next one. Cheers. [inaudible].



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