Episode 95- Willi Canell and wrestling with the Risk

Willi Canell will represent the US in the 2019 Red Bull X-Alps, the 5th US athlete in the history of the race to call Sun Valley, Idaho home of the 10 US athletes who have competed. He’ll be lined up with me in Salzburg June 16th in the greatest game on Earth as a rookie. He’s my neighbor, flying partner and consistently surprises me with the way he thinks about this crazy sport we all find so compelling. I invited Willi onto the Mayhem because he recently shared his private journal with me and I found his thoughts and ideas about paragliding, risk, training, fitness, and the ultimate question- why we all do what we do not only fascinating but informative and thought-provoking

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Episode 92- Marcella Uchoa and breaking the Women’s World Record

Marcella Uchoa breaks the Women's world record

On October 25th, 2018 Marcella Uchoa flew into the record books by flying 411 km across the Sertao, Brazil. She broke Seiko Fukuoka’s record of 402 km in Australia set in December of 2015. Marcella was in good company, team flying with Rafael Saldini, Frank Brown, Samuel Nascimento, Marcelo Prieto (the same group who flew 564 km to break the world distance record a few years back) as well as Sebastien Ospina, an ace pilot from Colombia.

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Episode 90- Threat and Error Management (TEM) and Free Flight

TEM is a simple system that helps pilots identify threats so they don’t lead to errors which if they multiply could lead to an “undesirable aircraft state.” It’s simply an awareness protocol laid out through a series of checklists and procedures that become built-in threat mitigation.  Threats in all forms of flight are ubiquitous- internal and external threats are everywhere. So how can we use this remarkably successful program in free flight to reduce risk?

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Episode 86- Annalena Hinestroza and managing a passion for flight

In this wide-ranging episode we discuss women in the sport, the importance of getting solid foundational skills, gear and why people choose the wrong equipment for their skill level, how to get into comps and how to be an efficient pilot, why learning slowly is so important, and why flying a more reasonable glider well is about the most rewarding thing you can do. We recorded this episode live in Colombia- enjoy!

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Episode 85- Mark Watts and letting your subconscious do the work

Mark Watts is one of only a very few UK pilots to have won the British Championships, a PWC, the UK X-Contest League, AND held the open distance record (at 275 km, which held until 2017). He has been on the British team many times, currently shares the out and back record in the UK with Hugh Miller and has been competing for over 25 years. Relentlessly fast, tactical, and consistent whenever Mark shows up at a comp you’ve got a formidable opponent. Mark has been one of the most-requested guests we’ve had because he avoids the spotlight, so while his flying resume speaks for itself not much is known about what makes him tick.

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Episode 75- Dominic Rohner and Chasing the Dream

Dominic has been flying for 21 years, recently sold his share of a very successful school (Paraworld) in Zurich and has been living the dream- traveling the world in the pursuit of the skycrack. From Tanzania and Kenya to Brazil to Colombia Dominic takes us on a journey that only a paraglider can do. This one is filled with great advice, many laughs, a few solid warnings, fantastic travel stories, the heuristic decision making process, and does what any good free flight talk should do- get you STOKED to go flying!

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Episode 68- Nik Hawks and weighing the risks

Nik Hawks returns to the Mayhem to share two pretty scary incidents that ended well, but came with a LOT of lessons that every pilot can learn from including: coming back from “fear injuries”  by using the big 4, time, building exposure, and pattern recognition; how to get better at self-assessment (wingovers, exit from 360, exiting and entering spirals cleanly, avoiding and handling collapses, etc.); how to ask older/better pilots for help and the best way to approach mentors; when a pilot is really ready to go XC and what risks that involves; what groundhandling can…and maybe can’t help with…

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Episode 64- Till Gottbrath and Rethinking Performance and Risk

Several years ago Nova Paragliders changed the way we think about performance when they put some of their top pilots on the Mentor, an EN B wing and the world watched as they ticked off some of the biggest flights that had ever been done in the Alps, including the vaunted 300 FAI triangle. By flying wings that were less mentally and physically demanding pilots could stay in the air for 10+ hours and make less mistakes. Till Gottbrath began flying when a paraglider had a glide ratio worse than a Rogalo reserve in 1986 and has never had an accident. In this episode we discuss…

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Episode 63- Adél Honti and what makes a successful pilot

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?

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Episode 62- Patrick Hennessey and Speed Flying basic to expert

After many many requests we bring you our first show dedicated to speed flying and mini wings. Patrick Hennessey is a pilot based in the Northwest of the US who’s been getting after it but came into the sport via skydiving and has a pretty interesting take on how people should learn and access the sport. In this episode we talk about the inherent risks of flying small wings, the high number of unnecessary accidents, the “cowboy” attitude and the lack of foundational skills, how important your own personal background is before you learn to fly a small wing, how “stupid” small wings are to fly, the best programs to go through to learn, how to safely learn the more advanced tricks, yet another shout out to learn ground handling and a lot more.

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