Half Marathon

Equipment

First-Aid Kit GPS Glider Harness Parachute Radio Variometer

Rules

There are many different types of competitions involving hang gliding, each with varying sets of rules. Recently, the most popular form of competition is cross-country flying. In this type of competition, two to four waypoints must be passed before landing at a goal. Participants may only use a flexible wing hang glider, rigid wing hang glider or Class 2 hang glider. World championships are held biannually.

Description

Hang Gliding is a sport in which a pilot flies a light, wind-powered glider at various altitudes across various distances. Control and steering is managed by the pilot shifting his/her own body weight to manipulate drafts and currents. Invented by a German scientist in the 1880's, hang gliding builds upon gliding technology dating back to 4th century China. Today, participants hang glide both recreationally and competitively. One must use caution though, as hang gliding can be extremely dangerous due to the unpredictable nature of wind and atmospheric pressure.

History

Early forms of gliding date back all the way to 4th century China. These gliders were rarely successful because of a lack of sound aeronautical knowledge. By the 1880's, technology had advanced enough to produce the first truly practical gliders. Soon after, German scientist Otto Lilienthal perfected these designs and built the first hang glider. The design was continuously improved over the ensuing decades, and its applications were broadened. NASA began experimenting with the hang glider in the 1960's in an attempt to use it as a system of recovery for downed space capsules. Today, hang gliding is a popular recreational and competitive sport practiced in countless countries around the world.