Nomenclature | Three Forces | Turning Flight | Load Factor | Airspeed Limits | Stability

About the course

Prerequisites: Glider Familiarization

Approximate time to complete: 2 hours 15 minutes

In this course, you’ll learn about the forces that act on a glider, and how these forces are created. You’ll also learn about how these forces affect the stability of the glider, and how the different airspeed limits are related to these forces.

It is important that you know this information so that you can understand how the glider will react under different conditions, and so that you understand why you must respect the airspeed, loading, and center of gravity limits specified by the manufacturer.


Please Note:

This course is designed for use by a single individual. It is against the Terms of Use to share this course, in part or whole, with other users, or to teach others using the content from this course. The time and effort that goes into the development of these courses is immense. To ensure that we will be able to offer more courses, we need to collect a fee from every student who takes a course. Thank you for supporting our effort!


Course Overview

  • Welcome FREE PREVIEW


  • Section Overview
  • Video
  • Quiz 1 & Instructions

Three Forces

  • Section Overview
  • Video
  • Bonus Video - Stall Visualization FREE PREVIEW
  • Quiz 2 & Instructions

Turning Flight

  • Section Overview
  • Video
  • Quiz 3 & Instructions

Load Factor

  • Section Overview
  • Video
  • Quiz 4 & Instructions

Airspeed Limits

  • Section Overview
  • Video
  • Examples - Aerodynamic Flutter
  • Quiz 5 & Instructions


  • Section Overview
  • Video
  • Quiz 6 & Instructions

Final Test

  • Final Test & Instructions
  • Fun with aerodynamics!

About Your Instructor

Russell Holtz

Russell Holtz

Russell is the author of two well-respected and widely-used soaring flight training books in the United States - the Glider Pilot's Handbook of Aeronautical Knowledge and the Flight Training Manual for Glider Pilots.

Russell grew up in Tulsa, Oklahoma, and attended the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Aeronautical and Astronautical Engineering.

He obtained his Private Pilot Certificate in gliders in 1995, in airplanes in 1996, his Commercial Certificate in Gliders in 1998, and his Certified Flight Instructor rating in gliders in 1999. He completed the FAI Silver Badge requirements in 1997, and the Gold and Diamond requirements in 1998. Russell has given over 2,800 hours of primary, cross-country, contest, and aerobatic flight instruction, and has over 4,000 hours total time in gliders.

Russell's passion for understanding and communicating soaring knowledge is evident in his teaching.


$35.00 Regular Price Buy $35.00



From Paul Norden

Sir Once again you take complicated material and create an understandable format with rarzor sharp examples. The material Is easy to understand - wish the videos could be watched on dvd...

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Great Visuals!

From Rand Baldwin

The videos and other visuals help the student truly understand and quickly develop an intuition for what really happens when wings meet the air.

From Savannah Rider

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