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I know I'm asking for it with this post.

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Active member
Jul 13, 2002
I am getting ready for the PPL check ride and when I go out and do steep turns for 15-30 minutes I start to not feel 100%. I'm not painting the cabin or incapicated but will admit feeling different. I have about 50 hours and am not giving it up(quitting) by any means but want to know what I can do to not let this simple manuever both me at all.

IS it something that gets better with time?

Any suggestions? Did anyone ever experience this at the beginning of their training?

I have considered buying time in an aerobatic plane to just spray the canopy but don't really know if that would help.

Okay, everyone take a shot at me being a wuss,quit now,etc....
I think it's a matter of watching what you eat before you go up. Anything that contains aspertame (like Equal, diet sodas, etc) I stay far, far, far away from. Same thing goes for having a lot of chocolate. Try to eat a bland meal and you'll probably do better.

I never had a problem with getting air sick or sea sick. Then my diet changed significantly and I started to feel awkward. Of course I did not know it had changed that much until I made a note of everything I ate for two weeks straight. Then eliminated the bad stuff by replacing it with healthier stuff.

Not saying that your diet is bad but it may be worth looking at.

I was told all this by my tailwheel instructor who had done basically the same thing. He's also an aerobatic instructor. Imagine how he fealt when teaching spins and the like. :eek:

Keep in mind too that the examiner is going to make you do one or two steep turns and then if you've done them correctly, he/she will move on to the next item.
Don't worry too much. After a while you will start to get used to it a little more. When it gets bad just move on to another maneuver. After 15 mins of steep turns it is time to take a break anyway. Its like beating a dead horse if you don't work on something else.

When you start to feel quesy (sp?) get some cold air on you. That will help a little.

One thing that gets me all the time are eights on pylons when instructing. I can take it for like 10 min, but after that I need a break. If you really want to get sick, sit in the back when someone is doing eights on and doing them really tight :eek:

Peace Out


BTW I droped my lunch on short final on my 5th flight as a student. Not feeling 100% isn't as bad as painting the tops of peoples houses. :D
Steep turns sickness

Maybe the G forces during the turns are acting on your sinuses. Just a thought. My sinuses would bother me sometimes and then steep turns sometimes made me queasy.

Why are you practicing steep turns for fifteen minutes at a time? Give them something like three reps and move on to something else. You might try opening the airvents in your airplane.

Are you flying in low-level turbulence? The jostling about can make people sick. One of my first solo students would get sick after a few stalls. We were flying in low-level turb. I wanted to solo him but thought he'd lose his lunch, until a more-experienced instructor assured me that he would not. He did not and soloed just fine.

Sometimes, inadequate rest can affect your tolerance for such maneuvers as steep turns. Maybe stress, too, because of your upcoming practical.

Try to eat right as the others suggested and get enough rest. Don't practice steep turns 15 minutes on end.

Good luck with your practical and let us know how it goes.
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The above posts are good. Be careful about what you eat and keep the vents open on you airplane. With only 50 hours under your belt your body is still adjusting to flight. Dont practice your maneuvers for so long.

I remember my full time CFI days. A day with a little turbulence would always bring 8 students who were ready for training the stall series. After doing stalls all day I always wanted to barf. Or head to the hardware store to buy a rope, I cant remember which. Anyway, I wouldnt spend too much time doing a particular maneuver with a student untill they got used to it.

Your body will adjust. Everyones bodies adjust at different speeds. Let us know how you do!!!
I agree with the other posts. I don't think I've ever practiced steep turns for 15-30mins. I would spend maybe 10 minutes on that maneuvar before moving on to something else. That is one of the maneuvars that will indeed get you sick if you do it for a long period of time. Factor in the heat and turbulence and I'm not sure if there are many people at all who would feel great after doing 15-30mins worth of steep turns.

What you are experiencing is perfectly normal. There is good advice already posted, so, definetly consider what some of the people are saying.

Good luck!
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Take some peppermints with you; I strongly recommend Altoids. These will help. A very cold bottle of water will help too.

don't worry about it , after 15' of steep turn you will feel different,
don't focus on it ,you will do fine.
Appreciate the honesty

Thanks for the candid comments. I am going to change the diet and not spend so much time on the manuver. I am really wanting to persue this as a career and figured if I am wussing out on steep turns how will I ever be able to teach them to someone else!!!

I have more hope to continue. Thanks again.
A cold can of ginger ale always helped me to feel better.

When I was first training, five minutes of steep turns made me want to open up that little window on the cherokee. Later, when I was instructing, I spent almost two hours doing steep turns with a young doctor who was feeling fine, but had a lot of trouble with the control of bank and altitude. Neither of us had a problem. So, it does indeed get better over time.

Build up your tolerance, and keep your eyes out on the horizon with some cool air blowing on you. A hot, bumpy afternoon will be challenging. Maybe some pattern work would be better on those days.

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