No. People of all shapes and sizes, ages and abilities have learned to fly. It's fun, and from the beginning of your training, you get to do most of the actual flying! On the practical side — while flying isn't a difficult skill to learn, you'll have to be willing to stick with it until you meet all the requirements. Also, you should consider the cost of becoming a pilot — you'll have to pay for your physical exam and your lessons.
Right away. All you have to do is find a flight instructor and sign up for an introductory lesson. You don't have to have a student pilot's certificate or a medical certificate to take flying lessons. Of course, you won't be able to fly solo right away. That takes time and the paperwork described in this guide.
It depends on you. There is no set number of lessons or hours of flight training. Your instructor must make sure you have learned to perform certain maneuvers before allowing you to solo. These maneuvers include safe takeoffs and landings. You must use good judgment when flying and be able to keep control of the aircraft.
Also, you'll have to get a medical certificate and a student pilot's certificate to fly solo.
Yes. A well-built and well-maintained aircraft flown by a competent and prudent pilot is as safe or safer than many other forms of transportation.
Modern aircraft engines are reliable and failure rarely occurs. However, your lessons will cover what to do in this situation, including selecting a good landing area and safely landing.
Page Last Modified: 03/19/13 15:04 EDT
This page can be viewed online at: http://www.faa.gov/pilots/become/faq/