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Features January 2020 Issue

Radio Confidence

A pattern drill can help improve a pilot’s skill in the pattern, while also giving him or her more confidence with the radio and procedures.

Radio Confidence

Many pilots ask, “What can I do to help ATC?” One of many answers is, “Improve your radio confidence.” (And, no, this isn’t yet another article about phraseology.)

Remember when you first picked up the mic in an airplane, either to ATC or at a non-towered field? Most of us were probably as tentative as a boy trying to get his first date . Even if you’re good at public speaking, few of us gain the comfort without first practicing with prepared remarks. But, on the radio our scripts are too vague and variable; we have to learn along the way. Meanwhile we’re so worried about sounding bad or saying the wrong thing, we often sound bad and say the wrong thing. Fortunately, practice makes perfect—or at least better.

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