Exercise 12 – Stalls

Before beginning the lesson on stalls, students should understand control responsiveness in the slow flight regime. This could possibly include practice reviewing slow flight before the official lesson on stalls. During PPL training, it is not your responsibility to make sure the student can “perform” a stall, the purpose is for the student to recognize and avoid a stall. If the student enters a stall they should be have the reasonable ability to recover – the main focus is recognize and avoid!


Power Off Entry and Recovery

  • Before beginning maneuver, input some nose up trim
  • Begin at flight for endurance, reduce power to idle and maintain altitude
  • Make it clear that you are applying backpressure to actively stall the aircraft
  • Keep the aircraft coordinated and straight
  • Once in a stall, keep it there and point out visual indications of a stall
    • Keeping the aircraft in a stall allows a student to see what it is about
    • It also demonstrates that stalls do not just happen naturally, pilots stall aircraft
  • After this, being a power off recovery by lowering the nose just enough to unstall
  • Establish a descent at best glide speed for the aircraft
  • Recover from descent back to cruise
    • Reducing AoA breaks stall, power arrests descent

Student Practice 

Power On Recovery

  • Begin a power off stall
  • Reduce AoA to break stall, apply full power and carb heat in (if applicable) to arrest descent
  • Control Yaw
  • Return to cruise flight

Student Practice

Some flight schools will break down stalls into a two part lesson, the first being power off entries and the second being power on entries. You may choose to add a bit of difficulty by having the student do some stalls with flaps and in turns during the first lesson.

Power On Entries

  • Achieve desired RPM, on initial demonstration using a medium power setting may be appropriate
  • Pitch the nose up (you may gain altitude)
  • As the aircraft approaches the stall, discuss the warning signs of the aircraft
    • Attitude, visual indications, physical feelings, which wing may stall first
  • On first indication of stall, recover
    • Many instructors will only teach students to “pick up wing” using rudder only
    • This is false, once the aircraft is unstalled, ailerons may be used to level the wings.

Student Practice using various power settings and attitudes 

  • If using flaps, ensure student retracts flaps at appropriate times
  • Minimize altitude loss in all cases

Transport Canada’s Stall/Spin Awareness Guide is a fantastic resource when it comes to teaching this lesson, it is available here (new window PDF).

There are many configurations in which a student can stall an aircraft. After all it is possible to stall in any attitude. Using practical scenarios such as Departure Stalls, Arrival Stalls or Accelerated Stalls will  hopefully prepare the student for these events. Before conducting each stall, it may be worth discussing with the student what the aircraft’s reaction will be once it departs controlled flight.

All of this information on pilot training and flight training in Canada is also available at www.myflighttraining.ca.