the History of USPPA, USHGA and power.
by Jeff Goin, Apr 20, 2008
The past is easily forgotten, especially when it's the recent past. And in
the sport of powered paragliding it is all a recent past. This is a work in
This is obviously my perspective on our history but most of it can be verified by looking at writings in groups,
magazine contributions, and other documents. If you know about any wrong facts, let me know.
corrections and will update the information accordingly.
The full history is on
history section (Chapter 25) but what's covered below relates to the
Before 1990 there was paragliding. Started in Europe by climbers wanting a
better way down, it grew quickly in popularity.
Powered paragliding enters the U.S. in some history that I don't know. The
first paramotor was the LaMouette, imported by the fellow who taught James
Miller to fly.
Alan Chuculate was an accomplished hang glider pilot, tandem paraglider pilot
and then got into paramotoring soon after it came across. Other players included
Canadians Eric Dufour and Francesco DeSantis, The
The sport was in its infancy, having landed on US shores in about 1990. Eric
Dufour, Francesco DeSantis, Alan Chuculate and others were major players.
LaMouette was the first machine imported with Adventure and Fly Products to
follow in fairly short order.
When I was lured in by a friend who never did pursue it, I went searching for
My background was (still is) flight instruction and airline flying with an
interest in human factors—the study of how humans actually behave in real-world
situations. I knew the importance of thorough training and went to seek it out.
Lo and behold there was no program out there for paramotoring for solo pilots.
The only powered program, from ASC, was really meant for tandem certifcation of
powered parachute pilots. That's not what I wanted so, taking the advice of Nick
Scholtes, I set out to use a recognized training program for paragliding with
the intent to go to a paramotoring instructor.