Safety and Recurrency go Hand in Hand

Who needs recurrency training?
by Eusebio Valdes

Just the pilots who fly commercial planes? Absolutely not. Every person who holds a pilot license should get ongoing training. Why? It’s all about safety. Frequent pilots, leisure pilots, commercial pilots, anyone who flies needs recurrency training. Remember it’s all about safety. The two go hand in hand.

I have seen individuals arriving from 200 or 300 miles away from their hometown to obtain Flight Reviews or upgrade their ratings so no one from their home area will notice their deficiencies. I applaud their efforts. “Better to be safe, than sorry”. It doesn’t matter where, as long as your flight school is reputable.

If airline pilots, cargo pilots and corporate pilots need recurrency training every six months and are required to take regular checkrides from the FAA, why would you risk doing less? Here’s where the broken-record of repeated excuses ring in the air.

First, there’s no such thing as a naturally bad pilot! I have met individuals who warranted more training for a range of reasons: some who over the years of flying by themselves have developed some bad habits and some who think the rules are made to be broken.

Second, time. Time is money. You already invested the time and money so don’t dilute or waste that money and let your skills deteriorate. Make the time, the commitment and you will improve!

Recurrency, or ongoing training, should not be a chore. It’s really about getting back to the basics, sharpening those dull skills, and growing confident where the aircraft is your friend and not your foe. Many sports and skills require a constant review of the basics. Each time you do, you learn something new. Air flight is no different. Plus you can do it on your own or with a flight instructor!

Recurrency simply means flying at the very top of your skill level every single time you fly an airplane. “If you don’t use it, you lose it”. So practice, practice, practice! It may require a little reading on your part such as reviewing the aircraft POH, and your Private Pilot Handbook that we use for everything from Private through Instructor. Number one on my Top Ten Flight books is “Stick & Rudder”one of the the best books ever written explaining what makes an airplane fly. While published in 1943, this book is classic flight instruction that transcends time.

Still feeling rusty? Hire an experienced instructor who never seems to be completely satisfied with what you are doing. In other words, with a tough instructor, you will go far. (Did I mention my middle name is “strict”?) Go and review “slow fly”, “power offstalls”, “power on stalls”, “accelerate stalls”, “steep turns” (and I mean 60 degrees) , “unusual attitudes”, “touch and goes with flaps and no flaps”, “shot field landings”. To round out the reviews, ask your instructor to help you work on “partial panel” and be very visual with outside traffic. Training and learning have to be continuous.

Getting current is just the first step. Now figure out what you are going to have to do on a regular basis to stay that way . . . and do it. I really don’t know how a pilot can consider himself as safety conscious and not feel that they are putting their passengers and themselves at risk on every flight if they are not absolutely and strictly current. I fly with a lot of people who have simply let their skills deteriorate .

Don’t let this happen to you. Recurrency is something that has to be done on a regular basis, and the only person who can keep up with your schedule is you. Are you current? Don’t clip those wings! Expand them and glide through the air with honed skills and confidence. Identify those bad habits and make a mental list of them. Slowly, make an effort to replace them with good form and proper procedures.

I’ll see you at the flight school or Tamiami Airport! Always remember: A good pilot is always training. What is the excuse?


Worst Pilot Mistakes

To begin with, pilots make mistakes just like any other professional we deal with on a daily basis simply because they are human. They forget. They get comfortable with their past performance. They get complacent . They exceed their personal minimums. They rely far too much on new technology. Finally, and the most dangerous of all, are those that think of themselves as the “Hot Shot” Pilots make mistakes by simply forgetting.

In their own minds, they become bulletproof, almost immortal. They get too comfortable with their past performance. It is usually the problem when we are told that some type of “pilot error” causes over 90% of all aviation accidents. They are usually very comfortable with their level of training, airmanship, aircraft knowledge, and certainly their expertise in getting from point “A” to point “B” and landing safely. Complacency is the easiest of all traps to fall into and the hardest to recognize and repair. It is also an erosion of all your skills and training if you let this happen to you.

Personal minimums are something that we as pilots in command set for ourselves. Personal minimums should be improved on or at least added to on each and every flight. Write down what you feel are acceptable minimums that you have set for yourself and then discuss them with another pilot you trust or your personal flight trainer. Get a second opinion. Do not overrate yourself to a level that you are unable to achieve on a regular basis. No one knows you better than you. Do not rely too much on new technology or ideas that can prove deadly without a backup. What we need to remember and use is the proven systems that have taken care of us for a lot of years, VORs, NDBs, Loran, time and distance, speed, wind correction, and certainly, “Prior planning prevents —- poor performance.”

The cockpit is no place to start planning your flight. If you are not mentally ready to devote your entire mind to taking this flight, don’t go. Be very wary of “Hot Shot.” Sometimes the very worst mistake pilots make is simply never learning that the airplane is really flying them.

The following are mistakes and attitudes identified by the Federal Aviation Administration: invulnerability; anti-authority; impulsivity; Mr. Macho; and resignation. Don’t let yourself fall into these traps by simply being aware of them. Know your enemy! And remember—“If all else fails, fly the airplane!” There are certainly a lot of great flight instructors out there to help you stay at maximum performance and prepare you to be a head of the game. Try to find that certain one that exceeds your needs and is not afraid to tell you what has to be done. Learning and re-learning how to fly is a constant battle; at least it’s supposed to be. Are you completely satisfied with your flying skills? Remember, this is a constant and never ending improvement. If you can afford to fly that aircraft you are in, you can also afford good training. In fact, you have to. Call me and lets get some serious training. Remember, MOST ACCIDENTS ARE CAUSED AND THEREFORE PREVENTABLE!

Meet Your Flight Instructor — Eusebio Valdes!

The experience of flying can be stimulating and enjoyable if you follow the highest standards. The right instructor can make all the difference in your confidence and ability to fly.

Meet Eusebio Valdes (you can call him “Valdes”) your professional flight instructor with over 25 years experience. Valdes starting flying at the young age of 24 in his native Spain. He later obtained numerous airplane and helicopter licenses when migrating here to the U.S. after 1976. Eusebio is a member of the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA).

His list of credentials is numerous:
  • Private Pilot Airplane License
  • Commercial Pilot Airplane License
  • Instrument License
  • Multi Engine License
  • Helicopter License
  • Flight Instructor Single Engine
  • Flight Instructor Multi Engine
  • Flight Instructor Instruments
  • Flight Instructor Helicopter
  • Primary and Advanced Ground Instructor
  • Tail Wheel Training and Basic Aerobatics
  • Airframe and Power Plant Mechanic License


A Personal Message from Eusebio Valdes to novice pilots:

After teaching for 26 years with zero accidents and incidents and 18,000 hours of dual flight instruction, I see the need to help novice pilots and instructors in the field of emergencies and “unusual attitudes”. In other words, I will help you prepare for the most important lessons in flying–preparing for the unexpected. These include slow flight, steep turns, stalls and recoveries, unusual attitudes, engine failures on take off,cross wind landings. I also specialize in tailwheel training, spin training and recoveries and multiengine training.

With my training, you will feel confident in maneuvering and landing a plane safely in any of these unusual conditions.

Welcome to Miami Fly


The freedom of flying brings excitement, independence, and a sense of accomplishment. Have you ever dreamed of flying like a bird–free and totally in control? Imagine flying alongside a setting sun above a tropical coast hugged by crystalline blue waters. Or majestic, snow-jagged mountains draped by bright blue skies? Or how about just a bird’s eye view of your rolling-hills hometown or bustling, expansive city?

The closest experience is flying a plane whether it’ s a single engine or multi-engine plane, and people of all ages and walks of life have learned to fly. No matter if you want to perform dare devil stunt flying or fly a commercial airplane, it’s all possible right here!

Welcome to Miami Fly. As our name indicates, we fly over Miami and offer aerial tours and flight instruction, for men and women around the globe. Whether you want to learn for fun (aerobatic flying with upside down flips) or for a professional career (multi-engine license), we offer basic training as well as airline pilot license.


Visiting Miami and want an abbreviated tour of the entire region without having to guzzle gas and sit in gridlock traffic? You’ve come to the right place. Miami Fly can take you and your family members (maximum three people) into the Miami skies for a magnificent view and telling tales of how Miami rose from swampland inhabited by crocodiles and snakes to a tropical paradise filled with transplanted flamingos and other exotic characters.

Reservations and a minimal deposit are required. Please call to make your reservation well in advance.


The United States is well known around the world as offering the highest quality training and at the most competitive prices. Just keep reading and compare our prices and experience, and we’ll be ready to assist you in the next step.

For competitive rates call 305-255-5519.

Reservations and a minimal deposit are required.

If you’re viewing this from outside the United States, you can plan a two week vacation alongside your flight training. Bring the family or adventure it alone. Either way, we can put you in contact with the best Miami vacation planner (just tell her your my customer and she’ll help you plan your visit). If you’re a local, even better. Flight instruction is right in your backyard!

Below is a video for more advanced aerobatic flying.

[Para información en Español, favor de llamar al dueño, Eusebio Valdes, 305-255-5519]