Acro Training

Train with the best!

We have teamed up with Xandi Meschuh, one of the top Acro pilots in the world and also a very accomplished instructor.


Xandi (or Alex) has been flying acro since the start of the discipline, has regularly featured in the top ten FAI ranking from Acro competitions and has been running his own Acro school for many years, mostly to Austrian pilots. However, for 2012 Xandi has agreed to team up with xTc to bring acro to the Brits (OK, so you don't have to be a Brit to attend). Don't be worried about Xandi being Austrian; he speaks impeccable English!


The setup is at the world famous acro site, Gerlitzen in Austria. The location allows an easy ascent up the mountain by gondola to the launch, some 1,500m (5,000ft) above the huge lake below. The landing place is just a few meters from the lake's edge allowing you maximum altitude for acro practice under Xandi's cool instruction. xTc have been using this site for 10 years since Xandi first showed Brett around back in 2002.


Did you know that something like 10 out of the top 20 pilots in the world come from the village under Gerlitzen and have been trained by Xandi. You can't get a better recommendation than that!


You can visit Xandi's own website here;


What sort of pilot should I be?

To get the best from the week from the very first flight you should be experienced in SIV, be comfortable with stalls and dealing with spins at their onset. A huge portion of UK pilots fit into this category as SIV has been a feature of UK flying for many years. That however does not exclude lesser skilled pilots from attending. They should just set their sights lower on what they will achieve. You will however be expected to be able to launch, land and organist yourself for the basics of flying and have a slightly deeper pocket!


What is the place like?

The launch is a huge, grassy bowl. It is an easy launch site and always has plenty of other pilots around. Mostly you will not be launching alone and help should always be on hand to help with laying out your wing etc. The landing field is equally huge and grassy with a massive packing area. Next to the landing field is the school house with facilities from ice-creams to bear to helmets and flying suits. Just a few hundred meters away is the posh, Austrian camping site on the lakes edge and just a few hundred meters beyond that is the gondola station for heading back up. There are several built up areas nearby with accommodation, banking etc an the city of Villach is just 10km away.


What manoeuvres will I learn?

That is entirely down to a discussion between you, xTc and Xandi at the start of the week. It will be a different course for every pilot. Maybe you will opt to learn the wing over properly and nothing else. Maybe you will learn the helicopter or maybe you are already good at acro and want to learn the Infinity Tumble. Xandi teaches them all, all with full briefing, debriefing and video footage. It is best not to want to learn too much in a week, but two manoeuvres is about the right sort of focus to end up with a well rehearsed routine for the end of the week.


What wing should I own?

You could attend this course with your EN-B, EN-C or even EN-D and learn some great Acro. EN-B's are good for throwing around without fear, practicing stalls, spins, wing overs, loops and other such manoeuvres. Some are good for helicopters too. EN-C's will allow you more scope for all these manoeuvres with the extra energy they have and SATs are far easier typically too. If you are on an EN-D you will be more limited on some of the extreme stuff, but they would have better energy for looping.


Of course, if you really want to get the best from the course you should be on a Freestyle wing or a dedicated Acro wing. If you have limited experience of Acro I would recommend steering clear of an acro wing at this stage and look towards a Freestyle if you want to spend some money. A freestyle is also good for strong wind flying when you get back to the UK so allowing a better return on your money. The new Freestyle2 from Gradient has an excellent reputation. There are some other good ones on the market too. Ask us for a quote of you want a wing and we can probably do you a good price against the course!


Do remember, there is a delivery time of 4-8 weeks if you order a week so don't decide this last minute!!!


What equipment should I own?

Aside from the usual, wing, harness, reserve etc you should also have a hook knife and life-jacket. Not those bulky, foam sort you used on SIV, but an inflatable one with a pull chord and maybe some spare canisters just in case. You could purchase them here, but search Ebay and they are not expensive.


So what does the week include?

This is not a regular xTc week where we offer guiding, retrieves etc. What we are planning on offering this week are the following;

  • Airport transfers. Around 1 hour from Klagenfurt Airport
  • Daily transport (from hotel to flying base, if needed, and from landing field to Gondola, to speed the day up)
  • Back up for safety etc
  • Additional transfers to/from launch by minibus if gondolas close at inconvenient times (lunch 1 hour shut-down or evenings after they close)
  • Arrangement of course with Xandi
  • Arrangement of Season tickets
  • Arrangement of accommodation


What will the cost be?

  • For the xTc content (above) £295 for the week
  • Accommodation, as you wish. Budget £150-200 for the week B&B or around £80-100 for camping
  • Gondola, around £100 (110€) for the season pass
  • Xandi's fees. See note below #1, but on average £350 for the week


#1 Xandi's fee is based on two instructional flights per day for 5 days at 40€-100€ per flight


Xandi's fees in detail?

The cost of the flights with Xandi vary from pilot to pilot. For an experienced SIV pilot, confident with stalls and spins he charges 40€ per flight, inc all aspects. Two flights a day, under instruction, are all you need, allowing time for three (or more. Ten a day if you are a local!) flights a day to reinforce the training. However, if you turn up as a low airtime pilot with no SIV experience then you first need some basic training from him. For that you would pay 100€ for the first flight, 90€ for the 2nd, 80€ 3rd etc etc until you are on the 40€ rate. You then pay 40€ thereafter. You can have as few or many flights with him as you wish in the week. Each pilot will be assessed to decide where he starts on the scale.


Gondola Pass

The cost of getting to launch on the gondolas is not as high as you may expect. Typically it is 16 euro per ride, but wait... they do a special season pass for paraglider pilots. Just 110 euro for the entire season, unlimited use! Work that out. Five rides a day for a 6 day week (the course duration, assuming perfect weather) allows you 30 flights, so under 4 euro per ride. Stay on for a week and the cost halves again.... and you can still come back all year long!!! The locals go for up to 10 flights a day, every day of the summer. No wonder they are good at just 10c a flight for them!


Staying on?

Once the week is done, why not take an extra week to consolidate all you have learned There are always rescue boats on the water so you have every opportunity to keep on practicing for very little extra cost! You would not need much help, although you can probably expect Xandi to still be around and willing to assist if you need some help as xTc will continue visiting here once a week during the summer.


Prepare for the week

Alternatively if you don't want to stay afterwards, why not come a week early and do a regular guided week with xTc to get in tune with your wing. You are paying a lot for the course, you may as well be ready!


Other details

We expect to be using flights into Klagenfurt. The main operator (for UK pilots) is Ryanair from Stansted. There are other options.

The dates of the course will be finalized in the coming weeks once Xandi has assessed his own competition calendar.

Any other questions, just ask!