Characteristics of a Great Helicopter Pilot

Characteristics of a Great Helicopter Pilot

You may be familiar with the many aspects involved with driving a car, such as the laws and driving techniques that keep yourself and other drivers safe. The same goes for other types of transportation, whether it be via land, sea, or air. Perhaps the most difficult vehicle to operate out of all transportation methods, however, is aircraft. Specifically, piloting a helicopter. With less stability than an airplane and an ability to maneuver in every direction, helicopters demand certain traits from the people who control them. Here are some characteristics of a great helicopter pilot.

Attentive and Aware

Helicopters require a pilot that pays attention to multiple details while being able to evaluate the conditions at any given moment. As a result, pilots must have solid situational awareness. This means that they need to be actively conscious of the helicopter’s systems, the outside environmental conditions, the helicopter’s spatial position, and time while in the air. Losing sight of any component of situational awareness can quickly lead to disaster should the pilot go off course or encounter unexpected obstructions or adverse weather.


Helicopter pilots must also be in constant contact with air traffic controllers during flight. The ability to communicate effectively is pivotal, as the pilot should be able to relay information on the state of their surroundings and their helicopter while also listening to the controller. Directions from the air traffic controllers keep the pilot safe, as they inform the pilot of other aircraft nearby, the weather, and when and where to land. They can also help the pilot in the case of an emergency. Pilots must, therefore, listen well in addition to speaking clearly. 

Controlled Mind

With the risks ever-present when flying a helicopter, a pilot should have a strong, controlled mindset that anchors them firmly no matter what circumstances they come across. When unanticipated incidents occur, they need to stay calm to maintain their full faculties and continue to pilot in the best manner possible. The ability to stay in command takes a fair bit of confidence, but they should also balance this with measured carefulness. Becoming too self-assured can lead to oversights in judgment and endanger the pilot and others.

If you believe you have what it takes to undergo extensive training and acquire a helicopter pilot license, contact Hillsboro Heli Academy. We have successfully raised professional helicopter pilots from all over the world since 1980.