Do most flight schools and FBOs in the US prohibit student pilots from practicing stalls while flying solo?

This question is asked in the context of civilian flight training in single-engine land airplanes.

I've heard of this policy actually being in effect with at least one flight school.

"Most" means more than half. "Student pilot" is not meant to include anyone who holds a pilot's license for airplanes or for that matter for gliders.

The reference to FBOs means that they are renting an aircraft to the student pilot involved.

The question is asking about a blanket prohibition that would include a student who is close to being ready to take his or her checkride, not something only applied to (for example) the first few solo flights.

People who have had personal experience with a large number of flight schools and FBOs will be in the best position to answer this question.

  • $\begingroup$ This really is a different question than the one that was originally on hold. My intention was to roll back the on -hold question to its original form and then delete it. Not sure the roll-back worked but since I deleted it it should vanish soon anyway. $\endgroup$ Commented May 22, 2019 at 17:34
  • $\begingroup$ This answer to another question is an example of one specific flight school with severe restrictions on what maneuvers a student pilot could perform solo-- aviation.stackexchange.com/questions/52994/… $\endgroup$ Commented May 22, 2019 at 17:47
  • $\begingroup$ What exactly qualifies something as a "flight school"? It could be anything from Embry-Riddle down to a CFI giving you instruction in your own plane... $\endgroup$
    – jamesqf
    Commented May 22, 2019 at 18:12
  • $\begingroup$ Well, I guess I could change the question to something like "Is it the norm for a student pilot who is almost ready to take his checkride to be prohibited from practicing stalls while flying solo, either by his instructor or by the aircraft owner or by a clause in an insurance policy?" -- would that be better? "Norm" specified to mean in this case more than half the time. $\endgroup$ Commented May 22, 2019 at 18:19
  • $\begingroup$ But there's still the problem of gathering statistics from all those diverse places that do flight instruction. All I can say is that it was not the case when I did my PPL at a smallish FBO, but that was several decades ago. $\endgroup$
    – jamesqf
    Commented May 23, 2019 at 2:16

2 Answers 2


The two flight schools I have used had this rule and all of the other local places I know of also have this rule. The FAA no longer recommends full break stalls during training anyway you merely need to bring it to the horn. Interestingly enough the data does not support the decision

Student pilots are, by far, the least likely to suffer stall/spin accidents, as a proportion of in the pilot population. Pilots holding FAA Airline Transport Pilot (ATP) certificates are also less likely to stall/spin.

Although a case can likely be made that limits like this are what make student pilots least likely to stall/spin.

  • $\begingroup$ "The FAA no longer recommends"... shocking. $\endgroup$ Commented May 22, 2019 at 18:40
  • $\begingroup$ @quietflyer the change came right after my check ride and I was quite surprised as well. They did not do a great job pushing the info out as many instructors I speak to dont seem to know about the change. $\endgroup$
    – Dave
    Commented May 22, 2019 at 18:43
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @Dave - It keeps changing. Your link is from 2017. The 2018 Private ACS requires a recovery after a full stall. 2018 Commercial: At the first indication OR after a full stall, as specified by the examiner. The new 2019 ATP: At the first indication $\endgroup$
    – Steve V.
    Commented May 22, 2019 at 20:49
  • $\begingroup$ I did my PPL training in a flight of Tomahawks in 2006. We would routinely fly stalls until after the break in solo training. I never spun one, either! $\endgroup$ Commented May 22, 2019 at 21:33
  • $\begingroup$ This is nuts. In Canada spins are still taught. No wonder the airlines have a problem with new pilots who don't really know how to fly airplanes. $\endgroup$
    – John K
    Commented May 23, 2019 at 0:37

My CFI was fine with me practicing stalls while soloing for my private. I know that doesn't provide a general answer, but this question can really only be answered by survey anyway.


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