Advanced Certifications

Find (or become) an instructor, observer, examiner, or administrator.

Looking to get your next ratings or to become a rating official yourself? Here's an overview of who does what, with for more information provided below.


Rating/Certification Issuing Official
Learn to fly and earn Basic/Novice ratings (H1/H2/P1/P2/S1/S2) Basic or Advanced Instructor
Earn Intermediate/Advanced ratings (H3/H4/P3/P4/S3/S4) Advanced Instructor or an Observer
Earn Mini-Wing special skills (M1/M2) (PG only) Paragliding Instructor
Become an Instructor Instructor Administrator
Become a Tandem Instructor (HG/PG only) Tandem Administrator
Become a Speed Flying Instructor Speed Flying Administrator
Become an Instructor Administrator Safety & Training Committee Chair
Become a Tandem Administrator Tandem Committee Chair
Become a Speed Flying Administrator Safety & Training Committee Chair
Become an Observer Examiner
Become an Examiner USHPA Director
Become a Tow Tech Tow Observer
Become a Tow Observer Tow Examiner
Become a Tow Examiner Towing Committee Chair



Instructors evaluate pilots to grant new ratings and special skills. 

Find an Instructor/School - If you're looking for your next rating or skill sign-off, find an instructor here.

Become an Instructor - Consider becoming an instructor to help bring new pilots into the sport!


Observers, who are appointed by examiners, can sign off ratings and skills in place of an instructor. They also giving tow ratings.

Find an Observer or Examiner - Observers can sign off certain ratings and skills when there are no instructors nearby. There are also Tow Observers who can sign off towing skills. The three types of Tow Observers are Surface Tow (ST), Platform Launch (PL), and Aerotow (AT). Read more about the USHPA towing program.

Become an Observer - If there are no instructors in your area, become an observer to assist with the tests and observed tasks required for pilots to earn new ratings and skills.

Become an Examiner - Examiners appoint observers. Contact a USHPA director to become an examiner.


The USHPA ratings and proficiency programs rely on responsible pilots stepping up to administer the various programs.

Find an Administrator - Interested in teaching others to fly? Contact an administrator to become a Basic, Advanced, or Tandem Instructor. Basic and Advanced Instructor candidates should contact an Instructor Administrator; Tandem Instructor candidates should contact a Tandem Administrator.

Become an Administrator - Contact the appropriate USHPA committee chair to become an administrator. Instructor candidates should contact the Safety & Training Committee, while Tandem Administrator candidates should contact the Tandem Committee.