Forward Slip

March, 2, 2021 by

If your intentions are to increase your rate of descent without drastically increasing your airspeed, a Forward Slip is your friend. This could be used if you’re high on final, need to clear an obstacle, etc.

To enter the Forward Slip, fully configure your aircraft for landing, bring the power to idle, and lower the wing that’s pointed toward the wind. To maintain a straight ground track toward the runway, step on the rudder.

These actions cross-control the aircraft, exposing a large amount of its fuselage surface area into the wind. Consequently, this increases both drag and descent rate, without a very substantial gain in airspeed.

To recover from the Forward Slip, level the wings out and gently release rudder pressure. Adjust your pitch and power to revert back to the regular glideslope and approach speed.

Luca Caviness is an editor for the IFATC Education Group and an IFATC Supervisor. He is also a real-world student pilot.