“Mental strength is no less important than aerial performance.”
Aircrews confronted complex situations—in the air, on the ground, and especially in the their heads
As part of the workshop, soldiers from the squadron went on training flights without knowing how they would end What do you do without a squadron commander? How do you keep alert during long hours of flight? How do you deal with uncertainty during a war? At a workshop held by the “First Jet” squadron, the pilots encountered not only complex scenarios, but also difficult mental challenges
Last week, aircrews from the “First Jet” squadron at the Ramat-David airbase took part in a complex workshop that included complex flight plans on the F-16c, complex dilemmas, and mental challenges that arise in an emergency.
During the workshop, which was held at the Ouvda airbase, conscripted and career soldiers from the squadron went out on training flights, without knowing how they would end: a change in mission midair, losing a plane, or even falling into captivity. “During the workshop, we were trained in a variety of unexpected situations”, explains First Lieutenant G’, who took part in the workshop. “From many complex flight plans to ground missions such as the appointment of a deputy squadron commander, escape and rescue scenarios, and simulations of tough situations-all in an atmosphere of almost complete uncertainty”.
Unlike other training sessions and exercises, the goal of mental preparation, on which emphasis was placed at the workshop, is to push the aircrews to the edge and have them confront complex situations- in the air or on the ground and, especially, in the heads of fighter pilots. “The workshop is very important on both an operational level and a mental level”, adds First Lieutenant G’. “Fighting is a difficult, Sisyphean, and exhausting event [sic]. You have to keep your cool when many things are happening around you and you don’t know what’s going to happen. Mental strength is no less important than aerial performance.”