This manoeuvre was invented by Raul Rodriguez in 1999. The name comes from the name of his team, the Safety Acro Team. Actually it’s a kind of spiral, wherein the center of the rotation is between the glider and the pilot. It means, the glider turns forward, (positive) while the pilot turns backward (negative). The sinking rate is pretty low, somewhere between 2-6 m/s, depends on the glider and the execution of the manoeuvre.
The SAT is the basis of some other manoeuvres such as Asymmetric SAT, Tumbling and Rythmic SAT.
If you want to do a SAT to the right, grab the left riser, push it out as much as you can, and shift all your weight to the right. It’s called SAT position. Take one or two wraps on the right brake (If your brakelines are long, it’s more comfortable to take two, because then you don’t have to pull the brake so deep, however I advise to do the first attempts only with one wrap, because there’s less risk to pull an unintended Spin. Probably you’ll be able to enter the SAT like this, but maybe you cannot turn it up very steep). Start to pull down the brake gradually, just like as you lead in a Deep Spiral but dynamically. After about 3/4-1 turn, as the leading edge starts to be facing the ground and the brake is getting heavier, pull the brake even further just a little bit faster (but still gradually!), around to your nipple (but of course it depends on the glider’s type and the brake setting). Now the center of the rotation is changed, the right side of the wing will be higher and you’ll lean down to the left in your harness. Keep yourself in SAT position by your left hand, don’t let yourself slide down. You’ll see there’s almost silence in the SAT, you are turning slowly, unlike in Deep Spiral.
Once you’re in, you can adjust the steepness (the angle between the leading edge and the horizon) and the speed of the rotation by the right brake. As you add more brake, the leading edge will be steeper according to the horizon, and it decreases the speed of the rotation, the sink rate and the G-Force also. But be careful, do not pull a Coconut Spin unintentionally. The maximum angle of the SAT, where the profile of canopy is still unbroked is various from glider to glider.
In a stable SAT, you can release your left hand, but keep yourself in SAT position (One-Handed SAT).
From my experience, it’s easier to SAT low DHV rated gliders (like DHV 1, 1-2), because on these types you have much more time to enter (you don’t have to be so precise) and due to the lower Spin tendency, it’s also much safer. I advise to learn this manoeuvre on one of these gliders, and once you did some successful SATs, it will be pretty easy to do it on other gliders.
Anyway, there are some gliders, especially older types, but also some of the newer designs, which are not able to do the SAT. Make sure you don’t fly with one of these wings before you try this trick.
Just center your body and release the right brake quickly. The movement will transform into a simple Spiral Dive. Lead it out gradually by few turns. Usually the lower wingtip collapses for a moment at the exit, but it doesn’t matter. With some gliders, you can prevent it by releasing the brake a bit slower, or use some outer brake at the exit.
Like in almost all acro manoeuvres, the most important thing is the right timing.
If you try to lead in too early, the glider won’t have enough energy to enter the SAT (too big angle between the leading edge and the horizon), and as you pull the brake very hard you’ll end up in a dynamic Spin and you can easily get a riser twist, big cravattes etc. Please read carefully the dangers of Spin, especially riser twisting. Anyway, if it happens, Full Stall is the safest way to return normal flight. Before you try this manoeuvre, be very confident with Full Stalls!
If you don’t brake enough or try to enter too late, the glider will have too much energy to SAT and you will enter a very dynamic Spiral Dive. In this case you won’t be able to enter the SAT anymore, even if you pull down the brake really hard, so immediately release it and lead out the Spiral (Ok, it’s not impossible with some damped gliders, but it’s better to exit anyway).
If you leave your body in SAT position at the exit (still lean to the right pretty hard), you may enter a Nose Down Spiral. This kind of spiral is very fast and stable and it doesn’t recover for itself if the pilot doesn't do anything!
Please read very carefully the dangers of Nose Down Spiral and before you try this trick, learn how to exit from fast descending Spiral Dives.
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