Real Answers from Real Pilots

Height and vision

Hey this is Love Patel again, I also have one more question…I’m only 5’3 as a 17 year old and that is really short. I have been to a university called Lewis University. Their main focus is aviation and I have talked to people their and they told me that my height will definitely not be an issue becuase they have students that are been shorter than me. As far as vision they said as long as u have glasses that correct your vision to a 20/20then that shouldn’t be a problem. I even sat inside a small Cessna and like a simulator and my legs weren’t short as I thought they would be, I was able to press on to the pedals and everything on the Cessna and the simulator…Now my question is since obvioulsy the commercial planes are bigger and stuff, will that change whether I’ll be able to apply full force onto the pedals? Like how far away are the pedals on a plane from the seat? I’ve been watching videos and I see so many tall pilots and that scares me and makes me wonder whether I’ll be fine later on or not.

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Hello Patel,

5’3” is tall enough. I’ve trained pilots shorter than you. Sporty’s Pilot
Shop sells seat cushions that help pilots position themselves higher and
closer to the controls if you just have to have those few extra inches.
It’s nothing to be embarrassed about. Proper seat position it very

As long as your vision can be corrected to 20/20 with surgery or glasses
you will be fine. If you’re going to get lasik, do it before flight
training. The recovery time will set you back if you’re already in
training. A good pair of glasses AND (Adam :wink:) prescription sunglasses
should do the trick.



As Tory said height and vision wise you’ll be fine. ALL large jets have adjustable seats, rudder pedals and armrests to accommodate the variety of shapes and sizes pilots come in.

On a side note commercial planes are bigger, faster, often complex and many other adjectives I’m familiar with but I’m not sure what the “and stuff” you refer to means? :wink:


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am about 6’15" tall and 17 year old student at secondary level i can see clearly but am afraid of heights what can i do to overcome it?


If you’re afraid of heights perhaps you should speak to a therapist and deal with that before you entertain a career in aviation. You’re 17, young and have time.

So are you saying you’re 7’3"?



Your height should not be a problem at all. I wouldn’t give it one more thought.


Oh ok thank you very much Tory, Chris, and Adam,those answers were a big relief for me thank you!

Haha sorry for using the term “and stuff”, but I appreciate your answers. Thanks!

They’d love you at NetJets! The Phenom 300 Signature Series is the entry aircraft at NetJets, I am 6’1", and barely fit. Many complain that they are too big, but agree to it to get the job, then are stuck flying it for 5 years or more.

Of course you need 2500 hours, an ATP, and turbine time…

Your height is not an issue. Just lots more room for you in the cockpit!

Good luck