Private Pilot is currently the highest certification that a weight-shift pilot can obtain. The Private Pilot will be qualified to operate in complex airspace (Class B, C, and D), above 10,000 feet, with visibility as low as 1 mile in certain airspace, and at night. A Private Pilot certificate is also necessary for aerotowing and for salespeople demonstrating aircraft for sale. The training requirements are given in FAR 61.109(j).
Aeronautical Experience Requirements (FAR 61.109(j)(j) For a weight-shift-control aircraft rating. A person who applies for a private pilot certificate with a weight-shift-control rating must log at least 40 hours of flight time that includes at least 20 hours of flight training with an authorized instructor and 10 hours of solo flight training in the areas listed in §61.107(b)(10) and the training must include at least—
(1) Three hours of cross-country flight training in a weight-shift-control aircraft;
(2) Except as provided in §61.110, 3 hours of night flight training in a weight-shift-control aircraft that includes— (i) One cross-country flight over 75 nautical miles total distance; and (ii) Ten takeoffs and landings (with each landing involving a flight in the traffic pattern) at an airport;
(3) Three hours of flight training in preparation for the practical test in a weight-shift-control aircraft, which must have been performed within the 60-day period preceding the date of the test; and
(4) Ten hours of solo flight time in a weight-shift-control aircraft, consisting of at least— (i) Five hours of solo cross-country time; (ii) One solo cross-country flight over 100 nautical miles total distance, with landings at a minimum of three points, and one segment of the flight being a straight line distance of at least 50 nautical miles between takeoff and landing locations; and (iii) Three takeoffs and landings (with each landing involving a flight in the traffic pattern) at an airport with an operating control tower.
Before September 2004 virtually all trikes were flown as ultralights under Part 103 of the FAA regulations. 2 seat trikes were flown for training only, had to be registered with one of the ultralight organizations, and had to be flown by an instructor (or under the supervision of an instructor) who was also registered with one of the organizations. Since September 2004 the FAA has opened another path to the sky – pilots can now obtain an FAA Sport Pilot certificate for Weight-shift aircraft and trikes can be certified as Light Sport Aircraft.Sport Pilot certification ensures a higher standard of training for pilots. It also allows pilots to fly FAA certificated aircraft and to carry a passenger without becoming instructors.Sport Pilot students will start by learning to fly the trike and will continue with cross-country flight training, solo flying, and specific preparation for the Sport Pilot Practical Examination. Students will also complete an informal written test before solo flight and a formal "knowledge test" before their Sport Pilot checkride.