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There are three types of harnesses commonly used by new hang glider pilots:

See Links to a List of Harness Manufacturers below:

  • Knee Hanger
  • Cocoon
  • Pod

When you first start your flying career, if you are foot launching or scooter towing, you will start in an apron harness, so named for its shape. If you are learning by aerotow, you will start out with a knee hanger, which essentially is an apron harness with two leg supports added:


Blue Sky Knee Hanger Harness

This is the simplest and least expensive harness that you would want.

A step up from the knee hanger is the cocoon:


Blue Sky Cocoon Harness

While foot launching or winch towing, the boot part of the cocoon will be in front of you, and will have to be suspended out of the way during the launch run. Once in the air, you would release the boot and get your legs in it one at a time.

The current favored type of harness is the pod:


Lookout Mountain GT XC Harness

A pod harness's boot trails behind the pilot during foot launch. Once airborne, the pilot tucks his legs into the pod, and zips the pod shut using an attached rope. Those pod harnesses that have multiple support lines are appropriate for new pilots. There are also more streamlined pods that have a single riser that attaches to the glider, which are for advanced pilots who want to minimize drag.

List of Harness Manufacturers -