Aerobatics is an aerial activity consisting in using an aircraft to perform aerial figures, ie unusual aerial manœuvres. Aerobatics figures can be performed by planes.
Competitors take part in several types of programmes: programmes known in advance that they can rehearse ahead; free programmes that each pilot prepares according to common rules, which he can then repeat; unknown programmes that each pilot will perform for the first time the day of the competition. These are naturally the most selective.
In the top category, i.e. Mélanie’s, the pilots can present a free integral with unique figures that they have conceived themselves.
During a competition, the figures have to be performed in a cubic volume of 1000 meters each side. This volume is materialised on the ground by white marks nine meters by two. For security reasons, the pilots are not allowed to fly below 100 meters. The pilot must fly his programme in that cubic volume (the box) without going past the limits, otherwise incurring a penalty by the jury. The latter rates the symmetry and the precision of the figures, a little bit like in an ice skating competition.