Anti-G Straining Maneuver - Technique Only

  • Jun 25, 2015 1:23pm GMT

Couldn't pass this up. Note: All puns are intended.

In military flight school (jet training) we learned the "hook" anti-G straining maneuver (AGSM). The ditty we were told to recite and act out was something like (pretty rapidly) "take a breath, toes calves quads abs - PULL!" Flexing those muscles, you bear down hard and use the word "hook" to make quick, short exchanges of air in order to breathe, and prevent gravitational force induced loss of consciousness (aka. GLOC). A few years later some squadron mates and I attended centrifuge training at NAS Lemoore, CA and the aviation physiology guys said they had found that too much air was escaping with the hook, so we should use this new technique which effectively is do everything the same as before, but use the word "hic". Seriously... Clearly it takes less time to say hic than hick, or hook (insert questioning, sarcastic, acquiescing emoji). They did explain how saying hic seals your airway more than hook; allowing less air to leak out of your bewildered, slack-jawed body.

While the AGSM cannot be completely explained this way, in a pinch, it has been briefed to some backseat riders as straining like you're on the toilet. Gross, I know - and I'm a Marine! You can imagine some of the unfortunate, though not unforeseen, incidents that might occur when only provided the 'quick and dirty' combat AGSM brief. A real bummer for the plane captain on the backside of that flight.

The Blues maintenance chief here is using a derivative of the hook/hic maneuver called the "!!AaaauwwghhhhZZZzzzzzzzz... ...Huh?" This word could have its root in French or Italian languages. Though lets be honest, it doesn't sound very "romantic". Maybe German or Russian. No?

For those of you who are aspiring aviators, take heed. This method is "A" technique - and not recommended for maintaining consciousness and subsequent control of your airplane. However, if you want a great ride and an interesting descent into, and awakening from a 'power nap' you might want to tryout the hid-maneuvers' older cousin... the !!AaaauwwghhhhZZZzzzzzzzz... ...Huh?. NATOPS Warning: this technique will most certainly lead to rapidly expanding trees and rocks. Also, note the three-pound watch on his left arm. A fringe benefit of having more money than you know what to do with, or being a Blue Angel team member (welcome to fighter aviation!), but not entirely helpful in the high-G environment of demonstration flying or air-to-air combat. But, it certainly looks cool on your flapping arm as blood returns to your brain housing group and your synapses reconnect from being off-line.

Remember - Pull back and the trees get smaller; push forward and the trees get bigger. Above all else, speed is life.

Have a great day and Semper Fly! wang