The United States Powered Paragliding Association (USPPA; www.usppa.org), is an organization founded and based in the United States since 2001 which endeavors to preserve, promote and enhance the sport of powered paragliding.
A paraglider is a foot-launched, inflatable wing with no rigid structure, which is guided by a pilot suspended by cords and clipped into a harness. While not all paragliders are powered, those powered are thrusted by a motor-driven propeller unit worn as a backpack r to give thrust and allow for take off from flatlands.
Since paragliding is an outdoor sport, it is affected by unpredictable, environmental variables. A thorough understanding of meteorology and the dynamics of flight are primary safety factors. Accordingly, the USPPA has developed a rating system to help participants understand their skill level, inform their choices on gear, and evaluate conditions and locations to fly. Ratings may be needed for insurance, to participate in some events, or even to fly in some locations.