If volunteers for air service were plentiful when war broke out, training facilities were not. Building on the few existing flying schools, the belligerents created dozens of new ones, refined training methods and found experienced pilots - including some brought home from battle - to teach the recruits. Students learned everything from plane construction to difficult tricks of flying, including looping, rolling, spinning and the climbing turn called a chandelle. And they were introduced to deflection shooting - how to hit a moving target from a moving craft.
Not all survived the course. Over four years, Germany alone lost 1,800 airmen in training accidents. But if a pupil considered training hazardous, a British instructor warned, "let him find some other employment. Whatever risks he is asked to run here, he will have to run 100 times as many when he gets to France."
Photo above - Aspiring British aviators study training manuals and working airplanes at a school in Oxford. A graduating pilot might have as many as 50 or as few as 12 hours in the air and was supposed to know how to dismantle and rebuild his plane.