How Long Does It Take To Learn To Sail?

Posted on March 5, 2014 by Lee under Boating, Day Skipper, First Aid, Sailing, Sailing Training Courses Comments Off on How Long Does It Take To Learn To Sail?

Sailing can be a tremendous way to relax and have fun on the water, and it probably isn’t as difficult as you might initially think.

Plenty of courses and guidance are available when it comes to getting started, from knowing which parts of a boat are which to how to cope with differing weather conditions.

The wind especially will impact upon a sailing experience, while calmer waters stand to make it much more enjoyable.

Learn to sail

Those wishing to get started, or to return to sailing after some time away, should consider the wide range of sailing courses that are available to them.

All can develop certain aspects of their sailing experience, from day skipper theory courses which are all about taking control, to yachtmaster courses which focus on an entirely different aspect of sailing altogether.

Sailing safely

Safety on the water is of vital importance should something go wrong, so survival courses and first aid guidance form a fundamental part of any lessons for those wishing to learn.

Incidents on the water can be significantly more serious than if they were to occur on land and these sorts of courses provide all the necessary guidance on what to do in an emergency.

From treating exposure to cold water and combating dehydration or sea sickness to the more serious aspects such as CPR and recovery, all elements of first aid at sea are covered.

It is recommended that anyone considering sailing has attended at least one of these types of courses, as they stand to significantly reduce the risks involved when sailing.

Decisions to make before embarking on sailing lessons

The sailing training that people choose to undertake will be dependent on how they envisage spending their time on the water.

Boats vary in many different ways, although the size of the boat itself and the size of the sail are often the main differences.

Some boats might be powered by engines, while others can rely on the strength of the person – in both cases, different powerboat training courses and smaller vessel courses can help people to learn.

Deciding on the type and scale of boat that will be used for training is an important aspect when hunting for courses.

Learn to sail – considering the theory

Alongside the practical aspects of being out on the water, a lot of sailing revolves around knowing how to do everything properly.

This is where aspects such as theory lessons come in as they provide the background information on exactly what should be done at any given moment.

Then it becomes a case of putting what is learnt during a training course into practice, as a sailor should then have suitable knowledge of how to handle themselves out on the water.

Learn to sail – the practical aspects

The theory is of very little use if the chance to use it out on the water does not exist, which is why learning to sail requires a hands-on approach.

A terrific amount can be learnt while actually doing something, and with sailing the majority of it comes with experience.

By trying new things and by practicing some aspects continuously, it’s possible to develop skills that can transform them in to very good sailors.

The process can take a considerable amount of time and those wishing to follow in the footsteps of some of the sailing greats will no doubt be aware of the dedication required.

As an example, Olympic champion Ben Ainslie only reached the top after a significant level of training and dedication to the cause.

That isn’t to say that somebody should be put off learning to sail by the timeframes involved though, as once on the water, sailing represents an opportunity to escape and relax – an experience that is unparalleled anywhere else.

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