I cut my sailing teeth in a penguin, when i was about your age. So i have had a lot of fun reading the thread. Try a tiller extension. You can find many types at defender.com Look for the twist lock type. I also found that the tighter my steering was the better i sailed. It was simple to release the tiller, do what i wanted and then just reach back an viola the tiller was just where i put it. In a small boat like that, moving around in the cockpit may be all you need to steer. Center of effort and all that jazz. If your boat is an open type, learn to sail the water out of it. A chock is a fair lead it redirections the line elsewhere to a cleat in most cases.