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Old 04-20-2011
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Question Age adjustments

Have you changed your sailing practices or equipment as you've gotten older? Would you like to share suggestions that I can use in an article about sailing after 60?

For example, as the years stacked up I found myself taking greater care to avoid fatique and hypothermia (e.g. shorter passages, warmer foul weather gear, a better dodger, more hot beverages). I can't say whether that was necessitated by age, or just me gaining common sense.

Do you have age-related physical limitations and how do you keep them from interferring with your enjoyment of sailing? Are you taking extra precautions to avoid slip-and-fall injuries? Changed your sail inventory, rigging, winches, etc, to get the same outcome with less strength?

Would love to hear your ideas.
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You are only as old as you feel. So, I'm about 10 years older than my driver's license claims!

The only adjustment is a knee brace that I feel necessary every once in a while.

I've also underwritten sailing school for my kids. That substantially reduces the effort! Well, when they come along anyway.

p.s. sorry, not over 60 yet either.
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Old 04-20-2011
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Are race boat is between 16 and 95 with myself at 55 and a bunch of mid 60s

Senior man Uncle Joe has had to back off on distance races as at about 92 the age did catch up a bit BUT still trims the main even on long day races

The less able people on the boat are so because of NOT staying at a reasonable weight or putting much effort into a basic level of fitness
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Originally Posted by tommays View Post
.......The less able people on the boat are so because of NOT staying at a reasonable weight or putting much effort into a basic level of fitness
Ouch. That's swinging below the belt.
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Liza Copeland says that she has installed one electric primary winch in recognition of her decreasing strength. She and her husband cruise together and frequently without other crew. She asserts that on long passages the electric winch reduces the need to call the off-watch on deck, thereby, reducing fatigue.

Personally I found that was unable to trim the mainsheet enough to close the leech of the main in some windy races last fall. I considered installing a cascading purchase but opted to spend my resources in the gym instead. I think I'm about 40% stronger now than I was before I started. We'll see how whether it worked when the racing season starts in two weeks.

I've given up overnight passages alone.
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Old 04-21-2011
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My wife and I are in our mid-sixties & we've been liveaboard cruisers since 1972. Nothing was a bigger change than adding the anchor windlass about twenty years ago. Now, our most taxing chores that keep us from having a true geriatric vessel are related to sail handling for me and moving from the dinghy or dock to the boat for my wife. We've added some interval steps for boarding and I've plans to change my roller furling headstay to something more ergonomic. Take care and joy, Aythya crew
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Miniscus

I'm 63 and my doctor advised me to stop jumping around on the boat. Now I move more fluidly and take care not to shock the knees or twist them. I had torn both miniscus tissues, but fortunately they healed on their own over six months.
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Old 04-21-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Minnewaska View Post
Ouch. That's swinging below the belt.
At least it's the soft spot!
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Old 04-21-2011
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In the past I viewed having an electric anchor windlass as a pleasant luxury but now I think it is a neccesity as I hit my mid 60s.

I had three goes at getting the anchor in the right place and gripping yesterday in Wallilabou each time having to recover 200 feet of chain. Really nice just to press the button and watch it spool in.
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At 67, I more than anything else have to be careful about overheating during the summer months. Asked my doctor about this and he says a combination of less flexible veins and arteries and loss of collagen in the skin causes us to overheat more quickly than when we were younger. I made a bimini and now wear a hat all the time, even though I hate them.
I installed roller furling for the headsail.
I made a lazy jack/stack pack to facilitate mainsail furling. I'm thinking about self tailing winches to ease jib sheet handling. I went to a 5:1 mainsheet for my wife, but now find it nice for me when the wind gets up.
I now ignore the inoperative log instead of diving down to clear it of grass and barnacles.
I moved to a different slip that makes it easier to get on and off the boat and makes it easier to dock the boat single handed.
I don't go out when winds are forcasted for 20 gusting to thirty even though that provides some great sailing.
I wear a wrist brace to limit further ligament damage.
Still sailing though.
John
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