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capnsamuels 09-25-2006 12:34 PM

Learning To Sail Plan

I have wanted to learn to sail and be active with it all my life, life has always demanded otherwise, now I demand otherwise, I want to learn, I have a plan,
that plan starts with finding a computer friend who will exchange emails, and talk to me and answer questions before I ever step on a boat, ( and I have never stepped on a sailboat in my life), that gives you an idea of where I will be starting. I wish to know some terminology and basics as my first step, for this step, I need you, I need a friend, I need expertise, NO STRINGS ATTACHED in any way
hope someone is interested

PBzeer 09-25-2006 12:47 PM

A good starting point is the articles section of this website. You'll find answers to a lot of your basic questions there.


SailinJay 09-26-2006 12:08 AM

Get A Book
I recommend getting a book a book about sailing basics and reading it. It will also serve as a reference once you get started. Two that you might consider are The Annapolis Book of Seamanship by John Rousmaniere and the Complete Sailing Manual by Steve Sleight.

lamb0174 09-27-2006 01:58 PM

I would vouch for SailinJay's recommendation of Steve Sleight's book. This is the first book I read when I was first bit by "the bug". The book does well at balancing breadth and depth for beginning sailors.

nolatom 09-27-2006 03:48 PM

Finding a mentor is good, and shouldn't be too difficult if you're located in Rhode Island. Let it be known around a yacht club, marina, or friends that you'd like to crew and you'd be surprised how easy it can be to get a ride. I find it's easiest to learn (and teach) sailing by doing it at the same time as you're doing the book-learning part.

Don't be reluctant to ask questions here as often as you need to. Usually several sailors, some of whom are instructors on occasion, are happy to respond, "no strings attached"..

hellosailor 09-27-2006 05:39 PM

There are always strings. Reading is good, but reading won't give you the visceral feel for the workings of a sailboat. If you really want to learn?

START BY TAKING LESSONS. That will get you on the boat and learning things with your hands and butt, the old fashioned way, that book learning just can't match for this.

Reading up on it is great--but the reading has to be an adjunct to experience. In RI the season will beending soon, so if you can take a course this season, while it is still possible, do it. Otherwise you're going to lose another year.

Once you've learned the basics, you'll find you can always bum a ride on race days, and watch and learn more every time you are out. If you don't spend time on the water--you won't learn to sail.

sailingdog 09-30-2006 06:46 PM

For a good basic overview of sailing, I'd recommend The Complete Sailor, by David Seidman. I'd also recommend reading it before taking any courses, as it will give a pretty good foundation that the courses will build on. :D

After taking a "learn to sail" course like an ASA 101 or equivalent, I'd recommend getting in as much sailing as possible, especially crewing on boats at a local yatch club. Sailing on smaller boats builds your sensitivity to sail balance, trim, handling faster than you would get on a large keelboat. Then take the 102, 103, 104 and 105 courses as you build experience.

fdibbl 10-02-2006 01:46 PM

The easiest BOOK I've read is "SAILING FOR DUMMIES" by Mr Isler, forgot his first name. GOOD BOOK.

Francis in Dallas

chuck5499 10-02-2006 06:25 PM

just my thoughts but i agree with hellosailor -- forget the books, forget the articles - go get a class - you can read all you want but until you step on deck and your heart rate goes up and you heel for the first time nothing counts -
find an asa course near you and take sailing 101 - then and only then will find out what sailing is all about == oh yea - and you have just scratched the surface as sailing is a life time learning experience
chuck and soulmates

ebs001 10-02-2006 06:49 PM

Buy "Sailing for Dummies" $6.44 used on

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