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  #1  
Old 12-25-2007
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Taking Classes or learning from a local sailor

I was curious if anyone thought it would be more beneficial to take asa classes over just having a friend who sails locally teach me how to sail? I am talking about someone who is a fine sailor and knows the local waters well. I just don't know if there is other knowledge in the classes that might be important down the road or not. Anyone with an opinion on whether the cost is worth it?
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Old 12-25-2007
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Take a weekend Asa class, then go sailing with your friend as often as you can. An Asa course will show and teach you the correct "habits" to have. Your friend may along the way of teaching you to sail, teach you some bad habits. Good luck.
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Old 12-25-2007
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I'd second freesail's recommendation. A Basic ASA 101 course will give you a solid foundation of knowledge and theory. It may also make it easier to communicate and understand your friend... if he is well founded in sailing, since he can say, "ease the jib sheet" and you'll have an idea of what he's talking about. Of course, if he is self taught, he may not know the proper terminology himself.

As for the cost of a basic ASA 101 course—it will vary depending on where you take the course.

I'd also recommend you get Dave Seidman's The Complete Sailor, which is an excellent book for any sailor to add to their library. It covers a fairly wide area of sailing knowledge and skills, while being quite readable with well-done illustrations.
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Old 12-26-2007
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It depends on the friend's sailing and teaching ability. If he's good at both, he can teach you a lot. But, sailing is best taught in a two part process, in which you begin by studying a book, with a teacher who guides you through the study materials and can answer your questions, and then you follow up with hands-on lessons on a boat, where you take the controls under the guidance of an instructor. The on-board instructor can show you how to make the boat go where you want it to go, and he can teach you important maneuvers, like docking and man overboard procedures. If the friend is good with the on-board instruction, you can get a low cost beginner's classroom course from your local Power Squadron, or Coast Guard Auxiliary. At this time of year, they are manning booths at boat shows all around the country, and they can enroll you in an upcoming sailing course, where you can study the terminology and theory of sailing, and then, in the Spring, your friend can provide the on-board instruction. I've had entry-level instruction from the Coast Guard Auxiliary, the Power Squadron, and from commercial schools, and I think the classroom portion taught by the Coast Guard Auxiliary and the Power Squadron is generally the equal of the commercial schools, and it's much less costly.

The commercial schools are good at teaching entry level courses, but they're best at teaching advanced levels of courses, such as racing, coastal cruising and blue water cruising.
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Old 12-26-2007
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Red face We can never learn enough

When I was growing up, schools where not a feasible option for me. One, being a Teenager I did not have the money to pay for everything I wanted to learn.

One thing I did learn; when a man/woman enjoy what they do, they enjoy showing/teaching others. The one's I knew did this free of charge.

In the Bible; Matthew 10:8 it say; "Freely you have received, freely give" I have applied this to my life. True, it not help my financial stability, but, I feel good of myself.

So, I have learned a lot of things for free. But, when I got older and could afford College and other learning experiences I realized there more to learning than what one man/woman can teach (Or have the time to teach for free).

I was able to build upon what people had taught me. Then I took it further with my own experiences.

If, you run from the storm, then a general self-taught or maybe a friend will suffice for your sailing habits. If, you make a stand at sea and fight the storm, well, you may be wishing you learned as much as you could.

Hope you see what I saying.

A few days ago they were talking on here of a man got caught in the Atlantic;
Halifax to Bermuda in December...not! What was he Thinking!

Now this man said, he knew what he was doing? The first thing that caught my eye in the picture was his sleeping bag wrapped around the boom. Jib is fishing for shrimp.

Then I read news articles and watched the videos and I have to admit. Many people have different ideas of what they feel is being a Experienced Sailor.
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Last edited by Gryzio; 12-26-2007 at 08:56 AM.
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Old 12-26-2007
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I really get the feeling that not many people around here know what they are doing, whether it be in a powerboat or sailboat. He does and is capable.
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Old 12-26-2007
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OK then, just take the classes from him...Shesh. You asked a question and you received many answers. Personally, I think new sailors should take instruction from a professional sailing school so you they will not pick up bad habits. That is just my opinion. However, everyones circumstances are different.

Scott - Namaste, Long Beach, Ca.
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Old 12-26-2007
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I'm with Freesail and SD. Go ASA. US Sailing might be slightly better but I'd recommend either one. I went the ASA route and loved it. Lots of fun, and you meet other people with the smae interests. The classes aren't work, They're a lot of fun!
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Old 12-26-2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by swadiver View Post
OK then, just take the classes from him...Shesh. You asked a question and you received many answers. Personally, I think new sailors should take instruction from a professional sailing school so you they will not pick up bad habits. That is just my opinion. However, everyones circumstances are different.

Scott - Namaste, Long Beach, Ca.
That is what I recommended in the first answer to him.
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Old 12-26-2007
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Just for the record. I went with US Sailing in Newport Beach, Ca. It was great and I learned alot.
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