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Go Back   SailNet Community > Skills and Seamanship > Learning to Sail
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View Poll Results: How did you get your start in sailing!
No formal instruction, just bought a boat and went for it 140 33.10%
No formal instruction, grew up sailing with family/friends 104 24.59%
No formal instruction, sailed with friends/family as an adult 54 12.77%
Formal instruction, US Sailing 22 5.20%
Formal instruction, ASA 55 13.00%
Military service lead to sailing 19 4.49%
Just crewed around randomly 8 1.89%
The boom hit my head on an accidental gybe, I can't remember 9 2.13%
Got in through racing for the most part 12 2.84%
Voters: 423. You may not vote on this poll

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  #111  
Old 06-07-2012
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Re: How did you get your start in sailing?

How did I get my start? I'm just starting now! I got my basic keelboat cert a few weekends ago from US Sailing. I first "caught the bug" towards the end of last season. My wife asked if I wanted to go sailing for my birthday. I said sure, I had never been. She bought a Groupon for a two-hour introductory sail and that was the end of that. Hooked. We both enjoy it but I'm a little obsessed. I read three books about it over the off season (in Boston so yes, there is an off season) and bought a computer sailing simulator/game to fiddle with different boats and wind conditions. We joined the club from the Groupon/sailing instruction and are working with Sonar 23s. It's a blast. Looking forward to our own boat when it's financially viable and, hopefully someday, moving aboard.
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  #112  
Old 06-21-2012
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Re: How did you get your start in sailing?

I just completed an ASA 101 class on a 20 foot Bristol with Narraganset sailing school in Rhode Island(by the way they were great), I did how ever get into sailing in the early eighties while in the Marine Corp at Cherry Point NC, did a lot of Sun fish and 15 foot rebel sailing at the base boat docks while i was in. I as well did a sailing class at Mystic sea port in CT on dire dows(sp) and those can be a bit twitchy with real wind but will acquaint you with the basics of sailing.
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  #113  
Old 09-01-2012
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Re: How did you get your start in sailing?

I was first introduced to sailing over 30 years ago whilst on a vacation in the Bahamas. I was hooked first time out. I came home and signed up at a local Yacht Club for crewing. I started out buying a Hunter25 and 10 years ago, I bought a CS30. Nothing like sailing. It is good for the soul. I never got any formal Skipper designation from a sailing school, I learned from other experienced sailors and of course, trial and error on my own.
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  #114  
Old 09-01-2012
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Re: How did you get your start in sailing?

I got talked into it...I was told I could go to any island I wanted...I like that.
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Old 09-01-2012
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Re: How did you get your start in sailing?

I grew up in MA but got introduced to sailing while I was in Austin TX. Went sailing on Lake Travis. When I got home Italked about it so mutch my wife
got me a membership in a community sailing program and the rest is history.
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  #116  
Old 01-29-2013
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Re: How did you get your start in sailing?

It was something I had always wanted to do. I can't believe I didn't try to get into sooner. I started reading up on sailing about a year prior to going out and buying a boat -ish type vessel (Starfish).
The first time I launch that boat I was off and going. I sailed around on every point of sail without a single problem all day. I was tacking and gybing flawlessly and I didn't end up in irons once. I even sailed the boat back onto the trailer. It was a magical experience and I was hooked.
I went out the next day under the same conditions and promptly capsized the boat three times, was caught up in irons a good number of times, and had to walk the darned thing off a lee shore. It was a frustrating experience and I was and still am hooked.
It's been two years since I started sailing. I'm still learning something new every time I go out. I'm hoping to be able to move up into something larger soon, but if I don't I'll still use and abuse what I have (that boat can take a real beating).
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  #117  
Old 01-30-2013
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Re: How did you get your start in sailing?

I was 8 years old (almost 50 years ago) and had gone with my Dad to run weekend errands. There was a styrofoam Sea Snark for sale in someone's front yard. He bought it for $20, and on the way home stopped at a used bookstore and bought "The ABC's of Small Boat Sailing". The next weekend we were experimenting on the Chesapeake.
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  #118  
Old 01-30-2013
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Re: How did you get your start in sailing?

I was about 30 years old. At the time, I was in the US Army, on a two year exchange with the Canadian Military teaching tactics and engineering at their military engineer school in British Columbia. One day, I was reviewing my goals – professional, financial, personal. The professional and financial goals were pretty straightforward, but I was struggling to come up with some good personal goals. Then it hit me – I wanted to learn to sail.

No sooner I had written down “learn to sail” as a personal goal, when Major John Hanson came into the room where we tactics instructors had our desks and announced, “I’ve just been assigned the additional duty of Commodore of the Canadian Forces Sailing Association and I need two vice-commodores. Any volunteers?”

All of us being good soldiers, none of us volunteered, at which point Major Hanson threw out an incentive and offered, “I’ll teach you how to sail.” My hand went up without me even willing it so.

So, there I was, the newly anointed vice-commodore of training, no less, despite never having set foot on a proper sail boat. When Commodore John realized that I truly knew nothing, he set out to make good his promise with a vengeance. Our school was between courses, so for the next eight weeks, I was given an intensive course of study – navigation, seamanship, and of course, handling a sailboat. Most of the instructors were Canadian naval officers and at the end of it all, I tested out on the Canadian Yacht Association sailing standards for advanced cruising.

Within a year, John was re-assigned and I was elevated to Commodore. It was quite a gig. I got to sail around 45 days a year, many of them on duty with the club. Nothing like starting out at the top, eh?
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  #119  
Old 01-30-2013
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Re: How did you get your start in sailing?

Fell in love with sailing when I was a passenger on a Sail/Dive vessel sailing around the Bahamas SCUBA diving.Later years I had a friend who's Dad had a 28' Bucanneer and he taught me the basics. Years later I bought my first sailboat a 19' Miriage to learn more by trial and error...mostly error...I have been sailing now for 5 years and have a Mac 26S and continue to study and learn as much as possible through sailing local lakes,and taking sailing vacations to the Atlantic and Gulf coastal areas.I also have done a little of the AICW and plan to do more this summer.My goal is to one day have a 35-40' cruiser and continue my journey loving the Sea!
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  #120  
Old 01-31-2013
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Re: How did you get your start in sailing?

51 candles in May
ASA 101 in June
My name on E32 title in December

Figure I have at least 20 years of sailing ahead of me and plan on savoring every minute!
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