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Go Back   SailNet Community > Skills and Seamanship > Learning to Sail
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  #11  
Old 04-14-2008
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I agree. Get on someone else's boat and keep asking for things to keep busy. Even if it's re-packing a kite. Learn some knots before you go out too. I learn by doing, so day sailing and racing in other's boats worked for me. Then I read articles, and books, and then sailed more. Pretty cheap to do it that way.

However, eventually, I'd like to take the basic keelboat course they offer. No such thing as too much knowledge.
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  #12  
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great well thanks for all the advice it makes me a lot less apprehensive about jumping into a dinghy and going for it, of course I wouldn't mind if someone in the oceanside area needed another crew member either wink wink.
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add your location in your profile, and post up in the CREW forum.
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done thanks for advice hope it works.
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I'm in a similar situation, raced when I was really young and am getting back into it. I just went and joined a local racing club. For the cost of one class I get a whole season of crewing, marshaling, rigging, etc etc etc. I was lucky enough to find a club that is very do it yourself, so the dues are very reasonable. For instance, we put the docks in ourselves 2 weeks ago and rigged all the club boats last week, did some building maintenance etc. Look around and see if there are any similar clubs in your area. NJ is pretty upscale around here but this place exists.
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Old 04-14-2008
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sailingdog is just really nice sailingdog is just really nice sailingdog is just really nice sailingdog is just really nice sailingdog is just really nice
A basic keelboat course is a good foundation. I'd also recommend picking up a copy of Dave Seidman's "The Complete Sailor" to read. It's one of the best books for novice sailors IMHO--well written, covering a fairly broad swath of material and well illustrated.
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You know what the first rule of sailing is? ...Love. You can learn all the math in the 'verse, but you take
a boat to the sea you don't love, she'll shake you off just as sure as the turning of the worlds. Love keeps
her going when she oughta fall down, tells you she's hurting 'fore she keens. Makes her a home.

—Cpt. Mal Reynolds, Serenity (edited)

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Self teaching is all well and good, and I long ago learned without a formal class, but informally instructed by some experienced sailors. But the problem with just getting on the boat and trying it is that there are some risks you are taking that you will not understand. Just because something works three times in a row, doesn't mean it can't kill you in slightly different conditions. For example, casually sailing downwind seems easy enough, but you are a lot better learning about accidental jibes from an instructor or a book or a skipper who knows what he is doing, than having a large piece of aluminum make its point on the upside of your head.
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