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Discussion Starter #1
I'm about to do the ASA 101 at a reputable school in my area, I'm wondering if there's any useful prep to do... reading, etc... that will make the experience more rewarding?

I've had some instruction previously in dinghies, and sailed dinghies a bit, so I'm not a _total_ novice, but looking forward to that next step.

Thanks!
 

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ASA 101 is basic, but terminology relating to keelboats and sloops might be unfamiliar to you. I suggest you get familiar with the names of the parts of a boat and it's hardware, learn to tie basic knots, such as a bowline, slip knot, cleat hitch, clove hitch and stopper knot. The sooner you can get past those basics, the more time the instructor can spend on sailing theory, which you'll find much more interesting. The instructor can spend a lot of time demonstrating each knot repeatedly, and defining terms. You can shorten that time by preparing in advance.
 

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The school should have sent you a book as part of your registration fee. But, I have found that many will often wait until you arrive, which really doesn't help you read ahead. This is the book you should be receiving:

ASA 101, Basic Keelboat Sailing Certification This page also lists most of the things you'll need to know.

They also have an online course that you can review.

In addition to the parts of the boat and the knots and their uses, that Sailorman mentioned. You'll need to know the various points of sail, be able to identify the standing and running rigging, and some basic navigation rules.

Good luck, have fun.
 

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Sailing For Dummies. It has most, if not all of what will come in your ASA book, but it's more fun to read.

This is the book I recommend to anyone who wants to start sailing and has the ambition to do some reading first.

If you have put down a deposit on your ASA 101, I'm surprised they didn't (or won't) offer you the materials before the class starts.

Good luck and have fun!
 

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Discussion Starter #5
If you have put down a deposit on your ASA 101, I'm surprised they didn't (or won't) offer you the materials before the class starts.
I'm still playing phone tag trying to settle this, so that's the hold up on the materials... it hadn't occurred to me that they might give some materials ahead of time!

As for books, I picked up one called "Plain Sailing" from a recommendation, I like it very much so far. I'll check out the dummies book as well.
 

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I used to use flashcards.

On one side of the card, write the elements of the standard. On the other side, write the answer or draw a picture.

My more modern version is use PowerPoint. When preparing for my ASA 214 course last year, I created a presentation of the whole standard.

<div style="margin-bottom:5px"> <strong> <a href="//www.slideshare.net/JackDale/asa-114-catamaran" title="ASA 114 Catamaran" target="_blank">ASA 114 Catamaran</a> </strong> from <strong><a href="//www.slideshare.net/JackDale" target="_blank">Jack Dale</a></strong> </div>
 
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I agree with what the others have been saying, read the book ahead of time.

That way you'll already know the vocabulary and how things are *supposed* to work, so you can spend you class time finding out how they really work :)
 

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Agree with the other posts...read the book ahead of time...it will familiarize yourself with the various terminology at the least...if they haven't sent it to you ahead of time, ask them to do so...the admiral and I too ASA 101/103 and 104 (different times) a number of years back from different schools and both sent the materials ahead of time...
 

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I have the ASA 101/103 classes coming up in about three weeks. My books have already arrived and I'm reading them carefully. Make sure your class sends you your material. It seems logical to me to get the "book stuff" out of the way so the "on the water" time can be spent wisely.

Bill
 

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You should do as much book prep as you think you need. However, realize that there is a little bit of a catch-22 in this process. You need to have book knowledge to understand what you are doing on the boat, but you need to actually sail the boat to understand and remember the book knowledge. It is a circular process that will continue forever. Learn (books, other sailors, SailNet, etc.), then DO (ASA courses, sail on others boats, club boats, your own boat, etc.).

Wax on, wax off Grasshopper.
 

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I have heard a couple lessons from this guy:

https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/sailing!-learn-to-sail-basic/id934925737?mt=1&app=music&ign-mpt=uo=4

I have mixed feelings on it. He has some samples on his podcast at Sailing in the Mediterranean and I would listen to the sample, but the set for 101 is only $10. Not sure if I would want to listen to him for money, but his pod cast can be interesting, but not great. But if you have a commute it might be better to listen to than the "morning gang" on any radio station. Might be a good additional source. I think he tends to editorialize and criticize what is expected to be known for my taste. I understand some of the info and terminology may be arcane, but you just learn it and go on.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I have the ASA 101/103 classes coming up in about three weeks. My books have already arrived and I'm reading them carefully. Make sure your class sends you your material. It seems logical to me to get the "book stuff" out of the way so the "on the water" time can be spent wisely.

Bill
Getting my materials on Monday, and reading the Annapolis Book of Seamanship in the meantime. Thanks to everyone for the good advice, really excited to take the next step toward my own boat.
 

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I have heard a couple lessons from this guy:

https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/sailing!-learn-to-sail-basic/id934925737?mt=1&app=music&ign-mpt=uo=4

I have mixed feelings on it. He has some samples on his podcast at Sailing in the Mediterranean and I would listen to the sample, but the set for 101 is only $10. Not sure if I would want to listen to him for money, but his pod cast can be interesting, but not great. But if you have a commute it might be better to listen to than the "morning gang" on any radio station. Might be a good additional source. I think he tends to editorialize and criticize what is expected to be known for my taste. I understand some of the info and terminology may be arcane, but you just learn it and go on.
I do have a commute, but it's by boat :svoilier: so I spend it looking at the water mostly :)
 

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Good luck & have fun! I took the 101 challenge, & the admiral did the 101-104 course in April. As others have said, read the book & be able to understand / answer the review questions. Hopefully the course weekend will strengthen your sailing desires & abilities.
Mike
 

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reading the Annapolis Book of Seamanship in the meantime.
That is a fantastic book. It has everything the ASA books cover plus much more. I went through it cover to cover (OK, I skimmed some of the nav stuff) when I first started sailing, then went through it again when I took ASA 106 and they used it as the course book.
 

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Let's not forget that ASA 101 is a beginners's course. It includes the fundamentals, and assumes you know nothing. The class I took was structured so that classroom was in the morning, and we tried stuff out on the water in the afternoon.

There is no need to study before the class. It would be useful to review the day's material in the evening after the class, and definitely swot up before the test!
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Let's not forget that ASA 101 is a beginners's course. It includes the fundamentals, and assumes you know nothing. The class I took was structured so that classroom was in the morning, and we tried stuff out on the water in the afternoon.

There is no need to study before the class. It would be useful to review the day's material in the evening after the class, and definitely swot up before the test!

Definitely true, but I figured if i can shorten classroom/shore time, all the better!
 

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I will give a "chalk talk" at the outset, but if everyone has studied either a book or an on-line tutorial, or even just looked at the standard Points-of-sail circular diagram, I can make the talk-time shorter and sailing time longer.

But I do not assume anyone has read or studied anything, I'll ask them, and ask about any prior sailing experience no matter how long ago.

I think the bigger question here is about learning styles and how they mesh with teaching styles. I tend to think sailors learn better by sailing, then looking afterward to see how "the book is right", than reading the book and comparing their experience to it--almost too much to think about when it's all new. So I'm more likely to give a short "debrief" with (my beat-up) book afterward if they have time, showing them how much of the book they just did. I think it leaves them on a high note.

I could be wrong doing "do, then read about it", if someone's learning style is the opposite, but haven't seen a downside in actual practice.

Reading beforehand is fine, just don't let it make you nervous or intimidated. Sailing is easier than you will expect..
 

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I will give a "chalk talk" at the outset, but if everyone has studied either a book or an on-line tutorial, or even just looked at the standard Points-of-sail circular diagram, I can make the talk-time shorter and sailing time longer.

But I do not assume anyone has read or studied anything, I'll ask them, and ask about any prior sailing experience no matter how long ago.

I think the bigger question here is about learning styles and how they mesh with teaching styles. I tend to think sailors learn better by sailing, then looking afterward to see how "the book is right", than reading the book and comparing their experience to it--almost too much to think about when it's all new. So I'm more likely to give a short "debrief" with (my beat-up) book afterward if they have time, showing them how much of the book they just did. I think it leaves them on a high note.

I could be wrong doing "do, then read about it", if someone's learning style is the opposite, but haven't seen a downside in actual practice.

Reading beforehand is fine, just don't let it make you nervous or intimidated. Sailing is easier than you will expect..
That all sounds excellent. Sounds like I'm letting my excitement get out of hand. :)
 
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