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San Diego Sailing Academy thoughts? Also taking classes with a spouse

1639 Views 6 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  MIKEMCKEE
Been reading these forums for a while but this is my first post. Im new to sailing...took a 3 week beginner course at my local lake here in Kansas and spend copious amounts of time reading about it on the internet. I'm thinking of going to take a liveaboard 7 day ASA up to bareboat chartering class and have read some good things about SDSA on this website. Would like to try bareboat chartering in BVI, PNW, etc eventually. Just curious if anyone else has some experience with them. Also I would be taking this course with my wife and have heard mixed things about taking courses such as this with a spouse. I think that we are both very motivated and interested and I think we communicate well enough it wont be one domineering and taking away from the others education type deal. The other nice thing is it would only be 2 students and 1 instructor which I think would be good. Any information would be helpful.


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You may want to peruse this thread. Rick was asking the same questions as you -- even took the course with his spouse. After completing their program, he provided a very detailed write-up of his experiences and impressions:

In 2007 two of my buddies and I took a 5 day class from SDSA. We took the ASA 101, 103 and 104 during the trip so we were pretty busy at night studying but it was not over whelming. Mike was our instructor and was great! Lots of energy. We were comfortable chartering a sailboat in Belieze after the class but we did have some chartering experience with power boats in the past.

Can't help with the dynamics of class with your wife. Our wives have learned alot as crew on the trips.
Just got back from the 7 day course with SDSA. Completed 103 and 104. Had a wonderful time. The perfect balance of instruction and practice. Mike was our instructor. He was excellent. Very intuitive to our skill levels and learning styles. The balance of time with Mike on board and us soloing was great. Perfect set up for building confidence with the boat. The amenities at the Kona Kai Marina were good. Nice hot showers. It was a easy walk to awesome local restaurants. Thumbs up for Brigantine's fish tacos. We are looking forward to our first charter. We would gladly take future courses from SDSA. Highly recommended.
Hi Eric,

I Can't speak to SDSA as I'm on the right coast...

On the other question....Having taught couples...I find it always goes best for everyone....when there is only one instructor on the boat.
It sounds like you get it. It'll be fine.
Hi Eric,

Can't help with SDSA as I am on the Great Lakes. My wife and I did a week-long live aboard ASA 101/103/104 school with San Juan Sailing out of Bellingham. Very good instructor and great learning experience. Especially valuable was our experiences with anchoring, tides, currents and navigating commercial shipping lanes. Living/sailing on a 36 footer really helped our confidence when chartering after that.

Tempest hit it right on the head. There can only be one instructor aboard. You and your wife can be study buddies with the book learning but after that ... head for a different part of the boat when the instructor is working with her.
My wife and I both took sailing lessons on San Diego in the early 70's and it was great, BUT I think that you'll both get more out of it, if your both in different boats, that way she won't feel that your watching her every move and worring about making a mistake, although you both will, it will be easier for her to learn and not feel under your watchfull eye. That way you both can compair notes at the end of each day and talk about what happened out there both good and bad.
My wife said that she was glad we did it that way and that she learned a lot and didn't feel worried about making a mistake in front of me and from what She told me one day, she did a biggie, she was tacking a Rebel 16 footer and just as she was coming through the wind it died and she was going to T-bone a 40 some foot sailboat, her solution was to close her eye's and shift the tiller hard over and pray, well it worked (thank God) and to this day she still talk's about it. Anyway these a just my 2 cent's worth for what ever there worth.

Good Luck,

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