Featured Posts

Sailing Fun for KidsSailing Fun for Kids Sailing is more fun with family and friends, so why not get your kids on the water on your next Caribbean vacation? The American Sailing Association is excited to debut the...

Read More

What you can do with your ASA sailing credentialsWhat you can do with your ASA sailing credentials Many prospective students ask us why getting certified is so important. Couldn't they pick up the same valuable sailing skills without passing a course and receiving a certificate?...

Read More

Dinghy Sailing vs. Yacht SailingDinghy Sailing vs. Yacht Sailing The kind of boat you choose to sail will define your relationship with the sport as a whole. Like wind and weather conditions, the boat is one part of the entire sailing experience....

Read More

Combine Sailing Lessons With an International VacationCombine Sailing Lessons With an International Vacation Vacations are for rejuvenation and exploration, right? So why not one-up all the normal resort-goers and take sailing lessons at your vacation destination this summer! Sailing...

Read More

Sailing is a Great Way to Spend Quality Time with your FamilySailing is a Great Way to Spend Quality Time with your... Whether you have a six-year-old son or a sixteen-year-old daughter, sailing is a wonderful bonding experience that everyone in the family will enjoy. Next time you suggest...

Read More

When it Comes to Your Sailing Education, You're the Boss!When it Comes to Your Sailing Education, You're the... One of the most important parts of beginning your sailing education is finding the right sailing school. Every individual has different strengths, weaknesses, needs, and ideal...

Read More

ASA in Croatia: Medieval Mysteries This is a story about ASA's 2012 Croatia Flotilla. For more info on upcoming ASA sailing flotillas, click here. Sailors (and tourists of all kinds) have beaten a well-worn...

Read More

Guanabara Bay: A Reminder to Preserve our SeasGuanabara Bay: A Reminder to Preserve our Seas “We are tied to the ocean. And when we go back to the sea, whether it is to sail or to watch - we are going back from whence we came.” –John F. Kennedy As sailors,...

Read More

Docking: Or, How You Can Learn to Stop Worrying and Love the MarinaDocking: Or, How You Can Learn to Stop Worrying and... Once, while sailing in the San Juan Islands, I saw something I'll never forget. A powerboater cruised into the dock at high speed with his wife on the stern, line in hand,...

Read More

ASA members unite for a special week in the BVIsASA members unite for a special week in the BVIs Lots of people sail the British Virgin Islands every year, but not many get to do it in quite the same style as the 2014 ASA Member's Event, which took place March 1-8. For...

Read More

Subscribe To ASA Feed

What is a sailing education?

Category : Standards

asa burgees flyingYou may have heard the term, but what does it actually mean? What is involved in a sailing education, and what are the benefits?

Some people are lucky enough to grow up on the water, with a parent, sibling, or friend who is an expert sailor to teach them the ropes. But most of us weren’t that fortunate, so we have to look for a different way to learn to sail. When you make the choice to get a sailing education, you are in effect saying, “I want to do it the right way.” This means learning the fundamentals, which will give you a strong base, and empower you to learn more advanced sailing techniques.

Sailing education begins with learning to sail and captain a small keelboat, something in 20-25 foot range, during the daytime in moderate weather. That’s where ASA 101: Basic Keelboating comes in. You’ll learn exactly how a sailboat works, what all the lines and tools are for, how to steer, trim the sails, read the wind, and more. This course basically covers the essential skillset that any sailor must have. For some people, that’s enough. It allows them to take their friends sailing on a local body of water for a fun afternoon. Others want to take it further, and for them, basic keelboating is the platform on which great sailing adventures are built.

The next step is getting comfortable making longer passages, and navigating within sight of land. For that, there’s ASA 103: Basic Coastal Cruising. You’ll learn the finer points of navigation, get more practice handling the boat, and generally grow in confidence. A big part of this course is practicing Crew Overboard techniques, beginning with preventing anyone from falling overboard in the first place, and then knowing what to do if it does happen. Safety is one of the most crucial skills good sailing instruction can give you.girls on boat asa flotilla

ASA 104: Bareboat Cruising is not the final piece of the puzzle, but it is the one that many people are striving to put in place. This is the certification that gives you the knowledge, experience, and credibility to charter a boat for a spectacular sailing vacation anywhere in the world. The course covers practical stuff, such as: How does the charter business work? What do you need to bring with you, and what is provided? And also sailing skills: Handling a larger boat, as many charter boats are in the 40-50 foot range, navigating safely in unfamiliar waters, and using the onboard electrical and navigational systems, and the engine, among other things. This involves at least a 48-hour live-aboard cruise, so you’ll get a taste of how much fun it can be to sleep, eat, and explore on the boat!

This is only the beginning of the sailing education you can get. There are many other courses in the ASA curriculum, which you can find here. But it all begins with that first step: contacting your local sailing school and signing up to learn “the right way!”

Post a comment