How does one learn to sail?

I've had a look on the tinterweb and I'm weary that I haven't got a clue what I'm looking at but if the price is within reason I'd like to give it a go.

Anyone got any decent advice.

I'm in the northwest!
Are you serving? If so then speak to someone at the Joint Services Sailing centre in Gosport. I got on a couple of courses down there and did a bit of sailing, really enjoyed it, until it got rough, then hurled all night like a baby.
The 'northwest' eh? Hmmm... They're still working on the discovery of the wheel up there are they? :D

The RYA is the standard route. They should be able to put you in touch with someone.

Ahoy me hearties!

RYA Training
Adventurous training at the Dummersee also. There is/was an Army sailing centre there too. The advantage of the Dummersee, is that it's a mahoosive lake, and only 5ft deep in the middle, so you can stand up when you capsize.
Better RYA website is

which is specific to your area.

Easiest way to get some experience is to ask to put a note up on a yacht clubs notice board telling folk what you are trying to do. The sailing community is a friendly one and you will probably find someone willing to take you out, just to give you a little experience. Such as this offer on the site

Arnside Sailing Club

Tea by the Sea in aid of Sail 4 Cancer

Thanks to all who supported this event.
Those wishing to have a taster sail (Young or Old) can contact Sailing Secretary Dave Boustead on 01524 762031 or committee member Richard Johnson on 01524 762053.
Starter for 10! :D


Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
Bouillabaisse said:
Ravers said:
I thought that place just taught you how to dress strangely and speak with elongated vowels?

Three Royal Navy Officers, yesterday.
Which one is you?
How dare you insinuate that I am or ever was a holder of the Queen's commission?

I pride myself on being a gash hand JR/OR.

I still hold both the Portsmouth Command and London District records for least productive use of time whilst on duty. :D
Get a cheap wetsuit ( and then head off to your local sailing club. There are always folks looking for crew so they can sail their own boat and all they are looking for is a pulse and some mass in excess of 75Kg. You want to crew in a boat that looks like a boat, has a back (transom), and looks like two would fit in it without surgery. Try and get in as many different boats as you can with different skippers and you'll soon work it out.

Do not under any circumstances big up your knowledge - if your new best mate hands you anything that looks like a harness walk away, do not accept any assurances about "it being easier than it looks". Once the safety boat has pulled you out you'll end up sitting in the corner clutching a bottle of OVD and muttering to yourself.
armadillo said:
get in a boat if wet you are doing it wrong,
or when you find yourself alone, downwind, at the far side of the lake in the reeds....

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