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Beginner’s Guide to Sailing 

Sailing is a beautiful experience. There is truly nothing like sailing upwind, with the breeze in your face and the light mist of the ocean spraying your skin. Whether you are an experienced sailor or are going out for the first time, it is an adventure you will never forget. If you are new to the world of sailing, read our tips below to help you get out there on your own in no time. 

Choose a Sailboat for Beginners

If you are a sailing rookie, make sure to choose a sailboat that will best fit your needs. Although it may be tempting to get out onto the ocean with a large sized boat, it is smart to stick to smaller ones until you are fully confident that you can handle it. 

Bring Someone That Knows What They Are Doing

A way to build confidence in sailing is by bringing along a trustworthy ally (assuming they are sailing experts) or an instructor so that you are able to ask questions. It is also good to have a second pair of eyes while handling the boat yourself. If you aren’t fully capable of confidently choosing your next move, sailing can become very dangerous. Do not be afraid to ask questions or ask for help. A good teacher will be excited to share their knowledge with you. 

Know Basic Sailing Terms

If you are going to become a sailor, it is important to know the terms that come with the job. Although that can seem intimidating, the more you practice out at sea, the easier it will be to memorize and understand the words used to describe the skill at hand. As well, take time to learn the parts of the boat you will be sailing on. Instructors will most definitely be using the correct terms when advising you to fulfill a certain task aboard and it is crucial that you can understand and finish the job efficiently.

Pick a Day with Good Weather Conditions

As a newbie, you are still getting used to handling the boat while at sea. Going out during harsh weather conditions can be extremely detrimental for someone who is still learning the ins and outs of sailing. The intense winds and strong ocean currents can lead you to unsafe circumstances. Until you are able to work the sails without question, choose a sunny day in a safe calm bay where your vision is clear and the water is calmer. NOAA is a great resource for monitoring the weather. We often use the report put out by the National Weather Service Forecast Office. Be sure to select the area where you are sailing. Look at the wind and swell. Remember, never go out when there is a small craft advisory. 

Choose a Destination That is Good For Beginners

Choosing a destination that feels safe is key when learning to sail. Staying close to home is always beneficial for you to naturally feel safer and more at ease. San Diego Bay and Mission Bay are beautiful areas to first take a boat out on the water. With great weather, scenic views, and wonderful instructors, you can’t go wrong!

If you are looking for a place to start sailing lessons, check out: