Are you looking for a great way to enjoy a vacation? Or perhaps you’re looking for a way to life your life a little more on the wild side. Regardless, learning how to sail can be a great experience for you, your friends, and your family. With that being said, operating a sail boat can be simple with the correct amount of training and experience, but it will take time to learn. Below are some tips and tricks that you should know while learning how to sail and other useful information that can assist you with the process.
Step 1: Gather a Basic Understanding
The first step to learning any new skill is to gather a basic understanding of what it is that you are learning. There are many different parts to a sail boat and if you are planning on taking an instructive course, you will want to understand what your instructor is calling out to you. Plus, it is a great advantage to be able to know the different parts of the boat so that you can be the most efficient sailor possible. If you are unable to understand the simple names such as “boom” and “bow”, you may find yourself in trouble in particular situations. A few examples of boat terms include:
Block: The name for a pulley in nautical terms.
Boom: The support that is used for the mainsail and the mast. This helps to change the direction of the sail boat that you are using.
Bow: The name for the front of the boat.
Hull: Anything that is below the deck is referred to as the hull.
Stern: The name for the back of the boat.
Step 2: Learning the Different Types of Sail Boats
Although you may assume that every sail boat looks the same, they actually differ in many ways. Considering that you will be learning how to operate a boat, it is very unlikely that you will be operating your own sail boat. There are 6 main types of sail boats: Sloops, Catboats, Cutters, Ketches, Yawls, and Schooners. The majority of beginner sailors will be learning with Catboats, Cutters, or Sloops. As you become more advanced you may want to try out a Schooner.
Step 3: Learning Navigational Buoys
As another important component to learning how to sail, it is important that you are able to understand navigational buoys. These unique components bouncing above the water are used to tell sailors that the water is safe to sail in. Depending on where you are sailing, these buoys may mean different things. As an example, navigational buoys are commonly used in North America to guide sailors out of marinas. Also, the color of the buoys will differentiate how you should navigate around them. This too differs by country.
Step 4: Preparing Your Boat
Now that you have acquired all of your theoretical knowledge, it is now time for you to prepare the boat for sailing. There are a variety of steps that you will have to take in order to ensure that your boat is safe and ready for use. First you will want to complete a visual check of your boat, this includes ensuring that the cables and ropes are in good shape, and that the sails are also in their best condition. Second, determine where the wind is blowing. The majority of boats have a windex (wind direction indicator). You will want to know the direction of the wind due to the fact that it will allow you to sail effectively. Third, direct your boat into the wind. In terms of sailing, it is ideal to have the least amount of wind resistance when you are hoisting the sail. Therefore with the boat directed straight into the wind, it will prevent the sails from being affected.
Step 5: Preparing the Sails
When you are looking to prepare your sails, you will first need to attach them to their respected shackles. You will also need to trim the jib sheets and trim the mainsail to ensure that your boat sails in the correct direction without going straight into the wind.
Step 6: Sailing the Boat
There are many different things that you will want to pay attention to when you are sailing your boat. In order to ensure that you are safe on the open water, you will want to be aware of the following:
· The direction of the wind
· Your wind indicators
· Determining close reach
· Determining close haul
· Turning the boat through the wind
With the ability to be aware of the above factors, you will be able to make it to your destination in a limited amount of time. Considering that sailing is not only a fun activity but an amazing hobby, using these tips will help you to be a great sailor in no time!