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You’re never too young to start sailing

We aim to make sailing as enjoyable as possible and Sailfish is the ideal environment to have Junior Sailing Lessons. It’s fun, there are structured lessons and there is a good mix of experienced sailors to help and encourage the more inexperienced members. The full Club sailing season starts from February till the end of November and offers opportunities for juniors of all levels to participate, either within the Sailfish programme, independently during club racing, or with other club members in a double handed boat.

  • We actively encourage juniors to team up and crew with more experienced helms (usually during club racing). This is a great way to develop your sailing skills and knowledge.
  • Sailfish sessions on Friday Evenings from April till the end of July which offers structured junior sailing lessons.
  • Sailfish sessions on Saturday mornings from 31st August till the end of October.
  • Learning at your own pace

    Children take to sailing naturally and they learn through a mix of training and play activities. When they join Sailfish it is expected that they follow the RYS stages which are run and monitored by qualified RYA coaches.
    Stage 1
    Familiarisation with the boats used at the club. Wind direction and strength. Comfort on the water in a heeling boat.
    No skill expectation. Qualifications – RYA level 1
    Stage 2
    Summary: Sail the boat in light winds. Experiment with the boat controls of rudder, sails, centre board to sail the boat in a planned direction. Crew a double hander under supervision and trim the jib according to the direction the boat is sailing.
    Limited skill in light winds mainly on a reach but able to tack the boat.
    Qualifications – RYA level 2
    Stage 3
    Summary: Sail the boat in light to medium winds. Control the sails and steering to sail a defined course on all points of sailing.
    Take part in first races around a triangular course and able to complete it unassisted.
    Participate in external Team sailing event such as the Hollingwworth 8 hr Race
    Stage 4
    Summary: Building confidence from Stage 3 in stronger winds to balance the boat and control the speed by changing the sail settings.
    Race confidently around a triangular course and sail a junior class boat in the Sunday afternoon Junior Race and other club races.
    Participate in external junior class events such as Northwest Topper series oand the Junior Traveller Series
    Participate in external Team sailing events such as the Southport 12 and 24 hr Race.
    It is expected that at stages 3 and 4 the sailor will want to participate in additional race training courses. Numerous events are held where juniors are coached intensively by a top RYA course. Courses are normally a minimum of 2 days and are heavily subsidised.
    At this stage the top young sailors may also be asked to participate in regional squands or start the path along an elite training programme.

    Assessment for the stages is made by level 2 Race Coaches to ensure the standard has been reached.

    Stage 5: Compete regularly in Junior and Adult club races. Have the ability to sail a mix of single and double handed boats, sail with Spinnakers. Sail confidently in strong winds.

    Typical Progression

    Year 1 – Taster & Stage 1.
    Year 2 – Stage 2 & 3.
    Year 3-4 – Stage 4.
    Year 5 & 6 – Stage 5.