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Old 28-05-2019, 15:02   #1
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Why aren't sailing instructors sailing?

I have visited many ports where clubs with small sailing boats often practice or race in the harbor. Usually the instructor is driving a powerboat, but a few times (less than 10% of the time) the instructor is also on a sailboat which seems to work out fine, and can show sailing techniques directly rather than yelling and blowing horns.

So, what kind of sailing instructor would use a powerboat? What kind of student would tolerate it?

Would you trust a dentist that has bad teeth?

What if you got a sail repaired and they used contact cement because it was easier than sewing?

A cook that won't eat their own food?

A farm where the owners have a separate garden for themselves but do not consume any of what they sell because of the chemicals they use.
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Old 28-05-2019, 15:08   #2
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Re: Why aren't sailing instructors sailing?

Those that can, do...Those that can't, teach!
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Old 28-05-2019, 15:24   #3
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Re: Why aren't sailing instructors sailing?

Here in the Va Beach/Norfolk Virginia the sailing school that I see most often is SailTime, and the instructor is always on the boat with the students.

I'm not a big fan of formal sail training for myself at least, but I must say these guys do a pretty good job and really seem to motive and care about their students.

Their beginners start on a Capri 22 which has a small Nissan outboard.

And Sean, I think you would appreciate the fact that I have seen at least one of them dock the boat under no power in one of the intermost slips.

https://sailtime.com/virginia-beach/
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Old 28-05-2019, 15:29   #4
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Re: Why aren't sailing instructors sailing?

Having held a US Sailing Small Boat Instructor cert the answer is easy.

You have a fleet of who knows how many students on small boats. Let's just say 16 students in 8 boats. Your job is the safety of your students first.

You will need to in many cases tow the boats out to the operating area, tow them back in, jet off to a boat that is in trouble or heading out of control out of the area etc. You will need to pull students back out of the water and in general be all places at once.

It is closer to herding cats.

One of the requirements for US Sailing is to swim a length (100' or so) in the clothing your students would be wearing without a life jacket, Put on a life jacket while in the water then swim back and get yourself out of the water.

I took my instructors course in Yaquina Bay where the water was 46 degrees. No one could get out of the water without help.

The point is to show you just what a student in the water would be going through. Makes you hustle to get them out. You cannot do that if you are in a small sailboat too.

-------

As a side note we were sailing in C-Larks and my partner for the course was a College racing team sailor. She had most of her experience in Open Bic and the like and at first was at first not too sure of a boat designed in the mid 1960's.

The winds were piping up into the mid 20's with perhaps a gust to almost 30 once in a while. The class bent more than one mast....

Anyway at one point she became quite distraught as we were constantly overpowered and needed to spill air to avoid capsize. As her panic built I suggested we heave to. She really did not know what that was or how to do it.

So laying over to the other tack we hove to and the boat settled right down. Gotta love an older design and how well they heave to. She caught her breathe and we were off to the races in a little while. Really an exciting day of it.

At the end of the day she stated that learning to heave to was perhaps the best thing she had ever learned sailing.
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Old 28-05-2019, 15:39   #5
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Re: Why aren't sailing instructors sailing?

What a silly rant...

I taught sailing to adults for 8 years on boats ranging from j-24 to up to 50 footers. I was always on the boat with the students.

The kind of teaching you are describing is on dinghies, one or two person boats where there isn't ROOM for an instructor! You might as well ask why the coach of the collage crew team is not out on the shell rowing the boat with his students...

And there are some sailing instructors out there who know more about sailing than you do. Certainly, I have had the pleasure to have known and worked with some men and woman who were both great sailors and great teachers.
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Old 28-05-2019, 15:53   #6
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Re: Why aren't sailing instructors sailing?

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What a silly rant...

I taught sailing to adults for 8 years on boats ranging from j-24 to up to 50 footers. I was always on the boat with the students.

The kind of teaching you are describing is on dinghies, one or two person boats where there isn't ROOM for an instructor! You might as well ask why the coach of the collage crew team is not out on the shell rowing the boat with his students...

And there are some sailing instructors out there who know more about sailing than you do. Certainly, I have had the pleasure to have known and worked with some men and woman who were both great sailors and great teachers.
No need to freak out billbo, it's just a question
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Old 28-05-2019, 16:14   #7
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Re: Why aren't sailing instructors sailing?

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Originally Posted by billknny View Post
What a silly rant...

I taught sailing to adults for 8 years on boats ranging from j-24 to up to 50 footers. I was always on the boat with the students.

The kind of teaching you are describing is on dinghies, one or two person boats where there isn't ROOM for an instructor! You might as well ask why the coach of the collage crew team is not out on the shell rowing the boat with his students...

And there are some sailing instructors out there who know more about sailing than you do. Certainly, I have had the pleasure to have known and worked with some men and woman who were both great sailors and great teachers.

My feelings exactly!


(I'll be out instructing on a J/24 for the next two Sundays).


I must admit that on the last Learn To Sail course I ran, I did run around on a RIB on one day. But that was because there were 4 keelboats out with an instructor on each one and I was on SAR duty.
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Old 28-05-2019, 16:17   #8
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Re: Why aren't sailing instructors sailing?

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No need to freak out billbo, it's just a question

I's actually 5 stupid questions following an ill-informed rant.
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Old 28-05-2019, 16:19   #9
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Re: Why aren't sailing instructors sailing?

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My feelings exactly!


(I'll be out instructing on a J/24 for the next two Sundays).


I must admit that on the last Learn To Sail course I ran, I did run around on a RIB on one day. But that was because there were 4 keelboats out with an instructor on each one and I was on SAR duty.
Looks like you instructors have grown a bit thin skinned after being in charge of some newbie sailors for a brief period.

And don't forget the OP has sailed most of the way around the world on a boat he purchased for $1,000.

What's the cost of a sailing course?

I taught myself and I'm guessing that possibly the OP did also
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Old 28-05-2019, 16:27   #10
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Why aren't sailing instructors sailing?

I have done it both ways. Small boats and less experienced students (mostly children) means your coaching from a chase boat. Trying coaching 12 Lasers from another laser when one or two decide to sail away from the group.

Teaching adults to sail in a freedom 20 and itís another story.
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Old 28-05-2019, 16:29   #11
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Re: Why aren't sailing instructors sailing?

Group lessons with dinghies: the instruction happens onshore and close to the dock. When you see the group out in the harbour, and the instructor buzzing around in a RIB, they're not being instructed; they're practising

More seriously; it's the only practical way to supervise and protect a group of students in dinghies.

(former certified learn-to-windsurf instructor; does that count?)
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Old 28-05-2019, 17:07   #12
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Re: Why aren't sailing instructors sailing?

At the local club in Cygnet, TAS, their insurance requires the RIB in attendance for the sailing classes, and a mother boat for the longer races.

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Old 29-05-2019, 08:07   #13
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Re: Why aren't sailing instructors sailing?

For Dingy training.
We have about 15-25 dingies out on the water during training. We do not have 15-25 instructors to put onboard these boats. So they use RIBS and go from one boat to the other for coaching
These RIBS are also a safety factor for the students who might need quick help or even rescue.
Easy to understand no?
For cruising training we use bigger 29-35 footers. We have an instructor onboard the boat with 4 students.
Even if I'm with students on a keel boat I do not sail the boat. Students pay to learn how to sail so they take charge of the boat the minute they step on it.
I Always ask who has never steered a boat and I Always choose the least experienced crew to pull out of dock and head out.
I stand close by just in case I need to take control but if all is going well I never sail the boat.
Sometimes a student will ask me to demonstrate Something but I always try and explain and have them do it themselves.

Keep in mind that students pay a lot of money for training and Learning. Not to be given a ride by an instructor.

I Don't really understand the parralle with the dentist with bad teeth. Nor do I care.
I work hard and have worked hard to demonstrate my competence to my certification standards. In my case CYA and IYT. They have tested me with theoric exams and practical tests on the water. Every year I have to go out and sail to demonstrate my capabilities, I have to undergo medical exams and pay some fees just to retain my certifications. All this to teach because I love sailing. I get paid almost next to Nothing for teaching. I do it for passion not for money.

You might be an awsome sailor with the best knowledge out there. BUT are you a good teacher?
I have seen super competent sailors be the worst teachers ever.

Has for paying or not for Learning...thats a personal choice.
It might or might not work for you. But to say that you did not need it then nobody should need it is very nearsighted in my opinion.

Some people need to have structure and reassurance to learn..
If you do not need it , just Don't come to my school
Training is not mandatory.

We train around 400-600 kids and Young adults on dinghies each year and about 500 adults per season on cruising keelboats.

Thats is not counting all the pratice sessions some students sign up for after certificatio.
Some want to practice docking, others want to practice jybes, tacks, etc.
We even have an all girl regatta. Last year over 185 women raced on 38 boats . No men allowed. Many of these women were students of our school.
During that regatta I am on a big rib on standy for assitance in case of accidents.
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Old 29-05-2019, 08:11   #14
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Re: Why aren't sailing instructors sailing?

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Those that can, do...Those that can't, teach!
I have seen more of those that are good sailors are not Always good teachers.
Some even stink at teaching.
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Old 29-05-2019, 08:16   #15
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Re: Why aren't sailing instructors sailing?

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1----And don't forget the OP has sailed most of the way around the world on a boat he purchased for $1,000.



2---What's the cost of a sailing course?

1---What does that prove? That he is a good sailor ( Probably ) That he is not a millionaire ( Maybe ). That he knows how to teach ( Not sure ). That he knows how schools run sailing classes? ( Seems he does not )

2----Depends on the sailing course. What course are you asking about?
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