Improving Skills

Improving Skills

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Objective By the end of this course you will be sailing on your own in light wind conditions 
without assistance from your instructor.
Previous knowledge / experience  You will be expected to have completed, or have experience equivalent to, 
the Basic Skills course and have been sailing regularly. If you have not been 
regularly practising these skills you will need to do so prior to this course at 
least 10 hrs as helm.
Types of Boat  This course may be completed in any type of sailing dinghy, small keel boat 
or catamaran. Your certificate will show what type of boat(s) you used.
Duration 4 - 10 days
Assessment Assessment is continuous throughout the course. However, your instructor 
may also choose to use a formal practical assessment of boat handling skills 
and a short written paper or oral interview in assessing your level of background knowledge.
  By the end of this course you will be able to do the following:
Rigging Rig the sailing boats used.
De-rig, secure and care for hull & equipment.
Tuning Identify and demonstrate / describe the use of the following in order to optimise the boat / rig for a particular set of conditions:
  • Sail telltales
  • Jib sheeting angles
  • Halyard tension
  • Outhaul
  • Cunningham / downhaul
  • Kicker or vang
  • Main sheet traveller / hawse
Use boat and rig controls to optimise the performance of the boat in a variety 
of conditions including light, medium and strong wind conditions and on all 
points of sailing.
Boat Handling 
  • Tack effectively in all wind conditions.
  • Perform a basic roll tack in light winds.
  • Gybe effectively in all wind conditions.
  • Demonstrate all of the skills covered in the “Sailing Manoeuvres” section of the Basic Skills course” in windier conditions.
  • Describe the principles of sailing without a rudder and sail a beam reach without a rudder.
  • Sail backwards for short distances.
Catamaran sailors will be confidently using a trapeze if carried.
Capsize recovery  Right an inverted boat.
Describe what to do if someone is caught under an inverted boat.
Boat Speed Be constantly aware of and apply the “5 Essentials”.
Set the boat up, and sail efficiently:
  • up wind
  • down wind
  • on a reach
Demonstrate how to obtain maximum leverage when hiking or trapezing.
Stopping Anchor your boat, then recover the anchor and sail away. 
  • Identify common weather conditions and describe how they may affect your activities.
  • Identify sources of weather forecasts.
  • Explain the significance of commonly used terms in marine forecasts.
  • Identify the significance to sailors of common weather patterns illustrated on synoptic chart.
  • Interpret the forecast with regard to planned activities.
Coastal Knowledge
  • Describe what causes tides and how neap and spring tides might affect sailors.
Sailing Knowledge
  • Explain how sails and foils work, how they interact and how they drive a sailing boat.
What next…  Describe how to continue sailing and develop your sailing skills and knowledge.

Course Information

Course Date 15-07-2024 10:00 am
Individual Price €415.00
Location Courtown Sailing Club

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Contact number for Courtown Sailing Club is 089 4941404. is the official web address for Courtown Sailing Club.