Started Sailing

How To Start Sailing

by Landlubber
(Flatlands of Midwest USA)

I live in the Midwest. We have lots of lakes, but no ocean. Because it is windy, getting something to sail should be no problem, but I don't have a lot of money. I can't afford a boat.

Aren't there less expensive alternatives? I've seen those sail boards that people use. Is that the same thing as sailing or is that considered surfing? Don't the same wind principles apply?

Also, is it possible to just rent a real sail boat and try it or would that be dangerous for a newbie?

Thank you.

Midwestern Landlubber



Hi Midwestern Landlubber!

Thank you for posting this question, on our free Ask The Expert page, because it is very interesting.

To your first question you don't need an ocean to sail! I sail on a lake (or a reservoir to be 100% correct) and I love it more than sailing on the sea. See my experiences in sailing on the Welsh Harp at Sailing Dinghy and you can see that it is great fun.

Also you don't need to own a boat to sail. I don't own a boat, my long time helm Mark owns the boat (and just got a new one - it looks really glossy and goes faster than all the other boats!).

Just find a sailing club in your area. By searching on Google, I found this site that is located in the Midwest USA that lists all the Yachting/Sailing clubs in that area. It is called Midwest Sailing and it should be a very good resource to get you on the water.

Those sail boards that you are referring to are part of a sport called wind surfing. Although it is related to sailing, it is not the same feeling or skills. I am not sure about inexpensive when windsurfing. I pay only £60 ($86) every four months to sail. To me that is very inexpensive, it is about £3.50 for each day I do sailing, which not bad at all!

In answer to your final question, although it is very possible to rent a sailboat, I think it would be better for you to get some proper tuition at a sailing club. Have a look at the clubs I mentioned above and see if you can find one you like that is relatively close to you.

Thank you for visiting my site and I hope you really enjoy your first sailing experience and you can even share what it was like, by visiting Sailing Stories!

Have fun!

Alex

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