Lesson Plan

Section 1: Club Overview (5 minutes)

This section is relevant to both beginners and advanced sailors.

  1. Equipment is fragile
    • Two people carry board, help each other
    • Don't just emulate experts carrying board+sail alone: ask
    • Report damage right away, don't use on water
  2. Equipment is complicated
    • don't force or jury rig
    • ask if unsure about anything
  3. Shed opening: keyholders, email announcements, wind conditions
  4. Sign-in protocol: logbook and whiteboard
  5. Safety:
    1. PFD required by law
    2. Hands up when you fall in the water
    3. Wetsuit: check water temperature
    4. Hand signals: "I'm OK" (hand on head) vs. "Help" (wave hands)
    5. Harmful Algal Bloom (HAB)

At this point, advanced groups (if any) will split off (see Advanced Topics below).

The rest of this page (up to Advanced Topics) is for beginner sessions.

Section 2: Beginner Intro and Demo (10 minutes)

  1. Wind clock
  2. ES landmarks, north wind vs. south wind, etc.
  3. Parts of a rig:
    1. Fin, Centerboard, Universal
      • Replace fin screw on fin
      • Don't lose nut in universal
    2. Mast, Boom, Uphaul
    3. Centerline of board (balance)
  4. Quick Demo of uphauling, steering, and tacking
    • Terminology: sheet in/out, move sail forward/back
  5. Subtle vs. exagerrated moves (when giving directions)
  6. Quick Demo of self rescue
  7. Split into groups, approximately same sized people

In the steps above marked "Quick", do not spend too much time dwelling on details.

These steps will be repeated in the small groups and in the follow-up.

A goal is to avoid too much information before students have a chance to get in the water.

Many details (like balance and body position) may not make sense until after getting on the water.

All topics should be mentioned (and repeated), but don't dwell on details until the follow-up.

Section 3: Small Group Demo (10 minutes)

On-land demo:

  1. Install a boom (optional)
  2. Install the universal
  3. Attach the sail
  4. Explain the centerboard
  5. Each person handles rig:
    1. Uphaul
    2. Steer (upwind/downwind)
    3. Tack
    4. Self-rescue
  6. Carry sail to the water (mast to windward)
  7. Install fin and universal as a group

Section 4: On-Water Session

Section 5: On-Land Follow-Up

On-land follow-up: in addition to reviewing any specific items that come up:

  1. Body position ("seven position")
  2. Manipulating the sail in the water before uphauling
  3. Right-of-way rules (starboard tack)

Advanced Topics

If we have an advanced clinic, be sure to cover Section 1, and also explain ES landmarks, wind directions.

Otherwise, just cover whatever makes sense, including but not limited to the following.

Low-wind skills ("schlogging"):

  1. Steering with sail and board
  2. Sailing without a centerboard, going upwind by railing
  3. Footwork (fast tack, plié step)
  4. Beach start, sail manipulation
  5. Pivot jibe, clew-first sailing
  6. Lee-side sailing (sailing back-winded), heli-tack

High-wind skills ("planing'):

  1. Harness
  2. Rig setup and adjustments
  3. Planing, carving, footstraps
  4. Water start
  5. Spinouts, Jumps
  6. Carve jibe