What Will You Learn?

Depending upon the option you select:

Option I – ASA 101 certification: you will start with a classroom session on Sunday morning, onboard orientation Monday morning, sail all day Monday and Tuesday morning. Wednesday morning is the on-water practical exam, Wednesday afternoon is the written exam. You have the option of sailing Thursday morning and Friday morning. ASA 101 INCLUDES NASBLA BOATING SAFETY CERTIFICATION.

Option 2 – ASA 103 certification : if you already have ASA 101, you have the option of attending the 101 classroom session on Sunday. You will have onboard orientation on Monday morning and sailing on Monday afternoon and the option of sailing Tuesday and Wednesday morning. The 103 classroom session is Wednesday afternoon. You will sail Thursday and have your practical on-water exam and written exam on Friday.

Option 3 – ASA 101 & 103 : you will start with a classroom session on Sunday morning, onboard orientation Monday morning, sail  Monday and Tuesday. Wednesday morning is the 101 on-water practical exam, Wednesday afternoon is the 101 written exam and classroom session for 103. You will sail Thursday and have your 103 practical on-water exam and written exam on Friday.

ASA 101 – Classroom Session
You will learn:

  • Terminology by identifying various parts of a sailboat: hull, keel, spreaders, etc.
  • The functions of items on a sailboat such as boomvang, downhaul, topping lift, etc.
  • To defining sailing terms: port, starboard, running rigging, etc.
  • To identify sails and parts of the sail: jib, genoa, main, leech, luff, tack, etc.
  • To explain terms relating to points of sail and wind direction: leeward, windward, beam reach, port tack, etc.
  • You will learn to diagram various situations covered by the Rules of the Road as they pertain to sailing and power vessels in stand-on and give-way situations.
  • You learn to understand Rule 5 (Look-out Rule) and Rule 10 concerning operating in commercial shipping lanes.

ASA 101 – Hands-on Sailing Skills
Once certified, you will be able to demonstrate your ability to:

  • Select and properly use a personal flotation device.
  • Select proper clothing for sailing.
  • Hoist basic sails and set appropriate luff tensions, and coil and hang halyards and other lines.
  • Act as helmsman/skipper and crew using proper commands and responses.
  • Sail windward and leeward courses while performing successful tacks and jibes.
  • Lower, fold and properly stow sails.
  • Describe and demonstrate crew overboard procedures.
  • Describe how to get an exhausted person aboard.
  • Steer a sailboat by the lee for l00 yards without jibing.
  • Secure a sailboat to a dock so as to ensure limited movement and set out fenders properly.
  • Describe the function of and tie the following knots in less than 15 seconds:
  1. Figure eight
  2. Bowline
  3. Cleat hitch
  4. Reef/square knot
  5. Clove hitch
  6. Round turn and two half hitches

ASA 103 – Classroom Session
You will learn:

  • Advanced terminology concerning larger sailing vessels such as stem fitting, gudgeon, pintle, binnacle, etc.
  • To list the Federally required equipment for the sailboat you will be operating.
  • To list the ASA recommended safety equipment.
  • To describe the most important reasons for keeping gear and equipment stowed in assigned compartments.
  • To describe roller and slab reefing with reef grommets and reef points.
  • To describe the purpose of proper use of a safety harness.
  • The purpose of bow and stem pulpits and lifelines.
  • To understand and describe the federally required navigation lights on sailboats when under sail, under power or at anchor.
  • To describe the 3 stages of hypothermia and their treatments.
  • To describe methods to reduce heat loss for a person or group of people in the water.
  • To describe and prevent deviation in a magnetic compass.
  • To identify common sources of fire and explosion and understand methods for preventing there occurrence.
  • To describe the USCG recommended refueling precautions.
  • To describe the “diverÂ’s flag” and alpha flag used to mark persons and vessels engaged in diving.
  • To describe the danger involved in recharging batteries and setting off flares.
  • Apply the Rules of the Road I I through 17 (steering and sailing rules) by means of a diagram.
  • To describe the required and ASA recommended actions and precautions to be taken during restricted visibility.
  • To interpret marine weather forecasts applicable to the area and determine what effect they may have on your sailing activity.
  • To identify the responsibilities of the skipper and the crew.
  • Describe the correct sail combinations to carry under various wind and sea conditions.
  • Describe the dangers of a lee shore.
  • Read and interpret various information from local NOAA nautical charts.
  • To describe a good anchorage and the proper techniques which lead to secure anchoring including terminology.
  • To describe the immediate actions to be taken when trouble or emergencies exist.
  • To describe the uses of and tie and the following knots:
  1. Bowline
  2. Sheetbend
  3. Round turn and two half hitches
  4. Clove hitch
  5. Reef/square knot
  6. Figure eight

ASA 103 – Hands-on Sailing Skills
Once certified you will be able to demonstrate your ability to:

  • Put on a PFD while in the water.
  • Carry out a check of required Federal equipment and recommended ASA equipment and demonstrate the use of each.
  • Demonstrate safe winch techniques.
  • Perform engine checks prior to getting underway.
  • Control the vessel under power.
  • Demonstrate crew overboard procedures while under power and under sail.
  • Describe at least two methods of getting a person out of the water and onboard.
  • Anchor securely so that anchor does not drag.
  • Raise anchor and get underway under power.
  • Function as helmsman and crew giving correct commands and proper responses while sailing all points of sail.
  • Reduce sail by reefing and shake out a reef while keeping the vessel under control and on course.
  • Heave to and get underway again.
  • Sail an ordered compass course for 5 minutes without varying more than 10 degrees.
  • Secure the vessel to a dock in various configurations and tie up properly and properly secure fenders.


Early days of fishing and wakeboarding boats. These days a little more relaxing and sailing time, mostly on catamarans. Still too poor be a yacht man.

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