usidp The Complete Sailing Course

Learn sailing skills and start sailing 28 foot keelboats!
The course includes: Basic Sailing (ASA 101), and Basic Coastal Cruising (ASA 103). After the course, you will feel comfortable sailing a 28 foot sailboat along a coastline, and can progress up to larger boats. The certification opens new doors to fun and exciting adventures on the ocean at sailing destinations around the world!
Classes are given in groups at most 3 students, offered on the weekends at 10am, 1pm, and 3pm.
We have weekday lessons available if 2 or more students.

Basic Keelboat Instruction Includes:

  • Basic Sailing Terminology
  • Boat Setup
  • Setting Sail
  • Points of Sail
  • Rules Of The Road
  • Sailing Safety
  • Coast Guard Regulations
  • Single-handed Sailing
  • Docking
  • Crew Overboard
  • Navigation

Visit ASA's website for detailed course and certification info.

Basic Keelboat Instruction Includes:

  • Review of Basic Sailing
  • Heavy Weather Skills
  • Seamanship
  • Anchoring
  • Coastal Navigation
  • Night Sailing
  • Introduction to Chartering
  • Boat Systems

Visit ASA's website for detailed course and certification info.

Class size is two to three people, classes taught year-roundIf possible, read the first 33 pages of Sailing Fundamentals before the first class, and memorize as much terminology as you can!

Lesson 1
On The Water Orientation (2 hrs.)
  1. Vessel/personal safety
  2. Parts of the boat
  3. Raising the sails
  4. Casting off (leaving the dock)
  5. Sailing closehauled (upwind)
  6. Coming about (turning into the wind)
  7. Port and Starboard tacks
  8. Jibing (turning downwind)
  9. Harbor orientation
  10. Introduction to knots

Before Lesson 2:

  • Complete lesson 1 handout
  • Practice knots (22, 23, 43, 123, 133, 174)
  • Read pages 36-63
Lesson 2
On The Water Orientation (2 hrs.)
  1. Review of lesson 1 material- Rigging, Coming About, Jibing, Port and Starboard Tacks, Knots (esp. bowline and figure 8)
  2. Points of sail
  3. Heading up and bearing away (falling off)
  4. Tacking review
  5. Docking safely
  6. De-rigging review

Before Lesson 3:

  • Complete lesson 2 handout
  • Review safety procedures
  • Review "Crewing" handout
  • Read pages 67-80, 83-88, 106-107, 205-209 (glossary)
  • Review Rigging and Knots
Lesson 3
Single Handed Sailing & Close Quarters Maneuvering (Rules) (2 hrs.)
  1. Review rigging and knots
  2. Single-handed tacking and jibing
  3. Avoiding collisions in tight situations

Before Lesson 4:

  • Complete lesson 3 handout
  • Read pages 101-103, 131-134
  • Review pages 37-43,45-63, 77-81, 87
Lesson 5
Docking Under Sail (2 hrs.)
  1. Review rigging and knots
  2. Review Rules of the Road
  3. Slowing and stopping the boat under sail.
  4. Docking and casting off, windward and leeward docks

Before Lesson 5:

  • Complete lesson 4 handout
  • Read pages 91-99, 104-105, 111-112, 129-130, 166-174, 181-182
Lesson 5
MOB and Heavy Weather (2 hrs. )
  1. Heavy weather prediction & preparation, weather radio reports, storm warning flags, internet weather sites, local weather hazards.
  2. Reducing sail, Heaving To and Reefing
  3. Man Overboard recovery methods

Before Lesson 6:

  • Complete lesson 5 handout q Read pages 111-130,
  • Review pages 24-25, 166-176, 181-183
  • Read handout "Getting a Lift"
Lesson 6
Anchoring and Ocean Sailing (3 hrs.)
  1. Ocean sail, steering by the compass
  2. Using telltales, holding a point of sail, and trimming sails to wind shifts
  3. Introduction to anchoring

Before Lesson 7:

  • Complete lesson 6 handout q Read pages 168-169,148-149
  • Review pages 112-118, 125
Lesson 7
Navigation and Safety Class (3 hrs)

This evening class, offered once a month at each office, can be taken at any time. It covers basic coastal piloting, chart selection and interpretation, plotting a course, ded reckoning, using bearings, fog tactics and night navigation, local hazards, chartering responsibilities, handling emergencies, and cruising techniques. Required before chartering and before lesson 8. Dates in Newsletter or on our website.

Group Daysail

This is an opportunity to go for a sail on one of our charter boats with other new and experienced sailors. We have weekday, weekend and sunset sails. On these sails, you sail with other experienced sailors and get a feel for sailing a larger boat by acting as crew and taking your turn at the helm. The daysail dates and costs are advertised in our newsletter on our website. You may come alone or bring your friends!

Lesson 8
Certification (3 hrs)& Confidence Sail

Given on a 25-30' charter boat

  1. Review of safety equipment
  2. Operation of marine sanitation system
  3. Through-hull valve procedures
  4. Introduction to diesel engine use & care
  5. Boat handling under power; casting off and docking safely
  6. Use of furling headsail
  7. Use of marine stove

The Confidence Sail is strongly advised to be scheduled immediately following Lesson 8. You will feel most confident at this time, and to help make this easier we offer a 20% discount off this first charter if you book it for the same day.

Required Equipment: Wear white soled boating shoes on boats at all times. In addition we suggest the following items for your sea-bag:

  • Chart Kit for Southern California
  • Pacific Boating Almanac
  • Chart #1
  • Parallel Rules, dividers and mechanical pencil
  • First aid kit
  • Safety harness and tether
  • Foul weather gear and sea boots

After Lesson 8: When you have chartered a 25-30' sailboat at least twice, arrange to take the ASA103 Basic Coastal Cruising examination at any Marina Sailing office (takes about an hour.) Remember to bring your Log Book along so your instructor can sign you off when you pass it.

Before Lesson 9:

  • Review pages 140-141
Lesson 9
Night Sailing and Navigation (3 hrs)

This three-hour on-the-water class is given in the evening once a month at each office, and is designed to help you navigate and practice your skills sailing after dark. We'll work on recognizing lights and landmarks and the use of triangulation of bearings to determine our position. Take this class when you are comfortable with your navigation skills, and prior to any night sailing charter, (after lesson 8.) Class dates are in the Newsletter or the events calendar on our web site.

A Note About the Homework and Practice: This course covers a great deal of material in a fast moving, concentrated form. To get the most from the course and better enjoy your sailing activities, it is essential that you carefully study the course materials, complete your homework exercises, and practice what you learn. We recommend that you go out on daysails, charter with your fellow students and friends, and/or get involved with racing to master these skills. Check the message board on the website to find crew or post there.

Congratulations! Now that you have completed the Complete Sailing Course, passed both the ASA 101 and ASA 103 exams (and had your instructor sign off your log book), you have met the beginner and intermediate qualifications needed to take advanced ASA classes. Your next step is the Bareboat Charter Certification (ASA 104) offered in a fun weekend class at the island. Ask about signing up for it at your local office. Class Dates are given in your quarterly newsletter or on the web site Events Calendar.

Special Offer
Non Member's Price
Member's Price

Special Offer course includes:
•  ASA 101: Basic Keelboat Sailing
•  ASA 103: Basic Coastal Cruising, $495 Marina Sailing Membership

Weekend Classes are $1595 per person
A one-time fee of $39 will be charged for ASA certificate processing
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