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Learn to Sail: School Sailing Programs

West Vancouver Yacht  Club (WVYC) has been delivering high-quality sailing programs to schools on the North shore for many years and this year is proud to announce the introduction of the North Shore School Sailing League program in addition to our one and two-day programs. 

Why Sailing


Sailing is a physically and mentally challenging sport in which you can participate in it for life. It is an inclusive sport that helps build personal and social skills such as self-reliance, responsibility, and co-operation while enjoying an outdoor, unstructured environment.

To teach sailing, Sail Canada has developed the CANSail program.  Based on the Long Term Athlete Development program set forth by Canadian Sport for Life, the program utilizes age appropriate skills and equipment for athletic success allowing athletes of different ages to work together. 

“As a teacher in North Vancouver who has taken students on a sailing field trip, it has been an amazing experience for the students. The students learned to safely maneuver the sailing boats to and from the dock and all were smiling. Sailing was a brand new skill for most of the students but many ended up taking sailing lessons later on because of the taste they got of the sport that one day.”
- Tine Moberg-Parker, Teacher


  • 1 Day Course
    • Take Your Class Sailing!

      The West Vancouver Yacht Club offers Introductory Dinghy Sailing Classes to schools for Grades K through 12. The goal of the program is to promote safe boating while exposing as many kids as possible to a recreational water-sport like sailing. Living on the west coast, it's important that students learn how to act safely and responsibly around the water. Sailing is the perfect medium to learn about safe boating, and, of course, an exciting and memorable way to begin or end the school year. Classes of up to 30 students can enroll in courses tailored for your needs, with special attention paid to the age of the students and time available for learning.

      There are several class structures to choose from, please contact our Sailing Director for details.

      All classes are taught by Canadian Yachting Association certified instructors who are trained to make sailing both fun and safe. The boats used for . Elementary aged sailors will use Optimists and high school sailors will use a Flying Junior.  All equipment including PFD's (life jackets) is included. Courses are offered from May through June and September through October. A minimum of 15 students are required for each class.

      This is a great opportunity to give students a taste of the exciting sport of sailing and water safety. If you are interested in hearing more about WVYC's School Sailing Program, or consult other teachers about their sailing experiences, please contact our Sailing Director.


  • 2 Day Course
    • This 2 day course starts with the basic skills covered in CANSail 1, such steering, towing and sailing in a straight line and then continues to develop other skills such as tacking, gibing, and sail setting in a fun and safe way.  All sailors will be able to explore more of sailing with less reliance on coaches to get in and out of sailing areas.

      All classes are taught by Canadian Yachting Association certified instructors who are trained to make sailing both fun and safe. The boats used for . Elementary aged sailors will use Optimists and high school sailors will use a Flying Junior.  All equipment including PFD's (life jackets) is included. Courses are offered from May through June and September through October. A minimum of 15 students are required for each class.


      This is a great opportunity to give students a taste of the exciting sport of sailing and water safety. If you are interested in hearing more about WVYC's School Sailing Program, or consult other teachers about their sailing experiences, please contact our Sailing Director.

       

  • North Shore School Sailing League Program
    • North Shore School Sailing League Program – 8 weeks


      This exciting program has been developed to allow students, with no prior sailing experience, to learn to sail (using the CANSail 1 and 2 syllabus) and then develop basic racing skills to allow them to compete in friendly inter-school regattas. The program is based on the highly successful Lower Vancouver Island Youth School Sailing League which has grown over the last 2 years to involve 183 students from 18 different schools participating in 2014.

      Starting in April, the program runs over 8 consecutive weeks, consisting of 1 session during the week, each week and an additional 5 one day race training sessions to be held at the weekends including a final interschool regatta held in June.

      The program is open to students in grades 5 to 12 using age appropriate boats. Sailors in school grades 5 to 7 will be introduced to sailing using the Optimist dinghy which is specifically designed for single handers of this age, allowing sailors to handle a wide range of conditions and skill development. Sailors in Grades 8 to 12 will use double handed boats such as Flying Juniors (FJ’s) and Club 420’s. These boats are faster, requiring the development of team work to allow them to sail most effectively.

      North Shore School Sailing League Program Rules


      • 8 Sailors per team (Schools can combine to form teams)

      • Boats will be appropriate to athlete’s stage / age, no trapeze or spinnakers.

      • The racing Rules of Sailing 2013-2016 shall be followed as well as the Sailing instructions and Notice of Race.

      • 1-weekday practice plus 5 one-day races / practices at the weekend

      Teachers / Parent Volunteers


      Each school needs to provide an adult representative to attend and assist at all practices. Included in the program fee, WVYC will help this person obtain their Pleasure Craft Operators Card (PCOC) and the CANSail Safety Boat qualification. This is also a great opportunity to learn a bit about how to teach sailing.

      Cost


      $200 (+ relevant taxes) per student. This includes over 40hrs of instruction by qualified CANSail Coaches, use of equipment and an inter-school regatta at the end of the course.
 

Why West Vancouver Yacht Club? 

·        Strong emphasis on safety and all our instructors are Sail Canada qualified and hold current First Aid, Sail Canada Safety Boat and Pleasure Craft Operators Card qualifications.

·        Large variety of courses which can be customized

·        Dedicated learning centre with a fully equipped classroom and full changing rooms

·        Well maintained fleets of age appropriate boats

·        Located close to the freeway and in a location renown for excellent sailing conditions.

 

Provided by WVYC

·        CANSail qualified coaches

·        Appropriate boats for age of sailors, lifejackets

·        Checklick (CANSail database tracking qualfications)

·        Regatta organization (if applicable)

N.B. WVYC operates a zero tolerances bullying policy and holds the right to remove the student from the program.

 

What the School Needs to Provide

·        Transport of sailors to and from the Club

·        Provide emergency contacts

·        A responsible parent or teacher coordinator.

·        A specific adult representative for every practice

  

Frequently Asked Questions


Q: Do I need to be able to swim?
A: No, you will be provided with a life jacket if you do not have your own. There are coaches out on the water to provide assistance if you end up in the water.

Q: What should I bring / wear?
A: Layers provide you more flexibility. Clothing with a high cotton percentage is not recommended, if you have a wetsuit this is always recommended but Lycra, wool and waterproof clothing are good alternatives. Shoes (runners or neoprene boots that can get wet) and toque/sun hat.

Q: Is previous sailing experience required?
A: No, you will be taught all the skills you require to learn to sail.