Learn to Sail Part 1


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SKU: LTS1- Category: Tags: ,


Part One of our Learn to Sail course covers the fundamentals of sailing. We’ll teach you how to rig and unrig the boat, leave and return to the dock safely with a bit of guidance, and adjust your sails and rudder to make the boat go where you want it to go. This is the first half of the complete course, and perfect if you just want to try out sailing without committing to the full 24-hour Learn to Sail course, you prefer a more relaxed pace, or your schedule can’t accommodate two consecutive weekends.

In twelve hours, you’ll learn enough to get you off to a good start, and you’ll probably find that you can sail with confidence with just a little bit of help from an instructor.

Scheduling courses in 2021 and possible changes for Covid-19

Keeping participants and instructors safe at all times while on and off the water is always a top priority for Courageous. We adhere to state and federal guidelines, as well as guidance issued on outdoor recreation and amateur sports. As you know, these policies on social distancing, mask wearing, and group sizes are ever-shifting. Because of this, we are remaining flexible with our course structure for 2021. Below are a few formats that will be in consideration as we count down the days until opening day on May 1!

  • One-to-One Instruction: LTS Part 1 courses would be held over the course of 2 lessons, 3 hours each, or 6 hours total.  The one-on-one environment makes for an individualized, streamlined approach to our curriculum, allowing you to cover all the course material in a shorter time than our typical multi-student format.
  • Two-to-One Instruction: LTS Part 1 courses would be held over the course of 2 lessons, 4 hours each, or 8 hours total. The ratio of 2 students to 1 instructor allows for individualized attention, space for social distancing, and the opportunity for students to learn from each other.
  • Three-to-One Instruction: In our traditional format, three students and one instructor sail together, allowing for plenty of personalized attention and teamwork. LTS 1 would be held over the course of 2 lessons, 6 hours each, or 12 hours total. 

As we get closer to May, we will reach out to students who have purchased courses with details about course structure, along with options for dates and times. Courses will be available on the weekends and weekdays; registration will be on a first-come, first-served basis.


Practical skills covered in the course

  • How to use weather forecasts to evaluate sailing conditions
  • How to board a sailboat, do an equipment safety check, and prepare to sail
  • How to rig, derig, and secure the boat to the dock
  • How to safely leave and return to the dock
  • How to maneuver the boat: starting, stopping, controlling speed, steering, tacking, jibing, getting out of irons, etc.
  • How to handle control lines and trim sails
  • How to depower sails if the wind picks up
  • How to tie the knots you’ll need
  • How to read a nautical chart of Boston Harbor (intro level)
  • How to apply the right of way rules
  • How to recognize and navigate around aids to navigation


  • Sailing terminology
  • Basic sailing theory
  • Points of sail
  • Right of way rules

Recommended Next Steps


Get your US Sailing Certification

Our curriculum is aligned with the US Sailing Basic Keelboat Curriculum. You can see the entire US Sailing Keelboat Curriculum which includes part 1 (this course) and part 2 Here
US Sailing Curriculum

Cancellation and Refund Policy: Please note that in an effort to keep our courses and memberships as affordable as possible, we must limit changes in schedule and membership. Because staff and instructors are hired and scheduled in advance, Courageous memberships, lessons, and/or other program fees are not refundable for any reason, including cancellation due to weather, or the participant’s inability to utilize the membership, lesson, or program. That said, we do understand that sometimes life gets in the way of sailing plans and, if necessary, we will work with you to reschedule for a later date. We cannot reschedule lessons within two weeks of their start date unless we are able to fill the spot with another student. All rescheduled lessons purchased before September 1 must be completed before the end of the season for which they were purchased; if purchased between September 1 and October 31, rescheduled lessons must be completed before June 30 of the following year.