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Keelboat & Cruising, Power Boating, Navigation, Personal Survival, Radio Licensing, Instructors & Coaches & Other Programs for Sailing Newbies & Professionals

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Established in 1931, Sail Canada is the Canadian national governing body for the sport of sailing. Sail Canada is committed to excellence in performance, developing leaders and training the sailors. The pursuit of Olympic success fuels the focus not only on its Team athletes but also on Canada’s next generation of performance sailors, and all the partners, clubs and coaches who support them.

Sailing is one of the leading and lifelong recreational and competitive sport in Canada, inspired by exceptional achievements from Canadians sailing in world and international competitions. From dinghies to keelboats, cruising to navigation, windsurfing to powerboating and parasailing, Sail Canada set standards and deliver programs for Canadians of all ages and abilities.


Sail Canada programs are delivered with the support of Provincial Sailing Associations and Member Clubs, Schools and Organizations across Canada. Sail Canada’s Offshore Group monitors and promotes Offshore Racing activities in Canada. The Offshore group is represented on the World Sailing Oceanic and Offshore and Special Regulations committees.

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Training Programs




Navigation & Seamanship Training

Keelboat & Cruising Programs

  • Introduction to Boating: To introduce novice boaters to safe practices when preparing to leave the dock, while underway, and when returning to dock.
  • Start Keelboat Sailing: To be able to sail safely as crew of a sloop rigged keelboat 6 to 12 meters with an outboard or inboard motor in 5 - 20 knots (not gusting over 25 knots) of wind by day.
  • Keelboat Spinnaker: To be able to sail safely as crew of a sloop rigged keelboat 6 to 12 meters while working with a spinnaker in light to moderate wind and sea conditions by day.
  • Basic Crew: o be able to cruise safely in familiar waters as competent crew of a sloop rigged keelboat of 6 to 10 meters with an outboard or inboard motor in moderate wind and sea conditions by day.
  • Basic Cruising: To be able to cruise safely in familiar waters as both skipper and crew of a sloop rigged keelboat of 6 to 10 meters with an outboard or inboard motor in moderate wind and sea conditions by day.
  • Introduction to Keelboat Racing: To be able to participate in local club white sail (non-spinnaker) races as crew and/or helm, of a sloop-rigged keelboat of 6 to 12 meters with an outboard or inboard motor in 5 - 20 knots (not gusting over 25 knots) of wind by day, with sufficient understanding of the racing rules, race management procedures, and tactics to successfully complete the race in an enjoyable manner.
  • Basic Keelboat Racing: To be able to participate in local club white sail (non-spinnaker) races as skipper, helm and crew, of a sloop-rigged keelboat of 6 to 12 meters with an outboard or inboard motor in 5 - 20 knots (not gusting over 25 knots) of wind by day, with sufficient understanding of the racing rules, race management procedures, and tactics to successfully complete the race in an enjoyable manner.
  • Intermediate Crew: To be able to cruise safely as crew of a sailing yacht of 9 to 12 meters, sloop rigged with an inboard engine, in moderate wind and sea conditions by day.
  • Intermediate Cruising: To be able to cruise safely as both skipper and crew of a sailing yacht of 9 to 12 meters, sloop rigged with an inboard engine, in moderate wind and sea conditions by day.
  • Catamaran Endorsement: To be able to cruise safely as both skipper and crew of cruising catamaran of 9 to 15 meters, sloop rigged, with twin engines, in moderate wind and sea conditions by day.
  • Advanced Crew: To be able to act safely as crew of a sailing cruiser of 10 - 15 meters, any modern rig and inboard engine, operating within 100 miles of shore by day and night in coastal or coastal or inland water in any weather.
  • Advanced Cruising: To be able to act safely as skipper and crew of a sailing cruiser of 10 - 15 meters, any modern rig and inboard engine, operating within 100 miles of shore by day and night in coastal or inland water in any weather.
  • Offshore Crew: To be able to safely act as crew in a sailing cruiser on an offshore passage navigated by celestial and electronic means without visual reference to terrestrial objects.
  • Offshore Cruising: To be able to safely act as skipper and crew in a sailing cruiser on an offshore passage navigated by celestial and electronic means without visual reference to terrestrial objects.

Power Boating Programs

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  • Basic Outboard: To be able to operate safely in familiar waters as skipper of a craft up to 6 meters and powered by an outboard engine under 55 kW (75 hp).
  • Basic Powerboat: To be able to operate safely in local waters as skipper of craft over 6 meters and powered by an engine over 55 kW (75 hp).
  • Intermediate Powerboat: To be able to operate safely as a skipper a powerboat between 9 to 12 meters with inboard engine(s) by day in moderate wind and sea conditions.

Navigation Programs

  • Basic Coastal Navigation: To be able to plan and to safely navigate by day in Canadian coastal and inland local waters. This introductory course offers basic knowledge of navigation theory and is the initial course in a comprehensive set of courses offered by Sail Canada on vessel navigation.
  • Intermediate Coastal Navigation: To be able to demonstrate the navigational theory required to safely plan and execute a long continuous passage including night sailing in unfamiliar coastal or inland waters, in all conditions of visibility, with or without electronic aids. The concepts are applied and tested in the Advanced Cruising Standard.
  • Advanced Navigation: To be able to demonstrate the navigational theory required to safely navigate a vessel on a multi-day voyage in tidal waters, in all conditions of visibility and weather, in accordance with a prepared passage plan, and applying the principles and techniques of safe navigation aided by conventional and electronic instruments and radar.
  • Celestial Navigation: To be able to demonstrate the celestial navigation theory required to safely navigate a sailing cruiser on an offshore passage. The Standard is applied practically in the Offshore Cruising Standard.

Personal Survival Courses

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  • Offshore Personal Survival Course: Offshore Personal Survival training is suitable for experienced sailors who are participating in distance and offshore races and passages. The training includes classroom and practical sessions.

Radio License Programs

  • ROC(M): The ROC license is a Canadian Federal government issued card that allows you to operate a marine VHF radio.

Instructors & Coaches Programs

  • Cansail Dinghy Instructor
  • Cansail Windsurf Instructor
  • Keelboat & Cruising Instructor
  • Development Coaches
  • National Coaching Certification Program
  • PCOC Instructor
  • Power Instructor
  • ROC(M) Instructor
  • Navigation Instructor

Other Programs

  • CANSail Dinghy Program
  • CANSail Windsurf Program
  • CANSail Para Program