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Learn to Sail Training with Yachting New Zealand

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Yachting New Zealand (YNZ) is the national body for competitive and recreational sailing in New Zealand and represents the needs and interests of over 160 member clubs and class associations throughout New Zealand. Yachting New Zealand works towards the goal of ensuring yachting remains a lifelong activity of choice for New Zealanders, and one of the leading international sports, on and off the water.

Yachting New Zealand member support include: training for coaches, club instructors, race officers, judges and race management volunteers; technical and safety support for yacht owners via Yachting New Zealand's safety inspectors; Maintains and develop the syllabus for dinghy and keelboat learn to sail programs ensuring the quality of sail training courses nationwide; management and support of national sailing programs including Learn to Sail, Sailsafe, Sailing… Have a Go! and NCEA; and more.

Learn to Sail is a national program developed by Yachting New Zealand. The program covers the basic skills and is offered in both a Dinghy sailing option and a Keelboat sailing option. While the program is taught mainly at Yacht Clubs it is also offered by affiliated Commercial Sailing Schools.

You may also read: Online Sailing Certifications & RYA Skipper Theory

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Training Programs

Keelboats Programs

  • Level 1 Introduction to Keelboat Sailing: The program includes - Hazards, equipment, parts of the boat and sailing definitions; Hoisting and changing the mainsail and basics of sail trim and telltale use; Avoiding collisions and recovering a man overboard; Understanding weather forecasts and the clothing suitable for different conditions; Learning a variety of knots and their uses; Performing all roles associated with tacking, gibing and other crew positions of a boat; and A knowledge of the ‘Give Way’ rules.
  • Level 2 Competent Cruising Crew: The program includes - Performing safety checks; The correct procedure for use of VHF radio in an emergency; An understanding of a marine engine, carrying out pre start motor checks and how to start and maneuver; Berthing and man overboard exercises under power and under sail; Hoisting and setting the jib/main, changing the headsail, tacking/gibing and sail trimming skills in all crew positions; Helming a boat under instruction; Planning a voyage and use basic navigation skills; Experiencing a night sail (optional); A range of anchoring techniques; Good boat keeping; ‘Rules of the Road’ on the water; and Tow and row a dinghy safely including coming alongside and transferring passengers.
  • Level 3 Overnight Skipper: The program includes - Planning for safe voyages; Communication systems; Engine management; Heavy weather precautions; Responsible navigation; Minor and less minor emergencies; Boat Keeping and Maintenance; Galley Skills, stocking the boat with food; Night watch & spending at least one night on board; and Planning & carrying out a sail of not less than 3 days.

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