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Home / Juniors / Junior Sailing Courses / Junior Sailing - Frequently Asked Questions
Home / Juniors / Junior Sailing Courses / Junior Sailing - Frequently Asked Questions

Junior Sailing - Frequently Asked Questions

Even if you have sailed with us before, please take the time to read these carefully - there have been many changes to take account of the restrictions imposed on us by COVID-19 procedures.

We'd like to thank you for booking a course with us and realise that you will probably have lots of questions about the course and the arrangements. We've tried to answer as many of the most commonly asked questions as possible in this document but please don't hesitate to contact us if your questions aren't answered here !

Do I need to do Shore Parent Duty?

Yes you do.

If you want your child to take part in junior training, then yes, shore parent duty is a compulsory requirement. We cannot accept your child on one of our courses, unless you or another adult family member can take on this duty. If you cannot fulfil this requirement, then please don't book your child on a course.

Shore Parent Duty can be very relaxing, maybe look at it as a chance to sit back, have a cup of coffee, read a book, and enjoy the view from our balcony.

Do I need to be a club member to book a place for my child on a training course ?

Normally, you don't have to be a member - but at the moment with the current limits on numbers within sports, we are limiting our Junior Sailing activities initially to members who are currently at Level 3 or above. As the summer progresses, we hope to expand that to members who have reached a certain stage within Level 2. As restrictions decrease, there is a possibility that we may be able to open up to non-members again.

What are the other advantages of membership, apart from the summer camps?

The club has a wide variety of activities and facilities for members and their guests. In a normal year, junior members may attend the Pico Club every Sunday from the start of May, and are encouraged to participate in club racing every weekend. Other events such as coaching weekends are organised from time to time, and there are also social events such as BBQs, together with winter activities such as talks and courses. We also encourage the non-sailing parents of trainees to consider joining the club as clubhouse members once the Covid-19 restrictions are lifted, our bar should be open again every Friday and Sunday as well as after sailing and during events and members are welcome to sign in guests. Or even better try out one of our introductory adult sailing courses contact us for more information on these. However current restrictions are limiting our activities and we are unsure of when we will be able to run them again.

What is the Pico Club give me some info for future reference

The Pico Club is an opportunity for younger club members (either cadet members or part of a family membership) to get out on the water in one of the club's Laser Picos, under the supervision of an instructor. It's not a formal training course and there are no exams, assessments or certificates but it's a great way for younger children to gain a little more experience in helming and crewing.

During a normal year, on-the-water activities take place most Sundays from May to September, in the future, keep an eye out on the monthly diary section (Calendar) of the club's website for exact dates and times. Additionally there are various extra-curricular activities throughout the year, these are advertised on the clubs various social media platforms, as they are being organised.

How do I make a booking?

Through our online booking system available on this website. Either through Book Online and JnrTrain or by going to the Calendar and clicking on the relevant course.

When should I book?

As soon as possible! The numbers that we can take on each course are limited as there are strict ratios of trainees to instructors for safety reasons.

How do I decide which course is the most suitable for my son or daughter?

The Irish Sailing Small Boat Scheme is a progressive scheme. Take a look at the "Which Course should I choose" guide on the training page of our website at Which Course. If you're still not sure, ask us for guidance! Unfortunately, under the current restrictions, we are initially only running courses for Level 3's and above and hoping, as the summer progresses, to expand this to Level's 2's who have achieved a certain stage within their level.

What happens if our plans change and my child is unable to attend after I have booked and paid?

We regret that we are unable to issue refunds after your booking has been accepted and a place allocated.

What equipment do I need to provide?

Under current conditions, we regret that we cannot loan out any club equipment.

Required equipment includes:-

  • A wetsuit (a "shortie" wetsuit is usually adequate for summer sailing)
  • Buoyancy aid,
  • Dinghy boots (old runners will do or maybe buy the cheapest pair of runners you can get), footwear is important bare feet are not allowed!
  • Swimming costume for under your wetsuit
  • Cagoule (lightweight waterproof top)

We also recommend that sailors wear a pair of board shorts over their wetsuit to protect the wetsuit from snagging on the sharp bits of boats and getting ripped or torn

All property must be clearly and indelibly marked with your child's name.

I'm afraid that changing facilities are currently not available, this may change over the summer, but in the meantime, trainees should arrive down in their gear and plan to return home the same way.

Don't forget sunscreen your child will be outdoors almost all day and even on cool, overcast days the sun reflects off the water.

Should my child bring their sailing gear home with them each day?

Yes, gear should not be left in the club, especially in the current climate.

Does my son or daughter have to supply their own boat ?

No. The club has a number of boats for use by trainees. If you do have your own boat, naturally we encourage your son or daughter to use it. Many trainees will want to buy their own boat after a year or two of training and we strongly encourage this please ask our instructors for advice if you are thinking of doing this.

My child has their own boat can I store it at the sailing club ?

Yes, as long as they are a paid-up member. The boat must be insured and must be registered with the club (ask for a boat registration form).

What time does the course start and end at each day ?

This year, we are looking at running two courses each week. One in the morning, for 3½ hours and one in the afternoon, again for 3½ hours. Times will vary according to the tides. You will be notified of the proposed times for each course, in advance of it starting.

What about lunch?

Courses this year will either finish before or start after lunchtime, so no lunch will be needed.

What happens if the weather is unsuitable for sailing ?

In previous years, in the eventuality of no sailing being possible, shore-side theory and activities would be organised. However, because of the current social distancing restrictions, this year, this is not possible. In the event of sailing being cancelled (this will be most likely due to adverse weather conditions), we will send out a message to all parents beforehand, informing them of this, so please check your messages before leaving the house in the morning.

In the case of days being cancelled by the club, a refund will be issued after the course is over, at a rate of 20 for each cancelled session.

Does my child need to be able to swim ?

Yes. They should feel comfortable in the water, be able to swim 25 meters (wearing a buoyancy aid) and be able to tread water for at least two minutes.

Are the children divided up into groups of similar ages ?

Trainees are grouped by ability and experience, rather than by age. In practice, this usually means that children of similar ages are grouped together but there may be a mix of ages in a group.

How do I find out more about future club activities and events ?

You can look at the club website or find us on Facebook and Instagram. However, the most important communications are sent out by email and WhatsApp to members only so the best way of finding out what's going on is to become a member!

My child has special needs and I'm not quite sure if this will work for them..

Please come and talk to us! We try to be as inclusive as possible. Unfortunately, in the current situation, we may not be able to be as flexible as normal. But talk to us and if we can't facilitate you this year, hopefully by next year, things will be back to normal and we will be able to come up with a plan.

Does the club also run courses for adults ?
Yes! Again, please keep an eye on our website and go to the Sea School & Training under Adult Training, as we hope to be back in a position to run an Adult Sail Training course later in the year. We also hope that as restrictions ease we might again run various Powerboat, Navigation, and VHF Courses all of which are also listed in this section. Alternatively, you can email us at if you have any questions that aren't answered on our website.

Last updated 13:54 on 4 April 2021

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