ASA Membership

American Sailing Association membership is about the future of sailing, access to the water, the environment and you!

The ASA is a community of 350 sailing schools, 7,000 instructors and over 500,000 sailors that all share a common bond – the love of sailing.

ASA membership supports the sailing community in the following ways…

Educational Programs

At ASA, our educational programs are battle tested and proven to produce highly competent sailors. ASA schools are hand-picked and counseled to keep the quality of the facilities high. ASA instructor qualifications are rigid and demanding to insure excellent educational results.

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Environmental Initiatives

ASA is passionate about keeping our oceans and waterways clean. Part of your membership goes towards organizations that are committed to our common cause – the elimination of toxic plastics and other harmful pollutants that destroy our environment.

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Boating Legislation

The ASA interacts with the U.S. Coast Guard and works with other major stakeholders to positively affect boating legislation and safety education throughout the country.

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Sailing Outreach

The ASA has a number of programs designed to introduce the sport of sailing to new people and to encourage more people to participate in the sport of sailing.

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Educational Programs

Our goal is to develop a wide range of sailing educational tools & resources for sailors of all levels. The goal is to enable more people to take part in the sport of sailing safely, with the proper training and respect for their responsibilities as boaters, ensuring that sailing will be safer, smarter, and more fun for everybody.
The American Sailing Association introduced certifications and developed national standards for sailing education in the United States over 35 years ago. Today, with 350+ sailing schools worldwide we’ve taught over 1/2 million people to sail and awarded another 1/2 million certifications to higher levels of sailing proficiency. ASA represents the largest and most trusted network of schools in the United States. Earning an ASA certification proves your sailing ability to the world and it gives you the confidence to maximize your sailing experience.
ASA’s sailing textbooks are considered “best in class”. They provide the most comprehensive education and boating safety learn-to-sail guide. The collection of 4 textbooks complements the ASA 101, 103, 104, and 114 certifications. Incorporated in the textbooks are useful illustrations and exceptional photographs of complex sailing concepts. There are also chapter end quizzes and a glossary to help sailors to navigate their way through the extensive nautical terminology.
Your First Sail is the American Sailing Association’s short, fun, online sailing course designed to familiarize beginner sailors with the world of sailing. The course, which works on desktop and mobile devices, combines videos and illustrations that teach users how a sailboat works, the common commands used to steer one, and some basic sailing terminology. Each section ends with an interactive quiz and there is a final examination where the new sailor can earn a certificate of completion. Taking this online course ensures that beginner sailors get the most out of their time on the water, and enables them to actively participate in the magic of sailing!
Sailing Challenge
Sailing Challenge is a cutting-edge, mobile gaming app designed as a fun learning aid to help illustrate the principles of sailing in a rich interactive and entertaining format. Sailing Challenge combines the most innovative thinking in the digital education field with ASA’s experience in teaching sailing to create a game that allows players to climb aboard, take control of the tiller in one hand and the mainsheet in the other, and sail off on a virtual sea of fun. Available on iOS & Android
The American Sailing Association has an ever growing library of educational videos that covers a wide variety of sailing topics. Learn the finer points of sailing maneuvers with our Sailing Made Easy series, or practice your knots with the Knots Made Easy videos, or improve your knowledge about docking with your Docking Made Easy video series.

Your membership helps us to further your sailing education!


Boating Legislation

Since its inception the ASA has opposed restrictive boating legislation and fought for boaters’ rights. ASA has worked diligently to keep governmental licensing of watercraft and their owners at bay and allow students to attend volunteer educational programs such as ASA’s on the water keelboat training.

ASA is represented on the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA) Education Standards Panel (ESP), and is a member of the American Boat and Yacht Council (ABYC) Project Technical Committee (PTC) for the National On-Water Standards (NOWS) program.

Lenny Shabes founded the American Sailing Association, in 1982, and is still the Chairman of the Board.

Lenny presently serves on the board of directors of Sail America, the renowned trade association for the U.S. sailing industry. Sail America’s purpose is to promote and foster the sport of sailing and it’s a great opportunity for the sailing industry work together to accomplish a common goal.

About Lenny Shabes
Lenny Shabes started his business career in the early 70s as a pioneer in the nascent home theater market. He founded “The Video Centers”, America’s first home video specialty chain of stores. He built seven stores, licensed thousands of films, and successfully sold the business to the Federated Group in 1980. After the sale his true love took front and center and he founded the American Sailing Association, in 1982. In the early 1990s he formed “WATV Productions”, a specialty television programming, production service, and consulting company. Lenny produced and delivered over 2000 episodes to multiple cable networks including; Discovery, Velocity, Spike, ESPN, TLC, Outdoor Channel, Outdoor Life Network, Speed, National Geographic’s, and, Fox Sports. Lenny is a successful entrepreneur and believes that the ASA is his greatest achievement.

Become an ASA member and we’ll make sure your voice will be heard…


Environmental & Charitable Initiatives

ASA is committed to helping overcome the problems, such as plastic pollution, that plague our oceans, lakes, & rivers. We will be concentrating on researching, publicizing and donating to organizations that share our environmental values.
We need your help. Join ASA now!

Every Year
Seabirds Die From Getting Tangled In AND/OR Eating Plastic
Every Year
marine mammals die from getting tangled in and/or eating plastic
there are currenlty
500 trillion
pieces of plastic estimated to be floating worldwide
in the year
there will be more plastic in the ocean than fish
(by weight)

Join ASA and together with our partners we can make a difference!

Sailors For The Sea

Sailors for the Sea unites boaters to protect the ocean. Whether you race your sunfish on a lake, or are on your 20th circumnavigation – you have the power to solve the most serious threats to our ocean. Sailors for the Sea’s programs and social media are creating a powerful wave of change – but we know it’s going to take all of us to get the job done.

The Ocean Cleanup

Founded by Dutchman Boyan Slat, before he turned 20, The Ocean Cleanup successfully completed a record breaking crowd funding campaign in 2014. They raised over US$ 2 million of funds which they’ve been using to carry out research expeditions, such as the Mega Expedition, as well as develop technology that will be used to clean the oceans of plastic.

Hands Across The Sea

Founded by bluewater sailors Tom and Harriet Linskey in 2007, Hands Across the Sea, a non-profit organization, has been raising child literacy levels in the Eastern Caribbean by sending new books asked for by teachers and school principals, creating and rejuvenating lending libraries (usually at schools), and fostering sustainability with ongoing monitoring and support.

Hands Across The Sea

#CherishOurOceans is ASA’s on going mission to showcase people, products and companies that are taking action towards protecting our oceans. We like and support Norton sunglasses and 4Oceans bracelets that are made from reclaimed plastic and plant based materials and campaigns like #StopSucking that discourages the use of plastic straws.

Plastic Pollution Purge

To help clean up our waterways, the American Sailing Association, the world’s largest sailing organization and America’s sail education authority, announces a new crusade… Operation “Plastic Pollution Purge”. The heart of the program is the responsible use of plastic and to always bring back more plastic than you take.

Sailing Outreach

ASA is dedicated to providing resources that make sailing accessible to everyone.



ASA’s GO SAILING app helps you find crew or apply to be crew on other skippers’ trips. There are also sailing related social events, seminars, and sailing lessons on the app. GO SAILING is the best free sailing app for connecting to your local sailing & boating community. The app is available at no cost for iOS, Android, and on the web.



Flotilla sailing charter vacations bring together a fleet of sailboats, each operating independently with its own crew, along with a lead boat and flotilla leader who knows the local area well. By joining a flotilla, you can enjoy the freedom of skippering your own boat but have comfort in knowing that support and advice are on hand to help with navigation and local weather.



ASA hosts many different events throughout the year that bring members together to enjoy a sailing related experience. Whether it’s a luxury charter aboard a mega yacht, or a luncheon to talk about the America’s Cup these events are a great opportunity to meet like minded people who share the same passion as you – sailing!

ASA Membership Benefits

  • We saved for our vacation, but never dreamed we could save during our vacation. Our ASA membership paid for itself the first time we used it. We couldn’t believe how much we saved.

  • ASA membership plays a part in each and every sailing experience. We learn about fascinating new destinations and techniques from the books and magazines.

  • ASA Community

    Your membership dollars directly support our ability to enhance your experience on the water and grow the sport of sailing. As an ASA member you’ll have the distinction of being part of a group of sailors that cares about the sport and the oceans & waterways where it all happens!

  • ASA Membership Card & Membership Portal

    Your personalized ASA membership card includes a complete listing of all your ASA certification achieved. You can also access your ASA Membership through our online portal.

  • American Sailing Journal

    A subscription to ASA’s monthly electronic newsletter the American Sailing Journal – packed with sailing tips, lifestyle articles, event information and more.

  • Member Only Specials & Partner Discounts

    ASA Members can enjoy special pricing and seasonal deals on ASA merchandise as well as great products and services from our partners, including West Marine, Weems & Plath, and more

Frequently Asked Questions

Additional Partners