UPDATE: Get the latest recommendations from the CDC at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/index.html
We don’t have to remind you that currently the hot topic in the news is the Corona Virus (COVID-19) but we could shed some light on how we think it affects the sailing community. After all, when we get on a boat and the breeze fills the main, we feel the tug of nature on the boat and our body; it is hard to imagine that anything can harm us. Sailing often takes us into a state of euphoria.
It’s a great feeling but is that accurate? Are we safe out on the ocean and free of the contagion? Sailing is often a refuge from our life. Sailing takes us away from the ordinary.
Currently, the recommendation from authorities is to practice social distancing. The CDC definition of social distancing is: “remaining out of congregate settings, avoiding mass gatherings and maintaining distance (approximately 6 feet) from others when possible.”
Maybe you need to be on a boat.
Why Choose Sailing In The Corona Virus Climate?
Currently, the big push is to refrain from congregating with large groups of people. Get on a boat and you can easily adhere to that suggestion. It’s you and the ocean. Never mind the large school of fish beneath the boat or the pods of dolphins that will roar past you. Those are the crowds you want. Go on the lookout for a whale or watch a soaring bird. Nature is contagious but not in the way a virus is. Getting out on the water will lift your spirits and take your mind off the general dark cloud that is currently hovering over all of our daily interactions.
We would not suggest that you cancel your summer sailing plans just yet but consider staying in the country this year for your next sailing adventure. As this situation subsides choose to stay local. Sailing schools across the country offer sailing excursions right in your backyard. From San Diego to Seattle to the Chesapeake to Florida you can find a school that offers charters that do not require you to get on an airplane.
Here are a couple of examples of flotillas in the US:
A flotilla in the US might not require a trip to an airport so you’ll adhere to the advice of avoiding non-essential air travel. A local flotilla might introduce you to waters that, while geographically close to you, might be just as foreign as an exotic port around the world. You’ll be surprised by the treasures you can find right under your nose when you attempt to be creative with your sailing excursions.
Take a Lesson at Your Local Sailing School
You don’t have to sit at home avoiding the outside world. Small class sizes at most sailing schools allow for an activity that gets you out of the house and on the water. Again, you’ll be free from the crowds and doing that thing we all love to do. Sailing!
While you may already have ASA 101 Basic Keelboat Sailing you could improve upon your sailing by moving on to ASA 103 and ASA 104. If you want to brush up on your sailing skills ASA 110 or ASA 111 could get you ready for the sailing season.
What Do You Do If the Sailing Season Has Not Officially Begun in Your Neck of the Woods?
- You can download the Sailing Challenge App or the Catamaran Challenge App to practice your sailing skills.
- Take a look at our videos to help improve your sailing education
- Get in some reading before you take a sailing course. Find an ASA textbook
ASA would like to remind you to heed the advice of national and local government agencies when dealing with this virus and the dangers that may arise from exposure to those who may be contagious.