FAQ's about NauticEd Online Sailing School.
I'm just getting started in learning to sail - what do you recommend?
Can I really learn to sail online?
We must ask ourselves - is sailing merely holding onto the wheel and steering a straight course or does it encompass the vast amount of information and learning the goes along with the safe operation of a sailboat and responsibility for the crews lives?
At NauticEd, we believe that sailors must have the essential information and knowledge ingrained before commanding a sailboat, or if they are crew, they must understand the "why" in the "pull that line" order. You can spend years figuring out the sail trim by trial and error or you can read up on the theory. Understanding the weather is not something you can learn on the water. Navigation is another one - you get the picture
We also believe that students (we're all students for life when it comes to sailing) have got to get on the water to help burn in that information. So we've created the best of both worlds. Learn the essentials and finer points of sailing, online - in your own time - at your own pace - when ever you have a spare moment. Now spend your weekend and other available water time actually on the water either practicing the knowledge or with a professional sailing instructor - but not in a classroom.
If you're getting started in sailing, we recommend that you begin with the basics with either the Crew Sailing Course or if you aspire to command a boat, the Skipper Sailing Course. Then as your thirst for sailing knowledge increases, take the other specialized sailing lessons that interest you. The first Clinic we recommend is Maneuvering and Docking a Sailboat Under Power. Learn the theory before practically banging into the dock.
If you're a more advanced sailor, then we suggest you review our list of recommended sailing lessons to select which interests you most.
What is NauticEd?
NauticEd is an online sailing school. Students learn basic to advanced sailing skills via online sailing lessons and instruction. Once a student has passed a sailing course, NauticEd will direct the student to a local sailing school for practical sailing instruction.
Can I return to brush up on the sailing instruction material at any time?
Yes, you can return to your NauticEd sailing lessons as many times as you like for life. Additionally, you can take the test as many times as you like. In fact you're encouraged to take the tests often to make sure your sailing skills are maintained. Again, the sailing instruction is free forever as soon as you're registered for each course.
Tell me about Sailing Certifications.
Certifications across most recreational industries are largely private company certifications and not government sponsored. In the United States, the only government recognized boating certification is the United States Coast Guard Captain's License and is used for commercial operation of a vessel. This license is not incredibly difficult to attain however the candidate must have a combined 360 days service on a boat and pass extensive tests and security investigations. For the average boater it is not necessary to attain this level, yet the information is extremely valuable. Thus private organizations offer education and consequently a sailing certification that proves the student has absorbed the information via a test.
Some countries and even States with in the USA require a state government recognized water safety course. These are good yet there is no specific sailing information in these courses.
The NauticEd Sailing Certification focuses on delivering boating safety and sailing information to students. It documents on the water experience, theory courses and practical verification from sailing schools. More information on the NauticEd Sailing Certification.
For Students there are two things to look at when gaining a sailing certification from these private companies. Is the education of a proper standard and is the certification recognized by others.
The NauticEd educational online sailing classes have been written by our faculty of sailing educators. All are vastly experienced USCG Licensed Captains or University professors. The NauticEd certification is also accepted by major sailing charter companies.
Do Sailing Charter Companies accept the NauticEd Certification when I want to take a sailing vacation?
Yes. Sailing Charter companies like Sunsail, BVI Yacht Charters, TMM, Kiriacoulis and Anacortes Yacht charters recognize the NauticEd certification. However, as with all sailing certifications, these charter companies require an extensive practical sailing resume to back up the theory skills. It is standard practice for a sailing charter company to require a test sail with a sailing instructor before the boat is released no matter what sailing certification the charterer has achieved including ASA, CSA, US Sailing, RYA, or NauticEd for that matter - and rightly so. However more often than not, a properly documented resume with extensive experience and proper certification will gain a waiver of the test sail.
I hate tests, why should I take the test?
Well first off, the test is in a totally relaxed format. It's multiple choice and the NauticEd software grades your test in real time. If you get a question wrong it will tell you instantly and help you with the correct answer. You can take the test as many times as you like. The questions are randomized so you are presented with a different set of questions each time. You can stop half way through the test, have dinner, feed the kids, get back to work, whatever - then log back in and start where you left off. It's a no stress environment. Additionally as soon as you pass the test, the sailing certification is instantly available for you to download.
What is the difference between a sailing course and a sailing clinic?
The Skipper and Crew sailing courses are comprehensive courses the teach sailing across the broad range of skills you need when learning to sail competently. The sailing clinics dive deep into that specific topic. Thus you can cherry pick the topics that you are most interested in.
Who should take the NauticEd Courses and Clinics?
Everyone who is passionate about sailing and everyone who is considering sailing as a recreational activity should take the NauticEd courses and clinics in addition to getting out on the water. These courses are designed to make you a safer sailor as well as help you and your crew enjoy the sailing lifestyle. For example, the Maneuvering a Sailboat under Power clinic is guaranteed to save you from expensive gel coat scratches at a minimum and perhaps even much more costly damage. It will have you confidently maneuvering a large sailboat in a tiny marina under high cross wind conditions. This is a highly recommended clinic.
I'm just getting started in learning to sail - what do you recommend?
If you're planning on taking the helm on a sailboat, then most certainly the Skipper Course is the place to start. It is a comprehensive course that will take you about 15-20 hours to complete. If you have a good grasp of the material, you'll pass the online test and be able to instantly download your certificate. You'll then be ready for practical helm-time instruction and the instructor will spend more time with you on practical sailing instruction rather than wasting time on theory.
Who should take the crew course?
If you're wanting a good understanding of what is going on - on a sailboat, then the Qualified Crew course is for you. If you'd rather participate than just watch then it's a lot more enjoyable if you understand why you're pulling on a line or adjusting the sail. Learn a few important knots that your Skipper will be able to rely upon. Take the helm and know what to do while the skipper is taking a break. Look knowledgeable in front of others on the boat. And - in the "just what if" scenario of the skipper falling over board - you'll know what to do.
I'm a sailing school - can I use NauticEd for my students?
Yes, NauticEd was designed with sailing schools in mind. If you're an existing established sailing school, NauticEd would like to talk with you to help get our students out on the water to gain practical sailing endorsements on their certificates.
When should I take the Bareboat Charter Clinic?
Take the Bareboat Charter Clinic if you're going to charter a sailboat on a chartered sailing vacation and/or if you want to gain the Rank of Bareboat Charter Master. The clinic was written by Captain Ed Mapes and Captain Grant Headifen. Both have done extensive chartering all over the world and know all the tricks and nuances to you're your sailing vacation more safe and enjoyable. In addition, the Clinic was designed to also have your crew to take the course. This increases the fun that the crew will have and ensure they are knowledgeable about all the boat systems.
We're a Sailing Charter Company - how can we align with NauticEd?
Just contact our office at USA +1- 512-696-1070. We'll show you through the NauticEd Courses and confirm student certifications. You'll quickly see why other charter companies are accepting the certification (combined with a practical sailing resume of course).
Across all industries, there is more than a trend to go to online education - it's more like a towering tidal wave. And it is even more prevalent in extracurricular and extra-career activities where people just don't have the time to sit in a classroom on a Saturday morning.
The advantages of online sailing lessons is obvious. Students can break up the sailing instruction into bite size chunks that suits their schedule. They can access the information at their finger tips. If they want to dive slightly deeper into a topic they can do that instantly.
Sailing, to some, is such an elusive and mysterious sport yet they wonder why so many people have such high passion. Online lessons can move that person from mere wonder to taking an online sailing course and gaining some skills so that real action towards practical sailing instruction can then take place. Thus more people are getting into sailing because of NauticEd's fun, educational and entertaining courses.
Sailing instruction on the internet is certainly available but it is spread wide and thin while the quality varies from amateur videos on youtube to good instruction - but perhaps just on one topic. NauticEd is a one stop quality shop which includes a branded and recognized certification that students can use forever.
In addition, the trend in sailing is to go to larger and larger (and more comfortable) sailboats. Yet very little sailing instruction focuses on this. Many certification companies worldwide start students on small boats and expect them to extrapolate their skills to larger boats. NauticEd focuses specifically on teaching people to sail on larger modern sailboats.
Who is behind NauticEd?
NauticEd was founded by Captain Grant Headifen, USCG 50 Ton Master, who is widely known as the father of fractional use of sailboats. He developed the companies, SailTime, Beneteau Fractional Yachting and Seafaring 360 and consults to countless other companies on how best to set up shared systems for sailboats. In doing this, Headifen recognized that more than 50% of people getting into sailing had very little experience and needed guidance in the best ways to get sailing education. And even the people with experience were hungry for more advanced learning. Thus the opportunity to serve the sailing community through a high tech high touch approach was born. The result? - NauticEd!
Today, NauticEd has grown to thousands of satisfied students and is becoming the default internet portal for sailors to further their skills and gain certification. Several major companies are endorsing NauticEd including Beneteau - the largest sailboat manufacturer in the world, Blue Water Sailing Magazine, Latitudes and Attitudes Magazine, Profurl, Harken and West Marine.
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