Sail Trim | Online Course

Lifetime access
Rating is 4.81 (based on 1411 reviews).

Master the Wind: Sail Trim for Beginner and Advanced Sailors

This online Sail Trim course is a comprehensive course designed to equip sailors of all levels with the essential knowledge and skills to master the art of sail trimming. Whether you're just starting your sailing journey or you're an experienced sailor looking to enhance your skills, this course covers everything from foundational concepts to advanced techniques.

Through interactive lessons and practical exercises, you'll gain a deep understanding of sail controls and their impact on sail shape. From adjusting fairleads to fine-tuning the traveler, downhaul, outhaul, Cunningham, boom vang, and more, you'll learn how to optimize sail performance in any weather conditions.

By enrolling in this course, you'll not only improve your sail trim skills but also become a more knowledgeable and competent sailor. Enroll now and learn how to master the wind.

Estimated Time: 4 hours
Price: $39 (or $33 with the Captain Offshore Sailing Bundle of Courses)

Master the techniques and theories of Sail Trim with this online course. This comprehensive Sail Trim online course covers the full range of sail trim knowledge and skills, from the basics to advanced sail concepts, allowing you to truly understand the art and finesse of trimming the sails.

From understanding the different sail controls and their effects on sail shape to knowing when to adjust the fairleads, traveler, downhaul, outhaul, Cunningham, boom vang, and more - this course will provide you with the knowledge and skills necessary to optimize sail performance in any conditions.

Whether you are a beginner or an experienced sailor, this course is a must for anyone looking to improve their sail trim skills and become a knowledgeable and competent sailor. Enroll now and take the first step towards mastering the sailor’s art of sail trim.

In this Sail Trim Course you will learn:

  • How does the trim of the boat change when the crew moves forward?
  • When the upper leeward telltales are fluttering but the lower ones are flowing smoothly, what should you do?
  • When should you move the jib fairlead forward and how much?
  • Why does an inch on the main outhaul make such a difference?
  • What are 5 ways to lessen the weather helm effect?
  • How to hoist, douse, and trim a spinnaker

We guarantee both your satisfaction AND Lifetime access to any sailing course you buy from us

More about the Sail Trim Online Course

  • This comprehensive Sail Trim online course covers the full range of sail trim knowledge and skills
  • View an excerpt from this Course
  • Simple concepts for real understanding
  • This Course takes approximately 4 hours of total time to complete
  • Take as long as you need to complete
  • Return as many times as you like to review
  • Take the online test as many times as you like
  • Adds the Sail Trim Endorsement to your Sailing Certificate
This is an ONLINE course and tests viewable in your browser window. 
Today's Investment: $39 (or $33 with the Captain Offshore Sailing Bundle of sailing courses)
Not convinced yet that online sailing courses are cool? Visit our fully interactive and completely free Sailing Course. You'll see why online e-learning is SO MUCH BETTER than a boring old Book.

You will receive access to our interactive online sailing lesson, plus a downloadable PDF document of the entire course for optional offline reading and the real-time graded test. This Sail Trim Course is a MUST for semi-experienced to experienced sailors. It is about the TRUE ART OF SAILING and the FINESSE. It is very technical and the test is difficult. Pass it the first time and we'll be impressed.

This course will take about 4 hours to complete including the test. If you really want to get the most out of sailing then this clinic is well worth the $39 investment in creating more exhilaration on your boat. Like all NauticEd sailing courses, you can revisit to brush up as many times as you like for life for FREE.

The author, Captain Ed Mapes is one of the best. He conducts seminars in most of the sailing boat shows throughout the United States. His informative articles can often be seen in many of the major sailing magazines. Captain Mapes is the owner of Voyager Ocean Passages where students take extended ocean passages and learn firsthand the real art of sailing. In this clinic, you'll learn the finer points of sail trim. The first time out after taking this Sail Trim Course you'll realize that your $39 was invested well. So don't touch that mainsheet yet, the traveler might be the best adjustment.

Having a properly trimmed and balanced boat gives the sailor a feeling of mastery and a quiet sense of inner peace. Please enjoy Captain Ed Mapes' Sail Trim Course.

Register for this course now, get more out of your boat, get more out of sailing, and enjoy life - all for just $39. With thousands of excited NauticEd Students, we can't imagine why, but if you did not receive $39 in value from this course then contact us and we'll happily refund your investment.

If you still have questions about NauticEd, the courses, and/or the sailing certifications, just contact us via email or phone we're happy to help. Otherwise, let's get started with registering for this course now!

Instructor Ed Mapes
By Ed Mapes
USCG Captain Master Mariner

Instructor Grant Headifen
By Grant Headifen
NauticEd Global Director of Education


View Sail Trim Course excerpt

Student Reviews

Robert J.
2024, 11 Jul. 00:53

Explained trimming better than I’ve heard in other courses. This is the best nauticed course I’ve taken (so far).

Jeff H.
2024, 11 Jun. 16:17

Great info - great animations

Nigel J.
2024, 11 May. 01:48

Very easy to understand, loved the animation

Jason V.
2024, 25 Jan. 02:48

Provides great visuals for gaining abetter understanding of wind and its interactions with the sails

Michael P.
2023, 10 Dec. 21:50

Extremely well presented in an easy to understand and comprehensive manner.

Terri P.
2023, 27 Sep. 20:07

Spinnaker chapter - illustrations are easier to understand than written explanations on this topic.

Gisle H.
2023, 15 Aug. 21:02

Good summary with lots of practical tips

Terence H.
2023, 09 Mar. 18:25

Comprehensive, covers everything that advanced sail trim should include. Th e only thing after this course is to go on water and practice.

Mark D.
2022, 09 Nov. 06:55

Initially I was disapointed but then I realised it is a "clinic" and builds on the intro sail trim course. As I've done a fair bit of bowman duties on a racing yacht I knew a lot of it already. However the course made it very clear to me as to why my amateur racing experince was usually frustrating due to poor performance most of the time! Our perfomance upwind and to a lesser extent under spinnaker was never as good as when we had a professional skipper on the boat. The clinic explains why and makes me realise we only ever did about 50% of the trimming at best outlined in the clinic. The spinnaker section of the clinic in particular was very challenging to me as we never used the tweaker or really understood proper positioning of the sail via the sheet on the different angles! Hower we did get the pole horizontal position correct but never considered the vertical positioning. I cannot wait to try these "additional" trimming considerations on my own small crusing yacht and maybe on the racer as well! Thank you so much for opening my eyes to this whole new world!

2022, 26 Oct. 21:30

It was very informative, had the most challenging test questions

Amanda S.
2022, 18 Sep. 15:04

Nice graphics and with advanced trim skills

Joe K.
2022, 27 Aug. 15:46

I love the intuitive way the courses have been created. The fact that the material is available to view again later is very useful as a refresher when it's been a while since the course was taken. The explanations on the test as to why you got an answer wrong is very helpful in correcting your understandings.

  • 1
  • 2
Showing 1 - 12 of last 18 reviews.
List Price: $39.00

Excerpt from the course

Expand Excerpt from the course

So far, we’ve hoisted the jib, adjusted halyard tension, and trimmed the sheet so that telltales at the bottom and middle sections stream back well.  Now it’s time to compare telltales from bottom to top.  Inequalities are corrected by adjusting the jib fairlead position.

jib too far open

Figure 3a: The jib fairlead is positioned too far aft, opening the upper leech and spilling air out.  The upper telltale flutters forward because the wind is choked off from that part of the sail. This is corrected by moving the fairlead forward

Figure 3a illustrates a sail with its lead too far aft, with the upper sail presented to the wind at too broad an angle.  Insufficient airflow and turbulence cause the upper windward (red) jib telltale to dance forward while the middle and lower stream back nicely.  The leech is allowed to open up and air spills out of the sail aloft.  The loss of air pressure decreases left and drive, slowing the boat down. 

Other sailing courses you might enjoy

Bareboat Charter 
Storm Tactics

Collapse Excerpt from the course

Sea talk testimonials

I really appreciate your website and services. Living on the East Coast the winter gets really looooong. Having a site like yours to work on is a great way to stay tuned into sailing and to improve your skills.

John R, Student

Trusted by the world's leading sailing companies