In 2018 we'll focus our energies on refreshing our Dinghy programmes in partnership with the Irish National Sailing Club.
Since 2015 we've invested heavily in introducing new yacht training at Irish National Sailing & Powerboat School. This focus on improving the yacht training offering has paid off, with RYA Cruising Courses beginning in 2015. Demand grew rapidly, and we’ve now added a second yacht dedicated to these programmes. Efforts now shift to refreshing the Dinghy Offering.
In partnership with the recently formed Irish National Sailing Club (2015), we have developed an offering across school and club, aiming to get more people who’ve never sailed before into Dinghy Sailing and progress onto club activities with the option of boat ownership and continuing their sailing development ever further.
Children’s Dinghy Sailing
As followers of our Facebook, Instagram and Twitter channels will have noticed we’ve made considerable investment in new performance dinghies to allow even more students to progress through advanced sailing modules. Our team of senior instructors have been designing new teaching approaches and even new programmes.
We’ve never bought into the idea that sailing must be about competition, however, we do see it’s value. Our new fleet of 6 RS Feva Dinghies will be used to allow 11-14 years students begin competitive racing, with announcements about this due shortly.
The Irish National Sailing Club will back up the school’s efforts in developing junior sailors with supports to be announced soon.
Adult Beginner Sailing
We’ve run beginner course for adults that are open to the public for 40 years. These courses are always great fun, with the feeling of mastering your own boat simply unrivalled. Our Start Sailing - Level 1 and Basic Skills – Level 2 Dinghy courses have undergone a review over the winter and we’re delighted to announce new teaching methods utilising new state-of-the-art training boats will be rolled out this season.
Adult Intermediate Sailing
The Irish National Sailing Club will play an important role in developing intermediate dinghy sailors. The club, founded by graduates and staff of the school to provide sailors a low cost, friendly and safe way to build on the skills from beginner courses is now well established and has organised a series of tailored coaching dates for members of all abilities. The key ethos that has allowed the club to flourish, it’s relaxed nature, will be to the fore in all training. This new programme kicks off this weekend, with a Laser Clinic open to members both with, and without, their own boat.
Adult Advanced Sailing
The school has recently launched a range of advanced dinghy courses, aimed at club sailors and the general sailing community alike. Skills from spinnaker sailing to dinghy day trips are all on the syllabus. Our aim is to continue to improve the confidence and competence of dinghy sailors with these programmes.
The Irish National Sailing Club's Role
The INSC is the cement holding this plan together. Sailing course providers regularly over look the key element to make a sailor better – continuous practise. The INSC fulfils this role. Dinghy sailors who have completed a Level 2 are eligible to join. The school has committed to supporting the club, by providing boats, equipment and staff as required. This has allowed the INSC to keep the club’s annual membership fee to €20, with members paying as they sail – as little as €26 for a three-hour supervised session!
Experienced dinghy sailing club members have committed to helping newer sailors find their feet and will be on hand to welcome them, and indeed join them in a boat for their first few sails. The club was recently in receipt of a Sports Capital Grant, with funds going towards the purchase of new boats specifically to accomplish this aim. The procurement process is well underway and new dinghies are expected by the end of April.
Dinghy 2018 – Secret Ingredient
The success of our refresh of dinghy sailing will hinge not on the equipment provided, new marketing approaches or overhauled training procedures, but instead will hinge on the commitment of the teams at the Irish National Sailing & Powerboat School and at the Irish National Sailing Club. Both are totally committed to boosting dinghy sailing in Dun Laoghaire and the experience of joint ventures suggests that Dinghy 2018 will be of great benefit, not only to the school or club, but to sailing in Dun Laoghaire generally.