Learn To Sail

wyc learn

2017/18 Learn To Sail – Dates and Class Offerings

Spring Offerings

LTS 1 Junior – Monday 3.30-5.30 Nov 6th thru Dec 11th (FULL)
                       – Tuesday 3.30-5.30 Nov 7th thru Dec 12th (FULL)
                       – Sunday 10-12 Nov 5th thru Dec 10th (FULL)

LTS 2 Junior – Monday 5-7 Nov 6th thru Dec 11th (FULL)

Teen Adventure Sail – Sunday 12-2 Nov 5th thru Dec 10th (FULL)

ADULT LTS1&2 – Tuesday Evenings Oct 31st thru Dec 12th (FULL)

Summer Offerings

LTS 1 Junior – Monday Evenings Jan 29th thru Mar 5th (FULL)

LTS 1 Junior Sunday 10am-12am Feb 2 thru March 10 (space limited)

LTS 2 Junior – Monday Evenings Jan 29th thru Mar 5th

Teen Adventure Sail – Sunday 12-2pm Feb 3rd thru March 10th

ADULT LTS1&2 – Tuesday Evenings Jan 30th thru Mar 13th

Day-Camp Offerings

Teen LTS 1 – 3-Day Camp December 14-16

LTS 1 Junior – 3-Day Camp Jan 18-20 (FULL)

LTS 2 Junior – 3-Day Camp Jan 24-26


WYC has limited space on instruction courses and space will be given on a first-come basis. Participants must meet minimum competency requirements and class participation will be that the discretion of the instructors.

What is Learn To Sail?
Learn to Sail is a teaching Syllabus that has been developed by Yachting New Zealand over many years to provide a fun and safe learning environment.
Participants learn how to sail a boat safely and competently in moderate conditions.  On bad weather days land teaching modules will replace sailing on the water.

Ideal Skipper
Students must be competent in the water and pass a 50m swim test before sailing. Most sailors start at around age 9 – 12. Weights range from 40 – 55 kg. To build confidence sailors capsize regularly at the start. There are up to 12 sailors in each course

Boat Options
The use of a club-owned Optimist or Open Bic (see Below) and a buoyancy vest is included in the Learn to Sail fee. All you have to provide is appropriate clothing and encouraging support!

Personal Welcome
Wanaka Yacht Club has both a warm, friendly atmosphere and a great spirit.  We work hard to provide great learning experiences and boat-loads of fun being taught to sail by our awesome volunteer coaching team.


 Questions about Learn To Sail Classes and availability  – Contact WYC

About the WYC Junior Sailing Programme

The fundamental purpose of the WYC is to introduce children to the joys of sailing and helping each participant to grow in character and personal confidence.

Level 1 will be using the MSC Optimist yachts. Levels 2 and 3 will use the O’pen Bic Class yachts. Certificates of attainment will be presented to course attendees who develop the skills taught in these courses.

Courses will be run by accredited YNZ coaches and other experienced yachtsmen and women from the WYC.

Level 1 – Start Sailing

 Safety first

 Getting to know your boat

 Capsizing

 Getting your boat in and out of the water  On the land, get set… go!

 Tacking

 Gybing

 Points of sail

 Rules and meanings

Level 2 – Sailing Fast

 Learn more lingo

 Safety advanced

 Knot knowledge

 Weather, tides and currents

 Balance essentials

 Points of sail – advanced

 Launching and retrieving more tips

 Tacking technique

 The art of gibing

 Boat handling

Level 3 – Go Racing

 Learn the basics of racing

 Getting your boat balanced and fast

 How wind, water and weight affects your boat

 Learn how to start and finish like a pro

 How wind shifts affect you and how to use them to your advantage

 Thinking smart and planning ahead

 Learn good technique and positioning for clear mark roundings

 Learn how to read and understand the forecast and what this means for your race

 Preparing yourself for the regatta

 A look at the most common rules and situations racers encounter

Learn to Sail Course Fees

Levels 1 and 2

6 Days – 2 hours each session (One Weekend day 4 hr session)……..…………….. $ 140.00


Additional Fees

All Levels – WYC Junior Membership…………………………………………………$ 30.00


Course Progression

Young sailors may join into any level but it is dependent on their experience. An interview will determine their most suited level.

Level 1: A beginner joining at Level 1 will complete the course and WYC will recommend the next step to take based on how well that student has progressed. Some youngsters may need a further course at Level 1 to gain enough confidence to step up to Level 2. Level 1 will be completed in Optimist dinghies.

Level 2: Those entering Level 2 will complete this course in the Optimist or O’pen Bic Class. Being a slightly bigger but less stable boat the Open Bic is fast and fun to sail. Youngsters that do not own an O’pen Bic will have use of a club boat for this course.

Level 3: Following completion of Level 2 the coaching in Level 3 becomes a little more advanced with race training. If a young sailor is showing natural ability and talent at the conclusion of this course, parents will be offered a way forward to either purchase their own Bic or enter the scholarship program in order for the young sailor to continue his/her development. Youngsters who own their own O’pen Bic’s may return to Level 3 as many times as they wish.

Those entering Level 3 would be expected to become members of the WYC and the O’pen Bic Association and must be members of these organisations if they wish to legally participate in organised racing.

These organisations provide and maintain valuable assets necessary for the program such as safety boats and coaching materials. They actively promote and encourage the interests of junior sailors.

What to bring when attending courses

Applicants will need to bring:

 Swim suit

 Life-jacket

 Bottled water and lunch/snacks

 Sunblock, hat, sunglasses, rash shirt

 Windbreaker

 Warm clothing

 Closed in soft beach shoes or neoprene booties

 Wetsuits (if you have)

 Sailing gloves (if you have)

Sailing clothing is dependent on seasonal conditions. For the first-time applicants the WYC can provide life-jackets but not wetsuits.


New Zealand O’pen Bic Class Association

The Class Association exists to provide alignment across the various regional fleets of O’pen Bic yachts sailed throughout New Zealand with fleets developing in Dunedin, Wanaka, Queenstown, Nelson, Wanganui and Manly.

A core value of the Class Association is retaining the fun element within sailing and encouraging sailing excellence.

The Class Association shares the vision of the WYC as a way forward for young sailors wanting to continue with progression within the sport.

The O’pen Bic Class worldwide is gaining strength and it offers many opportunities to take youngsters through to senior sailing.

There are regattas held throughout New Zealand that attract sailors from Australia and the Pacific Islands and each year there is a World Championship held somewhere in the world for those very keen sailors.