This course is designed for those who have very little or no previous sailing experience, but wish to start formal training.

NOTE:  If you already know how to "Head Up", "Bear Away", "Tack" and "Gybe", you may not need to take this course.  More details are available at Which Class Is Right For Me


No prerequisites required for this course.  Although it would make you feel more comfortable on the water, you do not need to know how to swim.

Upon Completion:

You will have the knowledge and practical application to be a competent crew member.

Starting Dates:

Starting dates are available online, with a new session starting about every 2 weeks (March 15th - September) - Starting Dates.  These are the classroom session, but since "Theory 1" is available online, you can really start at any time.  You can be studying "Theory 1" within 10 minutes of registering for the course.

Getting Started:

  • After you have registered, you will receive an automated email with instructions & credentials for our different web sites.
  • "Theory 1" and "Know Your Knots" can be taken in any order, but we do request that you have completed "Theory 1" prior to scheduling practical sessions.
  • "Theory 1" can either be taken in the classroom or online but the "Know Your Knots" is available in the classroom only.
  • We typically handout all course material and life jackets at either "Theory 1" or "Know Your Knots".
  • To see an example of one of our online theory videos - Why sailboats sail up wind.


  • An inflatable lifejacket (retailed at $99.99) handed out at either the "Theory 1" classroom session or the "Know Your Knots".
  • Access to our online "Theory 1", so you can review at your leisure the material covered in "Theory 1" (for up to 1 year).
  • Notes for "Theory 1" (classroom sessions) and line for the "Know Your Knots" session.
  • Three Practicals (on the water sessions, including all required safety gear) on our J/22's.
  • We encourage our graduates to test for the ASA certification(s) please check our ASA Certification Policies


$422.00 each
                    This price includes the above mentioned lifejacket for each registrant

To Register:

Please follow this link - Store/Sailing Instruction/Basic Keelboat Sailing.

General Description:

The course is 15 hours in length, all sessions are three hours each.  The course has two theory session consisting of "Theory 1" and "Know Your Knots", making up six of the fifteen hours. The remaining nine hours are three practical session on the water sailing the J/22s, each practical is three hours in length.

Ashore (Theory 1) Knowledge:

  • Terms and Definitions.
  • Gear and Equipment.
  • Safety.
  • Rules of the Road.
  • Required Lights
  • Hypothermia
  • Once you have completed the first theory class, you will be given a userid and password for our online reservation system, so you can start scheduling practicals.
  • Final Exam (ASA Certification available upon request).

Ashore (Know Your Knots) Knowledge:

  • Bowline
  • Sheetbend
  • Clove Hitch
  • Round turn and 2 1/2 Hitches
  • Figure 8
  • Square Knot
  • Trucker's Hitch
  • Prussick Knot

Skills Afloat include:

  • Boarding and Rigging.
  • Basic Knots.
  • Boat Handling Under Sail.
  • Commands and Responses.
  • Heading Up, Bearing Away, Tacking  and Gybing.
  • Making Fast and Snugging Down.
  • The full list of items covered is detailed on our Basic Keelboat Practical Checklist.
Victoria Sailing School *** 1776 S. Jackson Street, Suite 116 *** Denver *** Colorado *** 80210 *** 303.697.7433 - (8:00 a.m to 5:00 p.m. please)