Sailing is the boat activity that can be possible thanks to the propulsion of a vehicle and can be controlled by foils called sails, it's not an easy activity but with some dedication and practice it can become in the most awesome experience. However, some people consider sailing as a fun and relaxing activity, while other people take this seriously as a sport.
How to sail
If you don't have any knowledge on sailing, we recommend you to take a course, and if you're going to sail for the first time, we have some recommendations for you:
Be sure to have the adequate navigation equipment, especially if you you're going to rent the boat.
Get a large-scale chart, which is recommendable to be waterproof.
Trace parallel rules to determine the latitude and longitude of key locations, such as places you want to arrive, you must take note of them.
Learn how to read the compass, one of the most important tools for sailing. However, it will be better and easier if you carry a GPS.
It's important to know the rules of navigation also, known as collision regulations or Colregs:
- Rules of navigation between sailboats.
- Rules of navigation between sailboats and powerboats (includes sailboats under power).
- Rules of navigation between power boats.
- Remember that the more maneuverable boat should keep out of the way of the less maneuverable boat.
A sailboat is a boat driven partly or entirely by sails. Several boats are consider as sailboats as a generic term, those not as small vessels but no larger as sailing ships. Sailboats can be found in different types according to size, hull configuration, keel type, purpose, among most important characteristics.
An important first step when one is going to learn to sail, is to learn the parts of a boat and what are those parts for because it'll help you understand how the boat works:
Block: You might know this as pulley, but this is its nautical term, a wheel with a rim around which a cord passes.
Boom: To extend the food of the mainsail sailors use this horizontal pole attached to the mast.
Bow and stern pulpit: Parts necessary for safety, help to avoid accidents like people going overboard, you can see the navigation lights here.
Bow: The front part of a boat is designed to lift the boat with the waves.
Centerboard: It's a kind of plate that provides balance to the boat.
Cockpit: The place from which you control the sailboat, depending on the size of the boat it can be found on a pilot house.
Companion way: It's the route that goes from the cockpit to down below.
Deck: Commonly known as the floor. Depending on the size of the boat, it can have several decks.
Hull: The structural body of the boat, formed by an internal network of frames from side to side.
Keel: A huge structure along the base of a ship.
Line: Any piece of boat on a rope
Mast: a tall upright post, or other structure on a boat, generally carrying a sail or sails.
Painter: A painter is used to attach a small boat's bow.
Port: The port is the left side of the boat if you are facing forward.
Rudder: It is a foil and provides resistance against lateral movement, in this way it helps to provide equilibrium as the keel, especially with strong winds..
Starboard: It's the right side of the boat facing forward, opposite to the port.
Stern: Back part of a boat, it's lifted higher than the bow and it's here where motors are attached to push the boat when not sailing.
Sailing is a universal sport, sailors enjoy of taking some risks, and finding new places where they can develop and enjoy of this sport. Like sailing on the highest or lowest places of the world, for example, it's known around sailors that the highest navigable lake is located in Peru; it's the Titicaca Lake (12500 feet above sea level) and in 1974 was the first time that a sailboat navigated on its murky waters. You can see and learn more of this interesting information on the several magazines specialized in the topic.
With technology advances, many sailors use navigation apps to sail, those tools have been created to help them during navigation, for example: charting apps, raster charts, tracing routes, satellite maps, social media to share your track log, and more. Those apps are used with android smart phones, tablets, etc.