Try It Out Clinics

Try It Out Clinics  (This clinic series ran from 2014 – 2016)

                                Photos from Miami Try It Out

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In the continued effort to bridge the gap between high-performance and junior programs the Key Biscayne Yacht Club hosted the latest stopover of US Sailing’s Try-It-Out series. 15 sailors took to the tropical blue water of the Biscayne Bay testing their skills on windsurfers, catamarans, skiffs, and I-420s.
It was Breeze On! conditions which tested the mettle and determination of the experienced group of post-Opti where do I go from here? sailors. An All-Star line up of local Miami coaches provided instruction from their years of experience at the top level, all the while keeping it fun for the fresh crop of sailors.
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Rio campaigner in the women’s RS:X class Kathleen Tocke had the windsurfers ripping across the bay. As a reprieve from the challenging sailboard, kids jumped in the F16 catamaran under the guidance of youth elite Ian MacDiarmid who just returned from the Red Bull Foiling Generation. Elizabeth Kratzig shared her complex technical knowledge of boat set up with the I-420, while Phil Muller of local 2NINER Skiff Squad helped keep the skiffs mast up. Host organizer Adrienne Kamilar from KBYC was the glue that kept everything together.
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Contact Richard Feeny to learn how your club can get involved in the excitement and himg_5639ost a US Sailing Try-It-Out Clinic to take your junior sailors to the next level.

Overview
Try It Out Clinics are a series of regional clinics across the country intended to introduce and familiarize sailors 13-17 with high performance boats. Boats and equipment will be provided but participants will need a US Coast Guard life jacket and their own trapeze harness (if they have one); housing and meals are not provided. The clinic features one or two action-packed days of sailing in all positions and conditions on 29ers, I420s, multihulls and/or sailboards with a favorable coach to sailor ratio. Due to the small coach:sailor ratio, clinics will be by invitation but some open spaces will also be available, depending on the number of boats available.

A Dart 16 provided an easy introduction to catamarans.

A Dart 16 provided an easy introduction to catamarans.

International 420s - October 2014

International 420s – October 2014

These photos are from the first Try It Out Clinic, held October 2014 at the Bristol Yacht Club. One participant wrote: “I liked how the format of the clinic moved away from the typical training style. I think this gives sailors a better chance to get comfortable in a new boat. When I sailed the F18, which I had never tried before, I enjoyed being able to sail it first with a friend and try to figure things out on my own. I felt like I was under less pressure than if the catamaran sailors had tried to teach me from the beginning. Having said that, a brief introduction to catamaran sailing is certainly necessary, and I liked sailing with the regular F18 sailors later on in order to learn more of the specific skills. I enjoyed having two days to sail the boats in order to experience a wider range of conditions…”

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What To Expect

Skippers and crew will learn about the skills specific to each position. There will be a lecture component to discuss required boat handling techniques, apparent wind, physical characteristics of successful sailors in these boats, the opportunities available within the classes and within the Olympic Development Pathway specific to each of these boats.

There is not a competitive component to the clinic. The goals are to learn and have fun learning how to sail a new boat. At the conclusion of the clinic, interested sailors will be provided a general road map for continuing to pursue training and competition in these classes, including a draft regatta and clinic schedule, contacts within the fleet, providers of boats for sale and charter, and other resources available.

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US Sailing is not making any money on these – we are running strictly on a cost basis although the sailors will have to be US Sailing members.

  • Cost will be $100 per sailor (covers the coaching fee).  It’s nice if housing can be provided as it’s a day and a half clinic.  Nice but not required.
  • No charter fee – and the boats DO NOT HAVE TO BE NEW.  This is just having fun and trying a different type of sailing.
  • A damage deposit can be charged.
  • We would like your help gathering 3 classes of boats: multihulls (F16 preferred), sailboards (Techno 293 preferred), 29ers, and/or International 420s.  With 4 boats in each of 3 classes we can take a maximum of 24 sailors, 12 boats in total and three coaches.  So the clinic will be small, fun, and learning intensive.
  • US Sailing will manage the invitations and sailors will be experienced doublehanded sailors with crews who can trapeze.
  • US Sailing will work with you to find and pay the coaches.  Some hosts prefer to own the event while other hosts prefer US Sailing runs the event at their venue. Additional funds may be provided to the host to subsidize the cost of gas.
  • US Sailing will provide a road map for the sailors.
  • US Sailing will follow up directly with the sailors and start to create a development plan based on which boat they choose to explore further.
  • There will be a gap between a Try It Out clinic and a development clinic to allow sailors to start sailing the new boat on a regular basis.
  • Development clinic opportunities will be offered to sailors who form teams and are going on to actively sail in these boats.  The development will focus on tuning and other high performance elements.

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