First-time sailing experience may be life-changing for some but complicated for many. Being able to steer across the vast blue seas can be overwhelming. However, the journey can be made easier if you know the basics of sailing.

As boat air conditioning specialists, we hope these tips will help you enjoy sailing and one day enjoy your own boat flowing with cool air. So, to help you in this learning phase, we present five things you need to keep in mind before your first sail:

1.     Practice in Calm Water

For beginners, it can be tempting to sail in the deep sea but it can be dangerous. So, start practicing in the calm water and in ideal conditions, such as light wind and low traffic. Make sure to keep your sail flat when the wind is either very strong or very light.

You may also want to start your voyage on a small boat to get the hang of it. This way, it will be fairly easy for you to maneuver and sail in a responsive manner. Besides, you should always go sailing with a professional who can guide you about tides, wind, and weather conditions.

2.     Carry the Necessary Equipment

While on a sailboat, it’s recommended to carry the right equipment, such as shoes with rubber soles to avoid slipping, life jackets for safety, proper clothing, hats, sunglasses, and sunblock cream to prevent sunburns.

You may also keep a water-resistant backpack to safeguard your cellphones and camera and some medicines in case of emergency.

3.     Know the Water Traffic Rules

When wind and weather conditions are optimal, some areas on the sea might get more crowded. So, it’s good to know the water traffic rules to prevent accidents. The three important rules are:

  • If two sailboats meet on different tacks, the boat on the starboard should continue on its course while the boat on the port tack should turn away.
  • If two sailboats meet on the same track, the boat on the downwind should continue on its course while the boat on the windward should turn away.
  • Any boat that has more maneuverability must turn away in case it meets with the boat with lesser maneuverability.

4.     Learn the Sailing Terminology

It feels like a professional sailor when you know the right sailing jargon. Besides, learning the key sailing terms will also help you communicate with your fellow sailors on board. So, being a beginner, here are some basic terms to help you grasp the language:

  • Starboard: Boat’s front side.
  • Bow: Boat’s frond-end.
  • Port: Boat’s left side.
  • Stern: Boat’s backside.
  • Leeward: Boat’s direction against the wind.
  • Windward: Boat’s direction in the wind.

5.     Be Responsive and Attentive

Lastly, when sailing for the first time, always be responsive to any potential dangers and sail attentively. Undoubtedly, you’ll get better with time, but make sure you’re safe and never try maneuvering in the beginning.

Always seek help from a professional sailor and enthusiasts. Make sure your first experience gives you strength instead of fears, and follow the rules because safety comes first.


Now that you know these beginner sailing tips, you should be ready to set out for your first sail! If any advanced sailors have more tips, please leave them in the comments!