How many of us are familiar with this kind of dialogue on board a sailboat? Every anchorage sees at least one screaming couple, wife at the bow, husband at the wheel, both stressed, upset and unable to communicate properly.

Let’s take a deep breath, and learn to sail, calmly.

On Projection, we often use simple hand signals to communicate. Whilst anchoring, we have signs for “What’s the depth here?”; “The anchor has touched the sea-floor”; “The anchor is off the ground” etc… When we go up the mast (for inspections or repairs), we do so in silence, using one hand to say “Up”, “Down”, “Leave Me Here” or “Go Slowly”.

These silent conversations are just a small part of our overall onboard strategy. We love to teach unsalted guests how to sail, and it always starts with calm communication. Once the basics and safety briefings have been explained, we let you get your hands on a few lines, or have you steering the boat from behind the wheel. The feel or intuition of a sailor is the basis of her knowledge, so it’s important to nurture this early on. Each step is explained and re-explained in words, drawings or simply by doing, until everyone feels confident.

A week on board will turn you from novice to mariner. You’ll leave with more than just the basics of sailing, and a firm foundation for how boat stuff works. And it’ll be fun! No yelling, no mind-reading – just clear, calm communication with a whole lot of adventure!

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