Beginning the season with a couple of groups was a great way to start. It helps to bring a more social atmosphere to the whole experience. Each group was met personally on arrival and we started off with a Meza lunch and then a full introduction to the boat and the various equipment. The introduction, although comprehensive, is also a good time to get an idea of previous experience and skill level. This, along with an accompanied afternoon of sailing, helps to tailor the training to the individual groups so everyone gets the best support for them.
For groups that need more practice or tuition I extend the on board support into the second morning. Being a smaller company allows me to really look at the needs of my customers and provide the support as necessary. Providing a progressive structure and having a couple of groups really does help encourage progression. A slightly competitive feel emerges but at the same time the groupls arnt just learning from myself but from each other, either through mistakes they make or through previous experience that gets passed around. Sometimes I even pick up the odd handy trick.
Once the groups feel confident enough they are remotely supervised by myself, either by following in my safety boat or by text. Again due to the personal approach I can have with each group I can tailor the support to the needs of the group. If the group is just topping up skills before they go it alone or if they are complete beginners the level of support can be quite dynamic.
The bay on which the groups are in is ideal for both beginner and top up level groups. It is confined with no tides and no big waves so great to start sailing without having to worry about the behaviour of the sea so much so full concentration on the sailing and enjoying yourself in the beatuful setting. Even advanced sailors will enjoy Luggering about in the sun within the bay. There is always opportunity to extend yourselves and go further. The boats themselves are also perfect for both levels of group being extremely stable but at the same time very capable.
Pre planned days and briefings are held daily at the Iris pool bar, affectionately getting known as “The Office”, taking place at the end of the days. This really helps to foster not only the social side whilst out sailing but also the social side in the evenings. This also gives everyone the opportunity to share their experiences from the day and even pass around the wealth of information that collectively the groups have.
The Iris is also conveniently located near the supermarket which is great for picking up supplies for picnic lunches when heading out.
To begin with we are sailing here on Jib and Mizen. This is a great step towards gaining confidence and also useful if it is still quite gusty. Pushing the groups too hard is not only detrimental to their success but can be unsafe in some conditions.
This is why the smaller setup works so well for the groups. Tailoring to individual needs helps to build confidence, raise skill level and ensure that everyone is having a good time. If a group has a wobble then as I don’t operate a strict structure this gives the opportunity to take a step back and ensure that the training and knowledge are sufficient for the group to raise their confidence back again. Even simple things like the correct way to embark or disembark the boats is shown right up to the best way to position yourselves on the boat whilst sailing. Assuming knowledge is not something we do. This helps us assess and support our groups in the best way for them.
A perfect beginning, sailing and end to a day. Liz was brave to take a swim this early on in the season A great end to a day.
By the end of the week we can see from these pictures that not only is everyone smiling but a good connection has been made between the groups. After sharing their experiences with each other and all learning and bouncing ideas around has really helped to bring these sailors to a higher level of competency. Also they have made some new friends within the Drascombe community. Here are the groups at the perfect end to a weeks sailing in the sun. A birthday evening celebration for Rob at the Iris Pool bar. They also all loved their Drascombe T-Shirts.