top of page

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Do I need to know how to sail to become a member?
    Whether you are a complete beginner or an experienced sailor, there is a place for you in our community. HSA offers a variety of opportunities for new members to learn and improve their sailing skills. We host adult hands-on training classes throughout the year to help you in your sailing journey. Additionally, you can sail with experienced members during our events and social gatherings, gaining practical experience and building your confidence on the water.
  • I have never been on a sailboat, and don’t want to commit to taking a class or joining as a member. Is there an opportunity to go sailing with some to see if I'd be interested in taking a class or joining?
    Yes, absolutely! We understand that committing to a class or membership can be a big decision, especially if you’ve never been on a sailboat before. Our association offers opportunities for prospective members to experience sailing firsthand. You can join one of our sailing outings with experienced members to get a feel for the sport and see if it’s something you’d like to pursue further. This is a great way to dip your toes in the water before committing to a class or joining the assocation.
  • I am not a strong swimmer. Can I still sail?
    Yes, you can still sail even if you are not a strong swimmer. Safety is our top priority, and all participants are required to wear life jackets while on the water. Our instructors and experienced members are trained in safety procedures and are always available to assist you. Additionally, our classes and outings are conducted in safe environments with support boats nearby. While knowing how to swim is beneficial, it is not a prerequisite for enjoying and learning to sail with our association.
  • Do I need to bring my own life vest?
    No, you do not need to buy your own life vest. Our association provides life vests for guests, members and participants during classes and sailing activities. We ensure that the life vests are properly fitted and meet safety standards. However, if you prefer to use your own life vest, you are welcome to bring it as long as it meets the required safety and Coast Guard specifications.
  • I have a boat, can I dock it at the association?
    There is no dock space for personal/private boats, but if you want to store it on a trailer, there may be space available. Please go to our Membership Page to learn more about an upgrading your membership to include boat yard storage.
  • Where do I park?
    Park along the road in front of the baseball field and skate park before entering the fenced area of the club.
  • What is the club policy on sailing in strong winds?
    The club does not allow use of the club boats in wind over 15 knots. The club has a wind monitor at the pavilion for member to check the wind conditions before venturing onto the water.
  • Can I bring guests to the sailing club events or outings?
    Members can bring guests to events and sailing outings. Guests will have to sign a Liability Waiver before participating in activities.
  • What types of boats are available in the club’s fleet?
    Check out our Fleet Page for information on available club boats.
  • Are there opportunities for competitive sailing or racing within the club?
  • How can I volunteer or get involved with the club’s activities and events?
  • What safety measures are in place during sailing activities?
    Safety is our top priority, and we have several measures in place: Qualified Instructors for Classes: All instructors are certified as US Sailing Level 1, meaning they have strong safety training, including first aid. Personal Flotation Devices (PFDs): Everyone must wear a PFD, either personal or borrowed from the association. Safety Equipment: Each keelboat has a first aid kit, signal flares, fire extinguisher, and a throwable flotation device. Chase Boat: A chase boat is always available during activities. Weather Monitoring: We use weather and wind gauges and do not sail if winds exceed 15 knots. No Smoking: Smoking is not allowed on any vessel.
  • Can I rent club boats for private use outside of scheduled classes and events?
    Yes, you can use club boats for private sailing if you are complete a skills assessment and signed off on that specific boat by a boat captain or the commodore. There are no additional fees for members to use the club boats.
  • Can I participate in sailing activities if I have a medical condition or physical limitation?
    Yes, but it depends on your specific condition and comfort level. Talk to our instructors about your situation so they can help figure out the best and safest way for you to enjoy sailing. We want to accommodate everyone while keeping safety in mind.
  • Is there a minimum age requirement for classes or membership?
  • What should I have with me when sailing?
    When you go sailing, it's important to be prepared for various weather conditions and to ensure your safety and comfort. Here’s a list of recommended items to bring: 1. Clothing: Quick-drying, moisture-wicking clothes A windbreaker or waterproof jacket Non-slip, water-resistant, close toed shoes (flip flops are highly discouraged) A hat or cap for sun protection Sunglasses with UV protection and a strap 2. Safety Gear: A personal life vest (if you prefer to use your own) Sunscreen and lip balm with high SPF Gloves Plastic bump insert 3. Personal Items: A reusable water bottle Snacks or a light meal A dry bag or waterproof container for personal items A towel and a change of clothes for after sailing Retainer strap for hat and sunglasses 4. Other Essentials: A watch or a timing device Any necessary medications A camera or smartphone (in a waterproof case) By bringing these items, you’ll be well-prepared for a safe and enjoyable sailing experience. Come prepared to be on the water, rain or shine (unless it is a thunderstorm). We recommend checking the weather before you leave for your lesson at HSA. Required items include: Type III life vest <insert hyperlink>, water bottle, sunscreen, towel, hat, sunglasses, whistle, shoes that can get wet (shoes must have toes and heels, no flipflops). Strongly recommended: gloves, retainer straps for sunglasses and hats, SPF chapstick, and maybe a change of clothes.
  • Can I store my personal sailing equipment at the club?
    No, there are no designated secure storage areas or lockers for personal items at the club. Items left at the club are left at your own risk. If items are found, they may be placed in our lost and found area.
  • Are there opportunities for advanced training or certification through the club?
  • Are pets allowed at the sailing club or on boats? What about Service Animals?
    Pets are not allowed at the club or on the club boats. Service Animals are welcome at the club facilities.
  • Do I need to be a member in order to take the adult sailing classes?
    No, you do not need to be a member to take our beginner or intermediate sailing classes. These classes are open to everyone, regardless of membership status. Whether you are looking to learn the basics or improve your existing skills, you are welcome to join our classes and benefit from our experienced instructors and comprehensive training programs.
  • Do you offer private or one-on-one sailing lessons?
  • I don’t have a boat, where can I sail after I take a class?
    Members have access to our fleet of club boats. After successfully completing a class on a specific boat, you can sail these boats for leisure. If you did not take a class, to ensure safety and proficiency, you will need to go through a checkout process, demonstrating your skills and familiarity with the specific boat you wish to use.
  • What is the weather policy for class?
    With safety as our number one priority, we are constantly alert about changing weather conditions, and we only take students out on the water if conditions are safe. We will have classroom instruction if the weather prevents us from going onto the water. Our classes take place rain or shine, so please come prepared with the appropriate clothing and gear. Florida's weather can change rapidly. If a brief front passes through, we will continue with training. However, if the bad weather persists, we may end the class early. Also, the club policy is not to sail when winds are over 15 knots. Depending on the class, the instructor may lower this wind speed limit for safety reasons.
  • What if I have to cancel?
  • Do I need to take the sailing courses in sequential order?
    If you are a new sailor, taking classes in order will prepare you the best for sailing. Our structured approach ensures that you build a strong foundation before advancing to more complex skills. However, if you have taken classes outside of the association and can demonstrate basic sailing skills, you may be able to take the Adult Intermediate class without first taking the beginner class. Even if you have prior experience, taking the beginner class can still be beneficial, especially if you have never sailed a Sunfish. It will reinforce information you already know and allow you to hone your current skill set.
  • Does the club offer sailing programs for children or youth?
  • What happens if I encounter challenges during the sailing portion of class?
  • Are there social events or gatherings for club members?
  • What is the club's policy on alcohol and smoking during events or outings?
    The club does not allow smoking anywhere on the property or boats. Alcohol is permitted, but no club boats are to be operated under the influence.
  • How can I get involved in the club’s leadership or committees?
  • Are there any volunteer opportunities for non-sailing activities or club maintenance?
bottom of page