Youth Sailing

Youth Sailing at the Rochester Yacht Club

 2013 RYC Junior Sailing Program

  • Most sailing classes are broken down into 2 week sessions over an 8 week program. One week “Crash Course” classes are also available
  • Students typically take sailing classes for more than one session before advancing to the next level
  • All RYC Instructors are Certified US Sailing Instructor as well as CPR and First Aid Certified
  • Swimming lessons are included with most sailing classes for youths under 12
  • The Program Director and RYC staff members are happy to help with class selections.

*ALL Students MUST provide their own lunch*
*All Students must provide their own life jacket

*For questions please contact Program Director Jimmy Carminati at        

Link to RYC Junior Sailing Program web page

Session 1: June 24th-July 5th

Session 2: July 8th-19th

Session 3: July 22nd-August 2nd

Session 4: August 5th-16th

Half Day Programs

Dinghy Demons(Ages 6 – 8) 

One-Week Session: Monday – Friday | 9am – 12pm
The Dinghy Demon class experience is designed to help young sailors feel comfortable on the water, and to experience the sport of sailing in the most positive way, with close and supportive instructor involvement. The program is a half-day introduction to sailing for six to eight year old’s. Instruction includes on the water sailing in Optimist dinghies with an instructor on board or close alongside and shore based boating related activities. Each day’s class includes a 45 minute swim lesson in the RYC pool with Red Cross certified Swimming Instructors. Both safety and swimming skills are stressed.Our goal is for every child to have a great time and feel comfortable on the water; promoting a life long love for sailing.

Full Day Programs

Beginner Optimist (Ages 8 -12) —

Two-Week Session: Monday – Friday- 9am – 4pm
This course is geared toward fun and learning! We will teach the basics of rigging an Optimist, basic boat handling, sailing fundamentals, seamanship, sportsmanship, and water safety. Instruction is done in Optimists with 2 sailors per boat. Each day’s class includes a 45 minute swim lesson in the RYC pool with Red Cross Certified Swimming Instructors.

Intermediate Optimist (Ages 9 -12) — 

Two-Week Session: Monday – Friday- 9am – 4pm
Designed for sailors who have completed Beginner Optimist. This course focuses on more advanced boat handling skills. Sailors will sail 1 person/ boat. By completion, sailors will be able to sail on all points of sail in most wind speeds, know all parts of the boat, and basic knots. Each day’s class includes a 45 minute swim lesson in the RYC pool with Red Cross Certified Swimming Instructors.

Adventure Sailing (Ages 11 – 14) —

Two-Week Session: Monday – Friday- 9am – 4pm
This program is designed for the sailors who love sailing and want to be on the water but aren’t necessarily interested in learning how to race. This class will include fun and safe activities on the water. Activities may include long distance sailing, swimming, eating on the water, and fun sailing activities. Adventure Sailing includes sailing several different types of boats including; 420s, Ideal 18’s, and O’Pen Bics. The class may include sailing trips to local points of interest.

Beginner 420 (Ages 12 – 15) —

Two-Week Session: Monday – Friday- 9am – 4pm
This course is for older and larger sailors who are new to sailing, or younger sailors with some experience but who are new to the 420. Course includes basics of rigging a 420, basic boat handling, seamanship (knots, weather, etc.), sportsmanship, and water safety.

Advanced 420 (Ages 13-18)–

Two-Week Session: Monday – Friday- 9am-4pm
Designed for sailors who have completed Beginner 420. This class will introduce and refine racing skills, advanced boat handling, introduction to trapeze and spinnaker, tactics and strategy, and sportsmanship. This is meant to be a developmental course that bridges the gap between Beginner 420 and the 420 Travel Race Team.

Race Team Programs

Green Fleet Optimist Race Team —

Prerequisites: Under 15 years old, has completed Intermediate Optimist Course or equivalent and wants to learn how to race.
Monday – Friday | 9am – 4pm
This program requires an interest in learning how to race an Optimist! This course will provide an introduction to racing including boat handling, equipment, tactics, and strategy. Coaches will cover all aspects of racing on and off the water. Sailors will have the option of travelling to regattas with a focus on local Great Lake events, but with the option to travel further as well. Green Fleet racing is widely known for having great success offering students to learn how to race without the pressure! The meaning of this course is to introduce racing but to also have a lot of fun! Boat ownership is encouraged but not required as club boats are limited.

Red/White/Blue Fleet Travel Optimist Travel Race Team

Prerequisites:Under 15 years old. Coach’s approval.
Tuesday/Wednesday/Thursday- 9am – 4pm
Sailors on the Red, White and Blue Optimist Race Team will refine their racing skills and represent RYC in local interclub regattas and possibly other regattas around the country. This team will constantly refine racing skills, strategy and advanced boat handling. Boat ownership is strongly encouraged but not required. Club owned Optimists are available but limited.

420 Travel Race Team

Prerequisites: Coach’s approval and Sailor resume
Tuesday/Wednesday/Thursday- 10am – 5pm
The 420 Travel Race Team will work to perfect advanced boat handling, tactics, and racing strategy. The Race Team will travel to local and national events around the country representing the Rochester Yacht Club. Sailors will be expected to commit to the whole summer including many weekends traveling. On most days, racers will stay out on the water all day (yes even lunch) with a dedicated race team coach!

*NEW!- Laser Travel Race Team

Prerequisites: Coaches approval and own boat
Tuesday/Wednesday/Thursday- 10am-5pm
The Laser race team will work on refining boat handling skills, tactics, and strategy. This teams goal will be to travel to local and possibly national events around the country representing RYC. Sailors will be expected to have their own boat. Sailors will be expected to spend all day on the water with a dedicated race team coach!