The American Sailing Association provides standards for progressive sailing certification programs, including: Keelboat Sailing, Small Boat Sailing, Multihull Sailing
In addition, ASA provides standards for a number of endorsements, which are intended to supplement the main certification series. These include Docking, Weather, Celestial, and Radar.
Listed below are the prerequisites and descriptions for each available course. The detailed standards for each certification may be found by clicking the title. Standards are also published in the ASA Official International Certification Log Book.
Each certification requires participants to fully satisfy both knowledge and skills standards, which will be verified through a written exam and an on-the-water practical exam.
The standards are intended to be a minimum set of requirements. ASA affiliate sailing schools and instructors may choose to include additional requirements if they wish to emphasize knowledge or skills appropriate to local waters, conditions or practice vessels.
Obtaining sailing education is an important step toward a lifetime of sailing enjoyment, yet education is just part of the process. ASA highly recommends that each certification level be augmented with a minimum of 24 to 40 hours of practice in between courses.
All participants are encouraged to become proficient in swimming, first aid and cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR).
About The Ocean Cleanup
The Ocean Cleanup develops technologies to extract, prevent, and intercept plastic pollution. The Ocean Cleanup’s goal is to fuel the world’s fight against oceanic plastic pollution, by initiating the largest cleanup in history. Instead of going after the plastic – which would take many thousands of years and billions of dollars to complete – The Ocean Cleanup uses long floating barriers to let the ocean currents concentrate the plastic itself. After having worked with a team of 100 volunteering scientists and engineers, a 2014 study confirmed the passive system is indeed likely a feasible and cost-effective method to remove half the Great Pacific Garbage Patch in 10 years’ time. http://www.theoceancleanup.com
The ASA story is driven by a clear need for uniform sailing teaching standards and increased access to sailing activities, the American Sailing Association (ASA) has been the leader in U.S. sailing education for nearly two decades.
The association has grown to include an international network of 300 plus professionally accredited sailing schools. More than 449,700 students have graduated from ASA schools and clubs since 1983.
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Flotillas around the world in 2016
American Sailing Association joins The Ocean Cleanup’s Mega Expedition to fight against oceanic plastic pollution.
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – July 15, 2015 – This coming August the American Sailing Association will be providing exclusive documentary-style content from the infamous Pacific Garbage Patch off the islands of Hawaii. ASA certified instructor Bob Solliday will be in regular satellite communication with the ASA shore team as he participates in the Mega Expedition, a research component of The Ocean Cleanup project. As part of the fleet of boats that will be surveying the ocean, Solliday and his crew will be collecting samples that will aid in the research about the amount of harmful plastics that are in our oceans.
The Beneteau 523, Transformer, will first take part in the famous Transpac race from Los Angeles to Hawaii before Solliday takes the helm and brings the boat back through this notorious debris field. The skipper and his crew will be managing purpose-built equipment to collect and store the samples as they make their way through the area they are assigned to cover.
“We’re all sailors and we love the ocean,” said Solliday of his motivation to be part of the Expedition. “We all understand that the health of the ocean directly affects every living thing on the planet.”
The American Sailing Association feels the same way and is pleased to be part of The Ocean Cleanup in this capacity. As an organization that has introduced millions to the sport of sailing and has certified almost half a million sailors, the health of the oceans is on the top of the priority list.
“Protecting and caring for the oceans is extremely important to us,” said Lenny Shabes, Founder of the American Sailing Association. “We’re choking ourselves with all this plastic and it’s great that The Ocean Cleanup is providing some hope for cleaner oceans moving forward.”
The Pacific Garbage Patch is one of five gyres that, through the forces of particular ocean currents, cause trash to collect and accumulate. At least one million seabirds, and one-hundred thousand marine mammals die each year due to plastic pollution and the survival of at least 100+ species is in jeopardy because of plastic debris. Plastic pollution is also a carrier of invasive species that threaten native ecosystems.
As the Transformer team participates in the research, the ASA shore team will be maintaining close contact and reporting the progress via social media. Expect to see interesting videos, with satellite phone interviews from the garbage patch, that detail what’s happening in these incredibly unique and troubling areas of our oceans at Asa.com/themegaexpedition
About the American Sailing Association
The American Sailing Association was founded in 1983 with a simply stated mission: to teach people to sail safely and confidently. To achieve that goal, the ASA set out to establish standards against which to measure a sailor’s level of knowledge and skill, the first such unified standards in the U.S. to apply to sailors in keelboats.
After studying programs offered in other countries, the founders of the ASA selected the Canadian yachting association’s (CYA) “learn to Cruise” program and licensed it for use in the U.S. With this strong heritage behind it, the ASA has continually improved and expanded its educational system by drawing on valuable input from the ASA school network.
Today, the ASA is an association of sailing schools, charter companies, professional sailing instructors, and sailors, with over 300 affiliated sailing schools located throughout the U.S., as well as in Europe, Japan, Central America, Taiwan, China, and other far eastern countries. These accredited schools offer ASA certification to individuals who meet the requirements for a given level. To date ASA schools have certified nearly half a million sailors!
The ASA system has eight primary levels of student certification from Basic Keelboat all the way to Offshore Passagemaking. Whether your goal is to skipper a bareboat charter in the Caribbean or to crew confidently on a short weekend sail, the ASA’s sailing-education system will guide you as you learn the theory behind sailing, practice the skills needed to handle a sailboat, and build the foundation of knowledge that will enable you to navigate a vessel safely and within the law.
By establishing national standards for sailing education, the ASA has provided a way for more people to take part in the sport safely, with the proper training and respect for their responsibilities as boaters, ensuring that sailing will be safer, smarter, and more fun for everybody.
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