About High School Sailing
The high school sailing program through Bay Access gives boys and girls in the Houston area the opportunity to learn how to sail, race and compete in local and regional regattas. The boats sailed in high school sailing are double handed (two person) sailboats that are about 14 feet long and have two sails. (FJs). Bay Access has a fleet of 18 FJs – Flying Juniors that we use for our practices and hosted events. These and similar types of boats are used in local, regional, and national High School and Collegiate competitions. They are also some of the best boats for learning the fundamentals of sailing and racing.
Multiple high schools participate in the Bay Access program. The goal is to have at least four sailors from each represented high school. Sailors can participate in the Bay Access program and in many competitions even when schools do not have a full team (except at district qualifier events). More information on high school sailing regionally can be found here: regional SEISA and national ISSA.
Bay Access works in conjunction with Lakewood Yacht Club to offer community sailing access to the public. Bay Access provides the sail boats, coach boats, facilities, structure & coaching for all schools in the high school program.
Benefits of High School Sailing at Lakewood YC through Bay Access
- Supervised access to LYC facilities, boats, sails and equipment necessary for sailing
- Fall and Spring semester scheduled practices at LYC
- Sailing is an active sport, building strength, agility, and coordination
- Coaching at some of the local and regional events
- Sailing is also collegiate, co-ed, and lifelong sport, and will provide sailors lots of opportunity for the future!
7th & 8th Grade Sailors
There are opportunities for 7th and 8th grade sailors to sail with the high school team that will be the student’s home High School. 7th & 8th grade sailors are encouraged to sign up and join the High School sailing program. The SEISA District has rules to allow this age group to partake in some regattas. (Please see SEISA District Rules, Eligibility on the SEISA website: seisa.hssailing.org.)
The primary goal for this program is to introduce high school students to the sport of sailing and to teach them the fundamentals of small boat sailing & racing. Additionally sailors will be introduced to double-handed collegiate style sailboat racing through events held within the SEISA District. Sailors whose school fields a full team will also compete in district and qualifying events for the ISSA Double Handed and Team Racing National Championships.
Sailors will get out of this program what they are willing to put into it. That said, the way to get to the most out of this program is to attend practice regularly with a positive attitude and willingness to learn. Sailors are expected to actively participate in practices and to help more novice sailors gain experience at practice so that they are better prepared for regattas. Sailors are also expected to treat their teammates, coaches and parent volunteers with respect.
Each team should have a parent or a small committee of parents to lead the team. This parent(s) will organize the team, events, communication, regatta travel & payment, etc.
Practices for the fall season will be held on Wednesday and Friday afternoons from 3:30-6:30pm as well as Sunday from 12:30-4:30pm. Please arrive as quickly to practice as possible so that we can maximize our time on the water. This is especially important this time of the year as the days are getting shorter and we run out of daylight quickly. Practices will focus on boat handling, boat speed, starting and short course racing. The more boats we have on the water at practice, the better we are able to simulate regatta conditions
Attendance Policy: It is crucial that sailors attend as many practices as possible, and should attend all 3 weekly practices. If you cannot attend practice you must contact your coach by 10am that morning at the latest. We understand that students have busy schedules and studies come first, and cannot always attend every practice.
As part of the program there will be opportunities for members of the team to travel to events both inside the SEISA district and to intersectional events around the country. For events within the district all sailors are invited to participate and teams will be formed by the coach using all of the sailors who wish to participate. For qualifying, intersectional and national events we are limited to the number of sailors that we may bring to the event. Sailors will be chosen by the coach to represent each team that wishes to participate in these events. Travel to these events is done at the sailors cost. Fees will include travel to and from the event, lodging, food and entry fees, in addition to covering the cost for the coach’s travel. While at the event, all team members will stay in the team approved housing. There will be at least one adult chaperone at each event per 10 sailors. Parents are welcome to travel with the team but must make their own housing arrangements. For each event, each team will appoint one adult volunteer to be in charge of coordinating travel for the team with the coach. This includes collecting fees from team members etc.
We are lucky to be in Texas where the weather allows us to sail year round without having to do so in the bitter cold. That said, sailors still need to be prepared with the proper gear. Most of the year that will consist of shorts, a long sleeve UV shirt, hat, sunglasses, life jacket and close toed shoes (I recommend all gym shoes or sailing boots). As the weather gets colder mid-weight neoprene pants, tops and a spray top will make being on the water for several hours at a time much more comfortable. For those of you who need gear, KO Sailing is a great resource and offers a scholastic discount.
Still not sure? Want to try it out?
Feel free to come to a practice to check it out, no payment up front. You must have a signed registration form on file prior. Go to Bay Access for more info and to fill out a registration form.
Please contact Lakewood Yacht Club Sailing Director Watt Duffy at: email@example.com.
Lakewood Yacht Club
2425 NASA Pkwy
Seabrook, TX 77586