Spending time on a boat with friends, family, fur babies, or by yourself creates some of the best and most treasured memories. Although it is easy to gather why we love motorboats and their endless possibilities for fun, from relaxing moments to thrilling watersports, it may not be as obvious to know why sailboats are equally loved. Since the seventeenth century, sailing has been a favorite pastime that has yielded some of the oldest known clubs and longest-running Olympic sports. The boating experts here at the National Boat Owners Association (NBOA) are sharing the top four reasons why everyone loves sailboats.
The Art of Sailing
So, how do sailboats work and why is sailing so enjoyable? Since sailboats lack a motor to jet across lakes and oceans, sailors rely on harnessing energy from the wind and water to propel their vessels forward and steer. As aerodynamics are coupled with hydrodynamics, sailing truly becomes a technical artform leaving sailors with a sense of pride and accomplishment after a good run. From keeping the boat from capsizing with perfect form, stability, and ballast to determining the direction of the wind in a myriad of ways in order to sail in the desired direction, sailors can build trust and faith within themselves. This rewarding activity also creates a trusting relationship between sailors, their sailboats, and the water.
Feeling the Wind in Your Hair
Determining how fast a sailboat can go is dependent upon many factors, such as the size, weight, and purpose of a sailboat. As a generalization, it is safe to say that racing sailboats average in speeds at 15 knots, or 17 mph while cruising sailboats handle average speeds of 4-7 knots or 4.5-8 mph. However, the sky’s the limit when it comes to how fast you can get your sailboat to fly through the waves. In 2012, Paul Larsen set the world record for sailing at 68 knots or 78.26 mph. In addition, discussing different tactics and sailing speeds is a favorite conversation topic among sailors. Whether you enjoy feeling the wind rush through your hair as you zoom across the water or prefer a relaxing, peaceful, and lulling afternoon, depending on your craft, sailboats can achieve both.
Bonding with Mother Nature
A significant part of sailing is connecting and working with Mother Nature to achieve your directional goals throughout your journey. As you move against the wind, it is important to be able to successfully gauge its strength and movement, which takes a great deal of practice, accuracy, and patience. In addition to being able to read Mother Nature, sailboats give you the opportunity to get close up to marine wildlife. While you float above an entire ecosystem and exotic underwater world, sailors are able to explore and view different fish, small islands, and hidden gems that are often inaccessible.
Connecting with Others
As with most hobbies, sailing can be a great social experience through yacht clubs, sailing teams, or meeting on the water or at a marina. You can often find sailors exchanging their favorite methods, pointers, and stories and enjoying each other’s company as they work together during a voyage. Due to the organic friendships and connections that formed between sailors, in 1720 in Cork, Ireland, the world was introduced to the first yacht club. After sailing was brought to America around the seventeenth century, countries began competing in sailing competitions around the world, which opened another avenue for teams to create unique bonds. In 1896, sailing made its debut at the Olympics and remains a wildly popular water sport today.
Ever since the earliest boats were constructed by the Egyptians and evolved from papyrus reeds, powered by oars and rowers, to square sails, sailing has brought people together as a favored hobby. Since the list of reasons for why we love sailboats is simply endless, we encourage you to find out for yourself what strikes you about sailing. Consider popular sailboats to get, like Amel cruising monohulls, Beneteau racing sailboats, Catalina yachts and cruisers, Fountaine Pajot Belize catamarans, or Lagoon multihull cruisers.
While you dive into the art of sailing, navigate the wind and water, unplug, and connect with Mother Nature, there is no doubt you will fall in love with this sport, too. To ensure your safety on the water and protect your sailboat, NBOA is proud to offer unbeatable boat insurance through a community of sailors.