Restart Sailing

Sailing brings many Health Benefits (physical and mental) - also respiratory and vitamin D advantages of being outside Self distancing relatively easy to achieve Covid 19 is not believed to be water transmittable Sailing can be relatively cheap, with clubs and centres hiring boats. For those not participating , sailing can provide a nice visual back drop

Why the contribution is important

Italian university Politecnico di Torino has collaborated with the Italian National Olympic Committee (CONI) to release a more-than-400 page report detailing its findings about which sports are safest in a coronavirus-plagued world and which are most dangerous. The study lists 387 sport disciplines that have been categorized from 0 to 4 depending on the risk of COVID-19 spread. On the scale, 0 represents non-existent risk, 1 weak rise, 2 medium risk, 3 high risk, and 4 very high risk. Among the factors considered are the conditions for training, competition, and public presence. According to the study, sports that fall into the 0 category, with 'almost no possibility' of spreading the infection, are disciplines like sailing, open water swimming, golf, and tennis.

by restartsailing on May 06, 2020 at 08:11PM

Current Rating

Average rating: 4.7
Based on: 42 votes


  • Posted by Lizpriest May 06, 2020 at 21:50

    We would be happy to bring all provisions with us and anchor away from communities if our marina reopened and we were allowed to visit and use our boat. We would ensure social distancing at all times, and obviously be extremely careful in planning our sailing activity to avoid the possibility of requiring the support of emergency services as far as possible
  • Posted by IanC3454 May 06, 2020 at 22:30

    Based in the Highlands, near Inverness, I normally go sailing at Fortrose. I normally sail with one crew member, so social distancing would not be a problem. Travel is fairly local and would be by car, so no contact en route. Once afloat sailors are well away from any contact with others. I have sailed since school, some 50 years ago and, like most sailors, have had no need to call on RNLI or other rescue services, therefore sailing involves no more risk to rescue services than walking or cycling. The sooner sailing is allowed the better, especially here in the Highlands.
  • Posted by Webcraft May 06, 2020 at 23:43

    Our boat is on a mooring. We can walk to the dinghy (half a mile) and row (200m) to the boat. There are dozens of uninhabited anchorages in the area and I have 25 years trouble-free experience sailing over 25,000 miles. I cannot think of a much safer activity, or one less likely to transmit the virus.
  • Posted by Hamsterpus May 07, 2020 at 00:03

    Its simply stupid to ban sailing. The risk of transmission is exceptionally low. Use common-sense and get people on the water.
  • Posted by LauraCowan May 07, 2020 at 01:15

    I believe with stringent risk assessment by dinghy sailing clubs it could be one of the first sports to begin operating again. People can sail solo, or in family groups, with wind, tide, and weather considerations it can be very safe. Clubs can offer their own safety cover. Once RYA, RNLI, and Coastguard services agree I think this could happen once the rate of people dying in Scotland has reached zero, and restrictions begin to relax.
  • Posted by BUTEMACS May 07, 2020 at 02:46

    Just support the NHS for gods sake & follow the lock down your not going to die not getting to sail your boat for a while.
  • Posted by Schiehallion May 07, 2020 at 14:21

    Before the lockdown, we were getting our boat ready for the season and used our campervan to go down to the marina so that we had our own toilet and cooking facilities in the van. In that way were were 100% isolated. The hope being that we could get our boat launched and go sailing which is a form of isolation in itself. The plan being we would continue to use the campervan as our means of safe transport to the marina. While it has been stated that we could be putting others at risk if we have a problem, I know my boat inside out as I built it, we have sails, a main engine and an auxillary engine and I have never had to seek help in over 60 years of sailing.
  • Posted by AlastairCurrie May 07, 2020 at 15:47

    Many boats are based a couple of hours drive away from homes in Scotland. Driving to these locations carries a negligible increase in risk of contracting or spreading the virus, compared to local shopping i.e. fuel filling barriers such as distancing, gloves and hand sanitising are already being used. In addition boarding a boat whether in a marina or on a mooring can also be performed following current social distancing guidelines using existing practises as demonstrated in shops and other public areas where people have to congregate. Boating, has long been recognised as having a positive therapeutic effect on mental health as recognised by charities in this sector providing respite against mental stress e.g. Ellen Mcarthur Trust, Care Afloat. The mental health aspect alone of boating is a worthwhile reason to allow this low risk activity to be practised. It should be noted that other European Nations such as the Netherlands and Republic of Ireland have considered and allowed boating to be an approved form of sport during the current phase of the controls being implemented to counter the virus.
  • Posted by NormanS May 07, 2020 at 17:33

    Like many others, we live on the East coast, but keep our boat on the West. We, (my wife and I) drive through in our own car, park at the shore, and go out to our boat on her mooring, in our own dinghy. At no point do we come in contact with other people. Obviously once we are aboard, we are not only social distancing, but completely isolated, so any risk would seem to be negligible. I don't expect preferential treatment for sailing, but as a retired couple, sailing in our own boat keeps us fit and sane.
  • Posted by JamboBam May 07, 2020 at 18:55

    My boat is currently in the yard, within a short walk from my house in Granton. Surely there’s no risk to myself or others to go over there and work on it; social distancing, no tool sharing, and hand sanitising at entrance and exit. Next to zero risk to anyone.
  • Posted by Goose May 07, 2020 at 20:58

    Let sensible actions work for those that want to go sailing, the risk is so low it is negligible, sailing does not mean we all invade the Islands ,we can anchor off and social distance like responsible adults
  • Posted by Dave_H May 08, 2020 at 10:37

    I definitely think that non contact outdoor sports in small groups like sailing, hill walking and golfing should be allowed as soon as possible. These do not pose a threat of spreading the virus. The law would also have to allow a reasonable distance of travel to get to your chosen sport location. Again say driving 30 miles in your own car does not pose a risk of spreading the disease.
  • Posted by Gallanach May 08, 2020 at 11:07

    Allowing increased outdoor access is an important and manageable way to begin to reduce the negative impacts of lockdown. Sailing, boating, canoeing, fishing and other water based activities present negligible risk and are obvious candidates for review. We must manage our way out of lockdown, and identifying low risk activities where benefits outweigh risks is the way forward. Travelling to a boat, or to a loch or the sea, should be allowed when it can be achieved without breaching the social distancing 2m rule.
  • Posted by Scotsailtraining May 08, 2020 at 17:39

    Sailing a yacht crewed by your own household is a perfect way to isolate adhering to the new norm’ to keep a social distance from all others. Modern yachts are safe, reliable, provides ample exercise, enjoyable and mental well-being. Yachts can be self contained so eliminates need to go ashore, enter harbours and meet others. Lots of quiet safe anchorages within the hundreds of Scottish islands to visit. Few other forms of leisure activity offers so much as yachting. Commercial vessels go out in most conditions which is their occupation but risks of us needing RNLI assistance can be kept to an absolute minimum by choosing calm days to sail. I would like to see sailing being included in socially distant sports such as golf or tennis to be allowed very shortly.
  • Posted by Alba2020 May 08, 2020 at 19:56

    This can be done safely with full isolation if done solo it within a family / household group. The national sport authority RYA has shown it is willing to create sensible risk management plans and guidelines to support this in safety.
  • Posted by CarrieFortune May 09, 2020 at 09:39

    I think coming out of lockdown we need to re start with the activities which are least risk of passing on CoronaVirus. Just now we can go outside for exercise and many people have taken up running or cycling leading to the routes and streets in some places being crowded making it a risk of people passing it on. Sailing is also an outdoor activity. It also takes place in very small groups and in some cases solo. People who sail are travelling to the boat in their own vehicles (just like walkers currently are) then are in the open air during the activity. Sailing our coast is not dangerous sailing. It is also not an activity which loads of people who don’t currently sail will rush to take up making it over crowded. It should help reduce the number of runners and cyclists. Sailors tend to spend all their time on their boats and invest all their money in their boats with few other hobbies. Sailing is great for people’s mental health it is a very calming relaxing activity and also good for physical exercise. Just now boats are not being used people will need to be able to travel to them to carry out essential maintenance.
  • Posted by CarrieFortune May 09, 2020 at 09:50

    Many sailors sail with families close friends and can also take picnics for lunch and not land in different harbours or go out when weather not good. Banning it seems silly. I also feel like this about outdoor swimming, fishing, hill walking and horse riding. These are not contact sports played in teams and people already keep their distance. These are not indoors where it spreads easier and requiring a sports centre to be open. I understand canoeing, diving, skiing skydiving and even golf are a bit more dangerous. Perhaps next we could re start outdoor 5 a side and tennis.
  • Posted by Ivor73 May 09, 2020 at 10:41

    For me, sailing has brought many health benefits both physical and mental over many years. I enjoy single handed sailing, so self distancing is easy to achieve, although sailing with immediate family should also be allowed. After several weeks of lock down, I believe being able to go out sailing will bring an enormous uplift to an individuals spirit.
  • Posted by JudithMoore May 09, 2020 at 16:06

    Sailing is, in itself, a form of isolation. Many with yachts can sleep, cook and live on board in a self contained way. There are many beautiful places to anchor and enjoy the peace and glory of the sunshine. It is chiefly a summer only activity, and if the yachts cannot be put in the water, or sailed from the marina until autumn or later, it is an unnecessary whole year taken from people’s lives. Much healthier activity than being housebound, possibly suffering stress, with its attendant problems. It is not an activity which puts others at risk.
  • Posted by Sailing01 May 10, 2020 at 11:22

    The media are reporting that the Covid 19 virus transmission rate is significantly reduced outside - in the open air so outside actives such as sailing and golf are a lot less risky than say shopping at Tesco - provided Social Distancing is followed, easy to achieve with sailing. Sailing also provides mindfulness which will ameliorate the mental health problem caused by the lockdown as demonstrated by the increase and content of calls to the Samaritans
  • Posted by Grandpaboat May 10, 2020 at 18:59

    As already posted there are many health benefits from this sport. At the start of the crisis I considered this would be a great way to self isolate until we where told it would not be allowed. I do understand that guidelines should be in place to ensure sensible social distancing which are easily achievable on a cruising boat. France is lifting the ban on boating from 11 May under certain controls and Holland already allow sailing.
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