'Sailability' is the RYA’s national programme aiming to enable people with disabilities to get involved with sailing. It has branches all over the UK and encourages sailing at all levels, from first time sailors to Paralympians. The Guernsey Sailing Trust is very proud to be a part of this programme.
One of the fantastic things about sailing is that the sport can be accessible and inclusive for all. It caters to all types of personality, from those looking for a relaxing experience that brings you closer to the natural world; to those wanting the adrenaline rush of sailing in a strong breeze, with the boat surfing down waves and spray flying over the side of the boat! In all conditions sailing gives the feeling of independence and responsibility, in the little world that is a small sailboat.
The Guernsey Sailing Trust has a variety of boats to suit different abilities and we currently work with all the special needs schools on the island. We commonly use our Hawk20’s, which are comfortable and safe keelboats and allow us to go a little further afield to explore Guernsey’s coast line. We can accommodate more physically disabled sailors in our new RS Venture Keelboat Connect, Invictus. Invictus is specifically designed to help people of all mobility’s get out on the water. Bucket seats hold the sailors securely and all the boat controls can be reached from this position. The boat is steered using easily operated joysticks. To make the whole sailing experience simple and safe, we have wheelchair access right to the water's edge via a ramp and pontoon at the end of the Albert Pier and a hoist, with qualified operators, to gently lower the sailors into and out of the boat.
All sailing sessions are tailored to the individual or group, taking into consideration their schedules, the weather, tides, experience and abilities. Participants can also work through the RYA Sailability scheme, gaining certificates and badges while tracking their progress.
If you are interested in trying sailing or would just like to know a little more about it, please give us a call and we can discuss it further with you. All you will need to bring is your sense of adventure and a smile!