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July 11, 2016

Tips to Get Recruited for Sailing

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Not all colleges have sailing, and, due to the lack of intensive knowledge, it can be hard to be recruited. With that said, if you want to pursue sailing in college, here are some recruitment tips to help you through the process:

    • Some colleges do not have a varsity team, some just have club teams, but there is a small difference between the two. Some great coaches might be coaching a club team so don’t be shut off to that opportunity.
    • There are no divisions. All teams, whether student-led or a fully funded program, compete at the same level.
    • There are no scholarships. Ask the coaches or student leaders if they have a pull on admissions because that can help you judge if the school is a possibility for you. Sailing isn’t like other college sports. Some varsity teams, club teams as well, might have pull on admissions and some might have very little.
  • When trying to be noticed by coaches:
      • Attend invites and international showcases. These are the big leagues. You want to attend these to get noticed. Sailing is a huge financial investment. With that said, if it is not possible to attend a private school where sailing is big or you cannot join a year round development program, then aim to attend as many regattas as possible.You want to prioritize and lean more towards the big ones, so that you have a better chance of being looked at.
      • Participate in summer regionals and in spring/fall season. Summer regionals are summer based leagues focused around regional sailing. For example, the Southern Massachusetts Sailing Association (SMSA) is the league for the South Shore of Massachusetts.
    • All events and levels of sailing are technically youth amateur, meaning they have a hard age cut off. As a result, you need to get noticed before you age out of the amateur/youth circuit (meaning you need to still be 18 before a certain date). Therefore, try to be noticed early on and connect with coaches.
    • However, some sailing teams do not have coaches. That does not mean that they don’t recruit, and, as a result, your college sailing can be an excellent opportunity for student leadership. Therefore, when you go visit, interact with team leaders to see what it’s like to be one.
    • Make a detailed sailing resume. Include every regatta, camp, or even coaching experience. Add detail to each part, such as your finishing place or who you were coached by.
    • Show them that you are able to win. Showing that you win while sailing is always a plus, but winning in another sport shows them that you succeed outside of sailing as well.
    • If you have never sailed before, you still have potential. You might offer something else that they are looking for, something that can set you apart from others.
  • Make sure that you chose the school for the academics and campus-life too. Think of your major, the size of the school, and your fit in that program, and see if it will be a good fit. Make sure that the school is compatible to you and your needs. If you are a happy student, then you will be a happy athlete. Coaches want you to bring that positive energy which is needed for the sport.