Adult Learn-to-Sail

Learn-to-Sail classes are designed for adults with little or no sailing experience. The only pre-requisite is that you must be able to swim 50 yards without a life jacket (a swimming test is conducted on the first night of class). All Adult Learn-to-Sail classes are run by Concord Sailing Center (CSC), a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization.

There are two types of US Sailing classes offered: Basic Keelboat and Small Boat/Dinghy. Read more about each course below:

Adult Basic Keelboat Course

The Fall 2023 Basic Keelboat Class runs August 15th – September 12th, meeting every Tuesday and Thursday 5:30-8:30pm (August 15, 17, 22, 24, 29, 31; September 5, 7, and test night September 12th).

The Basic Keelboat Certification is the first stepping stone in US Sailing’s Keelboat Certification System.

The course will be taught in Catalina 22s by certified US Sailing instructors and will include evening instruction. One additional day at the conclusion of the course will include a written test, knot-tying test, and sailing skills test. Students who successfully complete US Sailing’s basic keelboat certification class will be able to responsibly skipper and crew a daysailing keelboat in familiar waters in light to moderate wind conditions.

Skills taught during the course:
  • Rigging and de-rigging the boat
  • Starting, stopping, and controlling boat speed while sailing
  • Leaving and returning to the dock.
  • Using sail controls
  • Tacking, jibing, and getting out of the no-go-zone
  • Sailing around a set course
  • Basic navigation rules
  • The heave-to maneuver
  • Depowering sails
  • Overboard recovery methods
  • and more…
Adult Small Boat/Dinghy Course

The Fall 2023 Dinghy Class runs August 14th – 30th, meeting every Monday and Wednesday 5:30-8:00pm (August 14, 16, 21, 23, 28, and 30th).

For those who want to learn to sail smaller boats, consider the Adult Learn-to-Sail course small boat/dinghy course.  The small group class is taught by certified US Sailing instructors and includes evening instruction.

Skills taught during the course:
  • Rigging and de-rigging a small sailboat
  • How to right a capsized boat (this is a crucial skill for small boat sailors and we’ll practice this on the first night of class so be prepared to get in the water)
  • Leaving and returning to the dock
  • Starting, stopping and controlling boat speed while sailing
  • Tacking, jibing and getting out of the no-go zone
  • Sailing around a set course
  • Basic navigation rules
  • Knot tying, and more!

PLEASE NOTE: Good swimming skills are required for this class (a swim test will be conducted on the first night) as well as arm and upper body strength.  Dinghy sailing also involves moving around a boat that will lean from side to side, being able to pull yourself back into the boat from the water, and being able to duck and move beneath the boom as the boat turns.  (If you enjoy activities like being in a kayak or balancing on a stand-up paddleboard, then small boat sailing may be for you.)

Adult-Learn-to-Sail Course Registration

Registration for both courses are offered on a first-come, first-served basis – there is no waiting list. If space is available, you will receive an email confirming your place in class when we receive your registration materials. If you are not able to secure a space this time around, please look forward to our Spring and Fall classes in 2024.  Class dates will be made available in late March to early April.

No refunds will be made for students who cancel less than two weeks prior to the first night of class.

Registration is closed for all Fall sailing classes. Classes will resume in Spring 2024.

(subject to change)

Basic Keelboat $575 per person

Small Boat/Dinghy $450 per person

Registration & Payment

Registration Will Open:  Spring 2024

Please complete the registration form above.  You will receive email confirmation from Sandra Ford-Johnson along with instructions on when and how to pay class fees. Please note that we are unable to accept credit cards for payment – at this time.

Sandra Ford-Johnson
9453 Westland Drive
Knoxville, Tennessee  37922



Sandra Ford-Johnson
865.599.0751 (If no answer, please leave message.)


Other Community Programs

Sail Camp
Sea Scouts
High School Sailing
College Sailing
US Coast Guard Captain’s Class



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Become a US Sailing Instructor
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