Dreaming about sailing but unsure how to begin? Well, it's all about skills, whether you're a beginner or an experienced sailor, cruiser or racer, coastal or offshore sailor and whether you're in it for fun or more advanced sailing. Griffin Sailing School can help you make it happen, turning your dream into lifelong passion.
We can help with:
ASA Courses, certified at all levels
Marine Surveys (any boats)
Sailing Consultation (cruising or racing)
We offer training in inland, coastal, and offshore sailing, providing a broad range of sailing knowledge to our graduates. We are proud to be an American Sailing Association affiliated school. Under strict ASA guidance we provide the highest level of sailing education available.
Our Courses page describes all available options, standards, and requirements. Our certification is honored by charter companies the world over. It's your passport to the location and vacations of your choice. It also help to save on boat insurance, charter cost and most important, sailors with ASA Certification enjoy safe and comfortable sailing wherever they go!
What to expect
After you Register for a course, we'll send you study materials. It is not required to read the ASA Textbook before the course, but if you do, it will be easier to embrace the course material. It also makes on-the-water training much easier. Because we teach above and beyond the course requirements, reading the material ahead of time gives you an advantage.
Light rain or showers will not stop us from sailing, so be prepared for rainy conditions, and have spare clothing and storm gear ready.
Our three-day courses are ASA 101, Basic Keelboat Sailing and ASA 103, Basic Coastal Cruising. We offer them May 1 - October 15, either Monday-Tuesday-Wednesday or Friday-Saturday-Sunday, at our Connelly, NY location. If your schedule does not permit a three-day block, we'll try to fit these courses to your schedule. ASA 104, Bareboat Cruising is a four day/3 night liveaboard sailing trip. Other courses can be arranged on an individual basis according to student preferences.
Griffin Sailing School policy for ASA 101 and ASA 103 is not to sail in winds exceeding 20-25 knots!
For easy sailing, we offer Introduction to Sailing, which is very popular 2-hour private sailing lesson on the water for up to two persons (additional persons add only $50.00 each). The instructor will explain the basics of sailing, maneuvers, sail trimming, and steering. If you have not decided whether sailing is for you and you just want to try sailing or relax on the boat, this private lesson is for you. There is no need to be an experienced sailor, or in learning mode, you can simply enjoy sailing with the instructor and enjoy awesome Hudson River Valley scenery.
For new sailors, or somehow experienced sailors, we offer three basic courses that will help you build sailing experience and knowledge much faster and safer then on your own. Those courses are: ASA 101 Basic Keelboat, ASA 103 Basic Coastal Cruising, ASA 104 Bareboat Cruising. Charter companies do require sailing certification at those levels. It is the most popular way to learn safely common sailing skills.
For experienced sailors, ASA 101 Challenge, ASA 103 Challenge or ASA 104 Challenge instead of taking the course may be the right choice. Challenge is not for beginners but if anyone feels like they have sufficient sailing experience, knowledge and comply with American Sailing Association Course Standards, Requirements and Prerequisites; the challenge is worth the try. The format of the challenge is pass or fail, and it takes 2-4 hours for ASA 101, ASA 103, and overnight for ASA 104. By taking multiple challenges only the highest-level written test is required. Passing it will save time and money. If you fail, we will arrange a make-up day, or recommend taking the failed course. For more info, please read our Policy. Before challenging any course, we are urging you to read ASA Textbook available at GSS or online at ASA. Passing ASA Challenge at the level 104 qualifies students to receive European IPC,
The International Proficiency Certificate IPC is accepted by most charter companies, including the biggest Kirikoulis Charters, in much of the European and Mediterranean waters. This certificate is adequate proof of bareboat skipper proficiency. A full list of the countries that insist on IPCs and requirements for IPC is at . It should also be noted that the IPC is all encompassing for recreational/cruising sailors, not just racers. The good news is the level of knowledge required to obtain an IPC is the same as what is required to pass ASA’s 101,103,104. Anyone who has received ASA 104 qualification is eligible for the IPC.
For sailing gifts, we have available Gift Card for an enjoyable lifelong lasting sailing experience! It makes a great gift for any occasion.
For private classes, we offer Private Sailing Lessons and Sailboat Racing Coaching, which may be done on our boat, or student's boats. We can accommodate all of your sailing needs per your request. Please, call us to make arrangements.
For performance sailors, (not necessary racing, but also!) we are offering two days (6 hours each day) Performance Sailing. It will cover fine adjustments of the sails, understanding sail shape and size of the sails, trimming the sails in different applications, spinnaker handling, hull speed, racing tacking and jibing, and basic racing tactics and strategy. It is an excellent and fun course for everyone.
For docking skills, which is an art form best executed when calm and collected, ASA 118, Docking Endorsement is very practical and will save your boat by eliminating your docking related aggravations. Knowing how to command the crew, approach the dock, dock the boat and use the docking lines will help to calm down and safely dock. Don't be surprised when you find out how much easier and safer is to dock the boat!
For catamaran sailors and owners, certified ASA 114, Cruising Catamaran course is an excellent option. If you own one or plan to charter one for your vacation trips and want to improve sailing skills, than this could be perfect choice to consider. We offer Cruising Catamaran course on 47' Leopard in the USA East Cost, Bermuda, Sint Maarten, BVI, and other Islands. Check our link to or Contact Us to find out more about courses combined with your dream sailing vacations.
For offshore and coastal cruising, we strongly recommend ASA 105, Coastal Navigation. It is self-study course that does not require sailing experience. Also, it can be done when our sailing season is over. It will bring your navigation skills to the much higher level, and it will help to navigate any waters. In case of the electronics failure using charts is your navigation plan "B" to get back home safely.
For experienced offshore sailors, we offer ASA 106, Advanced Coastal Cruising run only twice a year on larger sailboats. This course is offshore cruising and often sailed to Bermuda and BVI. Dates TBD.
All of our courses can be taken and sailed in the Caribbeans during your vacations
Call us, please to find out more about Caribbean's family/friends vacation and courses combo. Read the important Enrollment Policy and Refund/Cancellation Policy. All information is available on our Policy page.
Also, please remember to Register, as your file is needed to secure your enrollment, dates confirmation and to receive all updates.
The morning starts with 2-2.5 hour lecture. Please bring notebook and pencil! After that:
Brief lunch break (bring your lunch or dine at the local restaurants).
Practice sailing for about 5 hours.
Day 3: Students will take a 100-question multiple-choice written test. Afterward, we'll take you on the water, and let you choose a selection of practical skills to test. We encourage you to choose the skills that you think need the most work. We'll do our best to help you get it right.
We guarantee every beginning student will learn to sail (ASA 101). If someone fails the written or practical test, we will offer one free make-up during the next available slot in an upcoming class. That's our learn to sail guarantee!
Classes start at 10 AM and finish around 6 PM. If weather conditions are especially favorable, we may want to sail longer, so plan accordingly. Our instructor will meet you in the classroom to explain the schedule and the curriculum of your course.
If the weather is too unfavorable for sailing, we'll spend the day in the classroom, and on the following day, we will sail for the entire day.
For ASA 101, Basic Keelboat Sailing, ASA 103, Basic Coastal Cruising and Introduction to Sailing we'll be sailing on the Hudson River (lighthouse picture) or on Long Island Sound. Griffin Sailing Club members will enjoy the Hudson River as well.
For ASA 104, Bareboat Cruising we'll sail on Long Island Sound or Massachusetts Bay (departing from Boston). For ASA 106, Advanced Coastal Cruising we'll be sailing on Long Island Sound, or we will make a coastal or offshore trip. All of this courses are also available in the Caribbean (sunset picture above).
At Griffin Sailing School, we're happy to customize any of our services to fit the sailing preferences of individuals or groups. Let us know your needs, and we'll make it happen. Whether you're new to sailing or an experienced sailor, cruiser or racer, you'll benefit from both the lectures and the on-the-water training.
We are a true sailing school!
Sailing life occasionally is stormy; we can help you prepare for any number of situations; good, bad, or ugly.
We've been there; we've done that, and we've learned it all to share with you.
Whatever you choose, you will have a great time and you will be in experienced hands, getting the best help available.