Learn to Sail

The focus of the CBYC Learn to Sail program is to teach young and old alike the fundamentals of sailing in dinghies, with the aim of instilling a life-long love of sailing. We follow Sail Canada’s updated CANSail dinghy program, which includes lots of time on the water in a safe, fun and active learning environment. Most of our instructors have come up through our program as students themselves; all have had years of training and achieved national certification through Sail Canada.

We offer:

  • Two-week summer sailing school day-camps for youth age 8 to 17*, and
  • Evening sessions for adults in July and August.

* Please note our youth students range from  8 – 17.  If you are an “older” beginner sailor, you may want to attend the adult sessions.

Sailing School Schedule Summer 2017

Youth Program


CANSail 1 & 2 – $550* (no HST) per 2 week session

CANSail 3 & 4 – $600* (no HST) per 2 week session – Limited to 10 students per session

*Enroll by 1 May for a $50 discount

Youth Program Dates

Session 1 – July 3rd to 14th

Session 2 – July 17th to 28th

Session 3 – July 31st to August 11th.

Session 4 – August 14th to 25th

Adult Program

Our adult program is geared towards those who would like to learn to sail (or brush up on their skills) but don’t own a boat. You will learn about wind direction, points of sail, knots, where to sit in a boat, how to control the sails, how to tack and gybe the boat and how to right a capsized boat.  Classes run Monday and Wednesday evenings, from 6-9 pm throughout July. As well, once students have learned the basics, they can participate in our recreational dinghy racing on Tuesday evenings.


CANSail 1 & 2 – $475* (no HST) per 2 weeks session

*Enroll by 1 May for a $50 discount

Adult Program Dates

Session 1 – July 3rd to July 26th – 6 p.m. – 9 p.m. (note that classes begin on the July 3 holiday).

How to Register

For online registration and payment click here: Online Registration. If you choose online registration, please complete and send the Medical Information Form to the Sailing School Administrator.

To register by mail, download the Youth or Adult Registration Form, and mail it in with a cheque for fees made payable to CBYC Sailing School (mailing address on the registration form).

All forms are available here.

Space is limited – registration is confirmed when fees paid in full. Fees for this summer are listed above and on the registration form.

Our School


CBYC is a Sail Canada member school and we hire only the very best instructors who have been trained and certified by Sail Canada. Our instructors take each student through the basics of sailing including rigging a boat, points of sail, rules of the water and general sailing safety. We are committed to providing the highest standard of dinghy sail training.  Many of our instructors started as students with our school and other instructors with experience at other schools are hired to bring fresh ideas for our programs. We encourage and support our instructors to upgrade qualifications as they gain more experience. To ensure students get the very best coaching, we ensure the ratio of instructors:students exceeds national and provincial guidelines.


We have a great set of volunteers each year for our youth program that consist of our current and past students. Volunteers are required to be in CANSail 4 Level to volunteer. The volunteers receive volunteer hours for high school with this position. At least two volunteers are needed for each session.

If you are interested in volunteering please email admin –  school@collinsbayyachtclub.ca

Our Fleet:

Our policy as a not-for-profit organization is to invest revenues into new equipment. We pride ourselves on the quality of our fleet Topaz Toppers for our CANSail 1 and 2 program and Club 420’s (the preferred training boat for CANSail 3 and 4  level).

For our youth program we have three or four students in a boat rotating through the various tasks involved with sailing a boat. We can accommodate 30 students per session, and usually 10 of these spots are CanSail 3 & 4 students. Like most sailing schools, CBYC firmly believes students learn best from hands-on instruction. For our adult program two students is the norm for each boat.   It is mandatory for all students to wear life jackets while on the water.  However, strong swimming ability and no fear of the water is required.  Part of the program is dumping the boat and learning how to right it again.   

Please note: It usually takes at least four weeks of instruction to complete each level. Students must successfully demonstrate all of the required skills prior to completing the level. Weather and wind conditions may limit the amount of on water time available to demonstrate the prescribed skills and is beyond the control of the sailing school. Students are encouraged to sign up for four weeks at a time so as to build on the sailing knowledge needed to achieve each level. Two-week sessions are offered to accommodate busy summer schedules and for those who are keen to maintain their interest in recreational sailing. 

Youth Program Hours:

The Sailing School operates Monday through Friday from 9 am to 4 pm (including the July 1st Holiday & August Civic Holiday Monday). Students may be dropped off after 8:45 am and picked up until 4:15 pm with supervision provided by our staff during this 15-minute window before and after formal program hours. Supervised, extended hours are available from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm. The cost is $50 per week. Please contact Keith Davies, Sailing School Administrator, directly to arrange extended hours of supervision for your child(ren). Should you need extended hours beyond the 8 am to 5 pm window, alternate hours will be considered on an individual basis. Arrangements should be made through the Sailing School Administrator. Please do not leave your child unattended at the Sailing School facilities or on the Collins Bay Marina property.

What to Bring on Day 1

  • A Department of Transportation, Canada, approved personal flotation device – properly fitted (PFD/life jacket)
  • Pertinent medical information (if necessary)

Being exposed to wind, water and strong sun, we also suggest:

  • T-shirt & shorts
  • Full cover hat with brim
  • UV sunglasses with safety lanyard
  • Appropriate sunscreen
  • Quick dry shoes (non-marking water shoes or canvas runners are good choices)
  • A full change of clothing & footwear
  • A bathing suit and a towel
  • Long sleeved shirt & pants
  • Youth sailors need a lunch and snacks!
  • At least 1 full litre of water
  • Rain gear if inclement weather predicted

Where are we?

Collins Bay Yacht Club Sailing School is located on the grounds of Collins Bay Marina in Kingston Ontario. The Marina is at 1270 Coverdale Drive south of Bath Road off Bayridge Drive. It is adjacent to Rotary Park and Lemoine Point Conservation Area. Directions to the Marina.

If you need further information, please do not hesitate to contact the School Director or Administrator.


Sailing School Images from Past Years


Topper Topaz Uno

Topper Topaz Uno

If you have any further questions please contact the Sailing School Administrator or Sailing School Director