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Dinghy sailing's for old men and kids

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iitick View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote iitick Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 29 Nov 13 at 10:46pm
I think that the general misconception is 'expensive' and 'relaxed'. We do seem to have a lot of elderly members but relaxed is not an adjective I would apply to any of them. Most people who continue getting bruised and wet into old age are far from that. 

Our oldest active, and I mean really active is a 75 year old Phantom Sailor. We have another awesome guy who is 73 with parkinsons and a pacemaker.

These are not normal old men. Most old men take it easy!
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E.J. View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote E.J. Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 29 Nov 13 at 11:01pm

YW I feel your pain, I have to defend our noble conquest on a daily basis. I'm lucky enough to work in an environment with an ethos of sporting endeavour and all them (Swimmers, footballers, rugbyists, judoites, Triathamorons and even f**king table tennis) look down on us. It comes down to this; they can all understand and a categorise mainstream sports due to the ease that a person can identify a winner on tv. Sailing, even when its good looks like advanced pottering, unless your the sort of person that enjoys maths equations. Trying to get a non sailor to Appreciate sailing for what it is, is like saying that beauty is only skin deep . it might be true but no one really want to find out!

Sailing is like the matrix; no one can tell you what it is......

Edited by E.J. - 29 Nov 13 at 11:04pm
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yellowwelly View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote yellowwelly Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 29 Nov 13 at 11:06pm
Originally posted by E.J.

Sailing is like the matrix; no one can tell you what it is......

judging by some of the characters on here, I reckon it's more like 'Labyrinth'



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E.J. View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote E.J. Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 29 Nov 13 at 11:13pm
Haha, Yes, no wonder sailing can't get tv deal with the collection of morlocks available. Thank god for Big Ben.
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JimC View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote JimC Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 29 Nov 13 at 11:46pm
In the end, just ask yourself: "how much does what people who don't know any better think matter?
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sargesail View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote sargesail Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30 Nov 13 at 7:47am
Originally posted by yellowwelly

Originally posted by E.J.

Sailing is like the matrix; no one can tell you what it is......

judging by some of the characters on here, I reckon it's more like 'Labyrinth'




Is hos Phantom epoxy or GRP?
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yellowwelly View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote yellowwelly Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30 Nov 13 at 8:08am
Originally posted by JimC

In the end, just ask yourself: "how much does what people who don't know any better think matter?


Absolutely nothing of course, but it is interesting to see quite what a mountain those who are tasked with growing the sport side of sailing face.
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The Moo View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote The Moo Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30 Nov 13 at 9:12am
Funny, I sometimes get the opposite in that people think you must be really fit to do that. I do point out to them that on light wind days the most physical aspect is dragging (not GRF style) the boat in and out of the dinghy park!
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fab100 View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote fab100 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30 Nov 13 at 9:39am
Originally posted by yellowwelly

Originally posted by JimC

In the end, just ask yourself: "how much does what people who don't know any better think matter?


Absolutely nothing of course, but it is interesting to see quite what a mountain those who are tasked with growing the sport side of sailing face.

Darn it, you've set me off now Jimbo!

The mountain is a consequence of the actions of those running sailing. It's their artificial creation.

In the 70s heyday of participation, Joe Public was generally probably more ignorant of sailing than now. But the sports administrators were not in thrall to the false gods of TV or the lottery-funded gravy train that flows from the Gold medals of Sir Ben et al. 

In the good old days, if a Brit won a sailing medal it was pretty much despite, rather than thanks to, sailing's administrators. And for those too young to have been there, the sailing boom (sorry) came from the Daily Mirror, home of Andy Capp (who is nothing to do with yardstick banditry grumph), a socialist, working man's Red Top. They sponsored and promoted a cheap, easy home build boat and insisted the sail colour echoed their title-logo. With hindsight, they were the perfect organ. <cues jokes here> Just compare the Sunday Times' impact with the SigneT.

In contrast, sailing's administration now is simply a dedicated medal machine, because that's where the money comes from. It's a distortion reminiscent of bankers behaving 'badly' as a consequence of politicians changing the rules so as to induce the very behaviour they then get upset about.

Now don't get me wrong, I want team GBR to win medals. And what gets measured gets done. But the other face of that coin is 'what does not get measured does not get done.' 

Unfortunately, the medal machine has an unforeseen, unmeasured, detrimental side effect. It chews up and spits out the vast majority of young sailors; it's industrial strip mining for gold rather than panning a stream. Far more lucrative, yes, but totally destructive. Contrast my generation, many of whom started in Mirrors, never had anything to do with the 5-ring irrelevance and are still going strong today. 

So, RYA, Sport England and John Major with your accursed lottery, you are the problem. Your medal machine methodology maims what it claims to support (I'm trying to decide whether to call it a cancer, but it feels like a pretty good metaphor). You have misinterpreted the goal. The medals were supposed to be a way to raise the profile of sailing and encourage participation. Instead, the means have become the end. You destroy what you were created to cherish.

Private Fraser would conclude "we're all dooommmed", but, much as I loathe the Apprentice, I'd prefer "you're fired!"

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Rupert View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Rupert Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30 Nov 13 at 9:51am
Whilst I can see your point of view, I'm not really sure the good old days were as good as you remember, or that the modern day is as bad. There is huge amounts of funding for grass roots sailing, and the children I work with are having as much fun in a bunch of rotomoulded boats as any 1970's kids did in Mirrors or Cadets, with the bonus that they don't need painting.

One side of the RYA does seem squad biased, but if you look at loads of clubs round the country (just as Nessa) the system is used to produce talented sailors who like sailing for sailing's sake, not for winning. In our area, certainly, there is a choice of clubs for what style you want your kids/your kids want to do.
Firefly 2324, Lightning 130, Puffin 229, Minisail 3446
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