Get Involved in Sailing

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Last Updated: 08/08/12 4:54pm

As Team GB's sailors battle for Olympic glory at Weymouth Bay, the next generation of sailors are taking to the waves around the Britain.

"The Olympics have a massive inspirational impact. We are very successful at sailing in the Olympics and have been for many years so it is a wonderful thing."

Alan Russell

Quotes of the week

In this week's Get Involved we dropped in on Weymouth for Sail for a Fiver scheme, as well as Rickmansworth Sailing Club and South Staffordshire Sailing Club to show you the benefits of getting on board.

According to statistics from Sport England, 89,000 people sailed or went windsurfing, jet skiing, dinghy racing or yacht racing once a week in the UK in 2007-08, but by 2010-11 that figure had dropped to 52,300.

But like many sports this summer, sailing is getting a major boost from the London 2012 Olympics with youngsters especially getting involved.

Bury Lake Young Mariners has been a centre for sailing since the 1930s and is more popular than ever putting more than 6000 people on the water each year. And what is more, half of its volunteer instructors under 18.

Alan Russell said: "The Olympics have a massive inspirational impact. We are very successful at sailing in the Olympics and have been for many years so it is a wonderful thing."

Young volunteer Elizabeth Talbot added: "You meet loads of new people who are very similar to you and I find that is a very inspiring thing to do."

And despite sometimes suffering from the idea that it is in some ways an exclusive sport, sailing is a not as expensive as many expect insists Roy Alexander of South Staffordshire sailing club.

"For a single membership we charge about £110 a year and for that you can sail every week and several days a week," he said.

So is it time to Get Involved?

For more information visit:

- The Bury Lake Young Mariners

- The Royal Yatching Association

- The South Staffordshire Sailing Club