Sat, Feb 24, 2018

The Vallarta Yacht Club Junior Sailing Program


Our Junior Sailing program is intended to expose youngsters of all nationalities in the area and their families to the enjoyment of sailing.  With multi-lingual, competent instructors administered by a Board sanctioned Junior Sailing Committee and assisted by the stewardship of the Yacht Club Staff and member volunteer adult leaders and Junior Sailing parents. The program’s objectives are the following:

  • To teach seamanship, sailing and racing skills, in a safe and fun environment
  • To enable students to acquire, through the overall experience of program activities, life-long values such as sportsmanship, consideration of others, teamwork and self-reliance, as well as a love and respect for the sea
  • To teach young people how to sail to the best of their ability and interest, and to encourage growth in skill and competence through both individual and team participation
  • To encourage the acquisition of competitive sailing skills in regattas and in races at VYC and other Regional, National and International events.
VYC provides thirteen (13) new Optimist sailing dinghies and (3) Laser Class boats purchased by the club and by individual club members who donated these dinghies to the Jr. Program. Additionally, we have three laser Class boats. The Optimist was selected as our youth training dinghy because it is considered one of the safer and more stable dinghies afloat. There are over 150,000 Optis world wide with fleets in 110 countries. The Mexican Optimist Association has fleets in Valle de Bravo, Cancun, Lake Chapala and Acapulco. Our Junior Sailing Program has three levels of instruction for kids 8 – 14 years:
  • The Opti 1 – Beginners  This program is for kids with little or no experience. The goal here is to foster confidence and understanding. The students need only to know how to swim as a prerequisite.  The class is eight (8) weeks long with one training session each week after school.
    The class covers:
    • Boating safety
    • Basic elements of the Opti
    • Rigging the Opti
    • Basic knot tying
    • Reading the wind
    • Points of sail
    • How to accelerate, slow and stop
    • How to sail out of the no-sail zone.       
  • The Opti 2 - Intermediate  This program is for those students who have completed Opti 1 or have equivalent experience.  The class is six (6) weeks long and meets twice a week after school. 
    The class covers:
    • A review of Opti 1 basics
    • Basic rules of navigation
    • Introduction to Olympic triangle course
    • Starts
    • How to go fast
    • Trim and balance
    • Capsizing and righting
    • Participating in a VYC Home Regatta with prizes
  • The VYC Opti – Team  Those students who have excelled in Opti 2 can by invitation of the Director become a member of the Opti Team.  This is an ongoing course designed to further train and develop skills for regatta competition in both Mexico and North America.  VYC currently hosts Opti and Laser regattas here in Banderas Bay. Our first Junior Sailing International Regatta, the North American Optimist championship was held on July 4-12, 2007 and was attended by 190 kids from 20 countries.
 There two fee levels in the program:  VYC family Flag Member and Non Member
  • Non Member of VYC pay a monthly lesson fee of $2,100.00  pesos with each additional participating brother or sister paying a monthly fee of $ 1,900.00  pesos
  • VYC Family Flag Members pay a monthly fee of $ 1,000.00  pesos (plus monthly VYC Flag Member dues of $87.00 us dollars) with each additional participating brother or sister paying a monthly fee of $ 1,000.00  pesos.
  • Non-Members wishing to apply for VYC Flag Membership may choose to either pay the current Flag Initiation fee and immediately qualify for the Flag Member rate, or having paid the full Non-Member lesson fees for a period of at least six months, receive a waiver of the Flag Initiation Fee and subsequently qualify for the Flag Member Lesson Fee rate.

    * It is the intent of the Vallarta Yacht Club that no child with a desire to learn to sail be denied the opportunity. The Club has various scholarship opportunities to help those with need to make the program cost affordable. Contact the director for more information.  
Children have the opportunity to learn in a safe and protected environment, skills and knowledge that can allow them to enter a sport that can bring a life time of great joy, friendships and peace.
Simply obtain an application at the club or download an application from the club website Upon acceptance of your application, the Director will advise you of a class assignment and start date for your child. You will be required to pay your program initiation fee and sign a release of liability agreement prior to your first class.  Classes are limited to 10 students. Once classes are filled, your name, if you wish, can be placed on a waiting list for future classes.


If you wish, you can help with our program in various ways:

  • Outreach – if you know a young person whom you think would benefit from our Junior program, let he or she and their parents know about out Junior program and encourage them to contact us.
  • Volunteer – If you have some spare time and wish to help on the water or with maintenance or administration please contact our Director, Dan Green at 322 297-5730
  • Donations – At least 50% of our Program reaches out to kids who would never have the opportunity to participate or experience the growth such a program affords. In order to make this happens we utilize donations. 
    We receive Donations for the Junior Program in a number of ways:
  • Individual cash donations to fund scholarships, buy boats, equipment, and pay for student transportation and living cost for out of town Regattas.
  • Make a friend and adopt a student by helping to cover the cost of a young persons program. Watch him or her grow through the program, share their victories and be a friend. It’s sort of a Sailing “Big Brother” Program.
  • If you are a member of a service club, we can share the program with your membership at a meeting to solicit the clubs support. 

Thank you for your support!

Dan Green, Junior Sailing Director

If you are interested in finding out more about participating in this solid and growing program as either a student or volunteer leader, you may contact us in person at the Vallarta Yacht Club or be e-mail at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

To make a donation to the Jr. Program, please visit our Payment Page

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Upcoming Junior Program Events

Mon Feb 19 @ 3:30PM - 06:30PM
Regular Schedule for Lessons
Tue Feb 20 @ 3:30PM - 06:30PM
Regular Schedule for Lessons
Wed Feb 21 @ 3:30PM - 06:30PM
Regular Schedule for Lessons
Thu Feb 22 @ 3:30PM - 06:30PM
Regular Schedule for Lessons
Thu Mar 01 @12:00AM
WesMex International Small Boat Regatta
Fri Mar 02 @12:00AM
WesMex International Small Boat Regatta
Sat Mar 03 @12:00AM
WesMex International Small Boat Regatta
Sun Mar 04 @12:00AM
WesMex International Small Boat Regatta
Sat Mar 24 @ 5:30PM - 10:00PM
Junior Sailing Fundraiser

Vallarta Sailing Foundation
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