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Arresting the Decline and Fall of our Sport.

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tink View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote tink Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Nov 19 at 7:32pm
Just looked at the difference in finishers between the 2008 and 2019 slow handicap Sunday morning finishers...........

UP 12%  

EDIT 

Just looked at fast handicap 

UP 68% 




Edited by tink - 09 Nov 19 at 8:20pm
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ian.r.mcdonald View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote ian.r.mcdonald Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Nov 19 at 9:10pm
That's great news. As long as the growth hasnt been achieved by a similar drop in fleet racing entrants.
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tink View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote tink Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Nov 19 at 9:22pm
Originally posted by ian.r.mcdonald

That's great news. As long as the growth hasnt been achieved by a similar drop in fleet racing entrants.

Oops 

New to the club and hadnít realised the format in 2008. So looking at briefly will have been a small drop in the fast and bigger drop in the slow, there was a large laser fleet in 2008 (slow). 
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ian.r.mcdonald View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote ian.r.mcdonald Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Nov 19 at 10:02pm
And the shift in your club is mirrored in mine and 90% of all others.

And even if that is seen as a bad thing, we didnt have an answer to avoid it.

And people out sailing ( in whichever boat) is better than the same people watching a screen instead.
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zeon View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote zeon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Nov 19 at 11:40pm
Have sailed for 30 years . Have been a member of four clubs in that time . The only time I have class raced is at open meetings. I have enjoyed doing both. I just enjoy sailing.
The biggest change at the club I have been a member of for the last 15 years is the amount of people switching from fast boats to slow boats. 
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Sussex Lad View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Sussex Lad Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 Nov 19 at 5:31pm
......getting older maybe?

There was a thread on here 12/13 yrs ago discussing the decline in participation. The forumites of the time had a hard time accepting the idea, not all but most........there lies most of the problem.

Clubs that are in good health at the moment need to consolidate their positions and be prepared for higher levels of economic competition with neighboring clubs because a lot of them will go to the wall. I can drive to 4 clubs, all within a 35 minute radius. They are all good friendly clubs but some of them are tenants, renting from the local authority. As the economic pinch goes on these authorities will need to maximise their incomes from property/land, clubs with declining membership will not be able to keep up.

Clubs can boost their membership with adult learners doing the 1 & 2 courses. Maybe target other watersport enthusiasts (including jet skiiers? Lol) these new members do tend to be transient but some do stick and many have kids that get the bug. The downside of relying on adult learners though is a drop in volunteer skill level, the ability to host opens, set courses and run the club decreases.

IMO a clubs priorities now should be financial consolidation, big efforts to pass on skills more effectively and get ready for the sailing dystopia  Wink

Edited by Sussex Lad - 10 Nov 19 at 5:37pm
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ian.r.mcdonald View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote ian.r.mcdonald Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 Nov 19 at 5:56pm
I went on my first sailing lesson at school 52 years ago. Sailing has changed my life and these early lessons were vital.

But training needs to be done carefully. The draw on members time, funds and just basic dinghy park space can quickly take over. I have seen several clubs turned into training centres with the normal sailing club activities all but abandoned. Fantastic and essential to get kids into sailing, but almost certainly the majority will end up at other clubs.

Its vital, it can be done positively ( like at my club) but a balance needs to be maintained.




Edited by ian.r.mcdonald - 10 Nov 19 at 5:56pm
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iGRF View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote iGRF Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 Nov 19 at 6:21pm
I'm of the view that targetting kids in this day and age is a rfwot, if the kids have sailing parents they'll do the job anyway and if they don't it's unlikely you'll find that many willing to go through that God Awful mill that is the squad system.

I think we're missing a trick, not targetting mature empty nesters, that these days are more conscious of the liklihood of longer life, and have the necessary resources to facillitate what is after all a relatively high cost of entry, in the acquisiiton of the boat.

It's not a difficult sell, it's green, it's a relatively free ride once the equipment cost is mitigated, it's good exercise and it's a mental rather than a physical pursuit, that can be studied and improved on by reading, training and practise.

Provided the right products are suggested for entry level and access points detailed in an easy to find brochure, it shouldn't be a difficult thing to market to them.

Our problem within the sport is that we're so tied with all the detailed baggage of the past, the key to marketing is a simple inital message and not to over complicate. Sell the sizzle, not the complicated sausage, they can deal with that once they're hooked.

Edited by iGRF - 10 Nov 19 at 6:22pm
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tink View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote tink Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 Nov 19 at 6:57pm
As a keen sailor who has somehow ended up with a daughter in third year of squads I find it flabbergasting how many squad parents have little or no sailing experience. I just canít see how these parents will be able to facilitate their childís sailing logistics fully other than just squad dates and a few big events. 



For children there has to be a critical mass of other kids and when that is lost because there are so many of travelling we have a very big problem.



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tink View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote tink Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 Nov 19 at 7:44pm
Found some PY numbers from 2012 with the number of returns, total returns 211,000
Same number 2019 - 138,000 

There where a lot more classes in 2012 and perhaps the RYA is ignoring the small classes in the newer returns but still quite a difference,

radically different from the 216,000 the participation survey says race small boats 
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