Youth & Juniors


Keyhaven encourages our younger members to enjoy the water and all it has to offer. We recognise the Juniors and the Youth are the future of sailing and are supported and offered every opportunity to experience sailing in its many forms. Therefore, working with other facilities such as Salterns Sailing we run several sessions to get the youngest members confident in a dinghy and learning the basics of boat handling.

We run Junior sessions and Youth sessions on Saturdays and Thursday evenings, check the Calendar for dates and start times. With 12 club boats to choose from, which are free to use during Junior & Youth sessions you don’t have to have your own dinghy to join in. It’s a chance for parents to meet other families in the club and for the Juniors and Youth to get out on the water and learn in a safe and fun environment. For more information contact the office for details.

Both Youth and Junior sessions are organised and run by the parents of the youngsters taking part.

More information about the Juniors can be found here

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Juniors 1Junior sailing at Keyhaven provides young members with an introduction to sailing, giving them the opportunity to develop the skills and experience needed to play a full part in the club’s sailing activities.

Run by families for families, Juniors can have fun in a safe and welcoming environment, with parents passing on their knowledge and experience so that they can enjoy all that the club has to offer.

The aim of our sailing sessions is to encourage children to flourish in a relaxed informal atmosphere and to provide them with a solid foundation and hopefully a lasting passion for sailing in whatever capacity – whether it be to go on and become a competitive sailor or simply to have the confidence to enjoy being on the water.

We are not an instructing club, we are just passionate about sailing with the adults keen to pass their knowledge on to the children. Junior sailing is suited to children aged between 8-12 years all we ask is that they have a certain amount of water confidence and lots of enthusiasm, we will provide the rest!!

We have a great assortment of dinghies to use - four optimists (which are the perfect beginner’s boat), an RS Tera and two BIC O’pen’s, a scow that children can learn to crew on, or you can bring your own boats.

We provide a fully crewed safety boat at each session which means we can have up to 6 boats on the water at any one time. The children can learn all the basic sailing techniques as either a helmsman or a crew or both, moving on to informal racing when they are ready.Juniors 2

However, none of this is possible without the help and commitment of the parents or often grandparents, and we do need a certain amount of competent  adult volunteers in various roles both on and off the water to make each session possible – so please be prepared to get involved and happy to sign up for a rota!!

There is a full programme of sailing running from late April through to October on some Saturdays and some Thursday evenings, we would love to make it every week but we are constrained by the tides and other sailing events at the club.

This year we will be holding our first Junior Regatta in early September which we are very excited about and one that we hope will be a lovely event for the children to work towards.

Alongside all the sailing there will be regular informal picnics and BBQs after sessions – which is a fantastic way to get to know one another and really feel a part of our wonderful club.

Our start of season briefing will take place on Saturday 1st April 2017 at 9.30am and will be followed by an informal welcome BBQ – everyone is welcome so if you are interested please come along and signup. In the meantime if you would like more information on how it all works please email me Sam Gabriel,  at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

Youth sailing at Keyhaven takes competent junior sailors who are members of KYC from the age of 12 and exposes them to more testing conditions, longer sailing sessions and a wider variety of sailing activities. Unfortunately, we have neither the time or permissions to run ab initio training but do offer coaching and organised sailing sessions designed to be fun, at times exciting, challenging and confidence building.

Sailing sessions are published on the KYC website. We are seeking young sailors between the ages of 12 and 18 and sail club owned RS Qubas, BIC Opens, a laser and sometimes a Lymington River Scow. We also have an RS Tera which is useful for the smaller sailor in heavy weather. Youths are welcome to bring their own boats.

Youth sailing at Keyhaven is not just about racing! Whilst competitive sailing is an important element of the sport and we will race during the year we are really looking to improve sailing competence and confidence on the water.  Youth sailing provides a link between junior sailing and adult sailing and therefore youths have to rig and de-rig their own boats, sign in and out and are encouraged to make their own assessments of the conditions whilst under a 
parent run support system.

youth1This season we intend to thread the Needles again after the great success of the expedition last year. We also plan a bar-b-que on the beach and a trip to Yarmouth. Details will be emailed to youths nearer the time. In addition, there will be a junior and youth regatta in September and the youths are encouraged to race in Keyhaven week.  If the weather is good and the tides permit we often return from our sessions via the ice cream van at Mount Lake, youths should bring a couple of pounds for this if the weather is good.

The club boats are available to hire through the club website but are free for the youth sessions and centrally booked prior to the event.

Parent participation is essential for Youth sailing. Parents are needed to man the support boats, provide shore cover and assist in the clear up afterwards. However, parents must be members in order to meet the club’s insurance terms. In order to run the Youth sessions, we need to crew at least two safety boats with a minimum of 2 RYA Powerboat Level 2 in each boat (a course that is regularly run at the club). The RYA Short Range (radio) Certificate, First Aid and Safety Boat qualifications are also useful.  Parents are asked to declare any qualifications and volunteer to assist in the sessions. We are also looking for qualified dinghy instructors and coaches to add some more rigour to our sailing sessions.

It is a tradition that Youth sailors bring cake for after the sailing session. A donation of £1 per youth for each session covers hot chocolate or squash for the sailors and tea and coffee for the parents. A lot of kudos is gained by the youths for the best homemade cake of the week, preferably with them doing the cooking and not the parents. However, we are not proud and shop bought cake is equally welcome after a hard day sailing.

If you wish to take part in Youth sailing, or have a youth who wants to make new friends and improve their sailing then please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.using the Keyhaven youth email and I will add you to the mailing list.