Lessons and Certifications
The ONLY American Sailing Association Affiliate School on the US side of Lake Ontario

Private Lessons


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Interested? Learn more about our course plans, pricing, and options right here!

Start your sailing adventure today with Sail Ontario in the War of 1812's historic shadow. We are ideally placed (geographically and academically) to develop your confidence and experience, and we do that with programs that put you on the boat within minutes of starting…no boring lectures here. Sails go up within minutes of leaving the dock, giving you maximum time to practice all the skills until they are second nature.

What we do in the book only reinforces what you’ve seen, touched, turned, tied, trimmed, eased, hoisted and stowed on the boat. We consciously expose students to the basic concepts of sailing with a hands-on approach. We are the standard for hands-on instruction on Lake Ontario and you will work hard while having fun on the water. Our dedicated team of ASA certified instructors is committed to a high standard of training to achieve your ASA certification to safely charter a sailboat here on the lake – or anywhere in the world.

Sail Ontario currently offers certification at the following levels. Click on each to learn more about ASA's programs: 

           ASA 101 – Basic Keelboat Sailing
           ASA 103 – Coastal Cruising
           ASA 104 – Bareboat Chartering
           ASA 105 – Coastal Navigation

The content covered in these courses and the required written test for each level (except 105) is fairly simple with adequate study. Yet the level of sailing and boat handling skills required, even at the Basic Keelboat level, is fairly high and in most cases cannot be appropriately mastered in instructional courses shorter than two full days. Check the courses page to find the course appropriate for your needs.

Note: ASA 105 – Coastal Navigation certification does not require an on-the-water evaluation; it is a comprehensive test of all coastal navigation skills which requires four to six hours to complete.

Are you looking for a refresher or time to supplement courses you have already taken?

Do you want to target specific skills until you have mastered them?  

Have you owned a boat, but never felt fully confident in certain situations?

A private lesson might be exactly what you are looking for!  Every session will be structured to meet your individual needs aboard any one of our available boats. ​One of our ASA certified instructors / USCG licensed captains will partner with you to help you reach your goals!

$65/hr with discounts for multi-hour lessons.

Non-Certification Intro Course

Would you like to see if sailing is for you but not quite ready to commit to a full certification course?  ​​​​

Our introduction to sailing is a non-certificate producing, 3-hour familiarization cruise aboard our 32’ sloop, Eudaimonia. Our certified instructors briefly cover the most important knowledge and skills topics needed to begin. The first hour is spent dockside to learn important sailing terminology, necessary safety gear and radio procedures, basic chart reading, and sailing maneuvers/points of sail. The remaining 2 hours are spent on the lake learning line handling procedures, sail-hoisting, how to work the cockpit, taking the helm, and returning and securing the vessel.