Keep sailing as time marches on

Like the wind many things are beyond our control. As with sailing we can't always change what life gives you but you can change your "tack" or "adjust your sails" to how you deal with it and how it affects you.

As we age arthritic hands make pulling lines harder to do. Arthritic knees or hips make companionway stairs or going forward tougher. Balance makes getting in and out of your boat and going forward tricky if not perilous. Sight, memory and hearing diminishes.

Writing this is starting to scare the crap out of me. As they say "Growing old is not for sissies".

Take this aging bull by the horns if it starts snorting around your sailboat. Adjust, make modifications, change your tack. Run your lines to the cockpit to minimize going forward. You can even deploy the anchor form the cockpit with the proper setup.

Build wider steps and hand holds for the companionway. If you have slip at a marina install a step and boat fenders on your dock. Self tailing winches or even electric winches, use a roller furler and lazy jacks, tiller tamers and a cushion for your skinny old ass.

Sailors have downsized their sailboat to make handling, launching and retrieving easier. Others go bigger, get a marina slip and pay to have someone haul out or launch for them.

Sailors have told me that exercise, yoga or acupuncture has kept them sailing. Sailing itself can be good for balance, get out there and sail regularly.

At my yacht club there is usually lots of help available and people love to do it. Don't be afraid to ask. Put the word out and take new, more agile, sailors with you. You get help and safety they get to learn something from a wise old sailor.

Above all. Don't take this lying down. (Unless you've put your back out again)

If you enjoyed this post, I'd really appreciate it if you could help it spread by emailing it to a friend, or sharing it on Twitter or Facebook. Thanks & Cheers! Daryl