Sailing School

Adult Sailing Lessons

Green Fleet 

Sailing Instructor Information & Application

The Summer Sailing Program at Seattle Yacht Club typically instructs hundreds of sailors each year, ranging from 7 to 17 years old, as well as adult sailors in evening classes. Instruction takes place in the Club’s fleets of Vanguard 15’s, Lasers, and Optimists. We will also be purchasing a new fleet of RS Fevas for use beginning in summer 2021. Power boats used to support the program range from 13’ inflatable Avons, to two 19’ Boston Whaler offshore support boats. We utilize U.S. Sailing’s Small Boat Sailor (Little Red Book) curriculum, and the Learn Sailing Right book. Each student receives a photo, T-shirt, Little Red Book, and Certificate at the end of the sailing class session.

We teach students ranging from beginning sailors through coaching of advanced racing sailors. We instruct on Portage Bay near the Yacht Club’s main Clubhouse. Our instructor-to-student ratio ranges from 1:3 (Lil' Luffers) to 1:10 (Green Fleet). The classes are broken down into Class Groups based roughly on age of students, and within these groups the class may be broken into sections based on experience and skill assessment. We emphasize developing junior sailors for a lifetime of enjoyment and involvement in sailing.

Our typical weekly staff at Seattle Yacht Club will be approximately composed of the following positions: 4 – 5 Lead Instructors, 5+ Instructors, and 3 – 5 Junior Instructors. Additional supervision will be provided by the Sailing Director, Sailing Programs Coordinator, and Race Team Coach. Descriptions of the various positions below are for selection of the appropriate instructor level, and the associated requirements.

Full class details and session dates on the Summer Sailing School page.

COVID Update

Seattle Yacht Club Sailing School has a strict COVID safety protocol all staff and volunteers will be required to follow and enforce in 2021. The protocol will continue to change with the latest guidance. Please see the 2020 COVID Safety Protocol implemented last summer to get an idea of how operations will continue during the pandemic. In the least, expect physical distancing, reduced class sizes, and mask wearing as part of the 2021 program. 


Summer 2021 Position Descriptions & Application

2021 applications are closed

Please read the description of the position(s) you are applying for prior to submitting your application

Lead Sailing Instructor
Sailing Instructor
Junior Sailing Instructor

Adult Sailing Instructor
Green Fleet Coach

Application Info

Applications closed March 1, 2021. After your application submission, you may be contacted for a short phone interview. You will hear back about your application by April 16 at the latest. Certification requirements for Instructor employees are listed in each job description. For Instructor employees, all required certifications must be up to date and submitted to the Sailing Office before Instructor Orientation on June 12, otherwise you will be a volunteer until all of your required forms are submitted.

Applicants have a higher probability of getting on the schedule the more weeks they are available to work. 


US Sailing Level 1 Instructor Certification

The US Sailing Level 1 Sailing Instructor certification is the industry standard for being a paid sailing instructor in the United States. The Seattle Yacht Club requires a current Level 1 certification for Lead Sailing Instructor, Sailing Instructor, Green Fleet Coach, and Adult Sailing Instructor positions. 

While you can take the Level 1 class during the calendar year you turn 16 years old, please note Seattle Yacht Club requires Sailing Instructors to be 16 years old for paid positions. 

If you plan to complete the Level 1 course in 2021, check out 10 Steps of the US Sailing Small Boat Instructor Level 1 for a guide to follow. 

In 2021, the Level 1 course includes an online classroom component and a 2-day in-person component. Level 1 candidates must complete the online component before they are eligible to register for an in-person component. Seattle Yacht Club intends to host small group, in-person components on May 22-23, May 28-29, and May 30-31. Classes fill up very quickly, so complete the online component and register for the in-person component early! As of early January, these in-person components are not yet posted on the US Sailing website, but you may sign up for any of the online components now. 

If you cannot attend any of the in-person courses Seattle Yacht Club hosts, you may take any of the Level 1 classes listed on the US Sailing site at various locations around the Puget Sound and US. 

Complete details, requirements, and registration on US Sailing Level 1 site. We also created (recently updated!) Get Your Small Boat Instructor Level 1 in 11 Steps to help our instructor candidates understand the process.