A Google search for the top outdoor activities in Colorado includes a long list of outdoor adventures. Hot air ballooning, mountain biking, fly fishing, and rock climbing are just a few of the pursuits listed. There’s no mention of sailing, yet the Centennial state offers wonderful sailing experiences.
People of all ages and abilities can enjoy the thrill of sailing against the backdrop of the majestic Rocky Mountains at Cherry Creek Reservoir (just south of Denver) and Boulder Reservoir (just north of Boulder).
Sailing comes with physical and mental demands and offers several benefits for sailors of any age. Sailing is truly a sport that can be enjoyed by all.
Children and Youth
Teaching a child to sail helps them acquire skills that will assist them as they navigate their way in the world. Learning to sail develops independence and confidence. Adults control almost everything in a child’s life, but when a child sails, they realize that all decisions have consequences, and they are responsible for the result. Helping their peers get ready and launching the boats into the water together teaches care, teamwork, and team spirit.
Learning to sail also provides a wonderful alternative to the digital world. Rather than spending time on digital devices, or other sedentary activities, sailing is an opportunity to be fully present in nature. Those are just a few of the many benefits children can gain from learning to sail that help them mature into accountable adults who are better equipped to “go with the flow”.
Learning to sail isn’t just for kids! Learning to sail opens the door to enjoying the euphoric and freeing sensations sailing delivers. Recent research conducted by one of the leading researchers on the health benefits of the water, Dr. Wallace J. Nichols, marine biologist and author of Blue Mind, confirms a long-held instinct that the water is good for our health, both physical and mental.
His research shows that being on the water on a boat promotes physiological and psychological changes spanning health and wellness, awe and wonder, creativity and play, and happiness and relaxation:
- Boating resets our brain: Being on the water has been shown to offer relaxation, restoration, and happiness, along with the added benefits of exercise, social time, and a connection with nature.
- Boating is meditative: Time spent in nature, especially when it involves water, provides a way to offset the stresses of living and working in modern contexts.
- Boating promotes play and induces creativity: Stress is shown to inhibit creativity. Watersports and aquatic activities are playful activities that trigger the release of endorphins, the body’s natural feel-good chemicals.
- Boating appeals to our senses: The mere sight of water can induce neurochemicals that promote wellness. A lifelong relationship to water, achieved through boating, delivers cognitive, emotional, psychological, social, and spiritual benefits for people of all ages and abilities.
People living with developmental and physical disabilities can also enjoy time on the water as part of our Adaptive Sailing Program thanks to our generous donors, sponsor, and volunteers. Specially designed equipment allows us to host sailing outings with organizations that serve people living with diverse abilities.
Although the sailing season in Colorado may have come to an end, now might be a good time to consider a gift of sailing lessons for the holiday season. It’s the perfect gift that always fits, never goes out of style, and guarantees fun!
So whether you’re an old salt or you’ve never sailed before, check out all we have to offer and come sail away with us!