The first Caribbean Sailing Association Resort Instructor Course was successfully completed on Wednesday when seven instructors from three major resort groups in Antigua, Jumby Bay Island, Blue Waters Hotel and Elite Island Resorts attended the course to get a brush up on their sailing technique, safety procedures and customer service.
All seven instructors successfully completed the course and were enthusiastic about its importance. Wayne Walker of Jumby Bay was first to comment, “It’s true you can teach old dogs new tricks!”. His feedback solidified the reason for the creation of the course, to ensure that resort instructors were regularly retrained to check their skills and also be updated on new techniques and practices.
Rudyard ‘Dave’ Powell from Blue Waters Hotel thought the course was very worthwhile. ‘It has given me some ideas on implementing new systems and practices and it was good to go over rescue procedures.’ He highly recommends the course to other resort instructors.
Julian Douglas of Verandah Resort and Spa commented on the practical examples, “The structured learning on the course was very worth while especially with regards to guest briefing and caring for guests once on the water. I am taking back a lot of ideas to the resort following the programme.”
Chief instructor Sylvester Thomas of the National Sailing Academy who was part of the team delivering the course said, ‘The feedback from all of the instructors was very positive. As a group they appreciated the skills brush up and especially the focus on safety including assisting with capsized boats and towing, critical skills to ensure the safety of the hotel guests. We look forward to delivering the course to the next group of instructors in December”.
The idea for the CSA Resort Instructor Course came out of the CSA conference presentation two years ago when the initial concept of a full CSA Certification programme was discussed. It is seen as the first development towards regional wide training opportunities and in Antigua is supported by legislation set by the Antigua and Barbuda Department of Marine Services and Merchant Shipping which requires all watersports staff employed from the 1st January, 2016 to hold a valid watersports qualification in order to legally operate at a hotel.
At the end of day three Elizabeth was delighted to see the success of the course, “For the academy this course has been a revelation. It is very encouraging to see watersports staff from around the island so motivated by the course, and in agreement that ongoing training is needed to assist with ensuring they remain up to date with their skills.” She went on to add, ‘”We were also really pleased to welcome the instructors to the National Sailing Academy where we teach not just school children but adults. We hope that some of the instructors will come back to enjoy sailing as a leisure option, something they don’t get the opportunity at work to do.”
Check out the gallery for watersports instructors who received a certificate of completion.
The second Resort Instructor Course will take place from Tuesday December 4 – Thursday December 6, 2018. Any resorts or instructors wishing to apply for one of 8 spaces on the course should email firstname.lastname@example.org or call (268) 562-8060. There are plans to roll out the course around the region through the CSA Sailing Development Committee.