What Women Want; Instruction

December 2006 News

A recent online survey by BoatU.S. says parents play an important role in teaching their daughters recreational boating skills. But, when girls grow up, many women say there are not enough educational opportunities tailored for them.


Forty-seven percent of the more than 400 respondents said it was a parent who they first remember teaching them boating skills. Also, 47 percent said they had first gone boating before age 10, according to the results of "Boating Learning and Education Survey for Women"  


"What the survey essentially tells us is that families play an important part in introducing boating to young girls, but as adults they want to learn more in relaxed settings, perhaps away from a well-meaning spouse," said Elaine Dickinson, executive editor of DIY Boat Owner magazine and the leader of the BoatU.S. Women in Boating Initiative.


More than two-thirds (67 percent) said they had taken some type of formal classroom boating training and 73 percent had some hands-on instruction. Forty-two percent said that there are not enough opportunities for girls and women to learn how to operate a boat, and when asked what kind of learning opportunities are needed, 80 percent said more hands-on events for women.


Three times as many women found a women-only course seminar or training effective compared to those who did not (33 percent to 11 percent respectively).


"While there is much debate on whether women-only instruction is better, there is no doubt that women boaters prefer to learn in an environment that doesn't have the pressure associated with co-ed instruction," said Dickinson.


The respondents said they want instruction to include boat systems such as engines or electrical, navigation and upgrading boat handling skills.


More than three-quarters of the respondents own either a powerboat or sailboat.


The full results will be available at www.boatus.com/women.


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