American Sailing Association (ASA)

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About ASA

ASA is an organization which provides standards, curriculum and certifications for sailing instruction. They have been around since 1983 and represent about 85% of sailing schools in the country. They have certified over 7,500 instructors and over 260,000 students in the last 27 years.

What do ASA Certifications provide to you as a Member?

The ASA curriculum focuses on keelboat instruction and provides a set of curricula that is recognized by most chartering organizations and sailing clubs throughout the world. Being ASA certified allows you to take the sailing skills you have learned here at Hoofers and apply them elsewhere to continue your sailing education and/or be able to charter (rent) a boat. ASA certifications are also recognized internationally.

ASA Certification Levels

ASA 101 - Basic Keelboat Sailing -A ble to skipper a sloop-rigged keelboat of approximately 20 to 27 feet in length by day in light to moderate winds (up to 15 knots) and sea conditions. Knowledge of basic sailing terminology, parts and functions, helm commands, basic sail trim, points of sail, buoyage, seamanship and safety including basic navigation rules to avoid collisions and hazards. Auxiliary power operation is not required.

ASA 103 - Basic Coastal Cruising - Able to skipper a sloop-rigged auxiliary powered (inboard or outboard engine) keelboat of approximately 25 to 35 feet length by day in moderate winds (up to 20 knots) and sea conditions. Knowledge of cruising sailboat terminology, basic boat systems, auxiliary engine operation, docking procedures, intermediate sail trim, navigation rules, basic coastal navigation, anchoring, weather interpretation, safety and seamanship.

ASA 104 - Bareboat Cruising - Able to skipper a sloop-rigged, auxiliary powered keelboat of approximately 30 to 45 feet in length during a multi-day cruise upon inland or coastal waters in moderate to heavy winds (up to 30 knots) and sea conditions. Knowledge of provisioning, galley operations, boat systems, auxiliary engine operation, routine maintenance procedures, advanced sail trim, coastal navigation including basic chart plotting and GPS operation, multiple-anchor mooring, docking, health & safety, emergency operations, weather interpretation, and dinghy/tender operation.

ASA 105 - Coastal Navigation - Able to demonstrate the navigational theory required to safely navigate a sailing vessel in coastal or inland waters. There is no Sailing Skills part to this Standard and practical application of this sailing knowledge is found in the Advanced Coastal Cruising Standard.

ASA 106 - Advanced Coastal Cruising - Able to safely act as skipper and crew of a sailing vessel about 30 to 50 feet in length in coastal and inland waters, in any conditions.

ASA Courses through Hoofers

Given our place on an inland lake, we offer ASA 101 and 105 courses in Madison. We occasionally will offer ASA 103, ASA 104, and ASA 106 courses on Green Bay, Lake Michigan and Lake Superior during the summer and in Florida and the Caribbean during the winter.

ASA Course Pricing

  • ASA 101 | $315 for members and $415 for non-members.
  • ASA 101 Tesout | $170 for students and $200 for Faculty/Union Members
  • ASA 103/104 | $835 for all students
  • ASA 105 | $275 for members and $275 for non-members


You can sign up for the ASA 101 (20-hour) course or if you already have a J-24 or a Keelboat Crew rating, you can register for an ASA 101 test-out (4 hours). Please visit the Outdoor UW Office to register for these courses. To view courses that are available, please check the Lessons Website. Please note, most courses are offered during the summer months, while ASA 105 is typically offered during the off-season.


Still have questions, please feel free to contact the club's ASA Coordinator at