Sailing Access Program Helping People With Disabilities To Get Into Water

Needing to come back to the shore, alone in the boat without having a leg, is a situation that Kylie Forth,the Perth Sailor has been in for several times in the last twelve years. However,she is still fearless.

She lost her eyesight to cancer when she was three years old. Thereafter, at nine cancers claimed her right leg. However, it couldn’t stop this 32 years woman from being the top most sailor. In 2015 she won the United States Blind Match Racing World Championships. According to her, disability isn’t a barrier when it comes to sailing a boat.

She goes on to say even if you have no legs, no arms, young, or old, it simply does not matter when you are on the boat, racing on the water.

Ms. Forth learned sailing when she became a part of the Royal Perth Yacht Club’s Sail ability Program in the year 2006. She states that her disability came as a challenge to the teachers. She had to work hard to think of new ways to learn sailing without seeing the sails. The teachers who taught her would close their eyes and think.They would say they know how to sail is a sighted person but they are now to try to pass on the information to a blind person.

In order to perfect the art of sailing, Ms. Forth had to learn how to use her other senses. While sailing,she could hear the sound of water sloshing and that served as an indication of her speed. In case gurgling of water speeded up, it meant she was sailing faster and when it quietened down, it meant you are moving slowly. She dedicated time to practice these and home her skills.

By using the sense of hearing along with some adaptations means the vision impaired sailors will be able to take on the sighted opponents.

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