Boating's Next Wave - Introduce Someone to Boating !October 17, 2013
Anyone paying attention has noticed a decrease in the number of people boating. Of course the economy has hurt boating as an industry, but there are other serious reasons participation in boating has fallen off in the last decade.Time constraints. We're just working more, and harder and technology won't let us escape ! So we try to fit everything in less time. This has really hurt the sail boat industry, but affects boating as a whole. Competing activities; biking, kayaking, golf, spectator sports, video games, TV, the internet, you get it. Kids Sports; No longer content to be "after school sports", now every weekend is filled with travel, sports, more travel and Sunday morning practices (is nothing holy ? ) Multiply that by a second or third child and it's no wonder many boaters put the boat away for the winter in September, when school starts. Fewer friends participating; The average age of boaters is now older than ever and many are retiring, moving away or finding other leisure activities. So, how do we share our love for boats and the water with others and "pass the torch" ? Invite those friends you've wanted to take out. You may end up with a new crew, or they may love it so much they want to dive in ! Encourage them to start small or join a boating club to get their feet wet. Who knows, you may be planning a raft up with them in a year or two. Invite your kid's friends out too. Sharing with a friend makes it fun and they'll want to do more. Keep it simple, plan a simple trip, bring bikes or limit the many things you'd like to do and places you'd like to visit to one or two... and enjoy them more thoroughly. Encourage tubing, wakeboarding, waterskiing, windsurfing, using the dinghy or fishing. Slow down and don't scare them, they'll soon be asking to do it again (& faster this time). Help someone learn the boating rules and to take a safe boating course. Plant the seeds ! Capt. Rick Delfosse 203-216-7800 .