Sailing Lessons and Racing


SF Sailing Company has multiple yachts (not Americas Cup yachts, but… still really cool yachts) and offers Intro to Sailing lessons - They divide up the groups and practice maneuvers such as tacking and jibbing which both require very clear communication and coordination not only for safety, but also to maximize the speed and efficiency of the boat. They then follow it with a race between multiple boats. 

They have two identical vessels that carry 28 and 36 passengers and with their partners can organize regattas and team building events for many more.  Click here to visit their web site.

Group Racing With America’s Cup Yacht


Want a little more physical action… try ACSailingSF…The “only” America’s Cup yacht in SF….’USA76’ (84 Ft of “awesomeness”!).

Your group races the yacht against the clock to get ‘USA76’ across the 2013 AC race course, around the Golden Gate Bridge and back to the starting line. Groups up to 20 are divided in two, team captains are educated in a short separate session and those leaders then have to dispense their new knowledge upon their team members to get this big yacht around the race course as quickly as possible. Four professional crew members are there for guidance and to make sure no one is left behind (important in a boat). 

This 3  hour team builder is the standard event, but they also have full day activities built around sailing. Lots of possibilities. Click here to visit their web site.

Team-Building On A Cruise Ship


How about team-building on a cruise ship? Hey wait a second… how about having your incentive and/or meeting at sea? (Note… they do stop at land too)… so here are some ideas (but in my words) shared by Shari Wallack, President of Buy-The-Sea … and for those of you who don’t know Shari, she DEFINITELY knows what she is talking about…

Yes, you’ve got the normal ship-wide scavenger hunts, trivia contests, karaoke sing-offs and competitive sporting events using the basketball court, rock climbing wall, ping-pong tables and yes, the iconic shuffle board courts.  Shuffle-Board? Sounds…great. But these things have evolved way past your grandma’s team building fun…

Shari recommends Oceania cooking studios found onboard the ship’s Marina and Riviera.  This interactive event includes “adventure” shopping in the local markets at ports of call to collect the ingredients (“excuse me… is your iguana fresh?”) and then returning to the, hands-on, fully-stocked, professionally-staffed, on-board cooking school (maximum 24 guests at a time). The chef-guided process is completely collaborative and of course ends with a (hopefully) gourmet meal and champagne all around.


Team Building While Saving The Planet

How about a little team building while saving the planet?


The Four Seasons Bora Bora’s resident Marine Biologist (they offered me the job but I had to turn it down) re-creates your company’s corporate logo in an underwater stand that will support coral nubbin grafts (new scrabble word!). The team building activity is best spread out over several days, 75 minutes a day, and guests, with the help of the marine biology team, will snorkel out to the stand and graft two to four nubbins a day. These nubbins will grow, attract local fish and wildlife, and the resort will maintain the “growth” of the corporate logo/stand in the sanctuary for future generations to enjoy. (Note to self – write New Yorker cartoon about beings in the future discovering corporate logos made out of coral).

It’s suitable for every level of snorkeling ability and for all ages. And while you are saving the planet, you can also play with octopus (I am not sure what octopus play, but you’ll find out), feed puffer fish, spot flounders and lion-fish, and essentially realize that you love snorkeling in Bora Bora. I did a shark-feed there years ago and I still think it was one of the coolest things I have ever done.

Mini-Regatta For Corporate Team-Building

DPI Events, a Boston-based DMC ( partnered with Community Rowing (the first public rowing club in Boston) to create a mini-regatta for corporate team-building… and not to worry, it is for novices. Yes, there are certain physical requirements and so you have to consider your groups overall health, but this is for the general population, not Olympic athletes.


The coaching staff starts off by introducing with training session on technique and power application in their state of the art in-door rowing complex. From there, the teams launch on to the water and race strategies are planned, facilitated by coxswains and coaches. After about 45 minutes of preparation, the group lines up for the official regatta race. Depending on the group size, there can be several qualifying races, or just one winner-take-all, but whatever you choose, there’s lots of yelling, laughing, (some) sweating, and general competitive oozing (I just made up the phrase “competitive oozing” and although it sounds good, I have no real idea what it means).

The rowers return to the club where they talk about the value of what they just experienced while slowing their heart rate down to normal… and of course… photo ops!