Turns out that Gary Jobson has already addressed this subject in an article titled Encouraging Your Sailor first published in Yachting Magazine. He also touches on a question often posed to sailing instructors and much hashed over in sailing forums, "At what age should my kid learn to sail?" Gary has some excellent advice in the article -- do read the whole thing -- but the tips that I thought were most helpful were ...
- Explain that the difference between winning and losing is not that important.
- Demonstrate that most sailors experience many defeats before achieving success. (Personally I was a great example of this for my kids.)
- Emphasize restraint when winning.
- Don't always race. Kids love games.