This book, in preparation, aims at helping youth sailors, parents, coaches, clubs, federations, to navigate the complexity of youth sailing; to learn the best practices from the most successful experiences across the world; and to help transform competent youth sailors into high performance athletes.

The book is helpful at all stages of youth sailing development, from the moment one thinks about registering for a learn to sail programme, to performance sailing at the highest level. This transition happens actually in just a few years, and it’s critical to operate it well. The book is covering all the leading youth sailing development classes that are active around the world, including the Optimist, Open Bic, Laser 4.7 and Radial, RS Feva XL, 420, 470, 29er, Nacra 15, Waszp and Techno 293 windsurf, to name just those ones.

The book covers a wide variety of considerations associated with youth sailing development. This includes: the recent evolutions in youth sailing; the variety of development pathways, optimal conditions for performance development; modernizing club youth sailing programmes; best equipments/boats available for youth sailing development; goal setting at the athlete and club levels; controlling youth sailing costs; fitness and nutrition; injury prevention and healthy lifestyle; reconciling athletic and academic achievements; the long-term view: sailing and life success.

To be informed about the release of the book, simply join our Facebook Group.


Jean-Pierre Kiekens started sailing in the International Cadet, and then the Snipe and the Laser in Belgium, and later on as a master sailor in North America at various national and international events, in the Laser and Laser 28 keelboat. For the past years, he has followed the evolution of his son Jean-René, who represented Canada at the 2018 Optimist Worlds in Cyprus, and of his daughter, Alexandra, who sailed the Optimist, the c420 and the Laser Radial, and now focuses on her engineering studies. Jean-Pierre is an Oxford-educated economist and an engineer in agronomy from the University of Brussels. He lectured economic and rural development during several years at the University of Brussels, prior to moving to Canada. He also is a trained human potential coach. While having various interests, including healthy food and global sustainability, Jean-Pierre’s main passion is … sailing!

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