Chris Jepson - Cruising Instructor
I have been a professional teacher and coach since 1993. In 2001 I left my teaching job to chase a dream and set up an Outdoor Education Centre. I became an instructor of: caving, climbing, canoeing, kayaking, mountaineering, archery, canyoning and mountain biking and continued my teaching journey under my own terms.
Forward a few years, I found myself looking for something with a never-ending learning curve, excitement, technique and variety with travel and/or business opportunity. With my love of the sea, sailing was the obvious conclusion.
Initially I used the RYA scheme as a means to chart my progress and gain as much experience with highly knowledgeable skippers as possible. I bought a share of a Sigma 362 immediately after my day skipper as I figured the fastest learning curve would come from the great responsibility of being skipper, so the West coast of Scotland became my training ground. A small share in a Sigma 33 based in the Ionian gave me access to Med sailing but I was much more at home sailing in the challenging waters of the West Coast.
As my business progressed and I was able to have more and more time away from work I began to miss instructing. More accurately I missed the buzz you get when you are part of someone’s journey to skill acquisition and understanding. I missed the smile that takes over a person’s face when they ‘get it’!
I became a professional sailing instructor when I felt I had enough depth of knowledge and experience to be of use to those starting their own sailing journey. I found my strengths as an instructor lie in 30 years of teaching people to acquire skill and retain knowledge and from the fact that my journey is still relatively fresh in the mind.
I didn’t imagine I’d work for a sailing school as I am old, set in my ways, have very high standards and expectations and I’d want to do everything just so, to always use best practice, to always question why we do things a certain way and go the extra mile for the client regardless of cost. That changed when I met Richard and Fadwa who have the same exacting standards and are even older than me! Their approach and values mirrored mine so I packed up the dog, two kids, the minister of finance and war and moved to Lanzarote.
I look forward to sharing your journey.