Want information faster than I can write? Check out these great resources:
Sign up for classes at a US Sailing-certified school and you’ll be assured of a consistent, curriculum-driven experience, with certification that is transferable to other US Sailing schools. Get started with Basic Keelboat, the beginning text. Also check out the US Sailing channel on YouTube.
US Sailing is the governing body for sailing in the US, the official representative for the sport of sailing to the Olympic Committee, Congress and US Coast Guard.
American Sailing Association
Where US Sailing is more focused on technique and racing, ASA classes are more focused on cruising. Check them out on YouTube.
The US Coast Guard “Rules of the Road” for boating safely and legally. Includes critical information on safety equipment, operating proceedures, navigation rules, aids to navigation and more. Be sure to download the PDF.
Sailing for Dummies
JJ Isler, Peter Isler. Wiley Publishing, Inc, Hoboken, NJ (2006)
One of the better “for dummies” books I’ve seen! Excellent, step-by-step descriptions to help you get started.