Posted by Bühler
Though many are daunted by the prospect of learning how to sail, sailing is quite easy and relaxing once you understand the basics. Before you learn about the actual act of sailing, there are several terms you should know.

Bow: The front, or head, of the boat.

Aft: The rear of the boat. Also referred to as the stern.

Hull: The ship’s body.

Starboard: The right side of the vessel as one faces the bow.

Port: The left side of the vessel as one faces the bow.

Deck: The floor of a boat.

Ceilings: This paradoxical term refers to the walls of the boat. Also known as bulkheads.

Overhead: The ceiling of the boat, as ceilings are understood in most other forms of architecture.

Masts: Vertical beams.

Booms: Horizontal poles that can hit unwary sailors. Use caution when moving about the ship, as booms tend to swing in heavy winds.

Gaffs: Horizontal booms considered too high to reach.

Poles: Horizontal booms high enough that they cannot hit a sailor.

Spars: The various types of masts and booms.

Line: A rope used for a specific purpose. For example, a dock line is used to secure the ship to a dock.

Standard rigging: The collective group of stationary lines designated to secure the ship’s masts; typically steel cables rather than standard rope.

Shrouds: Also known as stays, shrouds are the individual lines of a ship’s standard rigging.

Running rigging: While standard lines remain stationary, running rigging is comprised of movable lines that control sails and other onboard equipment.

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