Sailing in Pakistan is steeped in history and has brought the nation a multitude of success stories at regional and international levels. These success stories have come from all ages within the sport but traditionally access to sailing has been restricted to those children associated to the armed forces, or those families who have been able to afford the high level of equipment and training themselves.
At the Natiopnal Sailing Centre in Karachi, training programs were established for those of Optimist age (7-15) and the PYSA has grown from this first initiative to now cater for young sailors from the ages of 6 to 21 in the provision of equipment, sailing time, fittness and coaching throughout the year. The clear objectives of the Pakistan Youth Sailing Association were established in August:
- To make available affordable sailing to the enthusiastic youth of Pakistan residing in Karachi initially, and later throughout the whole country.
- To provide a structured program for youth aged between 6 and 21 for Physical fitness, theory, and practical training on the water.
- To liaise with esteemed clubs and organizations in Karachi and elsewhere to extend any and all support
- To interact with worldwide sailing federations and clubs to make available the maximum opportunity for youth
- To solicit organizations and corporations, provincial and federal government and individuals to provide any and all support, both in cash and in kind
One of the first events held by the PYSA was the Pakistan Optimist Championship from 17-19 September in Keenjihar. 32 sailors competed in a hugely successful and well run event. With ages ranging from 9 to 15, eleven races were held on the waters of Lake Keenijahar. The event set the scene for things to come and coupled with an extensive sailing and fitness program at the National Sailing Centre, run in three groups for the Optimists and Laser 4.7's, the PYSA has grown from strength to strength.
Following on from the Optimist National Championships, the 29th National Games, including a sailing event run by the Pakistan Sailing Federation. Seven events were run and out of the 21 medals up for grabs, PYSA members achieved a goal of winning three Gold medals and three Bronze medals. Internationally PYSA members have competed in the Al-Bareh Sailing Regatta hosted by the Bahrain Maritime Sports Association in both the Optimist and Laser 4.7.
The PYSA continues to establish itself in Pakistan and with monthly newsletters going to all members, informing them of the latest news and program for the event, it promises to provide an exciting future for the developement of sailing in the region. Future initiatives include participation at an increasing number of international regattas, as well as and international Optimist exchange program, and the continuation of valuable training for youngsters.
For further details of the PYSA please contact the Association at:
67 Overseas Society,