Saturday, April 6, 2013

Sailing Basketball

A three day Laser sailing clinic is being conducted at our club by Kostas Trigonis, a world champion Tornado sailor and ex-Olympian 470 sailor - and luckily for us, a cousin of one of our sailors.

Although I can't sail yet due to my recent hernia surgery, I am attending and driving the RIB with Kostas on the water.  A great learning experience with a very down to earth guy. 

Kostas began the clinic with a very interesting question - what is the sport of sailing?  How does it differ from other sports? What makes it unique?  Sure there are similarities but consider how different it is.

He made a fascinating comparison - how would basketball be played if it were like sailing.

The game would be played on a rectangular court, but a rectangle that changes shape and orientation constantly, at unpredictable intervals.  Sometimes it is best to run to the left to reach the goal and sometimes to the right.  You can run straight to one goal, but you have to zig zag toward the other one.

Sometimes the goal is moved by the officials during the game.

Running speed is different on different parts of the court and these areas shift constantly.

In running down the court, there are right of way rules and when you get close to the goal, there are various exceptions to these right of way rules.

You dribble the ball down the court - but sometimes the floor is smooth and sometimes lumpy and rough or even hilly.

If a player commits a foul, there is no referee to blow a whistle.   The fouled player yells "Foul" and the offending player simply takes it upon himself to turn in a circle a couple of times.  In case of disagreement, it is all handled after the game during a court-like proceeding.

Who would be crazy enough to play such a sport?


  1. I think Kostas borrowed this analogy from one of Dave Perry's books. (It was originally comparing sailing to football.)

    See this link on a Yahoo forum.

  2. Have you noticed how many of the most popular sports involve balls: I think that might be where sailing is missing out.

    There must be *some* way of mixing balls with sailing


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