Monday, June 05, 2006

Is our blog scaring boaters??

Over the life of this blog we have had several comments from astute readers about our blog scaring people off the water.  It seems that posts about boating accidents, injuries, statistics and news has the effect of making people want to stay on the couch and off the water where it is “safer”.

Recently, a colorful and insightful reader “Tillerman” commented on our blog in his DO NOT READ THIS BLOG post.  Incidentally, our blog traffic increased after this post.  Several of Tillerman’s readers debate the question of whether the risk of boating is worth the fun. 

This has been said about risk:

“When channeled into sports like climbing, where skill and training can minimize danger, or into starting a new business, risk taking may continue to be a healthy psychological outlet. It may provide a means to cope with boredom and modern anxieties, to bolster self-esteem. Risk taking may provide a crucial sense of control in a period where so much of what happens--from crime and auto accidents to environmental disasters and economic downturns--seems almost random.”

Also this has been said about ocean sailing and risk:

“Psychological research studies that have investigated the mental health of risk takers have been inconclusive or contradictory, and in some cases risk taking behaviours (e.g. ocean sailing) have even been shown to lead to increases in self-esteem.”

If you have any BRAINS and want to avoid risk you may read this.

And if all else fails you may want to fall back on the old hold harmless agreement.

I think most boaters would agree that all risk cannot be eliminated from water sports and activities.  Risk is inherent to the water and craft that navigate upon it.  Some degree of risk is acceptable, if tempered with reason.  With training, skill and a modicum of common sense boating can be done safely. 

If you read this blog don’t freeze up with fear and anxiety.  Go out and enjoy the water and try to learn from the mistakes and misfortunes of others.  Although risky the benefits of the water are worth it. 

There is risk in sitting on the couch too.

Have fun on the water and remember …..always wear your life jacket!! 

Be safe.



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