This review is only for your use to prepare for the Skipper test.

The answers can be found in any basic sailing book, or by asking any NPSSA qualified skipper.


Part 1: Parts of a sailboat

1. The left side of the boat is called the:
a. port side
b. starboard side

2. The right side of the boat is called:
a. the port side
b. the starboard side

3. The forward end of the boat is called:
a. the bow
b. the stern

4. The after end of the boat is called:
a. the bow
b. the stern

5. The lines and wires used to hold the mast upright are called:
a. standing rigging
b. running rigging

6. The halyards are used to:
a. trim the sails
b. raise and lower the sails

7. The sheets are used to:
a. trim the sails
b. raise and lower the sails

8. The forward most sail is called the:
a. mainsail
b. jib

Part 2: Terminology:

9. When the stern of the boat crosses through the wind the boat has:
a. jibed
b. tacked

10. When the bow of the boat crosses through the wind the boat has:
a. jibed
b. tacked


11. The command that alerts the crew to prepare to change tacks by putting the bow through the wind (tacking) is:
a. “stand by to jibe” or “prepare to jibe”
b. “ready about”

12. The command that alerts the crew to prepare to change tacks by putting the stern through the wind (jibing) is:
a. “stand by to jibe” or “prepare to jibe”
b. “ready about”

13. The direction the wind is coming from is:
a. windward
b. leeward

14. The direction away from the wind is:
a. windward
b. leeward

15. When the wind is coming from the right side of the boat, you are on a ______ tack.
a. port
b. starboard

16. When the wind is coming from left side of the boat, you are on a ______tack.
a. port
b. starboard

17. When a sailboat leans over it is
a. heeling
b. tacking

Part 3: Basic Seamanship and Safety

18. What type of knot is used to secure a sheet to a sail?
a. figure eight knot
b. bowline

19. What type of knot is used to prevent a line from running through a fairlead?
a. figure eight knot
b. bowline

20. Another name for a “lifejacket” is a:
a. PFD: Personal Flotation Device
b. SLE: Standard Lifesaving Equipment

21. Who is required to wear a properly fitting PFD at all times in NPSSA boats:
a. Everyone in the boat.
b. All non-swimmers.

22. Which of the following are recognized as distress signals:
a. Radio call “Mayday” giving your identification and position.
b. Slowly and repeatedly raising and lowering outstretched arms.
c. A red hand-held flare.
d. All of the above.

23. If the skipper becomes incapacitated, a crew member should be able to:
a. Maintain control of the boat while awaiting help
b. Use the radio to call the Coast Guard for assistance
c. Both a and b

24. If you are sitting on a buoyant seat cushion, you do not need to wear a life jacket
a. True
b. False

25. A jibe may be dangerous because:
a. the boom swings across so slowly
b. the boom swings across so rapidly

26. How many life jackets must be carried aboard all boats?
a. one per non-swimmer
b. one per person

27. The most valued skill in sailing is seamanship, and the foundation of good seamanship is a constant and keen awareness of safety.
a. True
b. False

Part 4: Local Regulations

28. Alcoholic beverages may be consumed on board NPSSA sailboats:
a. Alcohol may not be transported or consumed on board NPSSA boats.
b. At any time when minors are not aboard.

29. Only eligible personnel who are qualified may use the NPSSA boats.
a. True
b. False

30. Sailing privileges may be suspended for which of the following reasons:
a. Being observed violating the rules of good seamanship or safety.
b. Being involved in the collision of a boat.
c. Being negligent in the timely return to the pier.
d. All of the above.

31. Approved types of footwear on board NPSSA boats include:
a. Closed toe shoes with non-marking soles
b. Bare feet, if the temperature is over 85 deg

32. NPSSA sailboats can be used for fishing and/or diving
a. Only on weekends.
b. Sailboats may not be used for fishing and/or diving.