6 Best Laser Sailing Books To Improve Your Sailing Skills

Last Updated on November 7, 2022 by admin

Many excellent Laser sailing books cover the spectrum from beginner to advanced. The picks below contain important information on the exciting sport detailing everything from laser sailing rigging to how to sail a laser dinghy.

Whether you are a novice or more experienced, there is a lot of information to learn. Get your hands on these titles and study them often so you will be better prepared and can put the theory into practice when you hit the water.

6 Of The Best Laser Sailing Books On The Market…

Because Lasers are a one-design class, they should all be very similar. This means that it’s up to the skill of the sailor that can make the difference between winning or losing a race.

Besides spending time on the water, it’s good to brush up on the theory behind how to get the most out of your laser. So make sure you fill your library with some or all of these great laser sailing books:


The Laser Book: Laser Sailing From Start To Finish by Timothy Davison

The Laser Book - Laser Sailing From Start To Finish

Key Specs

TitleThe Laser Book: Laser Sailing From Start To Finish
AuthorTim Davison
Length128 pages
Date PublishedOctober 12, 2017
FormatPaperback

Timothy Davison’s “The Laser Book”, subtitled “Laser Book: Laser Sailing From Start To Finish”, is jam-packed with rigging, launching, and sailing advice and tips on how to do all of those tasks in different weather conditions.

It is also probably one of the better guides on competitive racing where you’ll learn how to set up control lines plus how to master laser standard, radial, and 4.7 rigs. Tips also assist on how to race to win by avoiding common mistakes and by racing smart.

Davison has held the Laser (Masters) European and National Championships plus two Moth Nationals.

In his book, he enlists the help of other racing pros to share their experience with sailing lasers. They include Paul Goodison the top laser sailor in the world and Olympic Gold medallist and European and British Champion, Steve Cockerill, a six-time Laser Radial National Champion, and Radial Masters World Champ. Philip White, a top Laser 4.7 racer is also involved in the book providing information on his favorite racing dinghy.

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The Complete Book of Laser Sailing by Dick Tillman

The-Complete-Book-of-Laser-Sailing

Key Specs

TitleThe Complete Book of Laser Sailing
AuthorRichard Tillman
Length160 page
Date PublishedJune 15, 2005
FormatPaperback

Dick Tillman’s book “The Complete Book of Laser Sailing” could not have had a better title. Tillman details what you need to know not only on how to set up your dinghy, but he gives the goods on how to properly sail your Laser.

This book covers everything you could possibly need to know from upwind and off-wind racing techniques and how to train and condition yourself for racing to storage and maintenance tips and how to rig and sail.

What makes this book stand out is that the author is an expert on the subject of sailing lasers having won the first three Laser North American Championships (1971 to 1973), was on the US Olympic sailing team in 1976, won the Laser North American Masters (1981 and 1982) and the Great Grand Master Laser World Champion in 2002.

Tillman still races and shares his wealth of information in this must-have of all the Laser sailing books on the market.

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Laser Racing by Ed Baird

Laser Racing by Ed Baird

Key Specs

TitleLaser Racing
AuthorBaird Baird
Length68 page
Date PublishedJune 24, 1982
FormatPaperback

If you are serious about racing then you will want to have a copy of “Laser Racing” by Ed Baird.

In this book, you will learn through words and photos how to prepare your boat, improve your skills, and apply them to racing.

Baird, who is considered one of the top US racers and was Laser World Champion in 1980, uses his practical advice to ease you through every step of a competitive race from the starting line, through any possible scenario you may encounter during a race, to finishing hard and fast.

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The Laser Campaign Manual by Ben Ainslie

The Laser Campaign Manual by Ben Ainslie

Key Specs

TitleThe Laser Campaign Manual
AuthorBen Ainslie
Length96 page
Date PublishedApril 16, 2002
FormatPaperback

“The Laser Campaign Manual” by Olympic Gold Medallist Ben Ainslie is chock full of the tips and tricks that won him that medal.

Being known as the fastest laser sailor on the planet carries a lot of responsibility and Ainslie chooses to take it and share all his knowledge in this guide that will turn you into a competitive racer.

This book is an interesting combination of photos and text that is designed to teach you how to properly set up laser sailing rigging, how to maneuver around a course fast, the fitness and training tips you need to keep your body in top racing form, and how to become a champion Laser sailor.

This is a must-read for anyone who sails small sailboats… not just those in the Laser community.

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RYA Laser Handbook by Paul Goodison

RYA Laser Handbook by Paul Goodison

Key Specs

TitleRYA Laser Handbook
AuthorPaul Goodison
Length160 page
Date PublishedJanuary 1, 2008
FormatPaperback

Top laser sailor, Olympic Gold medallist, and European and British Champion, Paul Goodison hit our list for the second time but this time around with his own book.

Titled the “RYA Laser Handbook”, Goodison uses it to share his vast knowledge on sailing with a good chunk of the book centered on his suggestions for setup and handling of sailing lasers in any possible condition you can imagine. That information alone makes this guide a serious contender as a sailing/racing reference book.

The book also contains a generous amount of photographs that are used to illustrate the details described in the text on such items as how much vang is required and useful hiking positions to save you from learning through trial and error.

In addition, Goodison continues to race so his practical and logical tips and tweaks are not only based on his personal experience, but are also up-to-date with current laser sailing and racing standards.

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Sailing Fitness and Training by Michael Blackburn

Sailing Fitness and Training by Michael Blackburn

Key Specs

TitleSailing Fitness and Training
AuthorMr Michael Blackburn
Length108 page
Date PublishedMay 26, 2015
FormatPaperback

While most of the laser sailing books contained on this list mention conditioning in sections of them, Michael Blackburn’s “Sailing Fitness and Training” book focuses on just that subject.

Simply put, this book explores the ‘physical factors that affect sailing performance’ and in doing so reveals some interesting methods you can use to learn how to improve your strength, endurance, flexibility, and agility when sailing lasers. Blackburn is a Sports Scientist and World Champion sailor who completely understands the forces placed upon the body and the energy required to sail and race like a winner.

There is a lot to be said about being mentally prepared for a race as being one of your best weapons. If your body is not in tune with a high fitness level, there is no way you will win those races and competitions if you can’t keep up physically.

Blackburn’s book is one of the best fitness and training tools designed specifically for sailing lasers as it is written by a sailor.

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Here’s a summary of the books mentioned above, plus a few extras that I have found that you may also find interesting…

ImageTitleRatingMore Info
The Laser Book - Laser Sailing From Start To FinishThe Laser Book: Laser Sailing from Start to Finish
4.6 out of 5 stars
buy from Amazon
laser sailing bookThe Complete Book of Laser Sailing
4.6 out of 5 stars
buy from Amazon
Laser RacingLaser Racing
4.4 out of 5 stars
buy from Amazon
Laser Campaign ManualThe Laser Campaign Manual
4.4 out of 5 stars
buy from Amazon
Laser HandbookRYA Laser Handbook
4.8 out of 5 stars
buy from Amazon
Sailing Fitness and Training by Michael BlackburnSailing Fitness and Training
4.8 out of 5 stars
buy from Amazon
El libro del laser (manual de vela a color) (Spanish Edition)El libro del laser (Spanish Edition)
3.8 out of 5 stars
buy from Amazon
laser racing bookChampionship Laser Racing
3.9 out of 5 stars
buy from Amazon
Sailing Is a Breeze - Learning to SailSailing Is a Breeze: Learning to Sail
3.2 out of 5 stars
buy from Amazon
laser sailing bookFast Track to Sailing: Learn to Sail in Three Days
4.6 out of 5 stars
buy from Amazon

How Serious Are You About Your Laser Sailing?

You can learn a lot about how to sail a laser dinghy from other sailors. When those other sailors happen to be world champions at that sport you know you are going to gain some great knowledge from those who have experienced it all. That is what makes each of these laser sailing books essential reading for anyone at any level of laser sailing.

You can try to pick it up and learn it all on your own, but experts in any field know the importance of learning from the best. If you can get personal access to the likes of Michael Blackburn and Ben Ainslie, then, of course, you would be mad not to take advantage of that. Unfortunately, most of us don’t, so the next best thing is to read and study books written by these experts to speed up your learning.

Purchase one or all of these laser sailing books and you are sure to become much better at sailing lasers than if you do it all on your own.

Do you have a favorite Laser Sailing book? Please tell us what is your best sailing book and why below…

About Brendan

Brendan has over 30 years experience sailing dinghies, yachts, and windsurfers, but has recently started Laser sailing. "I found it difficult to find all the information that I needed when I started sailing my Laser, and I am sure that others have had the same problem. So I combined all the information I could into this website to help other Laser sailors get the most out of this sport. If you have any questions or comments, let me know... I will get back to you as soon as I can."

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