Hold Position – Downwind


  • Hold a boat in a fixed position while waiting for dock space, ramp access, or a bridge or lock to open.
  • Stresses the importance of the maxim, “Keep the stern away from danger.”

Setting Up the Drill:

  • Equipment: 4 to 6 buoys (used for Backing Slalom or Approach a Buoy/Mooring drills)

Conducting the Drill:

  • Operator holds position downwind of the buoy within 1 boat length with the bow toward buoy for at least 1 minute.

Teaching Tips:

  • Easier to hold position upwind/upcurrent with stern pointing into wind or current (whichever is stronger) than with bow pointing into wind or current.
  • Anticipate boat drift.
  • Make small, gentle corrections early.

Common Errors:

  • Failing to keep the stern away from danger (buoy).


  • Start Powerboating Right! textbook pg. 46