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How to…deal with seasickness

May 26, 2012

We’ve been going for a year now, on the water, and I thought it was probably about time to tackle problems and worries that guests may have whilst onboard a sailing boat. The first one’s a biggie – seasickness!! Noone wants to feel like the party pooper or have the constant worry that they might feel ill whislt on holiday and therefore not enjoy it – so here’s a few handy tips from a well-sailed crew!


There are many natural remedies for seasickness. We always have a well stocked fruit bowl onboard and there are always plenty of apples. Whenever you let yourself get hungry and your tummy starts rumbling, if it’s a bit choppy or you’re not used to the water and motion of the boat then eating an apple really helps to keep the seasickness feeling at bay! Sounds crazy, but on long trips we eat up to 3 a day! Maybe that’s why we don’t pay visits to the doctor, never have a cold, or get sick!!

Natural Remedies

Ginger is another known natural remedy for seasickness although I had a friend whose Dad used to make him take ginger tablets if it was going to be rough and he was convinced the tablets were so disgusting it was those that made him ill! When I was younger there was always a supply of ginger biscuits onboard, probably more for sustenance and sugar boosts than anything. Ginger beer could help although the fizziness may aggravate a queasy tummy.

There are also many natural homeopathic remedies such as small patches that stick behind your ear. One guest brought some with her last year and after a while they seemed to work but you do need to start using them a couple of days before you get onboard. Her two boys didn’t think they were so good as she kept hearing voices in her ear which they said were the patches ‘talking’ to her!!

Wrist bands

Another none-medicinal approach is the pressure bands to be worn on your wrists. I know they never worked for my sister, but again it’s what works for you! There are of course plenty of precautionary tablets available in the chemists among which are Kwells and Stugeron. These tablets can cause drowsiness so take your first one before you go to sleep the night before you come onboard. Each different brand also has a different active ingredient so although one lot might not work for you, it’s worth trying a different brand next time. We had one lady who had tried about 15 brands in her search to cure motion sickness! Thankfully she’d found the right one by the time she came to us!!


Our American friend had stocked up on American sea-sickness pills only available from the US doctors. He’d had to visit several surgeries to get enough to last him a couple of years – they were mostly for his friends that were joining him on various parts of his round the Med journey – but he said half a tablet and you’d be tap-dancing on the roof in a howling gale with no worries!! I have no idea what’s in them but if there’s any US citizens out there who fancy a trip to the Med maybe they could bring some?!

There are many suggestions out there: look at the horizon; feel the breeze on your face; drink water little and often; drink flat lemonade; eat ginger; do some steering; have a snooze; but the biggest rule of all is DO NOT GO DOWN BELOW!! Whilst your wife or your Dad may be fine downstairs in a blow, it doesn’t mean you will be! One gentleman and his wife had had a fantastic sail with us and we anchored up for lunch. His wife was quite happily reading a book down below even though the boat was rising and falling over a 2m swell so he came downstairs and sat down. Within 5 minutes he had turned green and was back upstairs over the side being rather ill! Lunch, a good sail and a snooze back in port sorted him out, but lesson learnt!!

Look out for more handy tips later in the season…

3 Comments leave one →
  1. June 24, 2013 8:46 am

    It’s difficult to find experienced people on this topic, however, you seem like you know what you’re talking
    about! Thanks


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