Slough it off

Anyone who regularly picks up a mooring under sail knows that when a yacht rounds up through 180 degrees with no drive on, the braking effect of her rudder drags off a surprising amount of way. It’s worth bearing this in mind if you find yourself needing to slow down with no astern propulsion to help you. Modern yachts have big rudders. Whacking one back and forth as far as you can might make you look like a lunatic, but you won’t seem so daft when you step onto the dock to bring her up sweetly with the stern line than if you’d done nothing and piled in at five knots. If things are really dire, you could even try a ‘three-sixty’. As with all unorthodox manoeuvres, have a go before you need it, and choose a day when nobody’s looking!