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Ocean Action Learning

Ocean Action Learning (OAL)

Highly efficient and sustainable action learning on board
of sail training vessels for team and leadership development.

On a sailing ship all actions must be well considered to reach your destination safely and efficiently. Sometimes only a few will take action. At other times, everyone participates.
It took us many years of experimentation in adult education to transform an onboard challenge into a learning process for managers. Afterwards the participants are more confident, able to stay constantly aware, make clear decisions in crises and can motivate their employees and colleagues optimally.
OAL supports the successful transfer of experiences on the water to daily business through a unique and customizable mix of methods. The methods used are proven and complemented by the latest results of motivational research.
The integral approach achieves amazing progress in the personality development of the participants.

“The sea moves you!” – Bernhard Pelzer

Ocean Action Learning promotes intuition through movement

Brain researchers discovered that creativity, intuition, and emotions are controlled in the same part of the brain area that automates our motion. Examples include running, cycling, skiing, horse riding, swimming and other learned and unconsciously controlled movements.
Everyone, who is quietly looking for an idea while sitting at their desk, knows this experience. When you get up and walk around, suddenly an idea appears which did not want to show up while sitting.
This is explained by the increased activity in the brain area of action and movement control. That energy boost also energizes the brain areas that are responsible for feelings, creativity, and intuition.

The permanent ship movements on the water have a stimulating effect on the brain and increase the intuition, the intensity of the experience, and the will of determination. This process induces lasting changes.


Change and sustainable learning are based on
relevant and feasible challenges:
  1. With OAL we create a controllable environment for experiential learning that reflects personal challenges, company decisions, or team dilemmas.
  2. Based on group dynamic and systemic know-how,
    OAL works in family-like groups of 5 to 15 people
    for holistic development.
  3. By the movement on a ship at sea, OAL creates a multi-sensory experience in a safe environment, neurally stimulating brain activity, and promoting intuition and creativity.
  4. Mutual support and constant mindfulness develop agility and resilience as well as positive and desirable behavioural preferences.
  5. In a demanding environment, OAL provides time and  space to experience and reflect on complex psychological
    and sociological situations.
  6. Consequences of complex decisions are directly
    experienced and the sensitivity to complex correlations
    is sharpened.
  7. The challenges and experiences mastered with OAL
    can be sustainable integrated into everyday life through
    systemic methods and a holistic approach.

Ocean Action Learning in 3 Dimensions

Personal development, teams from 10 to 50 participants
or large groups above 50 participants
Individual Coaching

An individual off-shore coaching on board of a sailing vessel unlocks your potential:

Goals are defined on the basis of an ILC potential analysis or a Lumina personality profile and a program is developed with a coach, in which personal challenges are mastered and individual leadership qualities are reflected.

At anchor, the time is used to process personal experiences with the OAL coach. The observations and findings gained on board facilitate the sustainable transfer into everyday life.

Team Development

Team development on traditional sailing ships:

Change and learning are always dependent on challenges that are relevant to the system and need to be mastered permanently.

A sailing ship at sea offers a wide range of options at every level of qualification and at all levels of challenge: from peeling potatoes, to climbing up the top of the mast, toilet service, and complex decisions.
The challenges on board are reflected on with the OAL trainers and can be transferred to business life with surprising ease.
Highly efficient development for organizations with several teams sailing as a fleet.
In order to develop teams into independent units within an organization, they must master cooperation in competition. During regatta sailing in fleets, our customers learn to achieve superior goals by competing with each other as a community. In small groups we reflect constantly; in the big group we debrief in the evening. Management teams of up to 70 participants become high-power interconnected teams, which fits well with companies that want to evolve from a tanker to a fleet of speedboats.
Impressions of Ocean Action Learning with ILC or Lumina Analysis
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