Vmg Calculator


About Vmg Calculator (Formula)

The VMG (Velocity Made Good) Calculator is a valuable tool used in sailing and navigation to determine the effectiveness of a sailboat’s course relative to the wind direction. VMG represents the boat’s speed in the direction of a specific point of interest, often a waypoint or the finish line, and it helps sailors optimize their routes to reach their destinations as quickly as possible. Calculating VMG is essential for making strategic decisions during a sailboat race or cruise.

The formula for calculating VMG is relatively straightforward:

VMG = Boat Speed (BS) * Cos(Θ)


  • VMG (Velocity Made Good) is the boat’s speed in the desired direction, typically measured in knots or meters per second.
  • Boat Speed (BS) is the boat’s actual speed through the water, measured in knots or meters per second.
  • Θ (Theta) represents the angle between the boat’s course (the direction it is currently heading) and the desired course (the direction of the waypoint or finish line).

To use the VMG Calculator, you need to know the boat’s current speed (BS) and the angle (Θ) between the boat’s course and the desired course. The calculator will then determine the boat’s VMG, which indicates how effectively it is progressing toward its destination.

Applications of the VMG Calculator:

  1. Sailboat Racing: VMG calculations are crucial in sailboat racing, where competitors aim to optimize their boat’s performance to reach waypoints or the finish line as quickly as possible. Sailors adjust their sail trim and course to maximize VMG.
  2. Cruising and Navigation: Cruising sailors and navigators use VMG to plan the most efficient routes to their destinations. By calculating VMG to different waypoints, they can choose the best course to minimize travel time.
  3. Tactical Decision-Making: Sailors use VMG information to make tactical decisions during races or cruises. They may choose to sail a higher or lower angle to the wind, adjust sail trim, or change their course based on VMG calculations.
  4. GPS and Navigation Software: Many modern GPS and navigation systems incorporate VMG calculations, making it easier for sailors to monitor and optimize their performance.
  5. Training and Education: Sailing schools and instructors use VMG concepts to teach students about sailboat performance and navigation strategies.

In summary, the VMG Calculator is an essential tool for sailors and navigators looking to make informed decisions about course and sail trim to reach their destinations efficiently. Whether in a competitive racing environment or a leisurely cruise, VMG calculations help sailors harness the power of the wind and currents to their advantage.