Outdoor activities on land. . . and water; Sailing Basics, by Lorna Slocombe. Englewood Cliffs, N.J.: Prentice-Hall Inc. 48 pp. $8.95.

''All you have to do to get started sailing is to learn how to aim the boat and set the sail.'' It's that simple, according to Lorna Slocombe.

''Sailing Basics'' is a breezy collection of tips from an old salt who aims to help beginning navigators do just that - and fast.

Author Slocombe urges the reader to learn by doing: ''You can get a boat rigged without knowing the name of anything.'' She charts a straight course in covering the basics: how to rig a sail; stop it from luffing; how to come about, jibe, and sail close-hauled. (If nothing else, the book will teach you these terms.)

Ms. Slocombe, a 25-year veteran, doesn't neglect the readers' fears and gives common-sense advice about capsizing, squalls, and other problems. ''You may not know where the wind is,'' Slocombe says, '' but the boat does.'' Photographs and simple illustrations spark up the text.

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