Having NEVER sailed before was recommended this brand and before the wetsuit came the boots.
Neoprene if you do not have a fetish on it smells, not these boots. The grip in the powerboat was perfect enjoying the lessons without problems.
For the 5mms they are really soft to put on and out and despite the thin soles had no problems launching or recovering the boat on them.
For the cost... they are a bargain and will keep your feet not dry (nothing can do that sailing (almost) but the little water that you will find later inside IS MEANT to go there and provide an insulation hot water layer surrounding them, same with WETsuits ;)
Learning is fantastic, with this gear you do not need to fear the weather strafes or any. really pleased with them.