Is the RYA Day Skipper practical course right for me?

Is the RYA Day Skipper practical course right for me?

The RYA Day Skipper practical course is those people who wish to skipper a boat on short coastal passages by day.  It is widely recognised and would enable you to charter a boat in the UK or overseas. You should have sailed before and have basic sailing skills equivalent to RYA Dinghy level 2 or RYA Competent Crew.

Let’s go through what you’ll be learning:

During your RYA Day Skipper practical course you will learn the basics of pilotage, navigation and seamanship. Learn how to handle a boat under sail and engine to be able to berth a boat, anchor, pick up a mooring buoy.  The RYA Day Skipper course is a live aboard course, experience eating and sleeping, aboard our 38ft Sigma 38 “Rho”.

Being safe on a boat is very important, and during your RYA Day Skipper practical course you will learn how to prepare a boat for sea – engine checks, the use on a lifejacket, safety harness, and what action should be taken if there is a man overboard, and how to recover them.  Appreciate the dangers of a fire onboard a boat and what equipment should be used to fight a fire.

You will learn how and when to hoist and lower the main sail and the jib when entering and leaving port.  Learn how to safely handle sheets and halyards by using winches and clutches. And start to develop your sail trimming skills on different points of sail. Selecting sails for the prevailing conditions when to reef and how to do it effectively under sail, ensuring all equipment and gear is stored securely above and below deck, before and during your passage.

During your RYA Day Skipper practical course you will get the opportunity to practice your navigational skills both traditional paper navigation and modern GPS techniques, learn to identify and use important navigational aids to plot your position and allow you to enjoy your sail, knowing the boat is in safe water and out of danger.  Learn the art of picking out leading marks to allow you to explore the secluded harbours and bays dotted along the South coast.  As we sail from port to port you will get to the opportunity to skipper the boat, making the decisions when to tack or gybe taking wind and tide into account to aid our journey to our destination. Learn to delegate tasks to keep crew members busy and not to try and do everything yourself.

Gain experience in preparing the boat to enter and leave port, practice berthing and un-berthing the boat in various conditions throughout the week.  Learn to use of lines to help berthing and un-berthing.  Practice anchoring in a secluded bay for lunch and picking up a mooring buoy in a crowded harbour.  Spend a night on a mooring buoy away from traffic noise; and enjoy a home cooked meal aboard with like-minded people on your course.

Rope work is an important skill for any sailor and during your RYA Day Skipper course you will have plenty of opportunities to practice your essential knots, tying on fenders, using cleats to secure a mooring line and securing the sheets to the sails.

Learn the importance of getting up to date weather forecasts, whether it’s getting up early for the shipping forecast, downloading it to your phone, or checking the marina office.  Learn to make to most of the weather and plan your trips to take advantage of the weather now and later.

During your week on Rho you will learn how to identify if there is a risk of collision with other boats and more importantly make a decision to avoid them.  Sailing in the busy Solent waters allows plenty of opportunities to put this into practice, with other pleasure craft and commercial craft aplenty.  Gain experience sailing at night, identifying lights on buoys and start to put together the lights that other crafts use to help us identify them at night.

Join the boat on Monday morning; meet your instructor and crew, after a safety briefing, set off for a week on the water.  Enjoy anchoring for lunch, or picking up a mooring buoy, and exploring the harbours and marines of the south coast before returning Friday afternoon.

The RYA Day Skipper practical course is the first step to becoming a skipper; by the end of the course you should have the skills and confidence needed to skipper a boat in familiar waters by day.  It is widely recognised qualifications recognised by charter companies both in the UK and overseas.

Why not continue you’re training and join us on one of our training weekends to practice your skills or to acquire some new ones.  If you are interested in continuing your RYA training why not conside the RYA Yachtmaster Theory course or perhaps you  just want to get out on the water,

then why not join us for a weekend cruise.
Fancy something a little faster? Why not come out racing or on a race training course?

Additional Courses
RYA VHF Course – Learn how to use VHF radio
RYA First Aid – Learn key first aid for boats
RYA Diesel Engine Maintenance
RYA Sea Survival Course
If you are interested in details on any of the above courses please contact us.

If you have any other question please contact us or check out our FAQ page