FAQs

Frequently asked questions

  • Classroom Courses

  • What’s in the course syllabus?

    RYA Day Skipper Theory Syllabus

    The Day Skipper / Watch Leader Shorebased Course provides a comprehensive introduction to chartwork, navigation, meteorology and the basics of seamanship.

    This course is ideal for those who have completed Competent Crew course and are looking to improve their skills and learning how to start making skippering decisions. The theory know-how gained from this course is the expected level of knowledge for those looking to go on and do Day Skipper Practical.

    The course covers the following:

    1. Nautical terms

    • Parts of a boat and hull
    • General nautical terminology

    2. Ropework

    • Knowledge of the properties of synthetic ropes in common use
    • Common Knots including, Clove Hitch, Reef Know, Round turn and 2 half hitches, Bowline, Figure of Eight, Rolling Hitch and Sheetbend

    3. Anchorwork

    • Characteristics of different types of anchor
    • Considerations to be taken into account when anchoring

    4. Safety

    • Knowledge of the safety equipment to be carried, its stowage and use (see RYA Boat Safety Handbook, G103)
    • Fire precautions and firefighting
    • Use of personal safety equipment, harnesses and lifejackets.
    • Ability to send a distress signal by VHF radiotelephone.
    • Basic knowledge of rescue procedures including helicopter rescue

    5. International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea

    • Steering and sailing rules (5,7,8,9,10 and 12-19)
    • General rules (all other rules)

    6. Definition of position, course and speed

    • Latitude and longitude
    • Knowledge of standard navigational terms
    • True bearings and courses
    • The knot

    7. Navigational charts and publications

    • Information shown on charts, chart symbols and representation of direction and distance
    • Navigational publications in common use
    • Chart correction

    8. Navigational drawing instruments

    • Use of parallel rulers, dividers and proprietary plotting instruments

    9. Compass

    • Application of variation
    • Awareness of deviation and its causes
    • Use of hand-bearing compass

    10. Chartwork

    • Dead reckoning and estimated position including an awareness of leeway
    • Techniques of visual fixing
    • Satellite-derived positions
    • Use of waypoints to fix a position
    • Course to steer

    11. Tides and tidal streams

    • Tidal definitions, levels and datum
    • Tide tables
    • Use of Admiralty method of determining the tidal height at standard port and awareness of corrections for secondary ports
    • Use of tidal diamonds and tidal stream atlases for chartwork

    12. Visual aids to navigation

    • Lighthouses and beacons, light characteristics

    13. Meteorology

    • Sources of broadcast meteorological information
    • Knowledge of terms used in shipping forecasts, including the Beaufort scale, and their significance to small craft
    • Basic knowledge of highs, lows and fronts

    14. Passage planning

    • Preparation of navigational plan for short coastal passages. Meteorological considerations in planning short coastal passages
    • Use of waypoints on passage.
    • Importance of confirmation of position by an independent source
    • Keeping a navigational

    15. Navigation in restricted visibility

    • Precautions to be taken in, and limitations imposed by fog

    16. Pilotage

    • Use of transits, leading lines and clearing lines
    • IALA system of buoyage for Region A
    • Use of sailing directions
    • Pilotage plans and harbour entry

    17. Marine environment

    • Responsibility for avoiding pollution and protecting the marine environment

  • What time does it start?

    Evening classes

    Our evening classes are normally scheduled to start at 1800hrs. They run until 2200hrs as this enables us to deliver the pre-requisite hours and complete the course syllabus. If there are any changes to this you will be advised in the joining instructions (sent via email) for your specific course.

    Weekend days

    The weekend day-sessions are 8 hours and normally start at 0900hrs. Your instructor or course joining instructions will advise you if this is different, however no classroom based course starts before 0900hrs.

  • Is there anywhere to park my car?

    There is free parking onsite near the classrooms. Don’t forget, it’s only a 5 min walk from Guildford station too.

    Evening Classes

    If there isn’t available space in the onsite carpark (very rare), you can park in marked bays on the residential roads around the school, usually for free after 6pm.

    Weekend Classes

    There is usually no problem with free parking onsite for any weekend sessions. We will endeavour to warn ahead of time if the site is likely to be busy and therefore a problem for parking.

    Note: We do not take any responsibility for the security of your vehicle or possessions in your vehicle.

  • Is there homework?

    As part of the leaning experience, you will be expected to do homework between the classes. This is all done online where the ability to check your answers and get additional support is provided as part of the course.

  • What happens if I miss a week?

    We understand that people lead busy lives and have other commitments. Missing one session isn’t usually a problem, unless it’s the first session. Missing more than one session is not ideal.

    We do provide online materials for revision which can normally be used to catchup should you miss a week.

  • Online Learning

  • What’s in the course syllabus?

    RYA Day Skipper Theory Syllabus

    The Day Skipper / Watch Leader Shorebased Course provides a comprehensive introduction to chartwork, navigation, meteorology and the basics of seamanship.

    This course is ideal for those who have completed Competent Crew course and are looking to improve their skills and learning how to start making skippering decisions. The theory know-how gained from this course is the expected level of knowledge for those looking to go on and do Day Skipper Practical.

    The course covers the following:

    1. Nautical terms

    • Parts of a boat and hull
    • General nautical terminology

    2. Ropework

    • Knowledge of the properties of synthetic ropes in common use
    • Common Knots including, Clove Hitch, Reef Know, Round turn and 2 half hitches, Bowline, Figure of Eight, Rolling Hitch and Sheetbend

    3. Anchorwork

    • Characteristics of different types of anchor
    • Considerations to be taken into account when anchoring

    4. Safety

    • Knowledge of the safety equipment to be carried, its stowage and use (see RYA Boat Safety Handbook, G103)
    • Fire precautions and firefighting
    • Use of personal safety equipment, harnesses and lifejackets.
    • Ability to send a distress signal by VHF radiotelephone.
    • Basic knowledge of rescue procedures including helicopter rescue

    5. International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea

    • Steering and sailing rules (5,7,8,9,10 and 12-19)
    • General rules (all other rules)

    6. Definition of position, course and speed

    • Latitude and longitude
    • Knowledge of standard navigational terms
    • True bearings and courses
    • The knot

    7. Navigational charts and publications

    • Information shown on charts, chart symbols and representation of direction and distance
    • Navigational publications in common use
    • Chart correction

    8. Navigational drawing instruments

    • Use of parallel rulers, dividers and proprietary plotting instruments

    9. Compass

    • Application of variation
    • Awareness of deviation and its causes
    • Use of hand-bearing compass

    10. Chartwork

    • Dead reckoning and estimated position including an awareness of leeway
    • Techniques of visual fixing
    • Satellite-derived positions
    • Use of waypoints to fix a position
    • Course to steer

    11. Tides and tidal streams

    • Tidal definitions, levels and datum
    • Tide tables
    • Use of Admiralty method of determining the tidal height at standard port and awareness of corrections for secondary ports
    • Use of tidal diamonds and tidal stream atlases for chartwork

    12. Visual aids to navigation

    • Lighthouses and beacons, light characteristics

    13. Meteorology

    • Sources of broadcast meteorological information
    • Knowledge of terms used in shipping forecasts, including the Beaufort scale, and their significance to small craft
    • Basic knowledge of highs, lows and fronts

    14. Passage planning

    • Preparation of navigational plan for short coastal passages. Meteorological considerations in planning short coastal passages
    • Use of waypoints on passage.
    • Importance of confirmation of position by an independent source
    • Keeping a navigational

    15. Navigation in restricted visibility

    • Precautions to be taken in, and limitations imposed by fog

    16. Pilotage

    • Use of transits, leading lines and clearing lines
    • IALA system of buoyage for Region A
    • Use of sailing directions
    • Pilotage plans and harbour entry

    17. Marine environment

    • Responsibility for avoiding pollution and protecting the marine environment

  • Yacht Racing

  • What’s included?

    • Accommodation on board the yacht, including meals, drinks and snacks (meals and drinks ashore are not included)
    • Lifejacket and safety harness
    • All race entry fees
    • All yacht expenses (berthing & fuel)
    • Professionally qualified, insured  Skipper
    • Polka Sailing Team Polo shirt

  • What do I need to bring?

    Obviously a lot depends on the time of year, however whatever the season, it is always cooler at sea. It’s also an outdoor, water sport so getting wet is part of the fun!

    What you’ll need:

    • Enthusiasm and a willingness to get involved!
      Wet weather gear – An outer, waterproof layer, with a hood*
    • Several warm layers
    • Sailing gloves (not just for warmth, for handling ropes)
    • Waterproof, non-marking boots
    • Non-marking shoes or trainers
    • Sunhat (or cap)
    • Suncream
    • Sunglasses – polarised are best as they got glare
    • Sleeping bag
    • Quick drying towel

    * We can lend waterproofs if required, please let us know at time of booking

    Marine Superstore has good pricing & normally a good ‘Sail Rail‘. We can also secure a discount on full price Musto clothing. Get in touch to find out more.