RYA Day Skipper Practical

(6 customer reviews)


RYA Day Skipper practical course, run over 5 days or 2 weekends. This course is run in conjunction with a Competent Crew course which makes for a great learning environment. We have a maximum of 2:1 Day Skipper students to instructor ratio to allow you to get the absolute most from the course.

(20% Deposit payable to secure a place)


The RYA Day Skipper practical is a course for aspiring skippers with some yachting experience and basic navigation and sailing skills. The course is run in a SAFE but FUN and FRIENDLY environment aimed at BUILDING CONFIDENCE in your SKIPPERING ABILITY. You’ll learn to skipper a short passage with the instructor on hand to give advice and encouragement and ensure your safety. Experience being in charge, taking credit when it all goes well and being responsible when it doesn’t. The required pre-course experience is 100 logged sea miles, 5 days onboard a yacht and 4 night hours. Additionally, you are expected to have theory knowledge to the standard of Day Skipper theory. Before taking this course, if you are not sure that your sailing is up to speed, get in touch and we can help ensure this is the right next step for you.

We sail from Hamble Yacht Services. Our adventures start here! Hamble Yacht Services offers easy access from the M27, has plenty of parking and nearby access to the bars and restaurants of Hamble.

There’s plenty of free parking on site.

Polka – GBR912R

Polka is a meticulously maintained Beneteau First 34.7, fully race prepared. She has a carbon mast and rod rigging and flies an asymmetric spinnaker from a retractable carbon bowsprit.
We carry a full race sail inventory including:

  • Carbon Membrane Main Sail
  • Membrane Jibs (No. 1 & No. 3)
  • Heavy Weather Jib
  • Storm Jib
  • TrySail
  • Code 0 Asymmetric
  • A2 Asymmetric
  • A4 Asymmetric

Polka is MCA coded and compliant with ISAF category 1 offshore racing. She carries all the latest safety equipment, above and beyond the requirements of both bodies. All crew whilst onboard have a Spinlock Pro-sensor lifejacket allocated for their use. (The Skippers rules when to wear them will be applied at all times).


  • 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.

  • Is there anywhere to park my car?

    There's free parking on site where the boat's moored at Hamble Yacht Services. For directions, click here. You'll get details of how to get access in the joining instructions which are emailed to you just prior to your booking start date.

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

  • 6 reviews for RYA Day Skipper Practical

    1. mattbirchy

      What a fantastic 5 days sailing! It was everything I hoped it would be. I made my mind up about Marcus and his teaching style after the first day of the theory course and decided to book the practical up there and then. I didn’t regret it, I thoroughly enjoyed my time aboard a lovely boat with great company. The weather was very kind to us which made the trip even better. I learned a huge amount from a very calm and patient tutor and left with a real sense of new found boat confidence. Not sure I’m ready for the Fastnet race yet but would definitely recommend Polka Sailing to anyone who wants to get their day skipper qualification. Thanks again!

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    2. davecrapnell

      Would highly recommend Polka Sailing and Marcus if you are thinking about getting your Day Skipper qualification. Both the theory and practical sessions were informative and great fun and Marcus has a very good teaching style. Now looking forward to putting my new found knowledge into practice.

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    3. paulayton

      Marcus is a great teacher – explaining things in an easy to understand way, would recommend doing the Theory and Practical course with Marcus as well as taking the opportunity to do some racing all great experiences.
      Highlight of the week sailing was sailing into Lymington at night (will not forget the fixed red light transit) and mooring at Pontoons just using the wind and tide ( ferry gliding) evenings were just as entertaining with an impromptu Pub quiz and then a last night Sambuca night cap or 2.The 5 days were great company and learned loads.

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    4. geoff_dibben (verified owner)

      Great to learn with Marcus – he is a very patient, knowledgable and experienced sailor. The yacht is in excellent condition and is a great boat to gain experience on. We had a great 5 days and I would recommend Polka to anyone. I am sure I will be back… Thanks

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    5. Graham Pollard (verified owner)

      I would recommend Polka sailing to anyone. Marcus is very knowledgeable and couldn’t be more helpful.
      5 stars from me

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    6. Ross (verified owner)

      Having undertaken Day Skipper Theory with Polka i had high expectations for the Day Skipper Practical Course and i was not disappointed. Marcus has a relaxed friendly approach to teaching which proved highly effective. Marcus’s yacht Polka was a really fun, seaworthy, safe, responsive boat to sail – which you might expect as it is a true Cruiser/Racer! Marcus provided all of us on the course with opportunities to stretch ourselves to a level in which we were comfortable. Endorsing the above – in the next few weeks i shall be booking a place on the Fastnet 2019 race campaign with Polka – which is not something i would do without trust in the ability of the Skipper and the boat!

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