RYA Shorebased Day Skipper

An elementary course in seamanship, navigation and meteorology, leading to the more advanced Yachtmaster course.

Subjects covered:

  1. Nautical Terms
    1. Parts of a boat, hull deck and superstructure.
    2. General nautical terminology.
  2. Ropework
    1. Knowledge of the properties of synthetic ropes in common use.
  3. Anchorwork
    1. Characteristics of different types of anchor.
    2. Factors to take into account when anchoring.
  4. Safety
    1. Knowledge of the safety equipment to be carried, its stowage and use (see RYA G103 RYA Boat Safety Handbook).
    2. Fire precautions and fire fighting.
    3. Use of personal safety equipment – harnesses and life jackets.
    4. Ability to send a distress signal via VHF radio.
    5. Basic knowledge of rescue procedures including helicopter rescue
    6. Stability
  5. International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea
    1. Steering rules (5, 7, 8, 9, 10 and 12-19)
    2. General rules.
  6. Definition of position, course and speed
    1. Latitude and longitude.
    2. Knowledge of standard navigational terms.
    3. True bearings and courses.
    4. The Knot.
  7. Navigation Charts and Publications
    1. Information shown on charts, chart symbols, representation of direction and distance.
    2. Navigational publications in common use.
    3. Chart correction.
  8. Navigational Drawing Instruments
    1. Use of parallel rulers, dividers and proprietary plotting instruments.
  9. Compasses
    1. Application of variation.
    2. Awareness of deviation and it’s causes.
    3. Use of hand bearing compass.
  10. Chartwork and Navigation – Traditional and Electronic
    1. Dead reckoning and estimated position including an awareness of leeway.
    2. Techniques of visual fixing
    3. Use of GNSS and chart plotters for fixing.
    4. Use of waypoints to fix position.
  11. Tides and Tidal Streams
    1. Tidal definitions, levels and datum.
    2. Tide tables.
    3. Use of Admiralty method of determining tidal height at standard port.
    4. Awareness of corrections for secondary ports,
    5. Use of tidal diamonds and tidal atlases for chartwork.
  12. Visual Aids to Navigation
    1. Lighthouses and beacons, light characteristics.
  13. Meteorology
    1. Sources of broadcast meteorological information
    2. Knowledge of terms used in shipping forecasts, including the Beaufort Scale and their significance to small craft.
    3. Basic knowledge of highs, lows and fronts
  14. Passage Planning
    1. Preparation of a navigational plan for short coastal passages.
    2. Meteorological considerations in planning short coastal passages.
    3. Use of and visual confirmation waypoints on passage
    4. Importance of confirmation of position by an independent source
    5. Keeping a navigational record.
  15. Navigation in Restricted Visibility
    1. Precautions to be taken in and limitations imposed by fog.
  16. Pilotage
    1. Use of transits, leading lines and clearing bearings.
    2. IALA system of buoyage (Regions A and B)
    3. Use of Sailing Directions
    4. Pilotage plans and harbour entry
  17. Marine Environment
    1. Responsibility for avoiding pollution and protecting the marine environment.