RYA Day Skipper Shorebased Course

RYA Day Skipper Theory Course

An introduction to navigation and seamanship for those new to yachting or wanting to consolidate existing skills.

About the course

The Rya day skipper theory course will provide you with a comprehensive introduction to chartwork, navigation, meteorology and the basics of seamanship for competent crew. The course will equip you with enough knowledge to navigate around familiar waters by day. A basic knowledge of lights is also included to introduce you to night cruising.

Course topics include:

  • the basics of seamanship
  • the essentials of coastal navigation and pilotage
  • chartwork
  • electronic charts
  • position fixing
  • plotting a course to steer
  • weather forecasting and meteorology
  • tides
  • collision regulations
  • construction, parts and equipment of a cruising boat
  • emergency and safety procedures including distress calls,use of flares, safety harnesses, lifejackets and liferafts

Course syllabus

Nautical terms

  • Parts of a boat and hull
  • General nautical terms


  • Knowledge of the properties of synthetic ropes in common use


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


  • Knowledge of the safety equipment to be carried, its stowage and use
  • Fire precautions and fire fighting
  • Use of personal safety equipment, harnesses and life-jackets
  • Ability to send a distress signal by VHF radiotelephone
  • Basic knowledge of rescue procedures including helicopter rescue

International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea

  • Steering and sailing rules
  • General rules

Definition of position, course and speed

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

Navigational charts and publications

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

Navigational drawing instruments

  • Use of parallel rulers, dividers and proprietary plotting instruments


  • Application of variation
  • Awareness of deviation and its courses
  • Use of hand bearing courses


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

Tides and tidal streams

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

Visual aids to navigation

  • Lighthouses and beacons, light characteristics


  • 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

Passage planning

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

Navigation in restricting visibility

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


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

Marine Environment

  • Responsibility for avoiding pollution and protecting the marine environment

What’s Included

  • Plotters and dividers
  • RYA Training charts 3 & 4 and RYA Training Almanac
  • RYA Day Skipper Northern Hemisphere Exercise book

Dates and pricing

Course From To Non-res All-inc
RYA Day Skipper Shorebased 23/07/2024 29/07/2024 £500 £680
RYA Day Skipper Shorebased 20/08/2024 26/08/2024 Full Full
RYA Day Skipper Shorebased 07/09/2024 13/09/2024 £500 £680
RYA Day Skipper Shorebased 28/10/2024 03/11/2024 £500 £680
RYA Day Skipper Shorebased 20/11/2024 26/11/2024 £500 £680
RYA Day Skipper Shorebased 12/12/2024 18/12/2024 £500 £680

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