You can take the RYA Competent Crew course over 3 weekends. We also offer a 2 and 3 day weekend option to make up the 5 days. You can also take Competent Crew as a 5 day course.

Competent Crew
Competent Crew

The RYA Competent Crew course is an ideal course for beginners or anyone with limited experience wishing to learn to sail. You will be taught basic seamanship and helmsmanship in the sheltered waters of The Solent. You can take this course as a 5 day RYA Competent Crew Course course or over 3 weekends or one weekend and another 3 day weekend. During the Competent Crew course you will get a chance to steer, handle sails, be part of the crew and gain hands on practical sailing experience! Our RYA instructors are very experienced and will ensure you learn in a safe environment as well as ensuring your time on the water is as enjoyable as possible. After the course you will be ready to experience more sailing and further your skills and experience. You should have become a useful crew member on board a sailing yacht.

If you are interested to see life on board during a RYA course check out the film at the bottom of the page!

You will be taught with a mixture of students who may be taking Start Yachting or Day Skipper courses.

The Competent Crew course is ideal for dinghy sailors wishing to learn to sail a cruising yacht and for those who have already done some sailing but want to learn a bit more about crewing safely and using the correct techniques.  The course is designed to help you become a safe and proficient crew member whilst having fun out on the water and ashore.

RYA Competent Crew
RYA Competent Crew

You can choose any 3 weekends from our programme to complete your course or a 3 day weekend which we run over most Bank Holidays and any other weekend. If you choose 3 weekends, you will receive 6 days tuition with the extra day free of charge compared with taking the course over 2 weekends. You will be awarded a Competent Crew course certificate for completing this course. After completing the RYA Competent Crew course you will then be able to progress on to the RYA Day Skipper theory and RYA Day Skipper practical courses.

Read feedback from students who have taken their Competent Crew course with us below

[wptabs] [wptabtitle]Course Information[/wptabtitle]


Duration5 daysMaximum students: instructor5:1
LocationSolentMinimum ageAll ages although under 18s must be accompanied by an adult
What’s includedAccommodation on board one of our Bavaria yachts Breakfast, lunch, two evening meals ** and drinks on board, berthing fees. Free hire of wet weather gear (adult sizes only).ExtrasEvening meals ashore during the course and on joining night if required. Log books if required £6.99
WhenFriday evening 1900hrs to Wednesday afternoon 1600hrs or Sunday evening 1900hrs to Friday afternoon 1600hrs. Also 3 weekends. All year roundDon’t forgetAnything you cannot travel without as we cannot cater for everyone’s special favourites!
Let us know aboutAny special needs and dietary requirements.
Please note, we will do our best to cater for vegetarian diets but cannot cater for alternative diets or allergies. Please call the office if in doubt.
Cost £510.00 - £655.00



FEEDBACK – Competent Crew Student Reviews

We had a fabulous weekend. Our skipper was amazing. Loved every minute of it. My daughter and I are different abilities and were appropriately instructed. Weather was perfect!!

Tony – Day Skipper / Competent Crew, May 2015

Having found my land legs, can now email you!! Attended your `Competent Crew` course 21st Oct – 26th Oct 2013.Totally surpassed my expectations. Was truly a wonderful experience and now totally sold my soul to sailing !!Neil was a fantastic instructor. Great guidance and knowledge, coupled with a brill sense of humour. Thankfully, didn’t have to taste his culinary skills !! Looking now to book for Skipper course in New Year with Commodore.

Michael – Competent Crew October 2013



[/wptabcontent] [wptabtitle]Recommended reading[/wptabtitle] [wptabcontent] [Available to purchase ver y soon]

[/wptabcontent] [wptabtitle]Syllabus[/wptabtitle] [wptabcontent] The RYA Competent Crew course introduces the complete beginner to cruising and teaches personal safety, seamanship and helmsmanship to the level required to be a useful member of crew of a cruising yacht. 

  •  1. Knowledge of sea terms and parts of a boat, her rigging and sails
  • Sufficient knowledge to understand orders given concerning the sailing and day to day running of the boat.
  • 2. Sail Handling
  • Bending on, setting, reefing and handling of sails
  • Use of sheets and halyards and their associated winches
  • 3. Ropework
  • Handling ropes, including coiling, stowing, securing to cleats and single and double bollards
  • Handling warps
  • Ability to tie the following knots and to know their correct use: figure-of-eight, clove hitch, rolling hitch, bowline, round turn and two half hitches, single and double sheet bend, reef knot
  • 4. Fire precautions and fighting
  • Awareness of the hazards of fire and the precautions necessary to prevent fireb. Knowledge of the action to be taken in the event of fire
  • 5. Personal safety equipment 
  • Understands and complies with rules for the wearing of safety harnesses, lifejackets and personal buoyancy aids
  • 6. Man overboard
  • Understands the action to be taken to recover a man overboard
  • 7. Emergency equipment
  • Can operate distress flares and knows when they should be used
  • Understands how to launch and board a liferaft
  • 8. Manners and customs
  • Understands accepted practice with regard to: use of burgees and ensigns, prevention of unnecessary noise or disturbance in harbour including courtesies to other craft berthed
  • Aware of the responsibility of yacht skippers to protect the environment
  • 9. Rules of the road
  • Is able to keep and efficient lookout at sea
  • 10. Dinghies
  • Understands and complies with the loading rules. Is able to handle a dinghy under oars
  • 11. Meteorology
  • Awareness of forecasting services and knowledge of the Beaufort scale
  • 12. Seasickness
  • Working efficiency is unaffected/partially affected/severely affected by seasickness
  • 13. Helmsmanship and sailing
  • Understands the basic principles of sailing and can steer and trim sails on all points of sailing
  • Can steer a compass course, under sail and power
  • 14. General duties
  • Has carried out general duties satisfactorily on deck and below decks in connection with the daily routine of the vessel


* Evening meals taken ashore on weekend courses.