RYA Competent Crew

This course is ideal for beginners to learn the basics, novice sailors and dinghy sailors and for those who would like to become active crew members rather than just passengers. By the end of the course you will not only be competent but a confident member of the yacht crew and be able to steer, handle sails, keep a lookout, row a dinghy and assist in all the day to day routines associated with the vessel.

The Competent Crew course is usually run over 6 days and you will spend 7 nights aboard the yacht visiting some of the beautiful harbours and anchorages of the Ionian.

Children aged 12 years and over are welcomed and encouraged and whatever training you do, your instructor will make learning fun. At the end you will be awarded the RYA Competent Crew Certificate and be an asset to any crew you join – not to mention learning in the beautiful surroundings of the Greek Ionian.

RYA Competent Crew Course Syllabus

The RYA Competent Crew course introduces beginners to cruising and teaches personal safety, seamanship and helmsmanship to the level required to be a useful member of the crew of a cruising yacht. Safety is paramount in all RYA courses and you will learn how to operate flares, life jackets, safety harnesses, life-rafts and how to assist the recovery of a man overboard.

Experience needed: None or dinghy sailing

Following Courses: RYA Day Skipper

Minimum age: 12 years old

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

Sail handling

Bending on, setting, reefing and handling of sails
Use of sheets and halyards and their associated winches

Rope work

Handling warps
Handling ropes, including coiling, stowing, securing to cleats and single and double bollards
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

Fire precautions and fighting

Awareness of the hazards of fire and the precautions necessary to prevent fire
Knowledge of the action to be taken in the event of fire

Personal safety equipment

Understands and complies with rules for the wearing of safety harnesses, lifejackets and personal buoyancy aids

Man overboard

Understands the action to be taken to recover a man overboard

Emergency equipment

Can operate distress flares and knows when they should be used
Understands how to launch and boat a life raft

Manners and customs

Understands accepted practice with regard to: use of burgees and ensigns, prevention of unnecessary noise of disturbance in harbour including courtesies to other craft berthed
Aware of responsibility of yacht skippers to protect the environment

Rules of the road

Is able to keep an efficient lookout at sea


Understands and complies with the loading rules
Is able to handle a dinghy under oars


Awareness of forecasting services and knowledge of the Beaufort scale

Helmsmanship and sailing

Understands the basic principles of sailing and can steer and trim sails on all points of sailing
Can steer and compass course, under sail and power

General duties

Has carried out general duties satisfactorily on deck and below decks in connection with the daily routine of the vessel

The full syllabus for each course can be found in the RYA's Sail Cruising Syllabus & Logbook (G158). This book explains the syllabus for the RYA Competent Crew, Day Skipper, Coastal Skipper and RYA Yachtmaster sailing courses. You ideally need to purchase the Logbook before you start your course directly from the RYA website, from Amazon or other good book stores but it can also be purchased from us in Greece. The book includes space for personal log and course completion certificates. The completion certificate is included in the cost of your course.

For more information call us on 0330 088 4744 or email contact@island-sailing.com

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