RYA Competent Crew – for sailing and yachting beginners

The competent crew course is your introduction to sailing but while learning you will have a whole heap of FUN! What is great about this course is it wont limit you to working on motor yachts. You will also be able to work on catamarans and sailing yachts. You will learn the nautical terminology necessary to work on the yachts. You also get insight into the living arrangements and the teamwork that is entailed.

Topics covered:

  • Nautical terms
  • Parts of sailing and motor vessels
  • Knots and rope work
  • Preparing the sails for the sea
  • Hoisting and reefing the main sail
  • Wind awareness
  • Points of sailing
  • Steering
  • Mooring and anchoring
  • Rules of the road
  • and weather and forecasts

The RYA Competent Crew course is for sailing and yachting beginners and those who would like to become active crew members rather than just passengers. For those interested in working in the yachting industry or on superyachts then this is a great way to learn the ropes.

Course Description

By the end of the course you should be able to steer, handle sails, keep a lookout and assist in all the day to day routines. If you have previously completed the Start Yachting course, the RYA Competent Crew course can be completed in 3 or 4 days. For those wishing to continue after the RYA Competent Crew this is usually followed by the RYA Day Skipper course.


Course Information

  • 5 day, 4 night practical on yacht
  • Beginners Course
  • RYA Competent Crew completion certificate

Students stay on the boat during the RYA Competent Crew, Day Skipper & Yachtmaster Practical courses to get a real feel for onboard living and is a mandatory requirement. A stipend for essentials (tea, coffee, cereal, milk, etc) is included in the course price. During the theory week and STCW, students have the option of staying at our Academy in the Waterfront.

For practical courses we ask that students bring a sleeping bag, towel, toiletries, change of clothes, and suitable wet weather gear. Sunglasses and sunscreen are also a good idea.

For the theory course students will need a 2B pencils, a pen, a notebook and where possible, their own Portland plotter and dividers (we can also loan to the student). We can also help with the purchase of any of these materials.

For STCW you will need your Passport or ID book on day one of your course. You will also need to wear old clothes for the fire fighting (MFF) element, for Personal Safety Training (PST) you will need swimwear, a towel and a set of clothes to get in the pool with.

PRACTICAL sailing courses start with a briefing at the school, 11 Portswood Road at 8.30am.
THEORY courses take place at the school and commence at 8.30am
STCW training takes place in the Cape Town foreshore, training starts promptly at 8.30am
STEWARDESS training takes place in Gordons Bay and/or Ocean Star Sailing Academy