Attaining your RYA Yachtmaster Offshore certificate of competence is a great achievement for any aspiring skipper, the qualification is highly respected and recognised worldwide. For many avid sailors or motorboaters, this qualification is a necessity to work commercially at sea as a Skipper.
Experience is essential whether you want to work at sea or just cruise the waters. Every passage you take will bring different weather conditions, different sea states and different ? It is important to equip yourselves and your crew with the knowledge and experience to handle any situation out at sea.
If you have never stepped foot on a boat before but would love to feel the wind in your hair and the fresh salty spray of a bow wave then I would suggest starting out with an RYC Competent Crew Course. This is a great way to learn the ropes, the lingo and whether becoming a salty seadog is for you!
Working towards your RYA Yachtmaster can be quite costly, not just the cost of the courses but also buying the right gear to keep you warm in the coldest of winters. Even in the midst of Summer you would be surprised at how cold the breeze can be.
If you’ve decided that progressing further is right for you then your next step would be your RYA Day Skipper, this course is split into theory and practical and aims to give skippers the knowledge to sail and cruise around inland waters during day light hours. You will learn manoeuvres, pilotage, buoyage and all the necessities to become a safe skipper. It is import to log all of your sea time in a log book so that you have evidence of your experience if/when you decide you are ready for your Yachtmaster. It’s also great practice and sensible to keep a log as this is a legal requirement on all commercial vessels and handy to have on your own boat to look back on in years to come. LINK TO VENTURE LOG BOOKS
To progress up to your RYA Yachtmaster exam there are various other courses or sailing trips you can embark upon, RYA Coastal Skipper (this is a step up from Day Skipper) and mile builders are a perfect opportunity to gain some extra miles and passages as skipper, essential for your Yachtmaster.
You are the only one who knows for sure if you are ready to take your Yachtmaster exam and pursue some incredible adventures at sea. Happy boating!