Doing chartwork

RYA Day Skipper Theory

Classroom Course

Scroll down for 2019 dates & booking

The RYA Day Skipper theory course involves 40 hours of tuition. It covers all the basic theory to navigate safely on short tidal passages by day. It's also the level of theory knowledge required for a 5-day, Day Skipper practical course or the 1-day ICC (International Certificate of Competence) test.

Bay Sea School spread out the course days to allow students more time to assimilate everything. The main course runs in the autumn with a second course in the new year. Classes are held in spacious facilities at a local school, just 10 mins from junction 34 on M6 motorway via the new road.

What's Special About Bay Sea School?
You'll be taught by the award-winning RYA 'Instructor of the Year'. John's no ordinary RYA theory instructor. He's a Yachtmaster Instructor & Examiner.  He inspects Training Centres for the RYA too. That's top notch in the RYA Instructor world! So if experience, quality instruction and depth of knowledge are important to you, don't miss John's classroom Day Skipper course. Deirdre's also a highly experienced violin teacher & RYA instructor. She often assists John with the class too.

Bonus Online Facility
When you choose Bay Sea School you'll have access to John's unique online study feature. It includes explanatory video tutorials and extra practise exercises along with the answers to check your own work as you go. Bay Sea School are passionate about helping you get as much as possible out of your boating. John's available during the week by phone and email if you have any extra questions during your course. Over the years of teaching people to sail, we've collected many useful training aids to help bring your course to life. There's also a selection of recommended books for you to look at. You can buy some of them right now by following the links provided below. 

What do I need?
The RYA course pack is included in the course price. You'll need to provide your own writing equipment, notebook, pair of dividers & Portland course plotter.

Optional Preparatory Course
It's worth knowing that the RYA give you a set of dividers & Portland plotter for free when you do the 'Essential Navigation & Seamanship' course. It's a short online taster course for beginners and a good introduction to some of the topics you'll cover in more detail on Day Skipper theory. There's no requirement to do Essential Navigation before doing Day Skipper theory. It's just that Day Skipper covers a huge amount of material and has to move on quickly to cover it all. Many of our clients enjoy getting a head-start with the Essential Navigation & Seamanship course first. They appreciate the free plotter & dividers too!

Day Skipper course topics include:
All the basics of coastal navigation using both traditional and electronic methods, position fixing, estimated position, planning a course to steer, tidal streams & tidal heights, weather forecasting, navigation buoys, collision regulations, emergency & safety equipment, including distress calls, flares, life-jackets, life-rafts and much more!

Can I do the course online?
Yes, Day Skipper theory courses are available online through various different providers. However we strongly recommend the classroom delivery to our clients. We want you to be successful and move forward to the next stage with your sailing. Nationally, Day Skipper course completion figures are much higher for the classroom version of the course. The interaction with other students makes for a broader learning experience and the structure of regular classes creates more focus to the course. Having a great instructor certainly helps too!

"What an amazing course and instructor...
John Parlane thank you for sharing your expertise and for your patience." Justine 2017

Feedback from our clients suggests they prefer having more time between classes than the usual intensive options of every day for 5 days or three consecutive weekends. If you work full-time & have family life to juggle as well you'll appreciate this! We want you to enjoy your journey from beginner to day skipper and get full value from the teaching too.

Want a day skipper refresher?
There's no reason why you can't do the course again. Everyone gets rusty if they don't use their navigation skills. If it's several years since your Day Skipper Theory course or if you're struggling with aspects of an online course, why not treat yourself this winter to a Day Skipper classroom course with John? There was a new RYA course pack a few years ago with lots of new exercises. 

Yachtmaster Theory
There's no requirement to do a Day Skipper practical course before you move on to the next step with Yachtmaster theory. Day Skipper theory introduces you to all the basic navigation techniques but it's during the next course at Coastal/Yachtmaster level that you'll put it all together to safely plan longer passages. If you're sailing in the Irish Sea you'll definitely need this level of knowledge! Our Day Skippers frequently ask questions about longer passages but there's so much to cover in the Day Skipper syllabus that those quite legitimate questions have to be largely reserved for the next level course. You'll fill in the gaps on your Coastal/Yachtmaster theory course.

Special Offer
After you've completed a Day Skipper theory course with Bay Sea School, you're welcome to return for occasional days to sit-in on a day's tuition. Just bring all your charts, almanac and plotting kit. There's no fixed charge. We just ask you to contribute whatever you feel the day's revision was worth to you. Please let us know in advance if you're coming. You'll need the current RYA course pack with the exercises to join in. Let us know if you'd like to buy one.

Email us or call John if you'd like any advice 07721 891 615

Private Day Skipper courses & coaching
These can be arranged throughout the year. However John has more availability in the winter months mid-week outside of the sailing season. Please get in touch for more details.

6-Day Course Dates Start Time Places Left

2018 Sundays: Nov 4th, 11th, 18th, 25th, Dec 2nd, & 9th

9.30 am


2019 Saturdays: Feb. 23rd, March 2nd, 9th, 16th, 23rd, 30th 

9.30 am


Click here for course joining instructions