RYA Competent Crew

(2 customer reviews)


RYA Competent Crew is a popular starting point in the yacht cruising syllabus. This course is for beginners and those who would like to become an active crew member rather than just a passenger. You’ll experience living onboard, really getting to know the boat. Virtually all the course is hands-on, you are the crew, without you, the sails won’t go up and the boat won’t be steered. By the end of the course, you should be able to steer, handle sails, keep a lookout, row a dinghy and assist in all the day to day duties on board. You will also have visited some interesting places and had an enjoyable holiday!

Pay a 20% deposit to secure a place

The RYA Competent Crew is the perfect starting point for your RYA training programme and a great introduction to yachting. The course introduces you to the delights of sailing aboard a cruising yacht. It is an ideal stepping stone for dinghy sailors trying yachting for the first time and for those who have already done some crewing but wish to learn more. At the end of the 5-day course,  you will become, a competent, confident crew member.

The course is run in a SAFE but FUN and FRIENDLY environment aimed at BUILDING CONFIDENCE and YACHTING SKILLS it’s ideal for BEGINNERS with no previous sailing or yachting experience. You will be taught the fundamentals of crewing such as knots, nautical terms, sail handling and helming, as well as how to live in the environment of a cruising yacht. During the RYA Competent Crew course you will spend all 5 days aboard the yacht visiting many of the beautiful harbours and anchorages of the Solent and if the weather allows, complete a longer coastal passage. With a maximum of 4 students per course, your fully qualified instructor will devote plenty of time to your individual needs. Safety is paramount on all RYA courses and you will learn how to operate flares, lifejackets, safety harnesses, liferafts, how to assist the recovery of a man overboard and participate in at least four hours of night sailing during the course. This is the perfect starting point before going on to complete the Day Skipper Theory and Day Skipper Practical courses. If you want to get a head start before taking this course, you can do the Essential Navigation and Seamanship online course (this is not a pre-requisite). At the end of the course, you will be awarded the RYA Competent Crew Certificate and be an asset to any crew you join!

We sail from Hamble Yacht Services. Our adventures start here! Hamble Yacht Services offers easy access from the M27, has plenty of parking and nearby access to the bars and restaurants of Hamble.

There’s plenty of free parking on site.

Polka – GBR912R

Polka is a meticulously maintained Beneteau First 34.7, fully race prepared. She has a carbon mast and rod rigging and flies an asymmetric spinnaker from a retractable carbon bowsprit.
We carry a full race sail inventory including:

  • Carbon Membrane Main Sail
  • Membrane Jibs (No. 1 & No. 3)
  • Heavy Weather Jib
  • Storm Jib
  • TrySail
  • Code 0 Asymmetric
  • A2 Asymmetric
  • A4 Asymmetric

Polka is MCA coded and compliant with ISAF category 1 offshore racing. She carries all the latest safety equipment, above and beyond the requirements of both bodies. All crew whilst onboard have a Spinlock Pro-sensor lifejacket allocated for their use. (The Skippers rules when to wear them will be applied at all times).


  • What do I need to bring?

    Obviously a lot depends on the time of year, however whatever the season, it is always cooler at sea. It's also an outdoor, water sport so getting wet is part of the fun!

    What you'll need:

    • Enthusiasm and a willingness to get involved!
      Wet weather gear – An outer, waterproof layer, with a hood*
    • Several warm layers
    • Sailing gloves (not just for warmth, for handling ropes)
    • Waterproof, non-marking boots
    • Non-marking shoes or trainers
    • Sunhat (or cap)
    • Suncream
    • Sunglasses – polarised are best as they got glare
    • Sleeping bag
    • Quick drying towel

    * We can lend waterproofs if required, please let us know at time of booking

    Marine Superstore has good pricing & normally a good ‘Sail Rail‘. We can also secure a discount on full price Musto clothing. Get in touch to find out more.

  • Is there anywhere to park my car?

    There's free parking on site where the boat's moored at Hamble Yacht Services. For directions, click here. You'll get details of how to get access in the joining instructions which are emailed to you just prior to your booking start date.

    Note: We do not take any responsibility for the security of your vehicle or possessions in your vehicle whilst parked on site.

  • 2 reviews for RYA Competent Crew

    1. Rachel (verified owner)

      Thank you Marcus for a fantastic Competent Crew course – a definite 5 out of 5! We turned up feeling very incompetent- having never even been on a boat before. With your great patience, good humour and supportive training, we really got the hang of it. I would highly recommend the course to anyone thinking about getting into yachting. Can’t wait to now book in the Day Skipper course!

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    2. Rob (verified owner)

      Thankyou for a marvellous week.
      I feel I’ve moved on from being a land lubber and now know the basics of sailing a very impressive yatch. Being only 4 of us Marcus was able to give us the time to develop the individual s skills. An action packed week and I’m now excited at the thought of gaining more experience and hopefully Coastal Skipper with Marcus in the not too distant future.
      Thanks Marcus.

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