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Youth Sailing

Dinghy sailing is a great introduction to watersports, and JYC Academy’s range of RYA-accredited courses and impressive fleet of dinghies make it the ideal place for your child to start their sailing journey.

Below is a breakdown of every youth course we offer at JYC Academy. The RYA’s structured and comprehensive youth sailing program is divided into different stages, each focusing on specific skills and knowledge to make progress on the water achievable.

Each stage takes approximately 2 days to pass, or the equivalent number of sessions, and is not only educational but also incredibly fun. Kids enjoy the thrill of being on the water, making new friends, and developing a lifelong love for sailing.

Check out our range of courses and get ready to set sail!

Recommended Pathway

Start your training with a course appropriate to your experience - you don't have to start at the beginning. Our recommended path through the courses can be viewed below.

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RYA Youth

Stage 2

Building on Stage 1, this level teaches children how to sail a set course and improve their steering and handling skills. Learn about rigging, launching, sailing in all directions, rope work, and essential safety knowledge. After this stage, kids are able to sail confidently on their own in good conditions, handling the boat in different directions, and will have learnt all about the essentials of steering, wind awareness, ropework and safety at sea.

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RYA Youth

Stage 4

The final step in youth sailing courses, this stage focuses on refining techniques in a variety of conditions, introducing racing skills and advanced maneuvers. Transferring the skills, techniques and maneuvers from previous stages to crewed boats, after completing this course your child will be able to sail a double-handed boat as both helm and crew and solve a variety of problems on the water, including practical skills to recover a man overboard.

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RYA Youth

Stage 1

The perfect introduction to sailing - no prior experience needed. Kids learn the basics of sailing, becoming familiar with parts of the boat, basic sailing techniques, and essential safety knowledge. By the end of this stage, kids can steer the dinghy and understand basic principles of sailing, all while having fun on the water.

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RYA Youth

Stage 3

Now you’ve mastered the basics, it’s time to progress! This stage introduces more advanced sailing techniques, including improved rigging, sailing theory, launching and recovery. Build your confidence in a range of sailing techniques on all points of sail and capsize recovery. Upon completing this stage, kids start to feel like independent sailors, and are able to launch and sail a dinghy on all points of sail or around a triangle in moderate conditions.

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RYA Dinghy

Start Racing

With a solid foundation in racing techniques, this course covers everything required to start club racing, including getting off the start line and round the course, improved tacking and gybing, and an understanding of the racing rules. Perfect for those interested in competitive sailing, gain the skills you need to enter your first race or simply have fun competing against friends.

Prerequisite: At least Stage 3 in Youth Sailing

RYA Seamanship


Continue to put your skills to the test and learn how to resolve a wide range of problems afloat. Develop your passage planning and decision-making skills for small boat cruising, while learning how to stop, reduce sail, recover a man overboard, pick up a mooring, and anchoring. Upon completing this course, you’ll be a totally self-sufficient sailor, able to handle a boat in practically all situations, with a strong foundation for the future.

Prerequisite: Stage 4 in Youth Sailing

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RYA Performance


The RYA Performance Sailing course is designed to improve your proficiency in handling performance dinghies. With practical experience in helming and crewing, the syllabus covers how to hike effectively, use trapezes, and enhanced spinnaker work. By the end of the program, we’ll have you sailing smoothly and quickly, with more confidence on the water.

Prerequisite: Stage 4 in Youth Sailing

RYA Sailing

with Spinnakers

Everything you need to know about sailing with conventional or asymmetric spinnakers. A fantastic addition to the Performance Sailing program, this course covers how to rig the boat, hoist, gybe, and drop and recover one type of spinnaker, either symmetric or asymmetric. Gain the knowledge and understanding to sail the best possible course downwind, all while experiencing the thrill of using trapezes and spinnakers.

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