Welcome to RAFSA (Offshore) Training

Key to making any sailor more proficient at sea, more confident leading a crew and any race boat faster, is constant learning and training. Having the right skills is essential and draws out qualities of team work, endurance, and determination, while teaching people to manage risk

2023 Training Courses

Stepping into the world of sailing for the first time is exciting and exhilarating. We offer training at a variety of levels, so everyone has a chance to get involved and improve their skills.

All of our Courses are open to serving RAF Regular and Reserve personnel, veterans, RNSA, ASA Members and their dependents. Additionally, civilians who are ineligible to join RAFSA may be accepted on a fill-up basis. We welcome novice and expert sailors alike and deliver a broad range of RYA qualifications, from beginner to instructor.

*Prices shown reflect course fee for serving RAFSA members. Civilians are charged at a higher rate (please see course page)

Competent Crew

Day Skipper

Coastal Skipper

Yachtmaster examinations

Cruising Instructor

Mile Building


RAFSA own two Hallberg Rassey 342 training yachts at two different locations. Either stay closer to home, or challenge yourself to learn in some new waters.

New for 2022 (Regular serving members only). We are looking to use JSASTC owned yachts, based out of Gosport.

Sir Arthur

Sir Arthur – Ardrossan

From Ardrossan you can explore the incredible Firth of Clyde and the Isle of Arran. This area has less tidal range but often some fast exhilarating wind conditions.
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Atlas – Plymouth

Sail the spectacular Devon and Cornish coastline, a busy stretch of water with strong tides makes it a challenging but rewarding stretch to learn and practice on.

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JSASTC – Gosport

The Solent is perhaps the most famous stretch of water for Offshore Sailing in the UK. Always busy, and packed full of challenges, you’ll be kept on your toes throughout.
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During a course, you will be accommodated aboard the yacht for the entire course, and will have the opportunity to berth in a variety of harbours and bays according to the weather conditions and ability. Students will all be allocated a bed space, but must bring their own bedding (sleeping bag and pillow). We do our best to keep it comfortable, but it can get cosy, that’s part of the skill of being a good crew.


360 Saloon

An example of what the inside of the yacht looks like.
(Real images coming soon)


Please get in touch at training@offshore.rafsa.org.uk for any further questions.

Beginners should attend Competent Crew. This will give you a feel for the sport and hopefully you’ll soon be desperate to come back for more. Students can then work their way up through the courses based on feedback from instructors. The aim isn’t to rush through, but enjoy some time at sea and leave plenty of time to develop in-between.

Which course should I attend?

Some students with a good amount of experience, or large dinghy sailing background do find it possible to jump straight in at competent crew. We would normally advise around 2 good quality weeks on a yacht and a good knowledge of sails and navigation. You will also need to complete the Day Skipper shore based course, or a substantial amount of self study in advance. Ultimately this depends on your own confidence levels, our instructors can assess your performance throughout and advise accordingly.

Can I skip Competent Crew if I already have some experience?

Information will be supplied in the Joining Instructions. Students will be provided with a waterproof jacket and trousers but the following should be considered, along with the seasonal conditions:

  • Wellies or non-marking trainers
  • Thermals, socks
  • Warm hat
  • Gloves
  • Bedding
What kit do I need to bring?

We run largely on a first come first served basis, however military students retain priority. Please apply on the appropriate course page.

You will have to pay for your place on booking and you will receive confirmation from the training officer within 7 days. Joining Instructions will be sent out 8 weeks prior to a course, please contact the training officer if you have any further questions.

How do I know if my place is accepted.

Yes! You attend these courses as Sport/AT subject to line manager approval.

Does this count as military duty?

Offshore Training Committee

Position Name Email
Training Principal David Stubbs
Training Team Carl
Training Team Joe Litten
Training Team Lucinda Conder

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