RYA Courses

Training Programme 2021


Theory of Power-boating – Online

Friday 19th March at 19:30hrs

An informal evening focusing on Powerboat activity such as Pre-launch
checks, launch & recovery at DSC and on-the-water techniques. There will be a quiz, and “what happens next” sessions designed to be informative and fun.


First Aid Courses – in DSC Lounge

One Day Course – Saturday 27th March. Evening course – Tuesday 13th + Thursday 15th + Tuesday 20th April.

Following an RYA recognised course. The Saturday course may focus on
members whose certificate needs renewal.


Power-boat Driving Refresher

Online – Thursday 1st April at 19:30hrs.
Followed by a practical session on Friday 2nd April at 09:00hrs

Sessions are aimed at DSC members who have had little opportunity to drive power-boats during the past year and would like to refresh their RIB handling skills. The program, mainly afloat, with few people in RIBs, will aim to help build members confidence in boat handling. The program could include pre-launch boat checks, launching and recovery skills, slow and higher speed manoeuvres, anchoring, towing, simple passage planning and emergency procedures.


Power-boat Rescue Skills Refresher

Online – Friday 9th April at 19:30hrs.
Followed by a practical session Saturday 10th April at 09:00hrs.

For those DSC members who had little opportunity to run Power-boats and
do Safety-boat duties during 2020. The refresher course will include pre-
launch checks and launch / recovery at Downs SC. It will also focus on the
safety-boat role during club racing covering:- mark laying and recovery,
positioning to maintain observation of the fleet, supporting capsized dinghies, entrapment risks, towing casualties and more.


Get Ready to Race Saturdays

Saturdays 3rd & 10th & 17th April at 1400hrs

This is aimed at sailors competent enough to sail around a triangle but
requiring training and support to enable confident participation in club racing.
Looking at the tide and wind conditions on the day. Looking at better boat
handling / starting practice / mark rounding / sailing in tidal conditions and
making good use of any waves.
The sessions will be supported by briefing & debriefing sessions / video
recording / close on the water coaching.

Further sessions will be arranged later in the season – please ask Training
Committee for dates


Friday Sailing

April to August 1800 – 2130hrs. First Friday 30th April

Friday evening sailing in the summer months is for everyone. The Club
Coach and volunteers are here to support and help you enjoy Downs SC as
well as develop your skills at the club on and off the water. Our aim is to
support all members both young and old to get involved and afloat.
There will be occasional Mini-course Teach-ins – tutor lead with a small
number of ‘students’.

Titles will include:

  • Using the Winches
  • Racing skills training
  • Introduction to power-boats
  • VHF Radio
  • And Others

Keep an eye on the Club Coach notice board for details and please suggest if there are areas you would like covered. Towards the end of the evening the club house; with drinks / food available, allows for a relaxed finish to the evening with a debrief on the day’s activity afloat and plans for the coming weeks being made. To make Friday Sailing more enjoyable and effective please get involved in any way you can ……on the water …….on the beach ……in the club.

Don’t be shy to ask. The club exists for its members and is run by the members.

NB. For 2021, DSC has introduced a “Recreational Sailing equipment
Package” For a one -off fee members will have free access to club sailing
boats on Friday evenings. We have also introduced a Club Racing equipment package for those who wish to take part in racing. For members not buying into a package and who do not own a boat they will have to pay for boat hire (or per session fee )
Please see the section on “ 2021 Club Boat Hire charges ” in this handbook.
Alternative please contact the membership secretary Or Training Coordinator


Sailing Skills Refresher Day ⊕

Saturday 8th May – 0900 to 1700hrs

Primarily aimed at the 2019 Learn-to-Sail course students who have had limited opportunity to practice due to the 2020 Covid restrictions. Subjects will be taught at a fairly basic level and will include Tacking, Gybing, the Points of Sailing and Launch/Recovery techniques. Depending on demand, it may be possible to offer additional course spaces to non L2S students who would like to improve their basic sailing knowledge.


Race Briefing for new racers

Sunday 9th , 16th & 30th May 0900 sharp

Following on from April Get ready to race series. A 30 minute briefing for club members, especially those with little race experience. Looking at weather and tidal conditions expected that day and boat set up to get the best of the conditions. Also covering the likely way the race will be sailed, starting options ad consideration of tidal effect off shore when rounding marks. All welcome Prepare to shake up the normal race results.


DSC Single-handed Classes – Race Training Day

Saturday 22nd May – 1000 to 1400hrs

This Race Training day will be lead by experienced national level coaches &
racers and open to all toe-strap single-handed dinghies. Depending upon
conditions and sailor’s requests; the program could include better boat
handling, sailing in waves, starting, mark rounding in a tideway and
preparations for the Open Meeting on Sunday


Sail Cruise to Sandwich Bay

Saturday 29th May 10:00

Dependant on conditions we are hoping to arrange a Club wide sail and BBQ to Sandwich Bay. This would work in a similar way to the sail to Goodwin later in the calender. Watch for details nearer the time.


Learn to Sail Course for Children and Adults ⊕

Friday 18th (1830-2000hrs) & Saturday 19th June (0930-1630hrs)
Friday 25th(1800-2000hrs) & Saturday 26th June (0930-1630hrs)
Friday 2nd(1800-2000hrs) & Saturday 3rd July (0930–1630hrs)
Saturday 10th July (0930-1630hrs)

This program is in three sections:-

For those children new to sailing and over the age of 7:
The children will learn basic boating skills and receive an introduction to
sailing, enabling them to have fun afloat. Whilst the course will follow the RYA Youth Sailing Level 1 syllabus, the training will be delivered informally and will include a number of fun activities. This program will be largely in the single-handed Optimist & double-handed Feva dinghies. Friday evenings will be at DSC and the Saturdays at Redoubt SC (Hythe) over the first 3 weekends only.

For (older) children who have done our courses in earlier years:
This program will follow the RYA Youth Sailing Level 2 &/or 3 syllabi’s and will use Tera, Topper and Feva dinghies. It will be slightly more formal than new to sailing course, but will still include fun elements. Friday evenings will be at DSC and the Saturdays at Redoubt SC (Hythe) over the first 3 weekends only.

For adults:
This introductory program is aimed at members with none or very little sailing experience. It will follow the RYA Level 1 (Start Sailing) and Level 2 (Basic Skills) syllabi’s. A variety of boats will be used but mainly the double-handed Laser 2000 dinghy. Friday evenings will be at Downs SC and will focus on sailing theory and preparation for the following day.
The first three Saturday sessions will take place on the sheltered waters of
Redoubt Lakes, Hythe. The final Saturday will be at Downs SC and will
introduce everybody to the Club equipment and sailing on the sea.
NB. Places on these Learn to Sail Courses are strictly limited and Advanced Booking is essential.


Sail to Goodwin Sands

Saturday 17th July at 08:00

Dependent on conditions on the day we are hoping to repeat a DSC past
favourite with a supported sail to the Goodwin Sands. Looking at the skills
involved in planning a day sail. The class of boats and numbers participating will be restricted due to safety considerations. We will also ensure all sailing participants are of suitable skill level to take part. Ahead of the event a session covering equipment and safety procedures will be arranged. Places may be limited and a small charge per person may be made to cover fuel costs of the safety boats. Watch out for more details nearer the time.


Powerboat Cruise (& possible sail) to Sandwich Quay ⊕

Saturday 21st August 09:00.

Repeating the very popular Powerboat cruise to Sandwich Quay offering
members an opportunity for a fun relaxed day out, and to practice boat
handling skills. The cruise up the Stour can be an opportunity to see the local seal community, practice coming alongside a pontoon and a relaxed lunch before heading back to the club.


RYA Powerboat 2 Course ⊕

Friday 3rd / Saturday 4th / Sunday 5th September

The course will follow the RYA Powerboat Level 2 syllabus helping to develop skills and understanding of Powerboat driving. There are sessions ashore, but this is principally a practical program afloat. Topics include boat
preparation, launch and recovery, boat handling, anchoring, towing, simple
passage planning and emergency procedures. The course is recommended
for all members doing DSC Safety Boat duties. The course will be coupled
with a mentoring scheme which will allow practice & consolidation of the PB skills as part of the DSC Duty Rota – look at “Dutyman” for mentoring
opportunities


RYA Safety Boat Course ⊕

Friday 24th / Saturday 25th / Sunday 26th September

This program will follow the RYA Safety Boat Course. It is particularly suited
to holders of the Powerboat Level 2 Award who wish to enhance their boat
handling and rescue skills. The program will look at supporting racing with
mark laying, the rescue of a variety of dinghies, canoes, & windsurfers and
accompanying boats on a journey


Powerboat Mentoring Scheme

Throughout the season

The Mentoring Scheme will work in association with the routine Club Safety
Cover Duty Rota. The Scheme is open to people who have recently done a
PB2 Course and those who feel they are short on experience and/or
confidence to manage a DSC duty as a Safety Boat driver. A Mentor per
week will be arranged for one of the DSC duty sessions (this session would
be one of the Mentor’s official duties for the season). The Mentor will be in a
supporting role, not in a leading role, in that way the member would gain the maximum benefit by working with an experienced, knowledgeable and
interested person. The Training Committee in conjunction with the Rota
Manager and Chief Powerboat Instructor will manage the scheme.


DSC Sailing Festival and Summer Camp.

Watch for details nearer the time

Fun on the water for all ! The day will include the popular Treasure Hunt on the water, games on shore, paddle boarding, kayaking, and many more fun activities on the water. Plenty of social fun , food and drink too.
Possibility of overnight camping for cadets and family’s.