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RYA Powerboat courses follow a progression ladder that builds a students learning. It can be difficult to understand this path when you are first looking in to training. This page will hopefully help you understand the course ladder and the ancillary courses that are recommended at each stage.

Powerboat level 2
RYA Intermediate Powerboat
RYA Advanced Powerboat

RYA Powerboat Level 2

The RYA Powerboat Level 2 course is the starting point for most people. The level 2 will enable you to apply for an International Certificate of Competence (ICC) for hiring boats while on holiday.

The PB2 as we call it, is a 2 day practical course. You will spend the majority of your time on a boat like the one below.

A RIB is a boat with rubber tubes around the sides

Boats like this, called Rigid Inflatable Boats (RIBS) make excellent training boats. This is because they have rubber sides. They will bounce of things if you have a slight knock when you are learning.

They are very capable work boats. The rigid part refers to the fibre glass or aluminium hull and the inflatable part obviously refers to the rubber tubes.

The PB2 course has a focus on safety and manoeuvring. Over the two days you will learn about the effect of wind and tide on the boat. You will carry out tasks such as turning in a confined space and bringing the boat alongside a pontoon to park. We call this mooring or coming alongside.

You will also learn the basics of handling the boat at planing speed. This is both in a straight line and turning corners. You will also learn about emergency procedures such as what to do if somebody falls out and how to recover a person from the water. This is also great to learn as it’s the same for picking up swimmers or water skiers for example.

Recommended with a RYA Powerboat Level 2

We also include the VHF Radio Short Range Certificate course that is recommended to compliment RYA powerboat courses.

The VHF radio (very high frequency) is the main means of communication on the sea. It has several advantages over a mobile phone.

RYA Intermediate Powerboat

The RYA Intermediate powerboat course is the next level after PB2. It is also a two day practical course. This course is very exciting as the emphasis is on navigation and heading off to new places.

There is more boat handling practice but by the end of the course you will be able to plan a trip down the coast to a different marina or destination.

RYA Advanced Powerboat course

This course is for people who want to take their boating to the next level. There is an optional exam after this two day course that will allow you to operate a boat commercially.

The emphasis for this course is navigation by day and night. You will be out till the small hours of the morning following navigation plans that you made during the day.

Qualifications and courses recommended to go with this advanced training are quite thorough.

You will need a VHF SRC marine radio licence, a current marine related first aid certificate, knowledge of RADAR and navigational theory to the level of the Coastal Skipper / RYA Yachtmaster shorebased certificate.