RS Sailing Academy

Level 1/2/3 - Sailing Courses (scroll down for course curriculum/dates)


Sailing tuition is offered to both adults and youth.

Adult tuition is generally offered on an individual basis however provision can be made in event a couple wish to learn to sail together.

Youth tuition is offered on an individual or small group basis.

To ensure quality tuition, safety and value for money youth groups are limited to a maximum of three students per instructor.

Age Group / Entry Requirement

Sailing has no age limit however a minimum body weight of 28kg is advised and all students must be able to swim unaided for a distance of at least 50 meters.

Course Duration

All courses consist of three modules completed in 3 x 3 hour sessions.

The Boats

Each student will have exclusive use and be responsible for their own boat throughout the course.

Youth students will be taught on the RS Tera sailing dinghy. The RS Tera has been chosen as it is one of the best and safest boats on the market suitable for training sailors of all abilities.

Adults are taught on the RS Quba that is a large version of the RS Tera and is able to be sailed single handed or two up.

Tuition is also offered on a RS CAT16. As sailing a catamaran is quite different to sailing a regular dinghy it is recommended that students first learn the basics of sailing on a dinghy before sailing the RS CAT.

The Instructor

The sailing courses are presented by Sydney Pettitt.

Sydney is a competent young sailor who has sailed for and represented South Africa in the 2010 RS Tera world championship and Great Britain in the 2011, 2012 and 2013 world championships.

Sydney has completed rigorous RYA sailor training and has the relevant RYA certification including first aid. She also has a powerboat level 2 coastal water license so is capable on both sailing and powerboats.

Safety / Child Protection

A strict safety and child protection policy is practiced at all times and all courses are held under adult supervision.

In addition to the course instructor a safety officer with adequate emergency equipment will be on the water during sailing activity at all times.

All students are required to wear a suitable life jacket / buoyancy aid when on the water. Use of buoyancy aids / life jackets are provided free of charge to students who do not have their own.

RS Sailing is an equal opportunity organisation. Racism, violence and abusive behavior toward fellow students or instructors is not tolerated.


Course Outline / Curriculum

Level 1 Course

This course is for persons who have not had experience sailing and controlling a sailing dinghy by themselves. If you want to learn how to sail and skipper your own sailing dinghy this course should be your starting point.

Primary areas this course focuses on are:-

  • Safety (on and off the water)
  • Boat terminology
  • Boat rigging
  • Basic principals of sailing
  • Boat launching / landing
  • Boat handling
  • Boat control
  • Capsize and retrieval
  • Sailing a simple course

At the end of this course each student should be capable of rigging, launching and sailing their boat around a simple sausage course in wind speeds of up to to 15knots.

Level 2 Course

This course is for persons who already have experience sailing and controlling a sailing dinghy by themselves.

Primary areas this course focuses on are:-

  • Safety (on and off the water)
  • Advanced boat rigging
  • Advanced principals of sailing
  • Boat control in adverse weather
  • Sailing a trapezoid course

At the end of this course each student should be capable of rigging, launching and sailing their boat around a trapezoid course and safely controlling their boat in wind speeds of up to to 22 knots.

Level 3 Course

This course is for persons who already have experience sailing and controlling a sailing dinghy by themselves in all weather conditions and who may like to participate in competition sailing events.

Primary areas this course focuses on are:-

  • Safety (assisting others in an emergency)
  • Advanced boat rigging / tweaks
  • Tactical sailing
  • Sailing backwards
  • Sailing rudderless
  • Racing rules of sailing
  • Sailing a complicated course

At the end of this course each student should be capable of rigging, launching and sailing their boat around a complicated course and safely controlling their boat in wind speeds of up to to 28 knots.


Certificate Awards

Each student completing a course will be awarded a RS Sailing Academy certificate for the level they have successfully completed.

It is the RS Sailing Academy policy that there are no winners and no losers in junior sailing. Every sailor is a winner and nobody is left out.


Course Dates / Times / Venue

All courses will conducted from 8 Paradise Point, Port Vila and all sailing will be in Port Vila harbour in the area between Ifira Point, Iriki Island and the Port Vila boatyard.

Courses will start promptly at the advertised times. To allow adequate time for students to change into clothing for sailing and be fitted with life jackets please arrive at least 10 minutes before start time.

As youth course groups are limited to just three students it is necessary to first fill one group before starting with another. Course group / time preference will be accommodated wherever possible.


Course Cost

The cost of the Introduction to Sailing Level 1 youth course is VU7,500 and includes tuition (3 x 3 hour sessions), exclusive use of a boat, life jackets, fuel, all course materials and refreshments. There are no hidden extra charges or surprises.

The cost of the Introduction to Sailing Level 2 youth course is VT8,000 and includes tuition (3 x 3 hour sessions), exclusive use of a boat, life jackets, fuel, all course materials and refreshments. There are no hidden extra charges or surprises.

The cost of the Introduction to Sailing Level 3 youth course is VT9,000 and includes tuition (3 x 3 hour sessions), exclusive use of a boat, life jackets, fuel, all course materials and refreshments. There are no hidden extra charges or surprises.

Adult and Individual / Private Lessons cost VU5,000 per session inclusive of tuition, exclusive use of a boat, life jackets, fuel, all course materials and refreshments. In event a couple or parent / child wish to learn to sail together the cost is VU3,500 per person per session. Each session is up to 3 hours duration.

The RS Sailing Academy is a non-profit organisation. Funds raised from the courses are used to cover boat maintenance, instructor remuneration, safety boat fuel and contribute to the cost of training disadvantaged sailors who would otherwise not be able to experience this fantastic sport.


Course Bookings / More Information

To book a place on this course please telephone Paul on 22909 or 7767360/3.

You may also send an email to academy@sailing.vu to request a callback or more information.