The Royal Brighton Yacht Club (RBYC) Youth Sailing Program(YSP) is for teenagers at any skill level between the ages of 12 and 18. The Program is about:

  • Having fun while learning how to sail in an inclusive Club environment
  • Training and completing Australian Sailing Dinghy Certifications
  • Racing and preparing to compete in the Stonehaven Cup
  • Developing life-long friendships and learning team skills

Participants are trained in the five progressive courses within the Australian Sailing (previously Yachting Australia) Dinghy Program under guidance of qualified sailing instructors to certificate level in:

  • Start Sailing 1
  • Start Sailing 2
  • Better Sailing
  • Start Racing
  • Better Racing

The YSP training is conducted on Sundays and accommodates students studying VCE. Sailing begins in August and includes the first Certificate training intake for 2016-2017 season. Teenagers can join at any time without prior experience.

One membership fee includes training, 120 program hours (including certificate training, weather dependent) and boats are provided. Enrolments are open now, see contact details on the tab “Fees and Joining”.

The RBYC Youth Sailing Program sails in the 12 Foot Cadet Dinghy. The boats are provided by RBYC and each boat has a crew of three, usually with the most experienced sailor at the helm.

To learn more about the history of 12 Foot Cadets click here.

Cadet Intro


The program runs on Sunday mornings, from at 8:30am from early August through to the end of May. The session typically finishes around 2.00pm, depending upon weather and race times. The program also sails on some afternoons to practice in the summer sea breeze, and this is detailed in the calendar which may be downloaded here.

The day starts with rigging the boats, followed by the pre-race briefing when weather observations and predictions are discussed. Personal preparations (dressing appropriately for the conditions) are followed by rig and safety checks, and then the boats hit the water.  After racing, the boats are de-rigged, washed and stowed, and a post-race briefing is conducted where on-water learnings and observations of boat handling, tactics and race rules are discussed. These discussions can be lively, especially those relating to race rules and sailing protocols. Yacht racing is self administered (there are usually no umpires), so fair and sportsmanlike conduct is an essential component of the lessons learned on the water.

If the weather forces crews off the water, the instructors take the opportunity to teach sailing theory, sail trim, race strategy and tactics, yacht racing rules and practical skills such as knot tying.


Safety is a primary consideration in the program. RBYC has a fleet of safety boats crewed by volunteers. Program members are taught how to right a capsized dinghy, manage heavy weather and sail in close proximity to other boats.


All crews are required to have the right gear. A PFD2 (Personal Floatation Device Class 2) buoyancy vest must be worn at all times on the water. Please contact one of the instructors for advice regarding where to purchase a PFD2 vest.

Inevitably, sailors get wet and clothing should be selected with this in mind. Children should wear clothing that remains warm when wet including a “beanie” for head warmth. A full wetsuit is required; some sailors wear cut-off wetsuits in the summer months with “Sun Safe” long sleeve tops.  Enclosed footwear must be worn at all times for safety.  Examples include wetsuit boots or sand-shoes. Thongs, sandals or bare feet are not acceptable. A hat and sunscreen are also required. After sailing, children will require a change of clothes and a towel. Showers are available.

For YSP events, a navy blue or school blazer, white shirt, bone trousers/skirt, and an RBYC tie are required. Events on the YSP calendar include the Annual Presentation Night, and other formal occasions, including representing the State in the Stonehaven Cup.

Cadets Equip

Fleet Maintenance

The entire fleet is subject to maintenance at the completion of the sailing season, during May. Attendance is compulsory. Major refits are undertaken and damaged fittings are replaced or repaired; wood-work is sanded and varnished (three coats!), hulls are polished; and masts and other spars are scoured and waxed. This trains our sailors in the upkeep and helps them learn about boat parts and their workings. It also builds on the teamwork and friendships developed during the racing season.

Cadet Maint

Parent Participation

The program relies on parent participation. No experience is required! We will teach you the required skills.

Parents who have a boat licence and can assist with crewing a safety boat are especially encouraged to participate.

RBYC also runs a comprehensive volunteer training program and is a great way to learn new skills and see your sailors enjoy themselves out on the water.  For more information, email [email protected].

Parent Cadet

Fees and Joining

To join or find our more about the Youth Sailing Program, please contact the following YSP Committee members:

or just turn up on a Sunday morning and speak with one of the experienced trainers who will answer your questions.

Each child must become an RBYC Junior Member (click here for membership details) and a Yachting Australia member which is invoiced separately by the Club. Fees for Sailing Season 2015-2016 are listed below:

Item Season 2016/17
Sailing Fee (YSP) $430
RBYC Membership * $168
Discover Sailing (new/returning) $43.50 / 14.50
Total $641.50 / 612.50

* Includes Australian Sailing Affiliation & Personal Accident Insurance


Fees cadet