Staff across the seven RYA Regions and three Home Countries are working together to host a free Virtual Instructor Training Day on 13 March, with the aim of ensuring that Instructors are fully up-to-speed and prepared for a new season as soon as restrictions allow.

The packed agenda includes eight inspirational workshops from exciting national presenters, addressing a variety of disciplines and current hot topics, as well as crucial updates from RDOs and RYA Training.

The virtual format presents distinct benefits for Instructors, as one of the organisers, RDO Rob Howlett explains: “Normally travelling around the region to attend the ITD can be a pain, especially for those instructors in the far reaches of their region. This year, attendance will be easy, open to all small craft instructors, including assistant instructors, and there will be the added advantage that all the content will be recorded so that you can catch up, view workshops you didn’t attend live and repeat sessions you found particularly valuable.”

The workshop line-up includes:

  • Dave Mellor, RYA Coaching Development Manager, who will take a deep dive into Growth Mindset and how it should influence the way you teach, coach or instruct.
  • Graham Stones, RYA Coach, Trainer and Examiner who works for Raymarine UK, who will look at some of the ways that modern marine electronics can be used to help you not only to navigate, but also to keep you safe and raise the alarm when afloat.
  • Tris Best, RYA Trainer and co-founder of The Official Test Centre (OTC), who will look at foiling on both windsurf and dinghy, focusing on how changes to tech and the introduction to the training scheme has made it more accessible. 
  • Calum McNicol, accomplished Powerboat Trainer, sailor, kayaker and ocean rower, who believes that everyone has the potential to reach great heights and blends his sporting background with his recent academic research into coaching and coach education. He will explore the techniques instructors can use to maximise and optimise learning opportunities for students.
  • Kate Fortnam, Campaign Manager for The Green Blue, who will share her passion for the natural environment and discuss new and updated instructor resources, designed to help you build upon your sustainable boating knowledge and pass on environmental best practice to students during RYA Courses.
  • Hannah Cockle, OnBoard Operations Officer, who will be exploring some of the RYA resources and support you can access, and how you can use them to run better, engaging practical sessions for everyone and keep people in the sport. 
  • Chris Cousins, RYA Coach & Trainer and Dominic Coleman, RYA YachtmasterTM Instructor and commercial skipper, who will explore the use of technology to enhance session delivery, and discuss some of the resources and platforms that are available to support modern and engaging delivery of RYA training sessions, whether remotely or in the classroom.

Additionally, there will be a trade area online where you will be able to meet and question RYA staff and partners.

The RDO team are planning regional on-water CPD opportunities to follow the online event; these will be available across each region once restrictions allow.

Booking is straightforward; all you need to do is register on the RYA website. You will be sent login details, and you can wait until the event has begun to select which workshops you wish to attend.