For more details about ISSA Inshore Skipper Certificate go to For more details about ISSA Inshore Skipper Certificate go to

Experience required prior training: At least 1 sailing cruise
Certification required prior training: None
Minimum age required: 16 years old
Suggested number of training hours: 50 hours
Who can run the training: ISSA Instructor
Who can do the examination: ISSA Instructor
How to submit the application: To authorized ISSA school only

Scope of required knowledge and skills

Yacht’s construction

1. Knows the basic parts of yacht and what are they designed for:
a. Cockpit
b. Bildge
c. Heads
d. Galley
e. Bow
f. Stern, aft etc.
g. Boom
h. Mast
i. Rigging
j. Haulyards

2. Can operate elementary yacht’s systems:
a. Toilet
b. Gass oven
c. Sink
d. Shower

3. Can fill up the water and diesel tanks

4. Can operate the inboard engine
a. Start it
b. Switch it off
c. Check whether cooling system works
d. Inspection before starting
e. Top up engine oil
f. Check cooling fluid level
g. Top up cooling fuel level
h. Control the tension of V-belt on engine
i. Find bottom valves
j. Recognize the breakdown of impeller in cooling system and possibly replace it
k. Check whether alternator is charging batteries when engine is working.

5. Knows elementary yacht equipment
a. Boom
b. Mast (with various methods of sail reefing)
c. Rigging
d. Haulyards
e. Echosounder (location, operation, typical errors);
f. Log
g. Steering system
h. Keel

Can name the points of sail in relation to wind

Operating sail sheets and haulyards

1. Can:
a. Manage crew to set and bring down the sails
b. Manage the crew to reef down and shake off the reefs
c. Adjust sails depending on the point of sails
d. Make a tack
e. Make a gybe

Line and spring handling

1. Can combine two lines of the same and different diameter
2. Can make:
a. Bowline
b. Fast a line on a cleat
c. Fishermen’s bend
d. Coil mooring lines
3. Can:
a. Pass, take, make fast on cleat, let go mooring lines
b. Throw mooring lines
c. Describe different ways of taking a mooring

Handling fenders

1. Can:
a. Fix them by applying adequate knots
b. effectively operate the manouvering fender

Operating the anchor

1. Can:
a. Prepare anchor for weighing (switches and controls)
b. Operate the windlass (control the letting out and pulling in the chain)
c. Select safe location for staying at anchor
d. Apply rules for safe anchoring (4xdepth, anchor alarm/watch)
e. Distinguish different types of anchors and their characteristics

Handling the dinghy

1. Can:
a. Take the dinghy off the deck and pull it in onto the deck
b. Secure the dinghy to the yacht
c. Paddle
d. Secure the dinghy to the yacht deck
e. Install the outboard engine on the yacht (for storage) and on the dinghy (for work)
f. Connect the fuel system to the outboard engine
g. Start and switch off the outboard engine


1. Can perform the safety briefing under the deck:
a. Gas system
b. Toilet operation
c. Fire fighting equipment
d. Water supply system
e. Electric system
2. Can perform the safety briefing on deck:
a. How to move on deck
b. How to apply personnal safety equipment (harness, jackstay, etc.)
c. Apply distress singalling equipment (pirotechnics, flags, etc.)
d. Liferaft
e. Different methods to send distress signal
f. Make a distress call with help of VHF
g. Knows procedures to be applied in restricted visibility
h. Basic knowledge about SAR procedures (RIB, helicopter)
i. First Aid Kit (location and content)

Handling yacht under Power

1. Can:
a. Manouver a yacht under power
b. Approach a MOB
c. Take a berth/leave a berth (longside, stern-to, bow-to)
d. Weigh anchor

Yacht handling under sails

1. Can:
a. Heave-to
b. Approach MOB – as emergency manouver
c. Approach a bouy/ weigh anchor – as emergency manouver

International Rules for Preventing Collisions at Sea

1. Knows the navigation shapes and lights:
a. Vessel not under command
b. Vessel restricted in ability to manouver
c. Vessel engaged in fishing
d. Vessel aground
e. Pilot vessel
f. Towing set
g. Sailing yacht
h. Power driven vessel
2. Knows the vessels’ priority at sea
3. Knows how to proceed in a „close encounter” situation
4. Is familiar and complies with the requiremet for continues observation
5. Is familiar with other legal obligations of a skipper and crew
6. Is familiar with and understands after-collission rules applicable at sea

Navigational Aids

1. Knows, understands and is able to recognize latteral and smaller channel marks at day time in system IALA A and B
2. Knows, understands and is able to recognize cardinal marks and other navigational marks (safe water mark, isolated danger mark) at day time
3. Is able to use the list of marks and symbols used on charts (eg. Chart 5011)
4. Is able to apply navigational publications when planning a port’s entry (pilot books, almanachs, navigational plans)
5. Knows and can recognize light characteristics of Lighthouses/navigational marks

Terrestrial navigation

1. Knows and understands the basic terms from geography:
a. Latitude
b. Longitude
c. Magnetic pole
d. Gegraphic pole
e. Earth’s magnetic field
2. Knows the basic types of sea charts, their construction and application:
a. Mercator’s projection chart (how is it constructed, spreading of parallels, construction parallel)
b. Passage charts, coastal charts, plans
3. Can read elementary information from a chart that is crutial for safe sailing:
a. Depths
b. Distance
c. Navigational obstacles
d. Navigational marks
4. Can read charts/ plot latitude and longitude
5. Knows and understands the phenomenon of Earth’s magnetism, variation and deviation
6. Can use a compass
7. Can calculate, set, read and plot courses on a chart with respect of variation, deviation and leeway
8. Can plot yacht’s position using bearing lines
9. Can plot yacht’s position using the maintained course, distance ran and estimated leeway
10. Can make use of various bearing lines
11. Has general information about tides and tide-related dangers

Eletronic-based navigation

1. Knows how the GPS system works.
2. Can enable and check the elementary settings of GPS and plotter.
3. Can set and read adequate course on GPS.
4. Can plot a position on a chart taken from a GPS.
5. Knows what is AIS, ARPA, VTS.


1. Knows the Beaufort scale and its meaning for small craft.
2. Knows sources of meteo information and how to use them.
3. Has the basic knowledge about high, low pressure areas, fronts.
4. Can recognize cumulonimbus clouds.
5. Understands meteo messages (including those broadcast by radio coastal stations).
6. Can take meteo factors into consideration when planning a passage in a coastal zone.
7. Has the habit not to leave harbour without valid weather forecast.


1. Environmental friendly approach and respect to other yachtsmen.
2. Knows and applies basic pro-environmental rules.
3. Knows and applies social friendly approach at sea and in harbour.