The RYA qualifications for fixed keel boats (i.e. yachts) ranges from the two day introductory course known as RYA Start Yachting all the way through to Yachtmaster Ocean.
In addition to these qualifications there are two teaching qualifications. The first is RYA Cruising Instructor and the second is RYA Yachtmaster Instructor. In addition to these there are a variety of shorebased instructor qualifications covering various topics including shorebased navigation, radar, diesel engine maintenance, sea survival and first aid at sea.
To qualify as an RYA Cruising Instructor one must first have qualified as an RYA Yachtmaster Offshore and be commercially endorsed. This qualification has to be renewed every five years and cruising instructors are usually encouraged to apply to become a Yachtmaster Instructor on renewal. This requires that you regularly take a medical examination. In addition, you must pass a PSSR test every 5 years and have a sea survival certificate and a valid RYA First Aid at Sea certificate.
A Cruising Instructor may teach and appraise students taking the practical RYA Start Yachting, RYA Competent Crew and RYA Day Skipper courses. If they have alternate shorebased qualifications, they may also teach shorebased courses including RYA Yachtmaster Theory.