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Nautical Skills Staged Activity Badge

Nautical Skills – stage 1

How to earn your badge

  1. Take part in a water activity taster session. You could try:
    • paddle sports
    • rafting
    • sailing
    • windsurfing
    • pulling.
  2. Correctly identify the different equipment used for the activity you chose.
  3. Gain an understanding of the safety equipment used.

 

Nautical Skills – stage 2

How to earn your badge

  1. Take part in a water activity taster session for at least one hour. By
    the end of the session you should be comfortable in your craft. You could try:
    • paddle sports
    • rafting
    • sailing
    • windsurfing
    • pulling.
  2. Show that you understand what to do in the event of a capsize or man overboard situation in your chosen activity.
  3. Demonstrate that you can tie either a figure of eight or a reef knot. Describe how you use them in water activities.
  4. Name the basic equipment you used during your chosen activity.
  5. List some clothing that is not suitable for your chosen activity, and explain the reasons why.
  6. Show that you know the safety equipment you used and why it’s needed.

 

Nautical Skills – stage 3

How to earn your badge

  1. Take part in at least two one-hour taster sessions in two different water based activities. By the end of the session you should be competent at
    controlling your craft. You could try:
    • canoeing
    • a powered activity like yachting
    • pulling
    • sailing
    • windsurfing.
  2. Show that you know how to act safely in your chosen activity if you are involved in a capsize or man overboard situation.
  3. Show how to check water depth using a method appropriate to your activity so that you don’t ground or beach. Try a method normally used in your activity
  4. Show how to tie a clove hitch, a bowline knot, and a round turn and two half-hitches. Explain when these would be used.
  5. Name the parts of one type of watercraft.
  6. Demonstrate and explain what clothing is suitable for the activities used in your chosen activity.
  7. Explain the basic safety rules that apply to your chosen activity.
  8. Explain the difference between a buoyancy aid and a life jacket, when each should be used and how they function. Show how they are worn.


Nautical Skills – stage 4

How to earn your badge

  1. Develop your skills in two water based activities. Show competency  and technique in:
    • launch and recovering a watercraft
    • manoeuvring a watercraft
    • communicating with the group
    • knowledge of safety.
  2. Take part in a capsize and recovery drill for the two watercraft you have chosen.
  3. Use a throw bag or line to reach a person six metres away in the water.
  4. Show you know how to apply the steering rules to your chosen watercraft and recognise the main channel
    markers.
  5. Use a knot (either a round turn and two half hitches or a bowline) or a cleat correctly to moor a boat with a painter or mooring line. Describe what you need to be aware of when using these to moor.
  6. Complete one of the following:
    • Pipe the ‘still’ and ‘carry on’ on a Bosun’s call.
    • Make a sail maker’s whipping and one other type of whipping and safely heat-seal the end of a rope. Describe the correct use of these whippings.
    • Make an eye splice or a back splice and safely heat-seal the end  of a rope. Describe the correct use of these splices.
  7. Name the parts of your chosen watercraft. If you have completed Nautical Skills Stage 3 you must choose a different watercraft.
  8. Take part in a challenging three-hour expedition or exercise afloat.
  9. Take part in a competition or crew-based activity in your chosen watercraft.


 

Nautical Skills – stage 5

How to earn your badge

  1. Develop your skills in one water based activity to a level where you can operate the watercraft safely. You could demonstrate this by gaining a personal permit or the relevant national governing body personal competency award.
  2. Show how you would use your watercraft to recover others from the water by taking part in a simple rescue exercise.
  3. Demonstrate knowledge of pilotage, navigation lights, sound signals, tides, currents and eddies, depending on what’s relevant to your local waterways.
  4. Demonstrate that you can tie a figure-of-eight knot, clove hitch, and a round turn and two half-hitches.  Tie an additional three knots: sheet bend, rolling hitch and bowline, then describe their uses.
  5. Explain the different types of ropes used in water activities, their advantages and disadvantages and how to care for them.
  6. Complete one of these:
    • Make a rope fender or other piece of decorative rope work, such as a lanyard or a decorative knot.
    • Demonstrate three calls made on a Bosun’s pipe, other than ‘still’ and ‘carry on’.
    • Hoist the colours for a Sea Scout ceremonial or nautical themed ceremony.
  7. Plan and take part in a one-day expedition or exercise afloat with others.
  8. Learn how different boats communicate with each other in your location.
  9. Take on the helm or cox role in a watercraft or help prepare a team for a competition.
  10. Learn how to get local weather forecasts, understand their importance and be able to recognise signs of changing weather.
  11. Learn how to safeguard against the effects of cold, and how to recognise and treat hypothermia.


 

Nautical Skills – stage 6

How to earn your badge

  1. Develop your skills in one water based activity to a level where you
    can operate the watercraft safely. You could demonstrate this by gaining a personal permit. If you have completed Nautical Skills Stage 5, you should try a different water based activity.
  2. Learn about flares, distress signals and marine VHF radio, and when it is appropriate  to use them.
  3. Learn about and explain the access and mooring issues in your chosen
    activity.
  4. Learn about and explain the ‘nautical rules of the road’ including passing other watercraft, the International Rules for Preventing
    Collisions at Sea (IRPCS), light signals, sound signals and the use of
    channels.
  5. Show an understanding of the maintenance your watercraft needs and show you can carry out simple repairs over the course of three months.
  6. Plan and take part in an overnight expedition by water with others. Your time underway should be at least six hours.

 

Each young person who participates in the Programme, including badges and awards, should face a similar degree of challenge, and requirements can be adapted according to each young person’s abilities.  For more information and practical tips see our guidance on flexibility.


 

 

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