Safe Powerboat Handling Instructor

An intensive 3-day course for advanced powerboat operators who will operate boats 26 feet and under, instructor candidates will learn the fundamentals of on-the-water instruction. Candidates must successfully demonstrate superior presentation, teaching, and powerboat operation skills in order to complete this course. Upon graduation, instructors will be eligible to teach Safe Powerboat Handling courses.

This is a rigorous course.  Safe Powerboat Handling student course completion is a prerequisite to the Instructor course

On-the-Water Skills and Classroom Topics

  • Fundamentals of teaching; teaching theory
  • Classroom, dockside, and on-the-water teaching techniques
  • Powerboat handling skill assessment and error correction
  • NASBLA Standards
  • Risk management and legal requirements
  • Lesson planning
  • Powerboats and propulsion types
  • Systems: engine, fuel, electrical, and troubleshooting
  • Powerboat handling principles
  • Boat control: speed, docking, precision maneuvering
  • Collision prevention; COLREGS review
  • Handling emergencies
  • Overboard rescues
  • Safety and rescue procedures
  • Search and rescue boat operations
  • Concepts of bearings and ranges, position and course plotting
  • Using GPS and hand-bearing compass
  • How to conduct Safe Powerboat Handling Courses


  • Successful completion of the US Powerboating Safe Powerboat Handling course.
  • Must be at least 18 years old or turn 18 within the calendar year of the course you are taking.
  • Current First Aid and CPR certification. US Powerboating accepts courses from the U.S. Coast Guard approved list.
  • Ability to swim 50 yards both with and without life jacket.
  • Ability to exhibit appropriate personal and interpersonal skills.
  • ***NEW*** SAFESPORT: Beginning on 1/1/2018. This program, developed by the US Olympic Committee, is required training for all Instructors. This requirement is also being put in place for other National Governing Bodies. This free online training course must be completed every 2 years. Instructor certification is not active unless SafeSport training has been completed.
    1. Go to:
    2. Enter your US Sailing member number, if you need to find it click here:
    3. Complete all the modules
  • Current US Sailing Adult Individual Membership
  • Powerboat Instructor Course: $350
  • Early registration discount: 4 weeks prior to the course: $25
  • Late fee for registration 1 week prior to a course $50
  • US Sailing/US Powerboating Adult Individual Membership ($65 1 yr)

Cancellation Policy

  • Course fees are nonrefundable.
  • For cancellations more than 4 weeks before the course date, the fee is transferable to another course.
  • For cancellations within the 4 week period, ½ of the course fee will be transferable to another course.
  • For no-shows, 100% of the course fee is forfeited.
  • If US Powerboating or the host venue cancels the course, 100% of the course fee will be refunded or transferred to another course.

Course Calendar

To enroll in a Powerboat Instructor Course, please select "Enroll Now" under the desired offering. All courses are first come, first served.

If you have questions or concerns regarding a particular course, please do not hesitate to contact us: (401) 342.7900 or