PADI Diving Courses
Learning to Scuba Dive FAQ
We’ve all got to start somewhere,…
….so what do you need to know when selecting PADI diving courses?
Having clicked on a link and arrived on this page, you probably expected to see a list of diving courses, along with prices and timescales. Instead, I present you with an article and advice on learning to dive and selecting a dive educator, along with my personal philosophies on effective scuba diving training.
Please take a little time to read over these points – if you find yourself interested in learning more, then please contact me to discuss your unique training needs. I only advocate personalized, quality focused, diving tuition – so you won’t find any ‘off-the-shelf’ course lists here…
Strong Foundations = A Safe and Happy Diver
Entry-level scuba diving courses are the critical foundation upon which a diver’s safety and future progression is built. Seeking the best possible instruction when you learn to dive provides a return-on-investment that pays dividends long into the future. It ensures that you enjoy scuba diving as a confident and competent diver. Having a strong base-level of skill and knowledge ensures that you are self-sufficient, safe and can easily progress into more advanced or skill-specific diving activities, such as; underwater photography, wreck diving, deep diving or technical diving… as you gain more experience.
All PADI Diving Courses Are Not Alike
Many novice divers do not look beyond the plastic certification card that they receive upon qualification. They compare the costs of diving courses based upon the notion that every course is identical – because they all result in the same certification at the end.
I encourage divers to look beyond the plastic certification card… and consider that what matters about training are the quality of skills and knowledge that you receive from a specific diving course. It is important to understand that seemingly ‘identical’ diving courses can vary dramatically in the quality of instruction and development they provide.
PADI scuba diving courses all follow the same minimum standards. These standards typically provide the minimum possible training, needed to get an ‘average’ person to the minimum required level to be able to scuba dive. Some scuba diving centers make it a policy to provide nothing more than these minimum standards – sacrificing quality education in order to ‘fit’ the student to the course, within a pre-set time and dive limit… and not vice-versa.
With 20+ years of experience in the diving community, I resolved to concentrate on the maximum training and development that can be attained. This is achieved by shaping the training to ‘fit’ the student, by not imposing a minimum structure and by focusing on the end result – the development of a confident, competent and safe scuba diver.
When it comes to the provision of training and the development of performance and knowledge, one size simply does not fit all. Forcing a student through a pre-scripted, minimum duration and inflexible diving course will not enable them to reach their potential. On occasion, it does not even enable them to reach a level of basic competence, but this does not stop them being ‘certified’ as divers.
Diving Courses – You Get Out, What You Put In
Scuba diving can be an amazingly rewarding pastime – talk to any experienced diver and you will swiftly understand the passion and wonder that exploring underwater creates. However, your enjoyment of scuba diving is tangibly linked to your comfort and competence as a diver. Quite simply, well trained and educated divers get much more out of scuba diving.
Opting for cut-price economy diving courses, conducted in the shortest possible time-scales and to the minimum standards is a false economy. It is well worth spending a little time, and effort, investigating your options and considering the long-term benefits when you are shopping around for diving courses.
PADI Diving Courses - Basic, Advanced and becoming a ‘complete’ diver
There are three core ‘levels’ of recreational diving training – Open Water, Advanced Open Water and Rescue Diver.
In parallel with those core levels, there are a variety of specialist activity and interest-related diving courses. Beyond all of these levels is ‘technical diving’ – the use of exotic gas mixtures to conduct longer, deeper dives involving decompression and/or exploration into more dangerous ‘overhead environments’ such as shipwreck and cave exploration.
My philosophy is that the Open Water, Advanced Open Water and Rescue Diver courses form a core, modular, training syllabus. They should be viewed as a fluid, natural progression towards developing comprehensive ability and safety in the water. Any diver serious about being safe, competent and skillful in the water should view these 3 courses as a single entity – a step-by-step approach towards being a ‘complete diver’.
Please CONTACT ME for further details about scuba training!