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The Next Generation

Discussion in 'Basic Scuba Discussions' started by DCBC, Feb 25, 2010.

  1. DCBC

    DCBC Tech Instructor

    When it comes to diving equipment and diving education, the values of older (age) divers are often discarded out-of-hand, although they may not be fully understood by a younger generation. Youth has little time for what has come before and progress by making the way "better" based upon their unique view of reality.

    At other times the differences lie in the length of time people have been diving (experience) or how they have seen recreational diving change over the years. How are age differences and experience levels beneficial in discussions on SB, or are they harmful? Can the wisdom of the past be embraced or should it be? What's your opinion?
  2. jmasin

    jmasin Barracuda

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Murphy, TX (DFW area)
    I fixed it for ya :) Honestly, your statement can hold for anything. Youth always knows better... The older I get the less I know about things :)

    I'm new to SB... so all I can say is the wisdom of the past SHOULD be embraced and there is much to learn from it.

    Is it... I dunno, I'm new.

    My first coach told me something that has stuck with for the last 25 years... "Always remember that you can learn something from anyone."

    That of course implies that you can learn what to do, what not to do, or somewhere in between, but pay attention, listen, observe and learn. And that includes from one's self... I see so many people cruise through life not learning from their own experiences (a pet peeve).
  3. Mattleycrue76

    Mattleycrue76 Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Marysville,WA
    I think it goes both ways. Certainly the previous generation has alot of valuable insights and experience to share. OTOH times do change and with them so do some of the standards and protocols. Just because someone did something a certain way for 30 years and didn't die it doesn't necessarily make it better than newer methods that have been developed based on precisely this basis of knowledge and it's possible pitfalls.

    I wouldn't want a SCUBA instructor who has 75 dives and just learned to dive last year.

    At the same time I wouldn't want an "old salt" instructor who thought I should be doing 200ft dives on air just because he used to do it all the time.

    Just my 0.02 psi
  4. JeffG

    JeffG Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Edmonton, Alberta
    When it comes to diving equipment and diving education, the values of newer divers are often discarded out-of-hand by the older generation. Some of the older generation are unable to understand that new information has presented itself and that diving has evolved past them. This phenomenon is call the "Law of Primacy"

  5. roturner

    roturner ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Rotterdam, Netherlands, Netherlands
    Crap. I promised DCBC I'd be the first to respond.

    I believe the "wisdom" of the past has a lot of value but the context has changed so much that the value can be skewed or lost.

    Take training.

    an "old time" instructor, who was pretty sure that an OOA buddy wouldn't have an octopus would advise us that *everyone* should learn buddy breathing.

    An instructor from the present generation would counter that the octopus is ubiquitous and that divers from this generation should be trained that if someone takes your primary that you should *not* initiate buddy breathing but you should take your own octopus.

    Who is right?

    On the other hand I'll take something from my own experience..... I've had to rescue a "drowned" diver because of mistakes made by his instructor.... The "younger" instructors (younger than me) probably haven't had this experience... so I can imagine that for the older generation *I* am the younger instructor who hasn't seen it all yet.....

    In this sense, in the sense of *knowing* what can happen, I can imagine the older generation having the inside track. I can imagine them being acutely aware of things taht I only see as theoretical possibilities.

  6. TSandM

    TSandM Missed and loved by many.

    # of Dives:
    Location: Woodinville, WA
    I think there is a lot to be learned from listening to people who were there back when. I know I have learned from listening to you, and to Thal, and from reading contributions from other people with a long history in the sport.

    But the equipment has changed, and the diving universe has changed, since the 1950s. Heck, it's changed since Peter got certified in the late 60's. What made sense then, or what was necessary to do then, may not make sense or be necessary now.

    Someone who has the history and the perspective but who has adapted is valuable. Someone who is determined to stay in the "good old days" is not.
  7. Garrobo

    Garrobo Great White

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Ohio
    It has been my experience of 70 years that the older a person gets the more apt he is to keep his mouth shut, thus the idea that older people are dumber than the younger ones by not giving an opinion. It's sorta like: "OK. Go ahead and let's see if the dumba$$ lives through it."
  8. Herk_Man

    Herk_Man Solo Diver

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: Landlocked
    As a young cadet, I was poo pooed by the "older wiser" officers when I tried to tell them that the aircraft I was spin testing was going into flat spins. "You're just inexperienced. You wouldn't know a flat spin if it smacked you in the face."

    Luckily for them, I told them how I managed to get the aircraft out of the flat spin while preparing to bail out of the aircraft (I was wearing a parachute.) They were so in denial about the flat spin that they let the aircraft descend through the minimum bailout altitude before employing the procedure I invented on the fly (no pun intended) to get the aircraft to recover.

    Likewise my young son has amazed me many times with his ingenuity in various video games that I thought I was pretty proficient at.

    There is a lot of great knowledge to be gained by listening to the lore of the geezers (a demographic I am quickly becoming part of), no doubt. But the ingenuity and fresh point of view of youth should not always be ignored either. It might save your life!
  9. Tigerman

    Tigerman Solo Diver

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location: Norway
    First off "older" dont mean "more experienced" or "better" by itself.
    You can have a dive cert for 25 years and have 50 dives to show, while others might have had theirs for 2 years and 200 dives and on top of that 200 dives doesnt mean "more experienced" than 50 dives either. You learn more from 50 varied dives, maybe with a few incidents mixed in than 200 perfect dives at the same site thats got no real dangers.

    The ACTUALLY more experienced divers however is of course worth listening to, but we should also keep in mind that the "modern reality" of diving isnt the same as it was 40 years ago, with regards to gear and redundancy. How to tackle an uncontrolled ascent, a strong current or other things may not change a lot, but what kind of safety equipment we have might have, for example with regards to backup regulators, BCDs and things like that.
  10. parkerco

    parkerco ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Parker, CO
    I think that depends solely on how it's presented and whether bringing it up adds contextually to a point being made. I've never noticed that age or experience are always synomymous with maturity, courtesy, respectfulness or professionalism, which is usually what you'd hope for in a discussion.

    I don't see how you progress unless you embrace the wisdom of the past -- some people, however, seem to have issues letting it go and embracing what that wisdom leads to, or getting over the fact that younger and less experienced people might have something valuable to add as well.

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