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TSandM
April 12th, 2012, 12:36 PM
Our little group of GUE divers has a standing set of dives on Wednesday night. A bunch of us get together, and anybody who wants to join us is invited to do so. We get a fair number of newer divers, who enjoy the opportunity to go out with some experienced and solid folks. One of our recent companions is a young man who moved to Seattle rather recently. He is, as we all understand and empathize with, dive-mad, and has been getting out about every other day to dive somewhere, with someone.

He went to dinner with us last night. And he told me, over dinner, that before he moved to Seattle, he'd had a very negative impression of DIR divers -- which he said he had largely gotten off SCUBABOARD. He also said that, of all the people he's dived with since he's moved up here, our group is the nicest one . . . and the MOST FUN to dive with.

I thought it was incredibly sad that he had gotten such a bad impression of DIR people from this board. And I wanted to offer his impression, now that he's MET us, so that other newer divers who have gotten the same impression might know that at least one person has concluded he was wrong.

Scott L
April 12th, 2012, 12:48 PM
A negative impression is quite a broad stroke. Perhaps, he meant intimidated which is probably common considering the wide gulf in knowledge between DIR trained divers and beginners. Just my 2 psi worth. :)

g1138
April 12th, 2012, 12:53 PM
Since joining SB, I think the DIR divers have gotten better at being more welcoming and explaining their reasoning better. At least portraying it as an opinion to diving rather than a must.

Doc
April 12th, 2012, 12:53 PM
It's sad that people take what they read (anywhere) as gospel.

For most, it's easier and better to meet in person rather than to try to analyze electronic digitized attempts at expression.

But, allow me to advocate the devil's argument: Once you drink it, you can no longer taste it.

Be sure to steer your friend away from rec.scuba usenet group.

That will make him sad all over again.

TSandM
April 12th, 2012, 12:55 PM
No, he was very clear. He thought we were all jerks and dive Nazis. He was very pleasantly surprised.

Doc
April 12th, 2012, 12:57 PM
We warm-water-pretty-fish types (having sat through a Psych 101 class) might call that "projection" or "self loathing".

(I still have my DSM-IV but my wife uses it as a booster seat in her Porshe)

kathydee
April 12th, 2012, 01:05 PM
Honestly, I was terrified of GUE divers/instructors from impressions gained on scubaboard. GUE seemed some exclusive clique that I could never measure up to, and the training very far out of my league.

I watched GUE videos and certainly wanted the skill and control in the water. Finally, curiosity conquered apprehension. I pushed through all the prejudice of the board and found myself in Fundies and then beyond.

It took many kind, knowledgeable and helpful GUE members and instructors to erase the early negative impressions from Scubaboard.

Sure, people are people and there are a few jerks everywhere - but 95% of the hundreds of DIR members I've met have been incredibly helpful and friendly!

Crush
April 12th, 2012, 01:22 PM
Here is a copy of what I previously posted on http://www.scubaboard.com/forums/dir/401853-why-we-so-mean-2.html#post6112966

[For those who are not used to my style of commenting I have chosen to highlight my ironic comments in red. ]


Initially, based upon what I read on SB, I concluded that most DIR divers were arrogant and egotistical - in a word, assholes. Now, having met a few, I am surprised that I have only happened upon the minority of DIR divers who are very nice. BTW, the posts that most put me off DIR were rants from what appear to me to be the old guard.

Crewfish13
April 12th, 2012, 01:23 PM
I'll pitch in as well. I understand that most DIR and tech divers on the board are simply trying to be helpful, but can definitely come off as know-it-alls or jerks. I've seen plenty of threads started with "I'm looking for a BCD. I'm thinking about xxx and yyy. What are the pros and cons?" and quickly turn into "Get a BP/W. You'll thank me later", which usually isn't helpful, regardless of the poster's intentions. After all, most of us buying our first set of gear certified in jackets, and that's what we're comfortable in. And to newbs, being comfortable in our gear is extremely important so we can focus on our skills. Same can be said for other pieces of equipment.

Granted, DIR divers tend to have a great deal of experience and there's a lot use newbs can learn from them, but sometimes the conversation feels like trying to explain what we're looking for in a minivan, and the response is "Just save up for a Ferrari."

Maybe someday I'll join the ranks of DIR, but these days DIR sometimes feels like an elitist attitude (even when it's not), and in the meantime, I'm happy just being a :dork2:

TSandM
April 12th, 2012, 01:27 PM
Crewfish, thank you for your comment, because I think it does a great job of illustrating what happens here.

It is not "DIR" or "GUE" to recommend a backplate, although some of the people who do may dive that way. But there are a TON of people here who use and advocate backplates who have nothing to do with DIR diving. But somehow, we get tarred with that brush.

And to address another misconception -- DIR, or GUE diving, isn't elitist! ANYONE is welcome to become a GUE diver, if they want to be. And if I could manage it, virtually anybody can :)

Crush
April 12th, 2012, 01:27 PM
I'll pitch in as well. I understand that most DIR and tech divers on the board are simply trying to be helpful, but can definitely come off as know-it-alls or jerks. I've seen plenty of threads started with "I'm looking for a BCD. I'm thinking about xxx and yyy. What are the pros and cons?" and quickly turn into "Get a BP/W. You'll thank me later", which usually isn't helpful, regardless of the poster's intentions.

It is precisely observations such as yours that prompted me to start this thread:http://www.scubaboard.com/forums/new-divers-those-considering-diving/415897-sb-regulars-should-respect-flame-free-zones.html

The text of which is:

Dear all,

SB is a great place. I came here a few years ago and learned MUCH from many of you - thank you all.

This comment mostly pertains to SB regulars. Many, or most of you are very patient with newbs - that is to be commended. However, at times, I feel that some of the regulars (myself included) fail to respect flame free zones. This is easy to understand - how many times do you want to search out and copy your 100 replies from "what camera to buy" when the darned newb could have searched it out just as easily?! New divers are usually new to SB and may not be comfortable with web searches. They cannot be assumed to have the same knowledge as more experienced divers have. If you bother to reply to their post, please take the time to not only give the correct answer, but also mention why the answer is correct (in your opinion) and explain your reasoning - it will educate the newb and make them more likely to participate in SB in the future.

Cheers,

Crush

Crewfish13
April 12th, 2012, 01:39 PM
Crewfish, thank you for your comment, because I think it does a great job of illustrating what happens here.

It is not "DIR" or "GUE" to recommend a backplate, although some of the people who do may dive that way. But there are a TON of people here who use and advocate backplates who have nothing to do with DIR diving. But somehow, we get tarred with that brush.

And to address another misconception -- DIR, or GUE diving, isn't elitist! ANYONE is welcome to become a GUE diver, if they want to be. And if I could manage it, virtually anybody can :)

As usual, the few bad apples in a group (or who like to act like they are) generally paint a very poor picture of the entire group. Same can be said for us newbs - some take diving seriously and want to perfect our skills, some just want to be safe and have fun, and some it's a miracle they come up alive.

nimoh
April 12th, 2012, 01:44 PM
When I bought my first BC 4 years ago, if I had asked in ScubaBoard for recommendations (I didn't) and someone told me "get a BP/W, you'll thank me later", I probably would have ignored them. However, if I did listen, I would be thanking them today, since after switching to a DIR configuration a year ago, I have never been more comfortable.

So, I don't think comments such as "get a BP/W, you'll thank me later" are rude, any more than a comment such as "get a jacket BC, you'll thank me later" although personally I think the former is more accurate.

I think the main issue is that DIR divers are quick to offer opinions on gear configurations, and they all have the same opinion (mostly). Because of this, DIR opinions show up more, and I think people tend to roll their eyes and interpret them as being rude after hearing it so often.

Tigerman
April 12th, 2012, 01:50 PM
"Get a <whatever>, you'll thank me later" kind of responses is rude regardless who put them forth as they provide absolutely no basis as to WHY you should select it and also imply that "my opinion is the only correct one" and sadly it seems to me that DIR/wanna-DIR divers post such answers more frequently than others either because they just assume everyone to "know why they are right" or because they just subscribe to the DIR idea without really knowing WHY the DIR style of diving preferr the type of gear it preferr.

Guba
April 12th, 2012, 01:52 PM
I've been on these boards for nearly a decade now, and I can attest to a subtle, yet distinct shift in the way I've come to regard DIR oriented folks. When I first started participating in SB (as a newbie), I witnessed several (perhaps 'quite a few') discussions in which very passionate DIR types...well...sorta showed themselves to be royal 'terminal sphincters'. The attitude was, or at least seemed to be, "you don't dive MY way? You're gonna die!" Or, at the least it was, "you don't want to dive MY way, then I sure don't want to dive with YOU!" In either case, the newbie could very well come away intimated and extremely dubious concerning the philosophy of the system as much as the character of the person involved.
Thankfully, I haven't witnessed that type of discourse or behavior in quite some time. It might be the influence of the MODS or the posted parameters for discussion, or the attitudes may have just shifted to be a bit more tolerant. It could be that the "friendly majority" have effectively shushed the obnoxious few into being quiet if they couldn't be nice. Whatever the case, I've found the DIR folk to be quite helpful and accomodating as well as downright friendly.
Hope it stays that way.

nimoh
April 12th, 2012, 02:02 PM
"Get a <whatever>, you'll thank me later" kind of responses is rude regardless who put them forth as they provide absolutely no basis as to WHY you should select it and also imply that "my opinion is the only correct one" and sadly it seems to me that DIR/wanna-DIR divers post such answers more frequently than others either because they just assume everyone to "know why they are right" or because they just subscribe to the DIR idea without really knowing WHY the DIR style of diving preferr the type of gear it preferr.

good point, when I was writing my post I was thinking of the comment "get a BP/W, you'll thank me later..." where it goes on to explain why. With no explanation, it is somewhat rude, and not at all helpful.

JahJahwarrior
April 12th, 2012, 02:08 PM
My initial impression of DIR came from the Internet but now I know a few.

Maybe things are different here in cave country. Does the DIR community hold access to exclusive spots in the ocean out west?

Don't get me started on what I've been told about my use of sidemount and solo diving :)

I'm sure I've said mean things about DIR, but I don't advocate a divide. I abhor rudeness no matter the agency on the card, and I've met far more rude non DIR divers than DIR. I do hope to see more collaboration in the future, like we are seeing more and more now, as well as more realization that Backplates aren't owned by DIR so we can differentiate between the backplate rude people and the DiR rude people, and stop blaming DIR for rude posts by non DIR divers about Backplates :)

nimoh
April 12th, 2012, 02:17 PM
I think part of the problem is that part of DIR is to "not dive with unsafe divers", but some divers (including some DIR divers) interpret this as "don't dive with non-DIR divers" which is completely wrong.

oreocookie
April 12th, 2012, 02:19 PM
My thought is sorta like crewfish's, it seems that a lot of people who either subscribe to DIR philosophy (or at least parts of it) or who prefer gear configurations that may be associated with DIR have a tendency to respond to some questions as "this is the only way" as opposed to "this is what I think is best, here's why". Perhaps it's that some of these topics (jacket vs bp/w, eg) have been discussed ad noseum, perhaps some of these people have drunk a Kool-aid and don't really know anymore why their choices are better than another option.

I think the average diver, who has not been exposed to the whole extent of the DIR philosophy, probably associates bp/w and long hose reg with DIR, even though the divers using them might not be. You're going to have zealots and jerks following any possibly philosophy, but if people are associating bp/w and long hose with DIR, then all of a sudden, the bp/w jerks get lumped with the long hose jerks and they all get lumped in with the actual DIR jerks => DIR followers are a big bunch of jerks as opposed to a group with a small amount of jerks like pretty much every other group.

petrieps
April 12th, 2012, 02:35 PM
I must admit, I also did not have a good impression of DIR at first. When you represent a group and make negative comments, it hurts the whole group and not the individual and that's unfortunate. Far more non DIR people make negative comments, and because they are not part of a larger group. it goes largely unnoticed, and does not fester.

I see DIR as the R&D of the dive world. There is not a diver in the world who would not benefit from SOME of the knowledge they are willing to depart. I am not DIR or a technical diver but have adopted some of the great ideas they dive by. It is too bad they get a bad rap.

JahJahwarrior
April 12th, 2012, 02:42 PM
I see DIR as the R&D of the dive world. There is not a diver in the world who would not benefit from the knowledge they are willing to depart. I am not DIR or a technical diver but have adopted some of the great ideas they dive by. It is too bad they get a bad rap.

Yes because they brought us the backplate, can light, sidemount, and CCR...

Dir is more like apple. They take proven technology and add subtle highlights that make the quality and ease of use stand out. They innovated more on the training side if anything, and required high quality from their divers.

peterbj7
April 12th, 2012, 02:47 PM
Some DIR divers are jerks, but then a proportion of all divers are jerks. I've dived with many people who I suspected from their gear and their approach to diving with DIR/GUE, but they didn't attempt to ram it down my throat and we had pleasant times together. But at my shop I've also had the other sort, who assert up-front that they're DIR and controls their diving lives. I'm glad to say that that sort now appears quite infrequently.

On the BP/W issue I have several and I use them, but equally I also use other configurations when I think them more appropriate for the circumstances. There are people who assert that BP/W is the only way to dive, and there must be something wrong with you if you don't agree, or at least you haven't yet discoved the joys of using them. But again, that tub-thumping approach seems to be fading, and we're all much better off for it.

As for me, I don't see DIR as the R&D of diving. I know some superb divers and teachers who don't follow the precepts of DIR.

BluewaterSail
April 12th, 2012, 02:52 PM
Based on postings I have seen here in the last year, I find it odd that someone would have gotten such a bad image of DIR divers from SB. It is from reading SB as a frustrated newbie that I learn of, and turned to, DIR and GUE.

Adobo
April 12th, 2012, 02:54 PM
How do you guys work out who is a DIR diver and who is not?

Do these guys get the same tattoo or something?

fjpatrum
April 12th, 2012, 02:55 PM
I just went to a meetup group "dive club" happy hour about week ago and got just the opposite impression. Or rather the inverse impression... that I didn't want to be associated with some of the "non-DIR" divers because all they did was trash talk the DIR divers without any real reasons for doing so (not that reasons would have made it any better).

While I definitely see SB bias I find it interesting that other folks take one side or the other being privy to both sides of the bias. The only bias I've noticed from DIR folks on SB is that they want to make better divers, more than anything else. Sure the comments can sometimes be curt or "overly harsh" from a "thin skinned" perspective, but I see that as necessary sometimes, when we're talking about things that can kill us. Of course, I'm not what anyone would call thin skinned either so I have my own bias.

BDSC
April 12th, 2012, 02:59 PM
I've always thought the term "DIR" itself was a put off for many folks. If a DIR diver is "Doing it Right", does that mean if you're not you're doing it wrong?

RonFrank
April 12th, 2012, 03:29 PM
DIR is rather a closed philosophy. DIR divers embrace one way of diving. You use a BP/W or your not DIR. If you dive Split fins then you are not DIR. There are DIR divers who refuse to dive with those who are not DIR. No matter how nice someone is, when they refuse to dive with someone because they are not DIR that can lead to problems.

Fortunately most DIR divers are not so strict. However there are some that are by the book DIR divers. In fact if you strictly follow the DIR way, you are by definition standoffish. I was involved with the whole DIR set of problems we as mods had and it was not fun. We basically ended walling the DIR zealots off and that worked. It is still that way to this day. They have opt in areas and if you want to participate there you better be DIR. There is no tolerance for split fins or jacket BC's.

I have close friends who are DIR, but they are also SSI or PADI instructors so while they practice DIR they can change skins. There was a group of DIR divers at the BH a few years back and they were a group of the most arrogant and boring folks I had the displeasure of meeting. So it's not a SB thing, rather a DIR thing as fanatical DIR divers can be very rude and may have no tolerance for non DIR divers. For a DIR purist that can be the way.

Me? I am a MOF diver, and I like Captain Crunch! :D

BVickery
April 12th, 2012, 03:56 PM
I've met a few people who are DIR that put me off, and met them via SB and the way if it's not DIR then its junk. I have also talked extensively with TSandM, and to a lesser extent a lady from the Atlanta area who really got me to see that some aspects of the DIR/GUE would truly benefit my diving, and that the GUE Primer course is very much PERFECT for me. Reading TSandM's post about her dive buddy described to a T the kind of diver I want to be. To do this I know that I need to master some skills to the point of being second nature.

And I am guilty of recommending BP/W and usually state the modular approach, and if your like me, tall and currently 'cushioned' it's geat in that as you drop your cushion, you don't need to get a new BCD, just adjust your webbing. Also, being a tall diver, traditional BCDs didn't set right on me, felt unnatural and uncomfortable.

NWGratefulDiver
April 12th, 2012, 04:41 PM
I've always thought the term "DIR" itself was a put off for many folks. If a DIR diver is "Doing it Right", does that mean if you're not you're doing it wrong?

... that's like asking if the term "PADI" stands for "Professional Association of Dive Instructors", does that mean that if you're not a PADI instructor, you're unprofessional?

It's a marketing term ... there are no hidden meanings ...

... Bob (Grateful Diver)

herman
April 12th, 2012, 04:47 PM
Having been on this board since it began, I can tell you the tone of the DIR divers here has changed a lot and it has all been for the better. In the early days after DIR divers started joining the board, a good portion of them were first class horses rears and very vocal, several names instantly come to mind. I saw more than one person (including myself) that was insulted and in general came down hard upon for discussing any number of non-DIR ideas, using a computer for one...they will rot your brain.. or being trashed hard for not using a BP/wing. Stroke was a common word back then, basically used as a derogatory term for any non-DIR diver. All strokes were unsafe and were not to be dove with and we were quickly told so. I am sure the majority of DIR dives don't deserve to be viewed in a negative light but there were a good number of individuals in the past who left a bad taste in a lot of folks mouths. The DIR divers I know personally are first class people and divers, I am happy to have their company any day. I am glad to see the overall tone of DIR divers on the board has changed. Even with the bad attitudes of some of those early DIR board members I looked into DIR to see what it had to offer. I came away with a great respect for the skills of a true DIR diver but did not see the strict gear requirements and procedures, while ideal for the technical diving it was designed for, added any real value to my chosen style of diving. Rejecting the religion was highly frowned upon in the early days...I hold an early DIR-F card (expired)

awap
April 12th, 2012, 04:55 PM
... that's like asking if the term "PADI" stands for "Professional Association of Dive Instructors", does that mean that if you're not a PADI instructor, you're unprofessional?

It's a marketing term ... there are no hidden meanings ...

... Bob (Grateful Diver)

While not an authoritative source, this quote from Wikipedia: Some DIR divers refer to non-DIR diving practices as DIW (Doing It Wrongly), and the non-DIR-compliant divers as "strokes".

NWGratefulDiver
April 12th, 2012, 05:10 PM
DIR is rather a closed philosophy. DIR divers embrace one way of diving. You use a BP/W or your not DIR. If you dive Split fins then you are not DIR. There are DIR divers who refuse to dive with those who are not DIR. No matter how nice someone is, when they refuse to dive with someone because they are not DIR that can lead to problems.


See, I think that's a rather closed philosophy ... because I've run into all kinds of divers who have varying exposure to DIR training ... and they're all individuals.

My first exposure to DIR was some fellow my ex-wife and I ran into while gearing up for a dive at a local site. He was a classic know-it-all ... pointing out why the gear we were using (as new divers) was, in his words, an accident waiting to happen. Turns out he wasn't much more experienced than we were, had just not-quite-passed the entry-level GUE class, and trying hard to prove something. I wasn't impressed.

Next exposure to DIR was a fellow named Terkel Sorenson. He was a much more experienced DIR diver ... had a company making can lights and other DIR-compatible gear. Despite my TUSA BCD, short-hose reg and split fins, we ended up doing a lot of dives together over a period of a couple years. Then he got married, moved to California, and got a job selling real-estate. I don't even think he dives anymore ... but I do know that when he did, he never took himself so seriously that he wasn't fun to be around and dive with. He's the guy who taught me ... even in split fins ... that I could dive without kicking up a lot of silt.

Next person I met who I thought was DIR because of her backplate and long hose was Mel Clarke ... some of you probably have heard of her. Nice woman, very good diver, never to my knowledge embraced DIR ... just happened to look like one. These days she dives and instructs on rebreathers.

Then there was Uncle Pug ... incredible diver, great sense of humor, and one of the nicest people you'll ever meet. He taught me how to think about diving. Ron was and is very much a DIR diver ... if there was ever someone I'd hold up as a person to emulate both in skills and approach to diving, it would be him. And yet I've never known him to judge anyone, or refuse to dive with anyone, based on their equipment choices or agency affiliations.

Along came TSandM ... the Borg Queen. Oddly, I think it was me who set her down the DIR path ... and I'm not even DIR. I just showed her what a good diver is supposed to look like, and when she said she wanted some of that, I suggested that DIR would be a good way for her to get it. Given her personality, I thought it would be a good fit for her ... turned out to be an understatement.

I've watched our local DIR community evolve over the past decade or so ... watched the ebb and flow of personalities ... worked at a shop that offered GUE classes for a while ... and had a succession of friends and not-so-friends who identified themselves by that particular style of training. And through it all, I've both participated and held myself aloof from what one would call the DIR community ... mostly for the simple reason that my interests lie elsewhere and in other styles of diving. And through all of those years, there have been a few "I won't dive with you" moments ... but way, way more times when I was warmly welcomed at events that were sponsored primarily by DIR-trained people. I've had several invitations from GUE instructors to come out and sit in on classes ... and have even helped out by videoing a few.

I've seen ... and endured ... stereotypes both by and toward DIR-trained divers. And frankly, I've had more people snub me because I looked to them like a DIR diver than I've been snubbed by the few "I won't dive with you" types who take their training and themselves too seriously. And through it all, I've learned something extremely important ...

... judge people based on their actions and attitude ... not by their equipment or training choices. We dive for fun ... I want to surround myself with people who are fun to be around. What I've discovered is that there's as many people inside the DIR community who fit that criteria as there are outside of it. And for the most part, they aren't going to judge you by your gear, but by your attitude ...

... Bob (Grateful Diver)

PfcAJ
April 12th, 2012, 05:10 PM
While not an authoritative source, this quote from Wikipedia: Some DIR divers refer to non-DIR diving practices as DIW (Doing It Wrongly), and the non-DIR-compliant divers as "strokes".

Le sigh... This old thing again? It's scuba diving, guys. Come on...

NWGratefulDiver
April 12th, 2012, 05:17 PM
While not an authoritative source, this quote from Wikipedia: Some DIR divers refer to non-DIR diving practices as DIW (Doing It Wrongly), and the non-DIR-compliant divers as "strokes".

... you do realize that the Wikipedia article was written primarily by a bunch of people who have no DIR training, right? We had a rather lengthy discussion about it in the DIR forum not that long ago. The amount of "agenda" that went into that Wiki article was just astounding ... made me wonder why someone would go to that much effort to write about something they had no experience with ...

... Bob (Grateful Diver)

Doomnova
April 12th, 2012, 05:21 PM
There are some practices of DIR that I aspire too have. Good trim and buoyancy control(the latter of which i have recently gotten down to the point where I can cruise a finger length above the bottom) stream lining of gear, proper maintenance of ones gear, and appropriate fitness to dive. But on the other coin especially as a newer diver I can see there are overzealous people who do forget that diving is also about enjoyment and take the DIR book and bash others over the head with it till they either A) submit or B) leave the thread. I think what comes out of this is the tone of the discussion whether implied or not. Most divers be it new or not ( more so for the latter) who come here and ask questions are probably nervous as well since odds are they are not regulars who have been reading here for year or may not be used to electronic forms of communication (which can easily be misinterpreted).

My first experience with a GUE person was during my first dive after open water and I can say I will never dive with her again. It was a dive run by one of the local shops on the weekend aimed at doing local dives within the limits of newer divers. When she looked at the sign up chart noted that I had just done my OW and pulled me aside and said "Ok you can come and dive with us just don't get me killed or ruin my dive". Simply put she was lucky I was in a good sense of humor. Funny thing is she as the DM for that Saturday dive should have expected newer divers. Needless to say I have not gone back to that shop to do a weekend dive since and honestly it made me look down on the whole GUE/DIR crew quite a bit from an initial meeting. Despite my respect for their work towards perfectionism. This is also despite the fact that every other person i have dove with notes how good my trim is and my buoyancy control is and the lack of dangling articles. It could be a once off sort of thing but it does from first impressions leave and impression that GUE/DIR folks are a bunch of assholes (not saying they are) who only respect others like themselves. Will i take a GUE/DIR course down the road perhaps, but I also remember the events of that day quite well and will make me a bit nervous when it comes to that training.

NWGratefulDiver
April 12th, 2012, 05:22 PM
How do you guys work out who is a DIR diver and who is not?

Do these guys get the same tattoo or something?

... redundant black t-shirts ...

... Bob (Grateful Diver)

Roko
April 12th, 2012, 05:26 PM
How do you know when a DIR diver enters the room? (S)He'll tell you.

:D

Sent from my SGH-I897 using Tapatalk

BDSC
April 12th, 2012, 05:32 PM
There are some practices of DIR that I aspire too have. Good trim and buoyancy control(the latter of which i have recently gotten down to the point where I can cruise a finger length above the bottom) stream lining of gear, proper maintenance of ones gear, and appropriate fitness to dive.

I would say those are practices that most any diver should aspire to have. I was taught all of that in OW class.

TSandM
April 12th, 2012, 05:35 PM
Doomnova, stories like that make me sad, because that was one individual who poisoned your view of a whole group. You said she was the DM for the group, which means she was a DM for some other agency (since GUE doesn't have DMs) -- why didn't you decide that THAT agency was full of bad guys?

I have met GUE and UTD trained people I didn't like, or didn't think were nice people -- although very few, because as far as I can tell, in general, divers tend to be pretty nice people. But I think they were just not nice people to begin with -- I don't think choosing that style of diving made them that way. There are always people who are going to lord it over others, or flaunt their fancy equipment, or sneer at awkward newbies, and I mean in any sport -- I've seen it in riding, skiing and diving.

BVickery
April 12th, 2012, 05:36 PM
From reading the post, it seems a lot of people place a ton of emphasis on the gear chosen (BP/W, hose length etc). To me, in essence, DIR should be ALL about skills in the water and not about the gear. I should be able to dive competently with BP/W or Jacket. Long hose or Short. Low Volume mask or regular. Split Fin or Blade. Hog Harness or Deluxe.

---------- Post added April 12th, 2012 at 05:38 PM ----------


Doomnova, stories like that make me sad, because that was one individual who poisoned your view of a whole group. You said she was the DM for the group, which means she was a DM for some other agency (since GUE doesn't have DMs) -- why didn't you decide that THAT agency was full of bad guys?

I have met GUE and UTD trained people I didn't like, or didn't think were nice people -- although very few, because as far as I can tell, in general, divers tend to be pretty nice people. But I think they were just not nice people to begin with -- I don't think choosing that style of diving made them that way. There are always people who are going to lord it over others, or flaunt their fancy equipment, or sneer at awkward newbies, and I mean in any sport -- I've seen it in riding, skiing and diving.

Lynne,

Believe it or not, I think you personally could be seen as a person who HAS changed the face of DIR here on SB. The segment will always have bad apples, but when the community as a whole stands quiet it appears that the DIR community condones the behavior. When you go and speak out against their behavior, it opens eyes and has challenged some peoples perception of the methodology (myself counted as one of them).

NWGratefulDiver
April 12th, 2012, 05:41 PM
My first experience with a GUE person was during my first dive after open water and I can say I will never dive with her again. It was a dive run by one of the local shops on the weekend aimed at doing local dives within the limits of newer divers. When she looked at the sign up chart noted that I had just done my OW and pulled me aside and said "Ok you can come and dive with us just don't get me killed or ruin my dive". Simply put she was lucky I was in a good sense of humor. Funny thing is she as the DM for that Saturday dive should have expected newer divers. Needless to say I have not gone back to that shop to do a weekend dive since and honestly it made me look down on the whole GUE/DIR crew quite a bit from an initial meeting. Despite my respect for their work towards perfectionism. This is also despite the fact that every other person i have dove with notes how good my trim is and my buoyancy control is and the lack of dangling articles. It could be a once off sort of thing but it does from first impressions leave and impression that GUE/DIR folks are a bunch of assholes (not saying they are) who only respect others like themselves. Will i take a GUE/DIR course down the road perhaps, but I also remember the events of that day quite well and will make me a bit nervous when it comes to that training.

... a pity ... you have one of the nicer GUE instructors in your area that I've ever met ... Guy Shockey. I'd recommend using him as an example of GUE/DIR in your area ... not some DM from a dive shop ...

... Bob (Grateful Diver)

Crewfish13
April 12th, 2012, 05:52 PM
From reading the post, it seems a lot of people place a ton of emphasis on the gear chosen (BP/W, hose length etc). To me, in essence, DIR should be ALL about skills in the water and not about the gear. I should be able to dive competently with BP/W or Jacket. Long hose or Short. Low Volume mask or regular. Split Fin or Blade. Hog Harness or Deluxe.

But...but... I thought expensive equipment was a replacement for good skills!

Before I got into diving (and had kids, for that matter), I spent a couple years as a weekend warrior Solo racing with the SCCA. Every event, we had a large contingent of regulars of all skill levels in all kinds of cars (98 Civic for me), and a few new alpha-types who would show up in shiny new sports cars. Then, once the driving started, some regulars in stock Honda Civics or the like would put up better times than the guy in the brand new Mustang/Corvette/etc. Really put a lot of things into perspective for young, impressionable me.

It's not the size of your equipment, it's how well you handle it ;)

grantwiscour
April 12th, 2012, 06:04 PM
My first experience with a GUE person was during my first dive after open water and I can say I will never dive with her again. It was a dive run by one of the local shops on the weekend aimed at doing local dives within the limits of newer divers. When she looked at the sign up chart noted that I had just done my OW and pulled me aside and said "Ok you can come and dive with us just don't get me killed or ruin my dive". Simply put she was lucky I was in a good sense of humor. Funny thing is she as the DM for that Saturday dive should have expected newer divers. Needless to say I have not gone back to that shop to do a weekend dive since and honestly it made me look down on the whole GUE/DIR crew quite a bit from an initial meeting. Despite my respect for their work towards perfectionism. This is also despite the fact that every other person i have dove with notes how good my trim is and my buoyancy control is and the lack of dangling articles. It could be a once off sort of thing but it does from first impressions leave and impression that GUE/DIR folks are a bunch of assholes (not saying they are) who only respect others like themselves. Will i take a GUE/DIR course down the road perhaps, but I also remember the events of that day quite well and will make me a bit nervous when it comes to that training.

That's a sad commentary on the person/DM. It sure wouldn't have made me felt good about diving.

One latter part of your post reminded me of a recent vacation. Diving Oahu, my wife and I were going out with the DM from our first Intro to Scuba dive. We had about fifty dives under our belts at the time. He commented to us how nice our rigs were setup with no dangling SPGs or octos. After diving he told us that we were becoming good divers with good bouyancy control and safety protocols. I think he was proud of seeing somebody that he turned on to diving "getting it". I was proud because he was proud of us.

We're still not "great" divers but we dive safe, have fun, make friends and try to be good to everybody. We'll keep diving and learning and try to shake off any A-Holes that we run into diving or anywhere else.

Doomnova
April 12th, 2012, 06:05 PM
Doomnova, stories like that make me sad, because that was one individual who poisoned your view of a whole group. You said she was the DM for the group, which means she was a DM for some other agency (since GUE doesn't have DMs) -- why didn't you decide that THAT agency was full of bad guys?

I have met GUE and UTD trained people I didn't like, or didn't think were nice people -- although very few, because as far as I can tell, in general, divers tend to be pretty nice people. But I think they were just not nice people to begin with -- I don't think choosing that style of diving made them that way. There are always people who are going to lord it over others, or flaunt their fancy equipment, or sneer at awkward newbies, and I mean in any sport -- I've seen it in riding, skiing and diving.

the person was with PAID which I also did my OW with. It was my course instructor who actually helped me get over my initial fears and get me into my OW class and well I'm up to my AOW and in time I may go up to instructor but I am in no rush. So by that time it was a 1-1 ratio of good and bad. After meeting up with all the folks at the U of Victoria scuba club I've yet to meet a person I dislike and honestly have inspired me to keep going and feel that how I am going about training myself to be a better diver is the right way to go about it and that one day when I am ready should consider making the jump form just a diver to DM. I'm not saying I plastered the whole group now especially after reading as much as I do here and watching I see DIR not as much the devil as she made it out to be to me. But still I think people forget how they act reflects on an organization as a whole. Just as how I act reflects on my family as a whole and if that action causes a negative impression it is harder for others to dig their way out of the whole that the initial person as dug. So the people here have changed my mind a fair bit about the DIR mentality which is good but looking back at past posts (ie years ago) of people you can easily see the zealots not representing the cause well.

Many people who I dive with think I'm a DIR person, but that is mainly because I try to help them improve their technique to be more efficient I jokingly call myself a DIE (Doing It Efficiently). But I also approach them and give them the option to tell me they are not interested and and have full rights to tell me to shut up and I will. Also after the fact I impart them with the choice of heeding what I have passed on or not and that is what the zealots (and usually the loudest part of the bunch of any group) fail to do. It is my way or the highway.

For me gear is secondary choice. I made my equipment choices based off what my instructor used and my kit is almost a carbon copy of hers. Since she took me through how it all works and the operation of it all. which means I'm using a back inflate BCD. But I also and looking at down the road a BP+wing but not at this time. But people should also be grateful that there is choice. Some are better than others. Some have advantages and disadvantages be they perceived or not.

But it ultimately comes down to can you have fun and enjoy diving while being a safe diver for both you and your buddy and I think many people forget that. Which you shouldn't need a special course to instill that. It should be instilled before you get your c-card and if you do not have they shouldn't have the card in the first place imho.

OzGriffo
April 12th, 2012, 06:09 PM
Well i've only been here for a few months, and i certainly was NOT turned off to GUE/DIR diving by scubaboard. Quite the opposite.
What I did see soon after joining was a couple of threads with some DIR 'bashing' in it. I also saw a couple of links to the GUE Gear Config webpage. I thought the GUE page was interesting in a techy kind of way, but had no idea what they were on about with this backplate thingy. I also didn't even know what DIR was, so I didn't make the connection between this webpage and the DIR methodology straight away.

Then I discovered this forum called "DIR" and started to try to find out what it was. This was not actually an easy process (hint, i think GUE really needs to improve their initial web presence, and I think the DIR guys could write a very simple "This is the idea behind DIR" sticky).

Anyway, I was at the time both keen as mustard about this new diving thing, and completely frustrated with the SSI classes i'd done. I felt I was passing classes without actually being taught how to be a better diver.

Long story short, I ended up looking up the local GUE instructors, and noticed that one of the names was very familiar. Turns out that one of my wifes work colleagues is a GUE instructor. And one of the nicest guys you could meet to boot. So my only interaction with GUE divers has either been here online - where they (and in particular TSandM) have been extremely nice and patient with my questions, and Nick, who is going to be my instructor, and has already spent a lot of free time helping me out.

So for me, SB turned me ON to DIR diving. But i've only been here a little while.

BrotherBear
April 12th, 2012, 06:18 PM
... that's like asking if the term "PADI" stands for "Professional Association of Dive Instructors", does that mean that if you're not a PADI instructor, you're unprofessional?

It's a marketing term ... there are no hidden meanings ...

... Bob (Grateful Diver)

I have to disagree with your comparison, I think it is invalid. PADI's name says that they are a group of professional dive instructors, not that they are what you must be to be professional. DIR, standing for Doing It Right strongly implies that it is the system that is correct, it is right. It is not much of a stretch to take from that that non-adherents must be doing it wrong, it may not be a logical truth but the inference is there.

This (seemingly) presumptuous label was a large part of what originally put me off on GUE/DIR as being "kool-aid drinkers". If the philosophy had a more benign label I'm sure it would not have the same reputation it does today. Like it or not who ever made up the label in the first place was probably in the elitest category...I don't buy that marketing had anything to do with naming the philosophy.

I did eventually come to understand the fundamental idea of standardization as a safety measure and learned the importance of solid fundamental skills. I have come to see that GUE/DIR has real value and contributes much to the dive world, I have even joined GUE in order to buy the books and do some home study...a decision I do not regret. But I have never taken GUE training courses and don't practice DIR mostly because no one I know does and if I did then I would be the non-standard diver who was DIW.

Bottom line for me is the name "DIR" has built in attitude and the message it implies is not entirely correct. The standard gear configuration COULD be safely rearranged and still be "right" if everyone in a given group used the same setup...I'm sure that there were dissenters with valid alternate reasoning in every stage of deciding the standards used. It would be just as accurate to call yourselves DIOW, Doing It Our Way, and the rest of us can call it DIYW for Doing It Your Way but it wouldn't have the same ring to it;)

Question: Is DIR just a label for a GUE trained diver who practices all the skills taught or is DIR beyond even that? If it is the former then why would you expect any different reaction to the Doing It Right label, why set yourselves apart as "right" and not just call yourselves GUE? Just asking.




His name is mighty little, he's a good horse.

NWGratefulDiver
April 12th, 2012, 06:24 PM
Question: Is DIR just a label for a GUE trained diver who practices all the skills taught or is DIR beyond even that? If it is the former then why would you expect any different reaction to the Doing It Right label, why set yourselves apart as "right" and not just call yourselves GUE? Just asking.

His name is mighty little, he's a good horse.

GUE doesn't even use the DIR term anymore ... but to answer your question more directly, it's generally associated with a style of diving, not a specific agency. GUE and UTD both claim to teach that style, although there are significant differences in both their approach and philosophy ...

... Bob (Grateful Diver)

Scott L
April 12th, 2012, 07:17 PM
Well i've only been here for a few months, and i certainly was NOT turned off to GUE/DIR diving by scubaboard. Quite the opposite.
What I did see soon after joining was a couple of threads with some DIR 'bashing' in it. I also saw a couple of links to the GUE Gear Config webpage. I thought the GUE page was interesting in a techy kind of way, but had no idea what they were on about with this backplate thingy. I also didn't even know what DIR was, so I didn't make the connection between this webpage and the DIR methodology straight away.

Then I discovered this forum called "DIR" and started to try to find out what it was. This was not actually an easy process (hint, i think GUE really needs to improve their initial web presence, and I think the DIR guys could write a very simple "This is the idea behind DIR" sticky).

Anyway, I was at the time both keen as mustard about this new diving thing, and completely frustrated with the SSI classes i'd done. I felt I was passing classes without actually being taught how to be a better diver.

Long story short, I ended up looking up the local GUE instructors, and noticed that one of the names was very familiar. Turns out that one of my wifes work colleagues is a GUE instructor. And one of the nicest guys you could meet to boot. So my only interaction with GUE divers has either been here online - where they (and in particular TSandM) have been extremely nice and patient with my questions, and Nick, who is going to be my instructor, and has already spent a lot of free time helping me out.

So for me, SB turned me ON to DIR diving. But i've only been here a little while.

This for all practical purposes mirrored my introduction to DIR and GUE. Every aspect of their style had a logical and time tested reason behind it's existance. There is defiantly pitfalls in organizing classes that the more experienced, like TSandM can help sort out. Most of the more abrasive posters have fallen away to other forums or left the sport entirely in the past year or so...

spectrum
April 12th, 2012, 07:33 PM
No, he was very clear. He thought we were all jerks and dive Nazis. He was very pleasantly surprised.

I don't have any trouble seeing where he would have that perception from board traffic. I happy to hear he found your group to be the opposite. The DIR kind is pretty scarce around here but the tech types I run into are entirely decent folks.

Just as is true for many gear perceptions (BP&W, APEK Regulators, jet Fins) internet forums seem to elevate preferences into ugly aggressive dogma. It's easy to be crass and inconsiderate when you aren't looking the other part in the eye. Frequently I see DIR types putting non DIR divers down for not seeking their higher plateau. A big rub is that many if not most divers local GUE training is not readily available even if they wanted it.

Pete

lowviz
April 12th, 2012, 07:44 PM
...//...Frequently I see DIR types putting non DIR divers down for not seeking their higher plateau. ...//...

I swore to myself that I would stay out of this...

But not always. I am both non DIR and seeking my higher plateau. -with help from BOTH non DIR and DIR friends and acquaintances alike.

Thanks again, Lynne, for your answer to my PM concerning trim. Most helpful.

matts1w
April 12th, 2012, 08:30 PM
This topic/issue has been very popular on ScubaBoard for pretty much a decade. It ebbs and flows, but there is always at least one active thread with a DIR versus the world theme. One would think if "generation" after "generation" of ScubaBoard members is consistently turned off by this rhetoric, then it might be time to make some changes instead of pointing fingers at everyone else who does not understand or the very few individuals giving the black or white system a bad name. If one person told me I had a tail I would think they were way off. If ten years passes and person after person keeps telling me I have a tail I might start considering looking in a mirror to see what is really going on back there.

If one subscribes to any "system" in life that accepts no gray areas, do not be surprised when many people simply do not want to join.

RonFrank
April 12th, 2012, 08:45 PM
... that's like asking if the term "PADI" stands for "Professional Association of Dive Instructors", does that mean that if you're not a PADI instructor, you're unprofessional?

It's a marketing term ... there are no hidden meanings ...

... Bob (Grateful Diver)

Bob, if you think it is just a marketing term and there is no implied "doing it wrong" then I need a hit of what you're smoking. Do you remember the flame wars DIR created on SB?

DIR has become more relaxed but last time I checked DIR still does not allow most popular gear configurations. I have the gear to fit the DIR lifestyle right down to a 7' hose but I am not DIR. When I can take Fundies in a Zeagle Ranger BC let me know.....

lowviz
April 12th, 2012, 09:11 PM
...//.... I have the gear to fit the DIR lifestyle right down to a 7' hose but I am not DIR. When I can take Fundies in a Zeagle Ranger BC let me know.....

Then there is the "personal preference" thing. ;)

My take on it:

If the whole magilla strikes a chord in you, go for it. If a lot makes sense and other parts don't, just watch and learn. Don't be a "hater".

-If nothing makes sense, or some parts just rankle, maybe it is the observer...

Saxatilis
April 12th, 2012, 09:20 PM
Sadly, I have to admit I was also one of the divers rather put off by extremist DIR people. Even now when my current rig is mostly DIR, I still dislike ANYBODY who is not willing to accept that there is no "one true way" as far as gear and setup is concerned. In my own posts I try to help people avoid the mistakes I made but try to keep in mind what worked for me may not work for others.

lamont
April 12th, 2012, 09:32 PM
I was involved with the whole DIR set of problems we as mods had and it was not fun. We basically ended walling the DIR zealots off and that worked. It is still that way to this day. They have opt in areas and if you want to participate there you better be DIR. There is no tolerance for split fins or jacket BC's.


Uhm, the DIR forum is an open forum and most SB users can go there and post. It isn't really walled off. The DPF forum is walled off, but its basically dead (users can still see what goes on in there, but its mostly lots of crickets chirping).

By far the most useful thing for the forums from my perspective as the DIR moderator has been banning the few posters who liked to troll the group. Generally they'd go in tossing off obvious troll bait and then when I gave them a warning in PM they'd go off with a pile of vitriol that was much worse and I'd forward the PM to Pete who would give them a subforum ban to keep them out of the DIR forum. Wash/Rinse/Repeat. Once those people stopped trolling the DIR group then the DIR posters have gotten a whole lot less defensive generally -- and the traffic on the DIR forum has dropped to zero because there's no more car accident rubbernecking factor to the group.

lowviz
April 12th, 2012, 09:40 PM
...//... there is no "one true way" as far as gear and setup is concerned. ...//....

It is more than just gear. If you buy into the system, you no longer have to defend anything you do. There is a sizeable structure in place that is quite willing to help you with that. This, I believe, is the unspoken draw that new practioners feel. Most mature past this to just become DIR practitioners. These don't bother me at all.

Scott L
April 12th, 2012, 09:44 PM
I was much more concerned if my fundies instructor was going to be reasonably nice, Etc. as opposed to the manners of some posters. Ironically, most things are so cut and dry with DIR, what is there to discuss? :)

lowviz
April 12th, 2012, 09:45 PM
Some, like Lamont above, share willingly and openly with the greater dive community. Much valuable information and ideas in there if you choose to look. -fundamentally changed how I dive...

Ulfhedinn
April 12th, 2012, 09:49 PM
Im a newbie diver with just over 50 dives under my belt. My PADI OW and AOW were in a vest and standard hose setup. 10 dives or so in I see this fellow at the beach wearing a BP/w setup and ask my good friend and instructor what that setup is he tells me he is a tech diver. So I approach this person when he is on his SI and ask him about his setup. He was very helpful and very freindly. He mentions DIR to me and tells me the best approach is to do some googling and read some forum boards. DiveMatrix and Scubaboard.


Since then I have "drank the koolaid" as some have said.


Now mind you I am the type of person who wants to learn, test, train every hobby I pick up to the very best of my ability. You might even call me an elitest. Its not for others its for me. The bad thing is I dont live close to the drink or I would dive everyday so I spend alot of time in a pool going over skills. Some of my freinds dont understand... hey just get in the water and swim around and look at stuff what is with all the drills, the training, the 2 hour pool time just playing around with your spool, smb, deco tank, trim, bouyance, etc.


I like rules, I like organazation, I like methods. This being said I also like to push the envelope but not if it endangers others mind you.


To know a thing well, know its limits. Only when pushed beyond its tolerances will true nature be seen. - The Amtal Rule


--


I have met many DIR divers. Spoke to a fair share of GUE and UTD divers and everyone of them have been courteus and professional to me. They have invited me to go diving with them and I have taken some up on this and so wish to take the others up on this too.


My wife and all my diving buddies that I dive with 99% of the time dont care one bit about DIR diving, my gear choices, and I dont share unless they ask... OK I probaly drive the wife crazy but I dont push ;) I will continue do dive with non DIR divers as long as I dive and they let me. hehe


--


Now I dont care for now it alls, I dont care for braggers, and I dont care for people who want to make my choices for me. I dont do that to others and expect the same from those I choose to hang with. On the other hand I do like and appreciate constructive crit, fact I look forward to it.


--


Where am I going with this... I love love love diving. Its the most cathartic thing I have ever done that at the same time makes me want to better myself in the sport. I choose DIR becuase it works for me and I dont know anyone personaly who has tried it and didnt walk away a better, more well rounded, safer diver and that to me speaks volumes.


Sorry if this is long winded and all over the place but I wanted to share my 2 cents. Thanks if you read this far. I also want to personaly thank those on this forum and Divematrix for going above and beyound the call of duty to offer assitance and help to this dive junkie! You know who you are!

"Wow my spelling and grammar are bad" sorry for that.

lamont
April 12th, 2012, 09:49 PM
This topic/issue has been very popular on ScubaBoard for pretty much a decade. It ebbs and flows, but there is always at least one active thread with a DIR versus the world theme. One would think if "generation" after "generation" of ScubaBoard members is consistently turned off by this rhetoric, then it might be time to make some changes instead of pointing fingers at everyone else who does not understand or the very few individuals giving the black or white system a bad name. If one person told me I had a tail I would think they were way off. If ten years passes and person after person keeps telling me I have a tail I might start considering looking in a mirror to see what is really going on back there.

If one subscribes to any "system" in life that accepts no gray areas, do not be surprised when many people simply do not want to join.

Thing is that the goal isn't to get you to join. The point is to find people who enjoy a well-tested system rather than trying to reinvent the wheel themselves.

Your point isn't the problem with it, its really the whole point of it.

The newbies that turn around and flame everyone else that want to push the whole system onto the rest of the world are the bigger internal issue.

The external issue is folks who don't understand it and like to demand that since everything revolves around their own worldview that GUE should change to suit them. Which will never happen.

All this then gets magnified by the internet and there's nothing much really to change here unless you can modify fundamental human behavior...

Scott
April 12th, 2012, 10:39 PM
I am not DIR but I have a general interest in any aspect of diving that would lend me to be a better diver or instructor.
Five years ago, I would have responded to anything DIR as a "cult". This was soley based on a lone experience with a DIR diver and some general observations on a boat trip. Possibly one of the old schoolers. :dontknow:
A few years later I had another opportunity to interact again with a DIR diver. There was an improvement in attitude for both of us. I had more knowledge of DIR phylosophy and this diver was a little more open than my previous encounter.
Within the last year I have had two more opportunities to talk with DIR divers. Both instances have been informative and enjoyable.

While first impression are important it is also important to become knowledgable about a subject before passing judgement, regardless of wether you're discussing DIR or the airspeed velocity of an unladen swallow.

matts1w
April 12th, 2012, 10:58 PM
The external issue is folks who don't understand it and like to demand that since everything revolves around their own worldview that GUE should change to suit them. Which will never happen.

My fault; I was not clear. I did not mean to imply that the GUE/DIR system should change its principles. I do not think that for a second.The OP solicited comments after reflecting it is "... incredibly sad that (a diver) had gotten such a bad impression of DIR people from this board.." when the reality is there are a number of fun and kind DIR divers (Which there are). My point is maybe after ten years of feeling sad and/or misunderstood it is time to change the way you (Not you or the OP specifically) talk to people on SB.

Rogersea
April 13th, 2012, 06:47 AM
In general I find folks who are associated with DIR including folks having conversations on the board a bit narrow minded and often times condescending.

Having said that if DIR works for anyones given situation and it gives you more confidence to stay active in the sport then use it, please just dont be so "preachy"....

Before I get flamed..... I do understand DIR, its evolution and its applicability.... I am familiar with fundies and....

I cant believe this is how I used my 700th post. ;)

Cheers,

NWGratefulDiver
April 13th, 2012, 07:13 AM
Bob, if you think it is just a marketing term and there is no implied "doing it wrong" then I need a hit of what you're smoking.
... then let me just point out, Ron, that the only person in this entire thread who has so far attempted to take it to a personal level by insulting someone they disagreed with is a non-DIR diver ... you.

So who is more deserving of stereotyping ???

Thankfully, here where I live, there is very little of this attitude ... by either the DIR or non-DIR community. And that which exists is easily ignored. In fact, our local GUE instructor is also a PADI instructor for the largest scuba chain store in our area ... and the store he works for sells both Zeagle and Halcyon ... as well as many other popular brands.

You complain that you cannot take Fundies in a Zeagle Ranger, ignoring the rather valid reasons why. That's your choice, but it begs the question why you would want to. As you and others continually point out, there are other ways you can obtain the skills to become a good diver. I teach for NAUI. I can and do teach those skills. One of my recent students was wearing a Zeagle Ranger, and did just fine.

DIR is one option for those who choose to dive that way. If you wish to stereotype those people, and to hold it against them ... or insult people like me who aren't DIR but who accept that their choices are valid ... then that says way more about you than it does about them.



I have the gear to fit the DIR lifestyle

... there is no DIR lifestyle ... there's a scuba diving lifestyle, and DIR is just one way to enjoy it. And that's really rather the point, Ron. You can either choose to go out and enjoy yourself, share your excitement about scuba with those who are also excited by it ... or you can choose "camps" comprised of your differences. That's really up to the individual, and has nothing whatsoever to do with your training or equipment choices.

It's all about attitude. I've never understood people who choose to take a negative attitude about something that we all do for fun, or the people who have chosen to do it a little bit differently than they have.


I was involved with the whole DIR set of problems we as mods had and it was not fun. We basically ended walling the DIR zealots off and that worked. It is still that way to this day. They have opt in areas and if you want to participate there you better be DIR. There is no tolerance for split fins or jacket BC's.
The creation of the DIR forum predates you as a moderator. I know this ... because I was a mod back then, was involved in the discussions ... in fact, at the time I thought it wasn't a good idea ... and you were not a part of those.

Frankly, Ron, you and a handful of other people who share your attitude are the main reason why the board admins felt that such a forum was necessary. It remains a problem today because ... even with a separate forum ... a few people such as yourself simply cannot allow a DIR discussion to take place ... even if it's just some DIR curious person asking a question ... without interjecting your negativity into the conversation. The opt-in forum was created as a place where people who have trained as DIR, and who have questions for similarly trained people, can go discuss those questions without having to fend off people such as yourself who just can't allow them to otherwise have that conversation without injecting your objections to their right to do so.

In other words, you did help create the "walls" you speak of ... not as a mod, but as someone who couldn't allow people to talk about DIR without having to listen to your complaints about what's wrong with it.

Do you also have objections to the solo forum? It exists for pretty much the same reasons ...

... Bob (Grateful Diver)

---------- Post added April 13th, 2012 at 03:44 AM ----------


My fault; I was not clear. I did not mean to imply that the GUE/DIR system should change its principles. I do not think that for a second.The OP solicited comments after reflecting it is "... incredibly sad that (a diver) had gotten such a bad impression of DIR people from this board.." when the reality is there are a number of fun and kind DIR divers (Which there are). My point is maybe after ten years of feeling sad and/or misunderstood it is time to change the way you (Not you or the OP specifically) talk to people on SB.

... I don't see any DIR folks in this or any other conversation saying "if you don't agree with me, then I want some of what you're smoking."

I do see someone who is not DIR ... and a memember of SB staff ... making that comment.

Do you hold him to the same behavioral expectations?

... Bob (Grateful Diver)

Rhone Man
April 13th, 2012, 07:57 AM
Lynne, I can empathise with your new friend. I certainly used to have a very negative impression of DIR before I met a number of DIR practitioners. I still find parts of the DIR philosophy quirky, but at the risk of quoting George W. Bush (!), I find there is more that unites us (love of diving) than divides us.

NWGratefulDiver
April 13th, 2012, 10:12 AM
I was involved with the whole DIR set of problems we as mods had and it was not fun. We basically ended walling the DIR zealots off and that worked.


I want to get back to this comment for a moment, just to set the record straight. The DIR forum was created in December 2003 ... nine months before you even joined the board, much less became a moderator. The creation of the board had nothing to do with a DIR set of problems. The idea was "born" from a thread that was started in 2002 titled "DIR: Hell Spawn or God's Gift" ... which proved to be rather popular among both DIR and non-DIR participants. As time went on, other threads that various members created were combined with it ... creating one of ScubaBoard's earliest megathreads. At the time that I became a moderator ... sometime in 2003 as I recall ... the discussion about creating a separate DIR forum was already in progress. As I mentioned earlier, I was initially not in favor of it ... because I believe that creating "camps" is divisive, and that people should be judged by their attitude and behavior ... not by their equipment or training choices. I still believe that way.

The DIR forum initially enjoyed a lot of success as a place where like-minded people could go and talk about the system. It had its ups and downs ... and people passed through who were not good representatives of that style of diving ... not because of the merits of the system, but because their attitude sucked. People also came through who had no interest in DIR, but just wanted to stir up trouble in the forum ... their attitude sucked too. As with all things, bad attitudes are independent of personal choices in this or any other activity.

Over time the forum became much less of a success because, since it was open to everybody, every thread ultimately got hijacked by non-DIR divers with an axe to grind and it became impossible to have a civil discussion about the merits or the system, or to answer questions from the DIR-curious. The people who were most qualified to participate ultimately decided it was a waste of time and moved on. You, Ron, were consistently one of the people who disrupted those conversations ... and as such did more to ensure the failure of the forum than contribute to its success.

After a time, those people who truly wanted a place where they could discuss DIR issues without the constant interruptions by the DIR-unfriendly asked for, and received, an opt-in forum with a moderator who is DIR-trained. You call it a wall ... yes it is ... but it is a self-imposed wall because it's the only way we could discuss anything without being disrupted by "protesters" every time we wanted to talk about something. So I'm not sure what "we" you're referring to, but the only participation you had in that was by being one of the disruptive influences that made conversation in an open forum impossible.

You're entitled to grind whatever axe you like as a participant in a thread, Ron ... but I seriously hope that as a staff member you are being recused from ANY moderator conversation or decision regarding DIR ... because you are clearly unwilling to do so objectively ... even to the point of personal attack ... i.e. referring to DIR divers as "zealots". Frankly, that sort of behavior is unbecoming of anybody who wants to represent this board in an official capacity ... because it shows that you are unwilling to treat a group of members here with the basic respect that they are entitled to ... the same respect you would expect to be treated with in return.

... Bob (Grateful Diver)

TSandM
April 13th, 2012, 10:40 AM
I really didn't and don't want this thread to turn into a "DIR versus the rest of the world" thread. DIR, as possibly poorly chosen as the word was (and GUE doesn't use it any more -- the only reason I do is that GUE isn't the only organization to take this KIND of tack) is one way to dive. Yes, perhaps some of us get a little overenthusiastic, simply because the system works so well for us that we can't believe it wouldn't be great for anybody (and honestly, I do believe that :) ). But people get wildly enthusiastic about their Zeagle BCs, or their DSS wings, and nobody thinks they're condescending or "preachy".

But there are a lot of ways to approach diving, and there's room in the ocean for all of us. The two points I wanted to make were a) that this particular diver had found we were not all jerks, and b) that he had found we were €‹the most fun to dive with!

DivemasterDennis
April 13th, 2012, 10:44 AM
As the co- author of The Scuba Snobs Guide to Diving Etiquette, and purveyor of "Scuba Snobs" logo items on our website, we are not loved by everyone either. However, we take a lighthearted and sometimes sarcastic approach to get across points about diving etiquette and in fact, dive safety. Not everyone loves our approach ( those who perhaps don't get our brand of humor) just like not everyone loves DIR. I am a cheerleader for recreational diving, I try to encourage others in everything I post or blog. Not everyone takes that approach. There is room in scuba for all of us. One can be serious and nice at the same time. Hopefully.
DivemasterDennis

Lemna
April 13th, 2012, 11:16 AM
But there are a lot of ways to approach diving, and there's room in the ocean for all of us. The two points I wanted to make were a) that this particular diver had found we were not all jerks, and b) that he had found we were €‹the most fun to dive with!

At least here on SB you can read the opinions of GUE/UTD/DIR/... divers. The local community is quite closed and inaccessible. AFAIK they use a closed mailing list. You need to apply for membership by writing a small essay and commit to taking Fundies within one year. If you don't finish the course successfully you are expelled from the list. It is not exactly welcoming and makes it really hard to find a DIR-minded buddy to see for yourself if it is an approach that would work for you.

HenrikBP
April 13th, 2012, 11:42 AM
... redundant black t-shirts ...

... Bob (Grateful Diver)

I think redundant black jeans were added to the SOP recently ... ;)

Heads up: I started GUE training 2-3 years ago, and was blissfully unaware of any DIR or anti-DIR "propaganda" at the time.

I was fortunate to be able to attend a GUE intro day with 2 outstanding (and very kind and patient) GUE instructors. When I saw their in-water skills and realized the comfort such skills would allow, I just had to "get me some of that".

It has since led to a lot of great, fun and comfortable diving with some of the nicest and most fun divers I've met in my relatively short diving career. I may have just been lucky, but I haven't met anyone in the DIR diving community I wouldn't also want to be around above water.

For me DIR diving is more about a mindset: that we all have a responsibility to each other - that we *all* have a safe and *fun* dive. A responsibility that starts well before we hit the water and extends until everyone is safely aboard, out of their gear and comfortably seated with a refreshment talking about the great dive we just had.

The gear is really just an aside to the mindset.

Henrik

Adobo
April 13th, 2012, 02:18 PM
... redundant black t-shirts ...

... Bob (Grateful Diver)

Actually, my question was sincere and honest.

For some people, its a lot of fun to participate in a dog piling session against a person or a group of people who seem like the villains. But are we sure we know who the "villains" are?

In this thread alone, we have all kinds of bad impressions that could easily be the result of interactions with someone who only looks the part but has absolutely no background in DIR:


I've seen plenty of threads started with "I'm looking for a BCD. I'm thinking about xxx and yyy. What are the pros and cons?" and quickly turn into "Get a BP/W. You'll thank me later", which usually isn't helpful, regardless of the poster's intentions.


also imply that "my opinion is the only correct one" and sadly it seems to me that DIR/wanna-DIR divers post such answers more frequently than others either because they just assume everyone to "know why they are right" or because they just subscribe to the DIR idea without really knowing WHY the DIR style of diving preferr the type of gear it preferr.



My first experience with a GUE person was during my first dive after open water and I can say I will never dive with her again. It was a dive run by one of the local shops on the weekend aimed at doing local dives within the limits of newer divers. When she looked at the sign up chart noted that I had just done my OW and pulled me aside and said "Ok you can come and dive with us just don't get me killed or ruin my dive". Simply put she was lucky I was in a good sense of humor. Funny thing is she as the DM for that Saturday dive should have expected newer divers.

I have no doubt that each of these people have had the negative experiences that they are describing. I am not convinced that in each of these cases, the guilty party or the villains have been people who have a real background in DIR (by that, I mean, has training from a instructor who teaches DIR principles).

First of all, I bet if we surveyed everyone on this thread, not everyone would agree what a DIR diver is. Second of all, even if we established what a "DIR" diver is, any random person can claim to be a DIR diver despite not meeting the agreed upon description. Third, people who do not even claim to be DIR (such as yourself) would still be commonly mis-identified as DIR.

Heck, take a look at this post:

DIR is rather a closed philosophy. DIR divers embrace one way of diving. You use a BP/W or your not DIR. If you dive Split fins then you are not DIR. There are DIR divers who refuse to dive with those who are not DIR. No matter how nice someone is, when they refuse to dive with someone because they are not DIR that can lead to problems.


This person posts so emphatically and with so much authority, you would think he has taken all kinds of instruction from GUE. I mean, he has the letter of the gear requirements right so he must know what he is talking about, right? When the truth of the matter is that itemizing gear requirements is meaningless unless there is the accompanying discussion as to why the gear is required. And the latter is actually the more important discussion. Because we always ask ourselves, what is it we are trying to accomplish? And only when we answer that do we ask the question, what tools do we need to accomplish the task?

And I won't even start with this "there are DIR divers who refuse to dive with those who are not DIR. No matter how nice someone is, when they refuse to dive with someone because they are not DIR that can lead to problems." business. Why a moderator is allowed to post something - so clearly out-of-context that it is unfair - is beyond me.

I am enjoying this thread thoroughly but I expect that it accomplishes little of the OP's original intent.

Tigerman
April 13th, 2012, 02:30 PM
Adobo, there is a few people on this board who is very vocal about being DIR divers and about the whole "get the BP/W or youll die" kinda statements.
Theres also a reason why i wrote DIR/Wanna-DIR, namely that some of them might just wanna-be rather than actually IS.
And no, its not been just once and yes, it has been better lately than it was a couple of years ago.

Adobo
April 13th, 2012, 02:40 PM
Adobo, there is a few people on this board who is very vocal about being DIR divers and about the whole "get the BP/W or youll die" kinda statements.
Theres also a reason why i wrote DIR/Wanna-DIR, namely that some of them might just wanna-be rather than actually IS.
And no, its not been just once and yes, it has been better lately than it was a couple of years ago.

Tigerman, I haven't seen it. Admittedly, I haven't looked in the BCs forum recently so...

If you have a few posts that you remember where someone said that (with a straight face, of course), I'd like to have a look. This seems like a common grievance against DIR divers so I expect there will be numerous examples.

eelnoraa
April 13th, 2012, 02:45 PM
http://www.scubaboard.com/forums/images/misc/quote_icon.png Originally Posted by Doomnova http://www.scubaboard.com/forums/images/buttons/viewpost-right.png (http://www.scubaboard.com/forums/basic-scuba-discussions/417086-somewhat-sad-conversation-last-night-post6303252.html#post6303252)
My first experience with a GUE person was during my first dive after open water and I can say I will never dive with her again. It was a dive run by one of the local shops on the weekend aimed at doing local dives within the limits of newer divers. When she looked at the sign up chart noted that I had just done my OW and pulled me aside and said "Ok you can come and dive with us just don't get me killed or ruin my dive". Simply put she was lucky I was in a good sense of humor. Funny thing is she as the DM for that Saturday dive should have expected newer divers.


This can come from a non-DIR/GUE/UTD diver as well if not more often. It is all about the particular diver, his/her personality, and nothing about diving organization

nimoh
April 13th, 2012, 02:49 PM
Actually, my question was sincere and honest.
This person posts so emphatically and with so much authority, you would think he has taken all kinds of instruction from GUE. I mean, he has the letter of the gear requirements right so he must know what he is talking about, right? When the truth of the matter is that itemizing gear requirements is meaningless unless there is the accompanying discussion as to why the gear is required. And the latter is actually the more important discussion. Because we always ask ourselves, what is it we are trying to accomplish? And only when we answer that do we ask the question, what tools do we need to accomplish the task?

And I won't even start with this "here are DIR divers who refuse to dive with those who are not DIR. No matter how nice someone is, when they refuse to dive with someone because they are not DIR that can lead to problems." business. Why a moderator is allowed to post something - so clearly out-of-context that it is unfair - is beyond me.

I am enjoying this thread thoroughly but I expect that it accomplishes little of the OP's original intent.

I don't see anything wrong with the post from RonFrank that you quoted. The fact is that DIR divers use BP/W and do not use split fins, to require every post like this to also include the reasons why every time it is posted is a little ridiculous.

He also makes no claim that DIR divers are not allowed to dive with non-DIR divers, merely that there are some DIR divers that choose not to dive with non-DIR divers which is also true. Furthermore, he goes on to state his opposition to this practice.

I don't think you will get a clear answer on how to determine if someone is DIR since it is a community rather than a formal organization. With no formal membership, anybody can claim to be DIR, and people are free to borrow pieces of DIR practice while ignoring other parts, and still claim to be DIR (even though they aren't).

For example, I am listed as Divemaster on ScubaBoard, I had to provide mods with my name, dob and instructor # in order to get this. I am also a member of the DIR Practitioner group which I just joined without any credentials.

Adobo
April 13th, 2012, 03:04 PM
I don't see anything wrong with the post from RonFrank that you quoted. The fact is that DIR divers use BP/W and do not use split fins, to require every post like this to also include the reasons why every time it is posted is a little ridiculous.

I agree. Everything he posted is correct. However, my point is, he comes across as someone who is knowledgeable about DIR when in fact, his knowledge is clearly limited. I say this because he has a desire to take fundies in a Zeagle BC which to me is analogous to wanting to take a motor cycle riding class and insisting that he be allowed to do it in a pick up truck.

Again, the point is, its not easy for the uninitiated to determine if the mean and rude comments are coming from a DIR person or someone who is just some random jerk.

mdb
April 13th, 2012, 03:05 PM
It seems that people who identify themselves as DIR-Doing it Right are often self congratulatory types who enjoy espousing their chosen form of diving.

There are a lot of very good divers out there and many who seem to be diving quite well without DIR.

It's nice that this small, but very vocal group, feel good about how "WE" do it. It is certainly not the only or even, maybe, the best way.

vcblklion
April 13th, 2012, 03:12 PM
Quite honestly, I learned about DIR from Scubaboard. The things I read made me want to investigate further and now I find myself pursuing the goal of learning how to dive DIR. Anyone that would form an opinion or judgement prior to investigation.......just isn't worth the effort of giving credibility to IMHO....just my $.02

Tigerman
April 13th, 2012, 03:15 PM
It seems that people who identify themselves as DIR-Doing it Right are often self congratulatory types who enjoy espousing their chosen form of diving.

There are a lot of very good divers out there and many who seem to be diving quite well without DIR.

It's nice that this small, but very vocal group, feel good about how "WE" do it. It is certainly not the only or even, maybe, the best way.
In one aspect it IS the best way though and that is the fact that both/all divers in a group goes in with the same gear configuration.

Wether or not the same thing can be accomplished with jacket BCDs, split fins, total silt-out trim and whatnot is another path of discussion, but having all the divers on the dive in the same configuration does make it easier to assist eachother if there is an incident as whoever has the issue has the same base configuration as you do yourself.

nimoh
April 13th, 2012, 03:24 PM
I agree. Everything he posted is correct. However, my point is, he comes across as someone who is knowledgeable about DIR when in fact, his knowledge is clearly limited. I say this because he has a desire to take fundies in a Zeagle BC which to me is analogous to wanting to take a motor cycle riding class and insisting that he be allowed to do it in a pick up truck.

Again, the point is, its not easy for the uninitiated to determine if the mean and rude comments are coming from a DIR person or someone who is just some random jerk.

My apologies, I was only reading the segment you quoted and didn't realize you were also referring to other posts (that I might not remember)

mathauck0814
April 13th, 2012, 03:25 PM
Our little group of GUE divers has a standing set of dives on Wednesday night. A bunch of us get together, and anybody who wants to join us is invited to do so. We get a fair number of newer divers, who enjoy the opportunity to go out with some experienced and solid folks. One of our recent companions is a young man who moved to Seattle rather recently. He is, as we all understand and empathize with, dive-mad, and has been getting out about every other day to dive somewhere, with someone.

He went to dinner with us last night. And he told me, over dinner, that before he moved to Seattle, he'd had a very negative impression of DIR divers -- which he said he had largely gotten off SCUBABOARD. He also said that, of all the people he's dived with since he's moved up here, our group is the nicest one . . . and the MOST FUN to dive with.

I thought it was incredibly sad that he had gotten such a bad impression of DIR people from this board. And I wanted to offer his impression, now that he's MET us, so that other newer divers who have gotten the same impression might know that at least one person has concluded he was wrong.

My experience with "DIR" divers (though honestly, it's just with GUE divers as the UTD folks I know out here are very friendly) locally has been overwhelmingly negative. While I can't say that I've interacted with a large number of GUE divers in southern California, those that I have had the "fortune" of speaking with were terribly exclusive. I don't mean to use exclusive to be synonymous with "elite", but rather the, "how dare I be forced to share my ocean with the likes of you". The attitude is wretched. I'm always open to having my mind changed, but first impressions and all...

Mitchell Teeters
April 13th, 2012, 03:29 PM
http://www.scubaboard.com/forums/images/misc/quote_icon.png Originally Posted by Doomnova http://www.scubaboard.com/forums/images/buttons/viewpost-right.png (http://www.scubaboard.com/forums/basic-scuba-discussions/417086-somewhat-sad-conversation-last-night-post6303252.html#post6303252)
My first experience with a GUE person was during my first dive after open water and I can say I will never dive with her again. It was a dive run by one of the local shops on the weekend aimed at doing local dives within the limits of newer divers. When she looked at the sign up chart noted that I had just done my OW and pulled me aside and said "Ok you can come and dive with us just don't get me killed or ruin my dive". Simply put she was lucky I was in a good sense of humor. Funny thing is she as the DM for that Saturday dive should have expected newer divers.


This can come from a non-DIR/GUE/UTD diver as well if not more often. It is all about the particular diver, his/her personality, and nothing about diving organization

While this may be true, there seem to me to be MORE DIR/GUE/UTD people with this attitude. Maybe this style of diving suits that personality we find distasteful? I know that these ambassadors have turned me of to even thinking about getting into this style of diving.

---------- Post added April 13th, 2012 at 02:30 PM ----------

In all honesty I have more of a beef with the DIR people.

vcblklion
April 13th, 2012, 03:32 PM
At least here on SB you can read the opinions of GUE/UTD/DIR/... divers. The local community is quite closed and inaccessible. AFAIK they use a closed mailing list. You need to apply for membership by writing a small essay and commit to taking Fundies within one year. If you don't finish the course successfully you are expelled from the list. It is not exactly welcoming and makes it really hard to find a DIR-minded buddy to see for yourself if it is an approach that would work for you.

That's funny....I looked up the membership to GUE here GUE Membership Levels | Global Underwater Explorers (http://www.globalunderwaterexplorers.org/membership/levels) and do not see the requirements you mention anywhere.

Ben Prusinski
April 13th, 2012, 03:38 PM
I have had positive and friendly experience with GUE and DIR divers. One group presented recently at a local dive shop and very open to new divers to learn the basics of GUE and DIR and intro to tech diving. For me, thats nice to know. Cave diving is an interest of mine but requires more advanced skills after the basics. GUE and DIR have good training from what I've read in these areas.

NWGratefulDiver
April 13th, 2012, 03:54 PM
In one aspect it IS the best way though and that is the fact that both/all divers in a group goes in with the same gear configuration.

Wether or not the same thing can be accomplished with jacket BCDs, split fins, total silt-out trim and whatnot is another path of discussion, but having all the divers on the dive in the same configuration does make it easier to assist eachother if there is an incident as whoever has the issue has the same base configuration as you do yourself.

There is no "best" ... there's a "best for me". Everyone's different. We all have different needs, desires, goals, and comfort levels. We all have different learning abilities, different limitations, and different ideas about what's important.

DIR appeals to a lot of different types of people and for a lot of reasons. It's tough to pigeonhole a group of people who represent a broad range of personalities, skill levels, and attitudes.

It's also not a good idea to look at someone in a backplate, long hose, and blade fins and assume they're DIR ... all of those things existed for years before DIR came along, and the majority of people who use that equipment are, in fact, not DIR.

We need to quit trying to categorize each other ... it's diving ... a recreational activity. Most folks have valid reasons for choosing the style, equipment, and mentality about diving that they do. It serves their needs.

Dive how ya like ... with whom you like ... in equipment you like. If someone else doesn't like it, don't let it ruin your day ... if someone doesn't want to dive with you, you're better off without them anyway. As Ricky Nelson so aptly put it ... "you can't please everyone, so ya got to please yourself".

We need to relax and go diving ... like these guys ... they don't give much of a crap about "best" ... they're just having fun ...

http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m257/NWGratefulDiver/Miscellaneous/threeamigos.jpg

... Bob (Grateful Diver)

Kingpatzer
April 13th, 2012, 04:40 PM
I've had very negative impressions of specific DIR people from both the board and a few I've met in person who've identified themselves as such.

I've also had very positive impressions of particular people, many of whom happen to be DIR/GUE/whatever trained divers and like diving in that fashion.

The problem is one of how a group is viewed compared to how specific individuals are viewed.

The DIR folks of old worked hard to earn a reputation that dogs them, while darn few people who are active DIR divers deserve the reputation, there are enough people, minority though they are, who ensure the stereotype continues.

And, as has been pointed out to me a few times, quite a few of those who are propagating the bad side of DIR tend to be folks who just finished a fundie course and who are a little high on the kool aide.

As for me, I hope to dive with some DIR folks from this board some day. I know there's more than a few people who are on my "get in touch with" list if I ever find myself in their vicinity with time to dive.

NWGratefulDiver
April 13th, 2012, 04:45 PM
The DIR folks of old worked hard to earn a reputation that dogs them, while darn few people who are active DIR divers deserve the reputation, there are enough people, minority though they are, who ensure the stereotype continues.


I disagree. Most of the folks who "worked hard to earn a reputation" aren't even diving anymore. Why blame those who are ... who have never done a thing to earn that reputation ... for the perceived sins of those who came before them?

That's like somebody blaming you for slavery ...

... Bob (Grateful Diver)

Lemna
April 13th, 2012, 04:53 PM
That's funny....I looked up the membership to GUE here GUE Membership Levels | Global Underwater Explorers (http://www.globalunderwaterexplorers.org/membership/levels) and do not see the requirements you mention anywhere.

vcblklion, I am talking about the local community (dir-nl/frogkick.nl), not about GUE in general.

vcblklion
April 13th, 2012, 04:55 PM
Anyway, I was at the time both keen as mustard about this new diving thing, and completely frustrated with the SSI classes i'd done. I felt I was passing classes without actually being taught how to be a better diver.

So for me, SB turned me ON to DIR diving. But i've only been here a little while.

I have to agree here. I'm a rescue diver under PADI and when a freind of mine started introducing me to the GUE philosophy (without being a jerk or zealot about it mind you....), my curiousity was piqued. I realized after he showed me just a little of the DIR philosophy that my PADI training didn't teach me ANYTHING about being a better diver...and that's why I went for Rescue training. After that I started doing research on my own and found much of my information about GUE/DIR here on scubaboard. I don't understand why some people would want to put down a system of diving because of a few egotistical people or because of an acronym such as DIR......If you take the time to see what all the hubub is about you will find a learning system that challenges you to be a better diver.....if you're not trying to improve your skills in a sport that can be life threating, why bother...?

Kingpatzer
April 13th, 2012, 05:07 PM
I disagree. Most of the folks who "worked hard to earn a reputation" aren't even diving anymore. Why blame those who are ... who have never done a thing to earn that reputation ... for the perceived sins of those who came before them?

That's like somebody blaming you for slavery ...

... Bob (Grateful Diver)

What do you disagree with:
Do you disagree that the folks of old earned a particular reputation that is not flattering? I think that's easy enough to show with a usenet search.
Do you disagree that the folks currently diving are dogged by that reputation? I think TSandM's threed that we're currently participating is an example of that being the case.
Do you disagree that few folks today deserve that reputation? It seems to me that you're arguing that very point.

It seems to me that you have acknowledged each of those points in this very thread.

Now, if your point is that it is unfair, I don't disagree with that nor did I argue it was either fair or deserved. However, fairness has nothing to do with it. The world isn't fair. People hold negative opinions of groups based on limited interactions. A small number of vocal, visible folks can ruin the great reputation of a large number of people doing good things very easily. That's just the way human beings work.

nimoh
April 13th, 2012, 05:08 PM
I wouldn't go so far as to say my PADI training has not taught me ANYTHING about being a better diver, but I agree that GUE has a lot more to offer in that respect.

Shasta_man
April 13th, 2012, 05:12 PM
Interestingly, I don't even know what DIR or GUE means.

NWGratefulDiver
April 13th, 2012, 05:34 PM
What do you disagree with:
Do you disagree that the folks of old earned a particular reputation that is not flattering? I think that's easy enough to show with a usenet search.
Do you disagree that the folks currently diving are dogged by that reputation? I think TSandM's threed that we're currently participating is an example of that being the case.
Do you disagree that few folks today deserve that reputation? It seems to me that you're arguing that very point.

It seems to me that you have acknowledged each of those points in this very thread.

Now, if your point is that it is unfair, I don't disagree with that nor did I argue it was either fair or deserved. However, fairness has nothing to do with it. The world isn't fair. People hold negative opinions of groups based on limited interactions. A small number of vocal, visible folks can ruin the great reputation of a large number of people doing good things very easily. That's just the way human beings work.

I disagree with this part ...



there are enough people, minority though they are, who ensure the stereotype continues.


Why should a minority ensure that a stereotype continues? I'd prefer to judge the few misbehavors as individuals, rather than stereotype a much larger group who doesn't deserve it.

"That's just the way it is" is a cop-out for people who are looking for a way to rationalize irrational behavior ...

... Bob (Grateful Diver)

---------- Post added April 13th, 2012 at 02:36 PM ----------


Interestingly, I don't even know what DIR or GUE means.

On this board it means another opportunity for some members to drag out old quarrels that should have been put aside a decade ago ...

... Bob (Grateful Diver)

Kingpatzer
April 13th, 2012, 05:59 PM
I disagree with this part ...



Why should a minority ensure that a stereotype continues? I'd prefer to judge the few misbehavors as individuals, rather than stereotype a much larger group who doesn't deserve it.

"That's just the way it is" is a cop-out for people who are looking for a way to rationalize irrational behavior ...

... Bob (Grateful Diver)



A minority ensure that a stereotype continues because human nature is what it is. You can feel that is unjust, unfair, and irrational. Guess what? Life isn't fair and human beings aren't rational.

dumpsterDiver
April 13th, 2012, 06:10 PM
I don't mean to be disrespectful of DIR divers, but.....if a particular group of divers are taught a particular way to dive and they are taught that this very particular way of diving is EXTREMELY well thought out, perfectly organized, optimized for all conditions, does NOT lend itself to personal preference or "tweaking", provides the highest degree of safety, requires a high degree of personal fitness, a dedication to team work, skill development (and maintenance) and is utilized by many of the most accomplished divers in the world.... and then you name it "Doing IT RIGHT".......

Well why wouldn't a certain number of these newly trained divers be very proud of their accomplishments and begin to exude an aire of superiority? It almost seems inevitable...

I'm sure it takes a lot of experience and exposure to many non-DIR divers who are "good and safe" before the idea that "I'M doing it RIGHT; so YOU must be doing it WRONG" begins to soften a little bit. :)

matts1w
April 13th, 2012, 06:13 PM
...he showed me just a little of the DIR philosophy that my PADI training didn't teach me ANYTHING about being a better diver...and that's why I went for Rescue training. After that I started doing research on my own and found much of my information about GUE/DIR here on scubaboard. I don't understand why some people would want to put down a system of diving because of a few egotistical people or because of an acronym such as DIR......If you take the time to see what all the hubub is about you will find a learning system that challenges you to be a better diver.....if you're not trying to improve your skills in a sport that can be life threating, why bother...?

PADI sucks? I might die?

NWGratefulDiver
April 13th, 2012, 06:14 PM
A minority ensure that a stereotype continues because human nature is what it is. You can feel that is unjust, unfair, and irrational. Guess what? Life isn't fair and human beings aren't rational.


People believe what they want to believe.

Put 25 people in a room. One of them starts acting like a jack-ass. Do you then stereotype everyone in the room as a jack-ass?

It depends on what you've already decided about that group of people. If you've decided before interacting with them that you won't like them, then you'll look for any reason to justify that decision. On the other hand, if you've decided that you'll judge them based on their overall behavior, then you'll discount the one as a jack-ass, and judge the rest according to their actions.

Life is exactly as fair as you decide to make it ...

---------- Post added April 13th, 2012 at 03:16 PM ----------



I'm sure it takes a lot of experience and exposure to many non-DIR divers who are "good and safe" before the idea that "I'm doing it right; so YOU must be doing it wrong" begins to soften a little bit. :)


... usually takes about a month for the bruises to wear off the ego ... then they come back to earth. Meantime, it's like dealing with teen-agers ...

... Bob (Grateful Diver)

Blackwood
April 13th, 2012, 08:02 PM
It's good to see that nothing's changed in my (more-or-less) hiatus from scubaboard.

Oy.

To paraphrase NWGratefulDiver's oft description of some DIR folks, I'm going back to be the best I can be at something else now (in particular: parenting).

vcblklion
April 13th, 2012, 08:29 PM
PADI sucks? I might die?


Not because you're PADI certified. You might be an excellent diver. I'm talking about MY experience and what I expect from the training I got. I'll share an experience. During my advanced class, I was going for my first night dive. I was partnered with my PADI instructor's brother. Not only did I have trouble getting in to the surf (as I wasn't very experienced doing it), my parter and I lost the instructor and the rest of the class 5 minutes into our dive. My partner signaled "UP" and I made my ascent. When I got there, my partner was nowhere to be found. I could see lights below but had no idea what they were doing. After being on the surface, in the dark, by myself for about 3-4 minutes....I went back in to shore. As this was only my 3rd shore dive...negotiating the surf back in was also a challenge. When the PADI instructor and the rest of my class finally came back to shore 30 minutes later....he made a joke about me in front of everyone to the effect of "why did you come back to shore...? we're here to dive..."

I could have taken that very uncomfortable experience and gone around shouting how much PADI sucks.....but I didn't. I just stated in my previous post that MY PADI training didn't prepare ME for being a better diver.....I have no idea what your training did for you. All I know is that what I've seen so far about GUE/DIR training is more in line with what I expect for being a better diver....MYSELF....and I posited that I don't understand why some people would take a few examples of egotisical divers and use that as a reason for comtempt of a system prior to investigation....

lamont
April 13th, 2012, 08:34 PM
vcblklion, I am talking about the local community (dir-nl/frogkick.nl), not about GUE in general.

They've got a very large community there and that mailing list is going to carry its own problems to manage. And based on their policy of requiring you to commit to fundies and kicking you out if you don't pass, I suspect that they've had incidents with vocal posters arguing why-cant-i-take-fundies-in-a-zeagle-ranger kinds of trolling that none of the members want to read.

lamont
April 13th, 2012, 08:49 PM
I don't understand why some people would want to put down a system of diving because of a few egotistical people or because of an acronym such as DIR......If you take the time to see what all the hubub is about you will find a learning system that challenges you to be a better diver.....if you're not trying to improve your skills in a sport that can be life threating, why bother...?

If you use a Mac, go surf around the internet for Mac zealots bashing Windows PCs. If you use Linux, you should have seen the fanboy zealots back on slashdot around 1998 or so... EPIC... Checkout out Richard Stallman sometime... He's sort of the GI3 of the Linux world (and yes, RMS can bite me, I'm still calling it Linux), only he's a bit weirder: Please Do Not Buy Richard Stallman a Parrot And Other Rules (http://gizmodo.com/5853729/please-do-not-buy-richard-stallman-a-parrot-and-other-rules) . If I stayed away from anything that had egotistical people involved, I'd have to be a buddhist monk living in some mountaintop in asia...

People that whine about someone they think was a GUE/DIR diver who told them they were going to die need *seriously* thicker skin.

NWGratefulDiver
April 13th, 2012, 08:50 PM
Not because you're PADI certified. You might be an excellent diver. I'm talking about MY experience and what I expect from the training I got. I'll share an experience. During my advanced class, I was going for my first night dive. I was partnered with my PADI instructor's brother. Not only did I have trouble getting in to the surf (as I wasn't very experienced doing it), my parter and I lost the instructor and the rest of the class 5 minutes into our dive. My partner signaled "UP" and I made my ascent. When I got there, my partner was nowhere to be found. I could see lights below but had no idea what they were doing. After being on the surface, in the dark, by myself for about 3-4 minutes....I went back in to shore. As this was only my 3rd shore dive...negotiating the surf back in was also a challenge. When the PADI instructor and the rest of my class finally came back to shore 30 minutes later....he made a joke about me in front of everyone to the effect of "why did you come back to shore...? we're here to dive..."


I love instructors like that. A few months ago I started offering a skills workshop specifically for people who are relatively newly certified and wanting more than they got out of their classes ... mostly they're interested in better buoyancy control, propulsion, trim, and buddy skills. Once word got out that I'm offering that class, I've had a steady stream of customers. I could teach nothing but that workshop and be busy almost every week-end ...

... Bob (Grateful Diver)

Kingpatzer
April 13th, 2012, 09:36 PM
People believe what they want to believe.

Put 25 people in a room. One of them starts acting like a jack-ass. Do you then stereotype everyone in the room as a jack-ass?


Do I? Or given a large enough population of observers will someone?

They are two different questions.

Are you offended by something I've said? Or are you offended because there are people who hold a poor opinion of DIR?

I'm unaware of anything I've posted in this thread prejudicial to DIR. Indeed, the only comment I made about DIR divers was that I had a negative experience with some of them, and that I hope to be able to dive with others that I've met on this board.

If you're not offended by something I've said, why are you taking general observations I'm making about the behaviors of populations of people and making it personal?




It depends on what you've already decided about that group of people. If you've decided before interacting with them that you won't like them, then you'll look for any reason to justify that decision. On the other hand, if you've decided that you'll judge them based on their overall behavior, then you'll discount the one as a jack-ass, and judge the rest according to their actions.

Life is exactly as fair as you decide to make it ...



Really - so I can stop kids dying of starvation and malnutrition the world over? 'Cause I don't think that's fair either.
And I can stop every prejudicial act by every person in the world acting on irrational biases too?

Oh, why didn't you tell me that I had the power to change human nature before?!

Or, maybe you might want to face the fact that you can be as high minded as you want, and people will still be people and they will still behave the way people behave and there's really little you can do about it.

elan
April 13th, 2012, 09:56 PM
How do you guys work out who is a DIR diver and who is not?

Do these guys get the same tattoo or something?

If you see a guy walking down the street, and when he scratches his ear with one hand his other hand starts shaking left to right left to right then he is "enlightened"

GShockey
April 13th, 2012, 10:55 PM
There are some practices of DIR that I aspire too have. Good trim and buoyancy control(the latter of which i have recently gotten down to the point where I can cruise a finger length above the bottom) stream lining of gear, proper maintenance of ones gear, and appropriate fitness to dive. But on the other coin especially as a newer diver I can see there are overzealous people who do forget that diving is also about enjoyment and take the DIR book and bash others over the head with it till they either A) submit or B) leave the thread. I think what comes out of this is the tone of the discussion whether implied or not. Most divers be it new or not ( more so for the latter) who come here and ask questions are probably nervous as well since odds are they are not regulars who have been reading here for year or may not be used to electronic forms of communication (which can easily be misinterpreted).

My first experience with a GUE person was during my first dive after open water and I can say I will never dive with her again. It was a dive run by one of the local shops on the weekend aimed at doing local dives within the limits of newer divers. When she looked at the sign up chart noted that I had just done my OW and pulled me aside and said "Ok you can come and dive with us just don't get me killed or ruin my dive". Simply put she was lucky I was in a good sense of humor. Funny thing is she as the DM for that Saturday dive should have expected newer divers. Needless to say I have not gone back to that shop to do a weekend dive since and honestly it made me look down on the whole GUE/DIR crew quite a bit from an initial meeting. Despite my respect for their work towards perfectionism. This is also despite the fact that every other person i have dove with notes how good my trim is and my buoyancy control is and the lack of dangling articles. It could be a once off sort of thing but it does from first impressions leave and impression that GUE/DIR folks are a bunch of assholes (not saying they are) who only respect others like themselves. Will i take a GUE/DIR course down the road perhaps, but I also remember the events of that day quite well and will make me a bit nervous when it comes to that training.

Greetings,

I'm sorry to hear you had a bad experience. Not surprisingly I know most of the GUE community here and I am surprised this happened. As Bob mentioned earlier (Hi Bob :-) ) please feel free to contact me at gs@gue.com and we can arrange to go diving. I will also introduce you to many other members of the local GUE community and we will see if we can't fix your first impression :-) No, you don't have to have any special equipment and feel free to bring as many questions as you like. At the recreational level I think you will find we are more concerned with dangling participles rather than dangling articles....:-)

Best,

Guy

Doomnova
April 13th, 2012, 11:43 PM
Greetings,

I'm sorry to hear you had a bad experience. Not surprisingly I know most of the GUE community here and I am surprised this happened. As Bob mentioned earlier (Hi Bob :-) ) please feel free to contact me at gs@gue.com and we can arrange to go diving. I will also introduce you to many other members of the local GUE community and we will see if we can't fix your first impression :-) No, you don't have to have any special equipment and feel free to bring as many questions as you like. At the recreational level I think you will find we are more concerned with dangling participles rather than dangling articles....:-)

Best,

Guy
Give me a sec to pick my jaw up off the ground.

Thank you for your offer Guy. i'm not going to ask you to come down to Victoria just for me. But I will email you and when your in the area I would be more than glad to hop in the water with you. I don't plan to be diving much for the next few weeks anyways as those dear thing called Final exams are circling me like I'm a a frozen bait chunk dangling on a line waiting for consumption.

Regards,

Gordon

GShockey
April 14th, 2012, 12:32 AM
Give me a sec to pick my jaw up off the ground.

Thank you for your offer Guy. i'm not going to ask you to come down to Victoria just for me. But I will email you and when your in the area I would be more than glad to hop in the water with you. I don't plan to be diving much for the next few weeks anyways as those dear thing called Final exams are circling me like I'm a a frozen bait chunk dangling on a line waiting for consumption.

Regards,

Gordon
Gordon,

I would be more than happy to make the trip to your dive site of choice for a dive. I do this for fun. :-). If it is just you that is perfectly fine. Let me know when you are available and good luck with finals. I have a very flexible schedule so you chose the time.

Best,

Guy

TSandM
April 14th, 2012, 12:49 AM
BTW, this exchange between Doomnova and GShockey is MUCH more what I'm used to . . .

I am going to write to one of the Dutch GUE instructors and find out if it is true that all GUE activities there are closed . . . I find it difficult to believe that there is no outreach going on, because I know JP and his wife reasonably well, and I know both of them would welcome people who are curious about the system.

vcblklion
April 14th, 2012, 12:53 AM
I love instructors like that. A few months ago I started offering a skills workshop specifically for people who are relatively newly certified and wanting more than they got out of their classes ... mostly they're interested in better buoyancy control, propulsion, trim, and buddy skills. Once word got out that I'm offering that class, I've had a steady stream of customers. I could teach nothing but that workshop and be busy almost every week-end ...

... Bob (Grateful Diver)

Yeah...he was awesome....I didn't even get into the story about when I asked him to help me review the dive tables and he told me "that's why I have a dive computer...." Yup....I sure learned a LOT in his Advanced Open Water class......

Doomnova
April 14th, 2012, 01:33 AM
I also would be more than willing to take feedback on my dive skills as I really am one of those who wants to be the best at what I do.

I'm done finals on the 25th of the month and I don't have classes again till the 14th of May (yay summer classes I'm a glutton for punishment). So anytime between those 2 dates I will surely be free. TSandM I'm not saying all people are like I mentioned in my post but as a new diver at the time I makes me apprehensive about going back to do dives with that shop/person and also about a group I aspired to eventually be part of because I do want my skills to be the best and the safest. I'm also aperson who gives groups and people second chances as well.

tadawson
April 14th, 2012, 01:40 AM
I've only met one GUE diver . . .

And he made me think that "DIR" stood for Douchebag In Residence.

The most conceited, self-absorbed, arrogant bastard I have ever met in diving . . . .

Granted, a sample set of one does not define the organization, but it sure made a strong first impression . . .

- Tim

TSandM
April 14th, 2012, 02:12 AM
Well, Tim, that's why I posted this thread. A single experience really shouldn't generalize. Even a set of anecdotes isn't data. And the young man I had dinner with the other night had found that out.

BVickery
April 14th, 2012, 03:29 AM
BTW, this exchange between Doomnova and GShockey is MUCH more what I'm used to . . .

I am going to write to one of the Dutch GUE instructors and find out if it is true that all GUE activities there are closed . . . I find it difficult to believe that there is no outreach going on, because I know JP and his wife reasonably well, and I know both of them would welcome people who are curious about the system.

I agree, there seems to be a much better outreach from GUE to get more people learning to dive in a more correct manner (by that, I am talking about skills). Before I had some serious medical issues I had a standing invite to dive the springs with a group of GUE divers out of the Atlanta area that are on this board.

NWGratefulDiver
April 14th, 2012, 08:21 AM
Give me a sec to pick my jaw up off the ground.

Thank you for your offer Guy. i'm not going to ask you to come down to Victoria just for me. But I will email you and when your in the area I would be more than glad to hop in the water with you. I don't plan to be diving much for the next few weeks anyways as those dear thing called Final exams are circling me like I'm a a frozen bait chunk dangling on a line waiting for consumption.

Regards,

Gordon

I encourage you to take Guy up on his offe. I can tell you this much from my one week-end diving in Victoria area with him ... he loves to dive. And like a lot of us who just love to dive, he enjoys taking new divers diving. Many experienced divers do ... it renews our enthusiasm for things we might otherwise start taking for granted.

Good luck with those finals ... one nice thing about diving, once you've reached a point where it's not a struggle anymore, is that it becomes a great outlet for relieving the stresses we face in our topside life ...

... Bob (Grateful Diver)

Doc Harry
April 14th, 2012, 09:13 AM
TSandM

As you know from our previous discussions, I had a bad impression about GUE folks from the Internet but I was still interested in the GUE concept.

My personal experience with GUE folks during GUE Fundamentals was as negative as it can get. "Assholes."

Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but the negative publicity that GUE gets is well-deserved.

The good news, as you mentioned, is that the asshole instructor is no longer teaching Fundamentals.

Wookie
April 14th, 2012, 09:29 AM
Sigh. When I learned it, we just called it Hogarthian or tech, and had Bill teach us, or had someone taught by Bill teach us. Then it became a cult, and and a bunch of cultists took it as their own, changed the name, and created a religion. Lynne, not ever meeting you or Peter (or Bob), I would consider you "Hogarthian trained" by GUE, but not members of the religion, that is, you seem to be able to think outside the religion. However, like any members of a cult, there will be those Baptists that are just Christians, and then there's the Westboro Baptists, which doesn't resemble any type of other Christianity I've ever seen.

If you can't tell the difference between a Westboro Baptist and the other kind, you will be likely to paint Hogarthian divers with the same broad brush as the cultists within the DIR/GUE/WKPP crowd (our way is the only way to heaven, or in this case, diving nirvana). Remember, the loud ones with the signs aren't necessarily representative of the whole group. In fact, the loud ones with the signs probably aren't representative of the group at all.

Tigerman
April 14th, 2012, 10:22 AM
Sigh. When I learned it, we just called it Hogarthian or tech, and had Bill teach us, or had someone taught by Bill teach us. Then it became a cult, and and a bunch of cultists took it as their own, changed the name, and created a religion. Lynne, not ever meeting you or Peter (or Bob), I would consider you "Hogarthian trained" by GUE, but not members of the religion, that is, you seem to be able to think outside the religion. However, like any members of a cult, there will be those Baptists that are just Christians, and then there's the Westboro Baptists, which doesn't resemble any type of other Christianity I've ever seen.
...

Those Westboro Baptists doesnt resemble any sane person I ever met :o

dumpsterDiver
April 14th, 2012, 11:05 AM
Those Westboro Baptists doesnt resemble any sane person I ever met :o

They are a weird group. Most of us like dive flags and all they can say is "die fags"..

Wookie
April 14th, 2012, 11:23 AM
They are a weird group. Most of us like dive flags and all they can say is "die fags"..
Warning: Off topic post

We had a local in Key West who was a member. I haven't seen him in about a year, but he used to stand on a street corner with a sign stating that God hates Fags. I always wanted to get my own sign, and when I saw him, stand next to him with my "God Loves Boobies, show yours now" I never got around to it, and feel badly that I didn't. Unfortunately, his police record showed many arrests for fighting, as well as some for public homosexual sex, so this was one crazy confused individual.

Now, back to another GUE/DIR/Hogarthian thread.

FoxHound
April 14th, 2012, 12:09 PM
When I first started diving doubles and working down the tech realm, I had a GUE trained tech 2 diver helping me along. Showed me the ropes, showed my the DIR concept and actually explained it to me and left it up to me to decide which training I would take. He made a very good case for GUE and I had signed up for fundamentals. Being military I ended up getting deployed so I had to withdraw from the class. Shortly after returning I met Steve Lewis, and one thing he said to me sticks out in my mind: "Do What Works" (I believe its in his book as well). So since then, I had started down the sidemount path....and a nice shoulder injury has solidified that choice. Plus after reading a lot of the GUE material, there is some of their policies that just don't make sense to me or I just don't agree with. Thats my personal opinion, YMMV.

Since then I have had a chance to dive with DIR and non-DIR folks, most are very happy just to be in the water diving. There is one guy up here that is just more then happy to dive with anyone and help then out as much as possible even if you aren't a GUE diver. Its a shame that a few bad apples ruin it for people but unfortunately that's how it goes.....stupid actions of a few ruin it for everyone, and that just doesn't happen in diving, it happens everywhere.

Hoomi
April 14th, 2012, 12:20 PM
No, he was very clear. He thought we were all jerks and dive Nazis.

Ve haf vays of making you dive right! :D

I think part of the problem is that tone is not conveyed through written conversations. How a statement is perceived is very often dependent on the inflection used by the speaker, and this is completely lacking on our forums. In person, the same statement can sound like friendly advice, while if we project an authoritarian perception onto it in written form, it will sound like superior condescension.

Having stuck around here for a while, I've learned that some of the people who, at first, struck me as demeaning and dismissive, ended up being the ones who were most helpful and knowledgable. In most cases, my perception of them was determined by how I read them, and not really by how they intended their posts to come across.

TSandM
April 14th, 2012, 01:03 PM
The good news, as you mentioned, is that the asshole instructor is no longer teaching Fundamentals.

Well, Harry, maybe GUE is doing something right?

There is something of a "generation gap" in DIR diving . . . in the days of the rec.scuba battles, I think the GUE folks tended to take a more stiff-necked tone. Today's GUE instructors don't seem to be like that (and from discussions with recent -- last few years -- GUE instructor trainees, they confirm my impression) and I think they are really making an effort to make sure that their students don't pick that up from them.

DD, you make a good point about people who take up the system and find it good becoming insufferable. My good friend NW Grateful Diver has a 30-day gag rule for Fundies graduates . . . but sometimes I think it should be more like a couple of years :)

BTW, I think everybody knows I'm a GUE supporter in a big way. But my two favorite cave diving buddies (other than my husband) are not GUE divers at all!

Roko
April 14th, 2012, 02:38 PM
I must be doing somethign wrong, then. :) I'm a new GUE-F graduate, and I still dive with my non-GUE buddies. Although I've mentioned the positives of the course to them, and why I like the GUE system, I'm not preaching to them and trying to change them. I also don't think I'm God's gift to the diving world. Maybe I just crossed the "I-Know-It-All" stage into the "I-Don't-Know-It-All" stage well before I took Fundies.

I think the key take-away is that "DIR" divers who are assholes, would still be assholes if "DIR" never existed. Some (wo)men just want to watch the world burn. This goes for non-"DIR" agencies as well...

I dive for fun. Agency/Shop/Training politics ruins the fun. My best advice, don't dive with those who are jerks. -- There are way more great divers who are a blast to dive with and hand out on an SI with, regardless of their agency/training/etc.

farsidefan1
April 14th, 2012, 04:12 PM
My impression has been that the DIR crowd, like all crowds is a mixed bag. My first impression a couple of years ago was, well, horrible. As this is now a pg rated site I can't say what my initial impressions were. Then as I got more experience I noted how helpful some DIR advocates could be without The pompous condescending attitude. Over the last couple of yrs I find that the jerks are FAR outnumbered by helpful, insightful advocates. Hopefully the needle keeps moving in that direction. As to those who feel it is just a matter of the posters deemed "jerks" by some of us because we were unable to see their nonverbal signals of "sweetness" -NOT! They are jerks. Fortunately they are few, unfortunately they tend to post a lot. Those are my impressions. Funny that the most helpful and considerate of the DIR group started this thread. She has probably never offended anyone in her life. Thanks again for your help on several occasions.The same can be said for most of the rest of the group.

TSandM
April 14th, 2012, 05:18 PM
She has probably never offended anyone in her life.

You should go back and read some of the threads I started when I first discovered DIR diving . . . One of them, you can't, because it ended up getting deleted!

I will confess to being an elitist snob, though, as a result of my GUE training.








I hate silt . . . :)

katepnatl
April 14th, 2012, 06:09 PM
You should go back and read some of the threads I started when I first discovered DIR diving . . . One of them, you can't, because it ended up getting deleted!

Oh c'mon... ya know we can't leave that one alone! If you won't post a link, then the date range, at least?!?!? ;)

Thalassamania
April 14th, 2012, 07:18 PM
Our little group of GUE divers has a standing set of dives on Wednesday night. A bunch of us get together, and anybody who wants to join us is invited to do so. We get a fair number of newer divers, who enjoy the opportunity to go out with some experienced and solid folks. One of our recent companions is a young man who moved to Seattle rather recently. He is, as we all understand and empathize with, dive-mad, and has been getting out about every other day to dive somewhere, with someone.

He went to dinner with us last night. And he told me, over dinner, that before he moved to Seattle, he'd had a very negative impression of DIR divers -- which he said he had largely gotten off SCUBABOARD. He also said that, of all the people he's dived with since he's moved up here, our group is the nicest one . . . and the MOST FUN to dive with.

I thought it was incredibly sad that he had gotten such a bad impression of DIR people from this board. And I wanted to offer his impression, now that he's MET us, so that other newer divers who have gotten the same impression might know that at least one person has concluded he was wrong.
If you recall, back in '06, I posted:

...

Another approach (the one I use for those days that I can't "use the force") is to glue a small (1/2 x 1 inch) neoprene nose block in the nose pocket of my mask. Mask squeeze helps since it seals my nose against the block, and when I exhale through my nose my ears first clear and then my mask equalizes.

You and I had a very reasonable and rational exchange involving maintaining positive pressure in the pharynx, but ... I got flames from the DIR side that stated that this was not DIR, this was an equipment solution to a skill problem, how gluing something in a mask that might come loose was not a good idea, how no one should ever modify gear themselves, etc., etc., etc.

I hope that you do not mind fielding another question. Something came up in discussion on another board that raised a question issue that I though might have some light shed upon it here.

In imitation of my old oval Swim Master Wide View mask I glue a small (perhaps ” x 1”) neoprene pad in the nose pocket of my current masks. My nostrils are completely, but gently, occluded by this pad. If I exhale gently, air goes by, but if I exhale more forcefully (or push my nose … well actually the nose pocket of my mask) against anything (forearm, instrument housing, back of my hand, etc.) I can close off my nostrils and equalize. I learned this using old style oval masks and commercial gear (Band Masks and Helmets). This lets me stay ahead of the need to clear by keeping slight positive pressure in my pharynx (during exhilaration) whenever I descent.

I suggested that this might help some folks who are task loaded with suit inflator, wing inflator, a scooter, etc., and find that they’ve “run out of hands.” The question was raised as to if it “was DIR” to “modify” your mask in this manner.

Any thoughts that I might share?


It certainly isn't DIR to do this. You are adding extra equipment to make up for something that could be solved with skill and practice.

What happens if the pad comes unstuck? What about your backup mask? What about your team's backup masks? What happens if you give a team member a backup mask with this pad added when they are not expecting it?

If you are worried about trying to clear your ears while doing other tasks, there are other ways of doing it other than by using the valsalva maneuver.

HTH
J
and it went on, until finally resolved by Peter:

From Peter Steinhoff:

I can't see any problems with that modification. I sometimes use a similar technique because I let my mask slide up a bit so that the nose pocket is close to my nostrils and I can to some extent equalize the same way.

One has to remember that equalizing is different for different divers. Some can do it by just wiggling their jaws and some have to use a proper valsalva or other technique. With your modification one would just have added another way of doing it in addition to the rest - another tool in the toolbox so to speak.

To keep in mind though is that we in general strive for ambidextrous operation of our equipment, even if we have a default like light in the left hand and scooter in the right. A proficient diver should be capable of riding a scooter both left and right handed, be able to use left or right hand for operating the wing, holding the primary light, reels etc. As long as the mask "modification" is not used as an excuse to NOT develop these ambidextrous skills there are no problems. To use a favorite buzz word in the dir community we could say that we still need to be "thinking divers".

feel free to post my response wherever you see fit.
I was appalled at the vehemence, venom and lack of actual cognition demonstrated by some of the responses. There were similar unthinking responses to question about dry suit material:

When diving a 7mil uncompressed neoprene suit, the suit material is part of your insulation, as it compresses you add air to compensate for that compression, just as you would add air to compensate for the compression of any gas based (and aren’t the all) insulation. If you're smart enough to have gotten one made of GN231N, then it compresses less than does other gas-based insulations. This is nothing more than urban myth.

On the other hand, the big plus to DIR is standardization. My divers have always dove the way I taught/told them to. I’ve always stayed open to changes and innovations, but have never moved rapidly to incorporate them. When you dive a “team approach,” a marginally non-optimum, but standardized, solution to an issue is in most cases preferable to an “everybody do their own thing” approach.

The problem with DIR is that when a new idea or suggestion comes up some folks seem to get disoriented and run about like a chicken with its head cut off. Permit me to harken back to our recent discussion of the length of BP/W hoses that got into my suggestion that a by 1 inch piece of neoprene glued in the nose pocket of your mask could help, which was met by cries of derision until I posted Peter’s note to me (http://www.scubaboard.com/showthread.php?p=2356279#post2356279)that said is was OK and the DIR dives should be thinking divers. There’s not been a word in response here or on DIREXPLORERS since I put his post up. I would have no hesitation at taking a group of thinking DIR divers out to do complex research tasks just as I do divers trained to AAUS standards, but I’d have to screen carefully to be damn sure that the unimaginative, auto-authoritarians, were left behind, because IMHO, they’re more dangerous than a PADI/NAUI/SSI/SDI/XYZ two day wonder (who at least knows that he or she don’t know poo).

NWGratefulDiver
April 14th, 2012, 07:27 PM
If you recall, back in '06, I posted:

You and I had a very reasonable and rational exchange involving maintaining positive pressure in the pharynx, but ... I got flames from the DIR side that stated that this was not DIR, this was an equipment solution to a skill problem, how gluing something in a mask that might come loose was not a good idea, how no one should ever modify gear themselves, etc., etc., etc. I was appalled at the vehemence, venom and lack of actual cognition demonstrated by some of the responses.

... most folks like that burn out after a few years, quit diving, and move on to becoming "the best" at some other recreational activity. They're worth arguing with, if you enjoy that sort of thing ... but not worth taking seriously.

I run into many people like that who are vehemently anti-DIR ... and just as insufferable as the people they like to complain about ...

... Bob (Grateful Diver)

TSandM
April 14th, 2012, 08:01 PM
I started diving in the summer of '05, and took Fundies that fall.

Thalassamania
April 14th, 2012, 08:22 PM
Here is a post that sums up my thoughts about the whole matter (back in Dec of 2008):


“What is DWW?” is an interesting thought exercise. What is DIR is rather clear … there’s a rule book (more or less) written by a cadre of authorities that is not hard to interpret. It is relatively rigid, dogmatic, inflexible and (if the proof is in the pudding) works real well. DIR draws flak from many elements in the diving industry for many different reasons, but the primary ones are, I think, economic, ego and past leadership personality problems.

I’ll leave the “ego” objections and past leadership problem to the realm of, “common knowledge.”

Some of the manufacturers don’t like DIR because their products are disparaged or they see it as too much investment in producing a diver per dollar of gear sales. Some of the agencies don’t like it because they follow the manufacturer’s lead, or because they are too far down their chosen path to turn back and they find it more cost effective to denigrate DIR than to redo their materials and retrain their people.

So now GUE has come through with a ten pool, ten O/W dive, 60 hour, DIR based entry-level program. Will the divers it produces be “better” than those coming out of current 18 hour, 4 dive recreational programs? Of course they will. Will the new GUE diver be “better” than someone who received conventional training that included some suite of additional courses (OW, Buoyancy, AOW, Rescue, Specialties?) I think the answer is still yes … but no quite as emphatically. I suspect that we‘d see two rather distinct distributions (measuring “betterness” on the abscissa and “numbers” on the ordinate):


A broad curve that describes "most" divers, those with non-DIR training that would include everything from a 18 hour course up through a 100 hour course.
The DIR course graduates (narrower curve) should have a high “betterness” score with a very low standard deviation,

The more conventional group would (again … I suspect) have a lower mean with a much higher standard deviation. It is these “tails” that are of interest to me. The “tail” on the down side (shown in red) indicate divers that are distinctly inferior to the DIR group, and the “tail” on the right side (green) indicates the few divers that are more capable (more better?) than the DIR group.
http://www.scubaboard.com/gallery/data/500/medium/base.JPG
My interest in diver training rests within that upside tail. My experience is that most divers with about 100 hours of training and 14 to 16 open water dives fall into that tail. But that’s just what one would expect a positive relationship between the “Betterness Score” and amount of effectively provided training (as measured by hours and number of dives).

Continued

Thalassamania
April 14th, 2012, 08:22 PM
So what does this mean to the concept of DWW? First let’s try and define our “Betterness Score” a bit:

There is a model out there know as the “Dreyfus Model” that suggests that in the acquisition and development of a skill, a learner (diver) passes through five levels of proficiency: novice, beginner, competent, proficient, and expert. These different levels are reflected in changes in three general aspects of skilled performance:


A switch from reliance on abstract principles to development (and use) of paradigms based on experience..
A change in situational awareness that produces the ability triage and prioritize inputs as a complete whole in which only certain parts are relevant rather than compiling them as equally weighted data points
A move from a third person view of a detached observer to a first person view of someone who is directly involved in their environment and is actively engaged in the situation.

Think of your own areas of experience in diving. Rate your areas of diving (e.g., air < 130 FSW, EAN, TriMix, DIR, Diving Mastering, Instructing, Wreck Diving, Cave Diving, etc) on an "expertise scale" of 1 to 5, with 1 being "novice" and 5 being "expert" according to the descriptions below:

Stage 1: Novice

Beginners have had no experience of the situations in which they are expected to perform. Novices are taught rules to help them perform. The rules are context-free and independent of specific cases; hence the rules tend to be applied universally. The rule-governed behavior typical of the novice is extremely limited and inflexible. As such, novices have no "life experience" in the application of rules.

Diving knowledge is minimal and solely 'textbook.’ It does not connect decisions with actions and ignores the context in which the action will be taken. The available suite of skills rigidly adhere to learned rules, other responses are not readily available. The possible use of knowledge for planning is without situational awareness and lacks discretionary judgment. The diver has available only rational decision making tools, nothing is intuitive or holistic. Individual actions are seen (and taken) in isolation with no conception of, or capability to deal with, complexity. Performance is unlikely to be satisfactory unless closely supervised.
Stage 2: Beginner
Beginners are those who can demonstrate marginally acceptable performance, those who have coped with enough real situations to note, or to have pointed out to them by a Divemaster, Instructor or mentor, the recurring meaningful situational components. These components require prior experience in actual situations for recognition. Principles to guide actions begin to be formulated. The principles are based on experience.

The diver has developed a working knowledge of key aspects of tasks and appreciates that complex diving situations exist. Since situational awareness is limited, all attributes and aspects tend to be treated separately and given equal importance. Though the begins to use global characteristics of situations that are recognized from limited prior experience, problems are primarily solved by using rote guidelines for action that are based on a situation’s attributes. The diver is starting to make rudimentary attempts to decide on appropriate actions in context, but is limited to applying actions as a series of steps, and thus can not be expected to successfully resolve complex situations. Though supervision is needed for the accomplishment of the overall task, straightforward tasks likely to be completed to an acceptable standard and the beginner is able to achieve some steps using own judgment.
Stage 3: Competent
Competence develops as the diver begins to see his or her actions in terms of how they effect the entire dive and dive team. The competent diver can create a dive plan that establishes a goal and waypoints based on considerable conscious, abstract, analytic contemplation of the potential problem. The conscious, deliberate planning that is characteristic of this skill level helps achieve efficiency and organization. The competent diver lacks the speed and flexibility of the proficient diver but does have a feeling of mastery and the ability to cope with and manage the many contingencies of the diving discipline in which they are involved. The competent diver does not yet have enough experience to developed nuanced situational awareness that provides both an overall picture and an instinctive grasp of which aspects are most important.

The diver now has a good working, as well as some background, knowledge of diving and as a result can deal with knowledge in context. Recognition of relevance is now present. Actions are seen, at least partly, in terms of longer-term goals. The dive is able to cope with simple multiple, simultaneous, competing inputs. Sees actions (at least partially) in terms of longer-term goals. The diver performs best with standardized and routine procedures, but is able to achieve most tasks using own judgment and can engage in conscious and deliberate planning. Skills are fit for the purpose intended, though may lack refinement.
Stage 4: Proficient
The proficient diver’s situational awareness focus wholes rather than parts or aspects, and actions are guided by maxims. Proficient divers understand a situation as a whole because they perceive its meaning in terms of accomplishing the dive. The proficient diver learns from experience what typical events to expect in a given situation and how plans that have been made and agreed to may need to be modified in response to events. The proficient diver recognizes when the expected normal progression of a dive moves off course. This holistic understanding improves the proficient diver’s decision making; it becomes less labored because the diver has a perspective on which of the many existing attributes and aspects of the present situation are most important and which should be ignored or put aside for the moment. The proficient diver uses maxims as guides which reflect what often might appear to the novice or beginner diver or even the competent diver, as unintelligible nuances of the situation; they can mean one thing at one time and quite another thing later. Once one has a deep understanding of the situation overall, however, the maxim provides direction as to what must be taken into account. Maxims reflect nuances of the situation.

Posses a depth of understanding of the disciplines that make up diving as well and those specific to diving so that the diver can make a holistic assessment in context rather than just an analytic one. The diver can deal with complex situations holistically, and decision-making is more confident. Performing to a fully acceptable standard is routine, as is seeing what is most important in a situation. Deviations from the normal pattern are quickly perceived. Decision-making is less labored. Maxims are used for guidance, but there is understanding that conclusions will (and should) vary according to the situation. The diver sees the overall 'picture' and how individual actions fit within it. The diver is able to take full responsibility for own work (and that of others where applicable).
Stage 5: The Expert
The expert diver no longer relies on an analytic principle (rule, guideline, maxim) to connect her or his understanding of the situation to an appropriate action, except in unique circumstances. The expert diver, posses an enormous background of experience that has jelled into an intuitive grasp of each situation and that subliminally focuses in on the problem without wasteful consideration of a large range of unfruitful, alternative solutions. The expert operates from a deep understanding of the total situation. The chess master, for instance, when asked why he or she made a particularly masterful move, will just say: "Because it felt right; it looked good." The expert diver is no longer consciously aware of features and rules; his or her performance is fluid, flexible and highly proficient. This is not to say that the expert never uses analytic tools. Highly skilled analytic ability is necessary for those situations with which the expert diver has had no previous experience (because in those situations the expert is, in fact, operating at a lesser grade). The expert diver has learned how to be the best possible Novice, Beginner, Competent or Proficient Diver that the situation and moment requires. Analytic tools are also necessary for those times when the expert gets an incorrect grasp of the situation and then perceives that events are not proceeding as was expected. Since alternative perspectives are rarely available to a diver, even when par of a team, the diver’s only way out of a wrong grasp of the problem is by using analytic problem solving.

The diver is capable of making correct decisions on an intuitive basis (e.g., no longer needs to rely on rules, guidelines or maxims) and posses authoritative knowledge of disciplines that make up diving that leads to a deep tacit understanding and a holistic and intuitive grasp of situations. In complex situations, the diver moves easily between intuitive and analytical approaches, using analytic approaches used only in completely novel situations or when problems occur. The diver sees the overall 'picture' and simultaneously grasps alternative approaches. Is comfortable taking responsibility for going beyond existing standards and creating original interpretations using a vision of what is possible. Excellence is achieved with relative ease.
I suggest that most divers trained today are lucky to reach the Beginner level, if fact they are really still novices. With additional tutelage (Buoyancy, AOW, Rescue, Specialties) they usually will reach the Beginner level, but fall short of Competent, lacking the ability to see actions in terms of longer-term goals and to cope with simple multiple, simultaneous, competing inputs.

What the new GUE program seems to me to do is to graduate divers at the Beginner or even at Competent level. I think this is wonderful. So what’s the downside? For much of diving there is no downside. Clearly, for diving environments (like caves) that, despite their high risk in terms of not having a “surface” that you can ascend to directly, feature highly predictable risks and a rather narrow range of problems that given care and attention to equipment and procedures combined with a coordinated team approach to the problem will virtually guarantee the divers’ survival. The same holds true for a large portion of open water diving, as long as the divers show good judgment concerning conditions.

But the GUE advantages are bought at a price. The range of responses that are available to the diver are significantly decreased due to the restriction of acceptable equipment and the precision of the ways in which the divers are trained to use that gear. While, as we have seen, this can be a very efficient way to bring divers to the Competent level quickly (and set them on the path to Proficiency) it relies on the use of dictates, paradigms and maxims to do so and this seems likely (to me) to cause a good many divers to stall at the Proficient level. Now is “stalling” at the Proficient level such a bad thing? After all, few conventional trained divers ever reach that level at all. So no, it’s not such a bad thing, and (to my view) is a damn sight better than conventional training which rarely results in even Competence, even amongst Instructors and Divemasters.

What DWW can do, if the diver can reach at least the Competent level, is to free them from a rule-based framework and put them on the path to true Expertise. Frankly the only place that I see the concepts of DWW being applied from entry-level on up is within the few Scripps model training programs that are out there. DWW is also well applied to some very challenging diving (e.g., the Jersey Wreck Divers) but that does not start out at the entry-level and thus almost always requires back-filling during technical training.

PS: DWW is "Doing What Works"
PPS: I screwed up in the graph axis, but I think you'll still get my drift.

lamont
April 14th, 2012, 08:34 PM
Thal, I still don't understand why you need to get public approval from DIR/GUE divers about edge conditions like your mask modification.

And I think all the people reacting to you were evaluating your proposal more on the axe you were grinding, less on any actual merit, which is the problem that you've got which you still don't seem to see.

Thalassamania
April 14th, 2012, 08:38 PM
Lamont, what ax? That conventional diving training is limited? That the DIR approach is rigid and since one can not possible foresee and train for all eventualities it too has built-in limitations? Those are not axes, those are truisms. If there is an ax, it is all yours, I just report them as I see them, and I am always looking for a better way.

If I have any ax at all, it is that I am put off by religion in diving even more than religion in everyday life.

Centrals
April 14th, 2012, 10:56 PM
Lamont, what ax? That conventional diving training is limited? That the DIR approach is rigid and since one can not possible foresee and train for all eventualities it too has built-in limitations? Those are not axes, those are truisms. If there is an ax, it is all yours, I just report them as I see them, and I am always looking for a better way.

If I have any ax at all, it is that I am put off by religion in diving even more than religion in everyday life.

My GUE trained buddies and I have a mutal agreement/understanding that the "subject" is never brought out to discuss.
Diving is for fun, isn't it.

NWGratefulDiver
April 14th, 2012, 11:14 PM
Lamont, what ax? That conventional diving training is limited? That the DIR approach is rigid and since one can not possible foresee and train for all eventualities it too has built-in limitations? Those are not axes, those are truisms. If there is an ax, it is all yours, I just report them as I see them, and I am always looking for a better way.

If I have any ax at all, it is that I am put off by religion in diving even more than religion in everyday life.

I guess it's all how ya look at it Thal ... in some respects, you're as religious as the GUE advocates ... only your version of religion is Scripps.

You're like Gandalf chiding Aragorn for not wanting to lay aside his sword ... while at the same time refusing to give up your staff ...

... Bob (Grateful Diver)

Belce
April 14th, 2012, 11:25 PM
Gord, I will also suggest you take advantage of Guy's offer for a dive. I took a course from him and I am still learning from it.

-Iain

Scott L
April 14th, 2012, 11:52 PM
What is the current thought of DIR training popularity as compared to say, 5 years ago? It seems new instructors (GUE) are announced once a week in Europe, The Red Sea, Far East, Etc., but just a few in the USA. IMO, UTD seems to have cooled-off since their inception...

Hoomi
April 15th, 2012, 01:53 AM
This 'ere's a 'appy day! Let's not bicker and argue about 'oo killed 'oo!

Sometimes, the wisdom of Monty Python is appropos.

Thalassamania
April 15th, 2012, 02:15 AM
I guess it's all how ya look at it Thal ... in some respects, you're as religious as the GUE advocates ... only your version of religion is Scripps.

You're like Gandalf chiding Aragorn for not wanting to lay aside his sword ... while at the same time refusing to give up your staff ...

... Bob (Grateful Diver)Where your simile breaks down is where the analysis of the religionists who decry atheism as "another religion" breaks down. I do not preach one approach, I do no suggest a single solution, I do not limit options to a small box that you can reach into and, maybe, most of the time, pull a passable solution out.

I agree that some things, like trim and buoyancy control are critical central issues, but then we (Scripps) have been preaching that since we brought scuba to the USA, those, and a whole lot more, are concepts that we developed and have lived by since the early 1950s, DIR does not own them nor did it originate them, it only claimed them with the inference that there are only two ways to dive, the DIR way and the stroke way, an approach that was adopted more out of ignorance than knowledge and self-awareness.

While I find LOTR references rather a stretch ... do you think that, perhaps, Gandolph knew many, many, things that Aragorn did not? While Aragorn had but one or two solutions to all problems, Gandolph had many, some of which were better than others depending on the moment, all of which were better than Aragorn's?

johnkendall
April 15th, 2012, 06:04 AM
If you recall, back in '06, I posted:

I've got to respond to this. Thal, you have some very fixed ideas, and for some reason you feel the need to try and get them approved as "DIR". Sticking stuff in your mask is still not DIR. Sorry about that. If you want to do it, then that's fine, fill your boots, but that doesn't and won't make it DIR. The reason I didn't reply then, and haven't replied about it until now is that I couldn't be bothered as it was like being hit in the head by a brick wall continuously.

I think the only person seeing Venom was you, I had no anger, nor any fear of what you were saying, it was simply that YOU seemed to be very narrow minded, but for some reason wanted DIR/GUE to immediately change to fit your world view. The GUE system is standardised, and so variations outside of the standard are not part of the system. As an organisation we do re-evaluate our standards, and do adjust them as and when it is necessary to do so, but this doesn't mean that we open the floodgates to lots of small changes, that are all different for different people. If you don't like the standards, then that's fine, you don't HAVE to follow them, there are no Dive Police and there are certainly no GUE Police, but that also doesn't mean that sticking a bit of neoprene inside your mask can be considered DIR. Sorry about that.

HTH
John

TartanFrog
April 15th, 2012, 06:37 AM
Along the lines of the original posting, I was also put off by the elitist and arrogant attitudes of some of the postings I read when I first became a diver and a member of this board. Each of the sub-groups had/have their own standards (opinions?) of what constitutes the absolute correct equipment, configuration and diving approach. So yeah, it can make us poor new divers that don't yet subscribe to the approach feel pretty intimidated and irritated when we ask another "stupid" equipment or diving question and we get slammed and flamed. So we quickly generalize that all of those people are jerks or worse. I also see that almost every time I walk into a dive shop, and I go into several in my area. One or more of the instructors or DMs or salespeople have very precise opinions on what is the right way to do something and the ONLY equipment that should be used. That includes everything from which clip you use to attach something to which camera to use and how to hold it. Is that wrong? Depends! In their place, opinions are a very valuable thing.

But before all of you flame all over me I will say that this happens in virtually every hobby, sport, practice and vocation that we will come across. Virtually anything we might choose to do will have its share of zealots that have drunk the kool-aid of some particular philosophy and will preach it to everyone. Just remember that us NOOBs are asking questions from all of you very experienced divers because we do not know. We aren't stupid we just haven't been diving as long and the insight of divers who have been there can be very helpful when it is in response to the original question.

txaggie08
April 15th, 2012, 08:36 AM
I see two distinct DIR groups in the dive world.

One group is a set of very knowledgeable divers who choose to do things in a particular way because they feel it's a good way to do things. They're happy to share what they know, but are fairly stubborn about being right, which is fine......if you're not willing to defend it, you don't believe it anyway.

The other likes the name "doing it right". They like the attention, and the "cool" gear configurations. They have limited to no knowledge of the system, but use the uniformity of the gear setup as a way to say "I'm DIR". The rest is cut and paste from wikipedea. The end to be arrogant, elitist assholes as well.

Unfortunately, the latter is MUCH more loudmouth and obnoxious than the former.

What you end up with is the loud mouths and trolls pissing everyone off, then you get into the deeper, more passionate discussions where vocabulary levels rise and scientific data, instead of just anecdotal evidence starts coming out, and the whole DIR community gets lumped together.
I'm not DIR either btw, so don't start that...

Simon-
April 15th, 2012, 08:37 AM
I have to say, I haven't had much dealings with DIR/GUE/UTD divers, however, the dealings I have had have sadly been negative.

Typical comment from a GUE diver when we discussing any possible benefits I woud get from taking a Fundies course (which he was adamant I should take), ignoring any experience and levels of training I have already undertaken, was "you should get some proper education". The tragedy was, it wasn't said tongue in cheek, but extremely vehemently.

A few bad apples do ruin the cart.

For me, it probably isn't a route I would be overly keen to go along. I like flexibility in my kit, I change things to suit the actual diving I will be doing. I don't believe there is a perfect one configuration fits all.

NWGratefulDiver
April 15th, 2012, 09:03 AM
Where your simile breaks down is where the analysis of the religionists who decry atheism as "another religion" breaks down. I do not preach one approach, I do no suggest a single solution, I do not limit options to a small box that you can reach into and, maybe, most of the time, pull a passable solution out.

I think you can be very preachy and one-approach oriented at times. For example, in a post you made just yesterday in another thread ...



It is mainly smoke and mirrors, but it depends on who you are:


The mechanically savvy, well connected diver, travels with a set of spare parts and most of the tools required to do just about any repair. For this diver the "local service" argument is complete nonsense.
The mechanically savvy, poorly connected diver, also travels with most of the tools required to do most repairs. But, getting the repair parts might be a challenge for this diver, so fortunately, there are companies like HOG to deal with this. For this diver, also, the "local service" argument is also complete nonsense.
The mechanically challenged, poorly connected diver has it harder, but again, fortunately, there are companies like HOG, who make both the training and parts necessary to deal with this available. For this diver, also, the "local service" argument, if looked are honestly, is not real.
So, who is left? The mechanically challenged, poorly connected diver, who neither wants to be able to fix his own gear nor wants to travel with the tools and parts that might be required. I'd suggest that these folks travel with an extra first and second stage and SPG, and be prepared to rent if need be. Face it, folks in the last category have little or no business traveling where the diving infrastructure is so weak that finding a good loaner or rental might be a problem. So, once again, even for this diver, the "local service" argument is specious.


That sounds pretty one-approach oriented to me, Thal. It also sounds as though you consider everyone who doesn't choose to work on their own regs as "mechanically challenged, poorly connected divers". That's pretty condescending ... and doesn't take into consideration that there are other options available. And saying that folks who lack this training have no business travelling to particular types of dive sites is exactly the type of elitism that many here have claimed turns them off to that other "religion" ... I wonder if they find your message any more appealing ...



I agree that some things, like trim and buoyancy control are critical central issues, but then we (Scripps) have been preaching that since we brought scuba to the USA, those, and a whole lot more, are concepts that we developed and have lived by since the early 1950s, DIR does not own them nor did it originate them, it only claimed them with the inference that there are only two ways to dive, the DIR way and the stroke way, an approach that was adopted more out of ignorance than knowledge and self-awareness.

Preach on, Reverend Thal ... but I read this as saying that "DIR doesn't worship the one true god ... Scripps does."

But, in fact, the "gods" of trim and buoyancy control are critical central issues to ALL forms of dive training ... if the training is implemented in the manner in which it was intended to be taught.



While I find LOTR references rather a stretch ... do you think that, perhaps, Gandolph knew many, many, things that Aragorn did not? While Aragorn had but one or two solutions to all problems, Gandolph had many, some of which were better than others depending on the moment, all of which were better than Aragorn's?
Indeed I do ... but while you may have knowledge of many solutions, you are only offering as valid the ones that work best for you ... someone who might choose other solutions you refer to using terms like "mechanically challenged".

You can be the most knowledgeable person in the world and still come across as an elitist ... that's what puts some folks off to the DIR methodology ... not the merits of the message, but the manner in which it's presented. You often do the same thing ... and no matter how valid your point, it gets lost in the presentation ... exactly as theirs does.

On the Internet, strongly-worded opinions usually do ... whatever their source ...

... Bob (Grateful Diver)

lamont
April 15th, 2012, 09:04 AM
I see two distinct DIR groups in the dive world.


Uhm, I just spent my whole 7 day vacation logging around 16 hours of bottom time in cave, and we just dove the whole time, and didn't really have to think about gear or procedures, which is more to the point. For all of thal's criticism about how its its narrow minded, it worked just fine for what I did, and works fine for just about everything that I do back home in puget sound, for around the past 8 years.

<---- I tend to get that expression on my face reading thal's long missives about his mask because it just doesn't apply to my life anywhere outside of online on scubaboard.

You want to know something the system doesn't work fine for? They do dives up here where the kids get to watch divers on the bottom show them sea life and in order to have comms to the ship, the diver needs to be in a FFM (and my dive buddy has logged hundreds and hundreds of these dives). Can't do that dive DIR. That is a *much* more solid example than any edge condition that Thal has come up with. That's okay, and thats not a contrived example to try to win an argument on the internet, that's just a dive with a goal that is outside the bounds of what most recreational diving is trying to accomplish. Thing is that we don't argue online trying to change DIR to encompass FFMs while yapping at kids underwater, its just not something that a GUE gear config is appropriate for, and we move on and use GUE for the remaining majority of diving where it works.

bluejaykaren
April 15th, 2012, 11:07 AM
I think DIR gets off on the wrong foot right from the get go with their name. Doing it Right implies that you are doing it wrong if you do not use their concepts and gear. Even though they do not know you or how you dive, you are doing it wrong.The name itself portrays arrogancy. If I saw a diver doing something wrong I wouldn't expect good results if I walked over and shouted "Hey, you are doing that wrong!!". I personally would be a little nicer about it in the hope of having a productful conversation instead of them mumbling under there breath about what a....... I am. It really doesn't matter how right you are if people are turned off by your arrogancy. From what little exposure I have with DIR, I have watched some videos only, it seems to me that it just might be the best way to dive so it is a shame if people get turned off before having a chance to try it. First impressions go very far and you only have one chance at it. I would try it just because of people like TSandM because I can tell she really cares about people becoming better and safer divers. I would have been drawn to them if their name had been Doing it Safer.

johnkendall
April 15th, 2012, 12:53 PM
I think DIR gets off on the wrong foot right from the get go with their name. Doing it Right implies that you are doing it wrong if you do not use their concepts and gear. Even though they do not know you or how you dive, you are doing it wrong.The name itself portrays arrogancy. If I saw a diver doing something wrong I wouldn't expect good results if I walked over and shouted "Hey, you are doing that wrong!!". I personally would be a little nicer about it in the hope of having a productful conversation instead of them mumbling under there breath about what a....... I am. It really doesn't matter how right you are if people are turned off by your arrogancy. From what little exposure I have with DIR, I have watched some videos only, it seems to me that it just might be the best way to dive so it is a shame if people get turned off before having a chance to try it. First impressions go very far and you only have one chance at it. I would try it just because of people like TSandM because I can tell she really cares about people becoming better and safer divers. I would have been drawn to them if their name had been Doing it Safer.

It is interesting how this argument still keeps doing the rounds. Do you feel the same about "Dive Rite"?
Just wondering ...

Thanks
John

PfcAJ
April 15th, 2012, 01:12 PM
Doing it safer? So everyone else is doing it less safe?

Is this really a big deal to folks?

At risk of sounding like an elitist, arrogant, unfriendly, a-hole, who gives a damn? Its scuba diving....

gcarter
April 15th, 2012, 01:27 PM
It is interesting how this argument still keeps doing the rounds. Do you feel the same about "Dive Rite"?
Just wondering ...

Thanks
John


Doing it safer? So everyone else is doing it less safe?

Is this really a big deal to folks?

At risk of sounding like an elitist, arrogant, unfriendly, a-hole, who gives a damn? Its scuba diving....

IMO it is probably more often rationalization of an already decided opinion that may in fact have a reasonable basis, but this is easily picked up and thrown into the mix in the mistaken belief that it bolsters the position.

Doc Harry
April 15th, 2012, 01:42 PM
Well, Harry, maybe GUE is doing something right?

Perhaps... Depends on whether the instructor decided to stop teaching GUE-F or whether GUE made him stop pissing off students.

Either way, when GUE sends me a check for $2,000 to cover the costs of my wasted trips to Florida for the GUE-F course, then I might consider trying GUE again. I admire the GUE philosophy, and strive to attain their standards. Too bad the GUE folks behave so badly.

awap
April 15th, 2012, 02:08 PM
Perhaps... Depends on whether the instructor decided to stop teaching GUE-F or whether GUE made him stop pissing off students.

Either way, when GUE sends me a check for $2,000 to cover the costs of my wasted trips to Florida for the GUE-F course, then I might consider trying GUE again. I admire the GUE philosophy, and strive to attain their standards. Too bad the GUE folks behave so badly.

First rule of scuba.

NetDoc
April 15th, 2012, 02:09 PM
While a good, even a great reputation is easy to lose, a bad reputation/impression is hard if not impossible to outlive. On top of that, the misdeeds of only one or a few are often all people need to make or continue that reputation/impression. Is it fair? Nope. Is it a forgone conclusion that DIR will always be saddled with an onerous reputation? Perhaps.

In any event, it's important to accept that reputations are earned. In doing so, it's also important to identify what actions and individuals are responsible for a particular impression and then it's up to the group or individual to do something about it. Make no mistake, I encounter a lot of the same less than flattering attitudes when it comes to many divers' impression of ScubaBoard. For the most part, ScubaBoard is incredibly friendly and helpful but there are a few elements who create a dissonance by creating problems. I have spent years trying to cultivate a kinder, gentler ScubaBoard and have had a bit of success in doing so. To do that, I have had to listen to my critics and embrace what they are telling me. It's hard not to rail against misguided rationals but it's mostly counterproductive. Look at the responses to BlueJayKaren. Do they really address her concerns or are they laced with with an attitude that blames HER for her impression? I have learned and am still learning that it's wrong to kill the messenger. Look at the OP. She would really like to turn this around rather than to live by that bitter river of Denial. Rather than attack the fact that someone has a less than stellar impression of DIR divers, look a little deeper and learn why. Of course, if you don't care that they have this bad opinion then simply continue on. My feelings are that most DIR divers care very much and their participation here is evidence of that.

BTW, you're always going to have a competing group(s) trying to compare themselves with you looking for you to ADMIT that they are just as good. I don't know that I have a good handle on what makes them want to do this but it could be as simple as professional jealousy. I can't tell you how many times I have heard that this or that forum are better or just as good as ScubaBoard, but if our popularity is any indication then most of those insights are clearly faulty.

bleeb
April 15th, 2012, 02:10 PM
Can we please concentrate on the question at hand, and have a little less vitriol and personal comments when people try to post examples of how they've had negative experiences with the DIR community? Way too much of that, especially in the recent parts of this thread.

Thalassamania
April 15th, 2012, 02:56 PM
Our little group of GUE divers has a standing set of dives on Wednesday night. A bunch of us get together, and anybody who wants to join us is invited to do so. We get a fair number of newer divers, who enjoy the opportunity to go out with some experienced and solid folks. One of our recent companions is a young man who moved to Seattle rather recently. He is, as we all understand and empathize with, dive-mad, and has been getting out about every other day to dive somewhere, with someone.

He went to dinner with us last night. And he told me, over dinner, that before he moved to Seattle, he'd had a very negative impression of DIR divers -- which he said he had largely gotten off SCUBABOARD. He also said that, of all the people he's dived with since he's moved up here, our group is the nicest one . . . and the MOST FUN to dive with.

I thought it was incredibly sad that he had gotten such a bad impression of DIR people from this board. And I wanted to offer his impression, now that he's MET us, so that other newer divers who have gotten the same impression might know that at least one person has concluded he was wrong.
I think that we've just had a rather clear display of how it is quite possible to rather quickly develop both a jaundiced and inaccurate impression of DIR.

Thal, I still don't understand why you need to get public approval from DIR/GUE divers about edge conditions like your mask modification.

And I think all the people reacting to you were evaluating your proposal more on the axe you were grinding, less on any actual merit, which is the problem that you've got which you still don't seem to see.What need? What proposal? What ax?

I brought this up, once again, years later, for the sole purpose of illustrating the problem that Lynne's friend had described. Thank you for your assistance in the demonstration, it was unexpected, but is both classic and spot on.

I've got to respond to this. Thal, you have some very fixed ideas, and for some reason you feel the need to try and get them approved as "DIR". Sticking stuff in your mask is still not DIR. Sorry about that. If you want to do it, then that's fine, fill your boots, but that doesn't and won't make it DIR. The reason I didn't reply then, and haven't replied about it until now is that I couldn't be bothered as it was like being hit in the head by a brick wall continuously.

I think the only person seeing Venom was you, I had no anger, nor any fear of what you were saying, it was simply that YOU seemed to be very narrow minded, but for some reason wanted DIR/GUE to immediately change to fit your world view. The GUE system is standardised, and so variations outside of the standard are not part of the system. As an organisation we do re-evaluate our standards, and do adjust them as and when it is necessary to do so, but this doesn't mean that we open the floodgates to lots of small changes, that are all different for different people. If you don't like the standards, then that's fine, you don't HAVE to follow them, there are no Dive Police and there are certainly no GUE Police, but that also doesn't mean that sticking a bit of neoprene inside your mask can be considered DIR. Sorry about that.

HTHst
John
Is it any wonder that people, to this day have a bad taste in the mouth concerning DIR, that has little or nothing to do with the actually philosophy? Let's look at this foolish contretemps for just a moment. Diving with a Swimmaster Wideview mask (that comes with the neoprene block installed) is DIR. Adding such a block, yourself, to a different mask, is not DIR, at least according to John. But Peter (who is supposed to be a recognized authority on the subject) seems to think it is fine.

Now, I really don't give a rat's ass about whether it is DIR or not, that neither defines nor circumscribes my diving world. I only bring up the example to demonstrate how what is touted to be a holistic system can, with respect to a trivial issue, quickly degenerate into a reductionist one. I really don't care how John, or Lamont dive, per se, but I do believe, that as a thinking diver, I have an obligation to point out (if just for the benefit of new divers) that BS is being distributed and that confusion is rampant. If there is this much confusion and angst concerning a nose block, does that not make one wonder about more sweeping and important dictates?

Uhm, I just spent my whole 7 day vacation logging around 16 hours of bottom time in cave, and we just dove the whole time, and didn't really have to think about gear or procedures, which is more to the point. For all of thal's criticism about how its its narrow minded, it worked just fine for what I did, and works fine for just about everything that I do back home in puget sound, for around the past 8 years.

<---- I tend to get that expression on my face reading thal's long missives about his mask because it just doesn't apply to my life anywhere outside of online on scubaboard.

You want to know something the system doesn't work fine for? They do dives up here where the kids get to watch divers on the bottom show them sea life and in order to have comms to the ship, the diver needs to be in a FFM (and my dive buddy has logged hundreds and hundreds of these dives). Can't do that dive DIR. That is a *much* more solid example than any edge condition that Thal has come up with. That's okay, and thats not a contrived example to try to win an argument on the internet, that's just a dive with a goal that is outside the bounds of what most recreational diving is trying to accomplish. Thing is that we don't argue online trying to change DIR to encompass FFMs while yapping at kids underwater, its just not something that a GUE gear config is appropriate for, and we move on and use GUE for the remaining majority of diving where it works.


Can we please concentrate on the question at hand, and have a little less vitriol and personal comments when people try to post examples of how they've had negative experiences with the DIR community? Way too much of that, especially in the recent parts of this thread.

johnkendall
April 15th, 2012, 03:35 PM
Is it any wonder that people, to this day have a bad taste in the mouth concerning DIR, that has little or nothing to do with the actually philosophy? Let's look at this foolish contretemps for just a moment. Diving with a Swimmaster Wideview mask (that comes with the neoprene block installed) is DIR. Adding such a block, yourself, to a different mask, is not DIR, at least according to John. But Peter (who is supposed to be a recognized authority on the subject) seems to think it is fine.


Sorry Thal, why do you think that a vintage oval fronted mask, that you can't buy anymore, would be DIR?

From an equipment perspective GUE recommends the use of a low-profile mask.

I'm afraid I can't comment on who might or might not be a recognised authority.

HTH
John

NetDoc
April 15th, 2012, 04:05 PM
but I do believe, that as a thinking diver, I have an obligation to point out Thal,

This "obligation" you feel is the very same ax you continue to grind. If the DIR crowd has proven anything, it's that reputations are earned. In this case, they have shown how you have earned yours in regards to being just as inflexible and intractable as you claim them to be. You should first get the beam out of your own eye before you attempt to remove the mote from your brother's eye.

Thalassamania
April 15th, 2012, 04:05 PM
Oh ... I'm sorry, I did not realize that all items that you dive, regardless of design, utility, or quality, have to be in a current manufacturer's catalog to be safe and efficacious. Thank's for the tip.

johnkendall
April 15th, 2012, 04:12 PM
Oh ... I'm sorry, I did not realize that all items that you dive, regardless of design, utility, or quality, have to be in a current manufacturer's catalog to be safe and efficacious. Thank's for the tip.

I didn't say that either :) Keep trying

HTH
John

Thalassamania
April 15th, 2012, 04:44 PM
John, you've provided an A-1 example that answers the OP's question perfectly. You can stop now.

johnkendall
April 15th, 2012, 04:54 PM
John, you've provided an A-1 example that answers the OP's question perfectly. You can stop now.

Thal, you have proved time after time that you actually have no interest in GUE/DIR other than to try and poke holes in it. If you actually have any questions then I am happy to answer them for you, I can't promise that you'll like the answers, nor do I expect you to change anything, or do anything differently to what you currently do. But if you want a GUE answer then I will do my best to provide it.

On the mask front, GUE suggest a low-profile simple mask. So an oversized oval front mask doesn't fit the bill.

HTH
John

Thalassamania
April 15th, 2012, 05:06 PM
Thal, you have proved time after time that you actually have no interest in GUE/DIR other than to try and poke holes in it. If you actually have any questions then I am happy to answer them for you, I can't promise that you'll like the answers, nor do I expect you to change anything, or do anything differently to what you currently do. But if you want a GUE answer then I will do my best to provide it.
When I have current questions I call JJ or AG, their answers are almost always clear and concise. Historical questions I usually refer to JJ or Dan Volker. But ... thanks for the offer.


On the mask front, GUE suggest a low-profile simple mask. So an oversized oval front mask doesn't fit the bill.

HTH
JohnActually, the volume of a Swimmaster Wideview, when in use, is about the same as most current "low-profile" masks, since the neoprene skirt sits back, the hognose makes room for your beak, and the glass plate sits very close to your eyes.

Kevrumbo
April 15th, 2012, 06:27 PM
Our little group of GUE divers has a standing set of dives on Wednesday night. A bunch of us get together, and anybody who wants to join us is invited to do so. We get a fair number of newer divers, who enjoy the opportunity to go out with some experienced and solid folks. One of our recent companions is a young man who moved to Seattle rather recently. He is, as we all understand and empathize with, dive-mad, and has been getting out about every other day to dive somewhere, with someone.

He went to dinner with us last night. And he told me, over dinner, that before he moved to Seattle, he'd had a very negative impression of DIR divers -- which he said he had largely gotten off SCUBABOARD. He also said that, of all the people he's dived with since he's moved up here, our group is the nicest one . . . and the MOST FUN to dive with.

I thought it was incredibly sad that he had gotten such a bad impression of DIR people from this board. And I wanted to offer his impression, now that he's MET us, so that other newer divers who have gotten the same impression might know that at least one person has concluded he was wrong.Such is the "elitism" and "exceptionalism" of DIR/GUE. Originally IMO, the reason for the rigorous training & standards was to develop a pool of highly qualified & competent support divers to draw upon for the exploration dives of the WKPP.

A better analogy to GUE as dive agency for a particular mission -as well as few of their attitudes- is the US Navy/Marine Corps: Pass GUE Fundamentals "Boot Camp" and you're a part of the "few & the proud" -- the Marines. Pass tech & cave levels and you're in Force Recon. If you and your team are doing special or unique explorations in demanding environments, then you're a SEAL Team 6 Operative.

To be a good recreational diver (qualitatively & socially) you don't necessarily have to go through such a regimen; just find a good instructor & mentor, a friendly group divers to buddy up with (like Lynne's group above) and go have some fun. . . !

Similarly & rhetorically, if you only want to get a private pilot's training & license --do you have to join the US Navy/Marine Corps to become a Navy/Marine Aviator???

mdb
April 15th, 2012, 06:41 PM
Kevrumbo:

Not a bad analogy. As a former Marine I might add that all Marines wear the same uniform without special shoulder patches for this or that.

I was a Marine Artillery officer. First, like all Marine officers, Lawyers, future pilots, supply officers, etc. We were first trained as Infantry Officers.
When I served the officers basic training was 36 weeks before going to specialty schools. Basic enlisted training was 10 wks. It is now 12.

I believe that shortened courses and minimum skill levels to be certified have significantly damaged diving. A competent basic diver will be able to
take care of themselves from the first dive on their own. Further training and more skill sets are certainly a plus. I do not think any one agency has
the upper hand on this, although, some may think they do. I do think some agencies have dumped down training to a level that needs to be reset.

For me it has always been about the instructor and his/her course. I have been very fortunate to have been a student with some very gifted and
dedicated instructors.

BrotherBear
April 15th, 2012, 08:16 PM
Our little group of GUE divers has a standing set of dives on Wednesday night. A bunch of us get together, and anybody who wants to join us is invited to do so. We get a fair number of newer divers, who enjoy the opportunity to go out with some experienced and solid folks. One of our recent companions is a young man who moved to Seattle rather recently. He is, as we all understand and empathize with, dive-mad, and has been getting out about every other day to dive somewhere, with someone.

He went to dinner with us last night. And he told me, over dinner, that before he moved to Seattle, he'd had a very negative impression of DIR divers -- which he said he had largely gotten off SCUBABOARD. He also said that, of all the people he's dived with since he's moved up here, our group is the nicest one . . . and the MOST FUN to dive with.

I thought it was incredibly sad that he had gotten such a bad impression of DIR people from this board. And I wanted to offer his impression, now that he's MET us, so that other newer divers who have gotten the same impression might know that at least one person has concluded he was wrong.

So, your implied question was why would someone have such a negative impression of DIR? The answer is right here in this thread...not in the individual posts but the thread itself. For whatever reason the subject has a polarizing effect and attracts controversy like flys (17 pages and climbing fast!). In reading this thread I see both sides of the fence engaging in vitriol and specious arguments to satisfy personal vendettas. We even have our fearless leader in here joining in an ongoing argument that is clearly in violation of the TOS for this sub-forum!!
Most newbies to this subject are coming in from the outside are going to be drawn to one side or the other and are either going to embrace DIR or hate it. Over-generalized to be sure but in any case that is human nature...if there is no apparent middle ground among the forum members then where is a newbie to stand?

NWGratefulDiver
April 15th, 2012, 08:29 PM
BTW, you're always going to have a competing group(s) trying to compare themselves with you looking for you to ADMIT that they are just as good. I don't know that I have a good handle on what makes them want to do this but it could be as simple as professional jealousy. I can't tell you how many times I have heard that this or that forum are better or just as good as ScubaBoard, but if our popularity is any indication then most of those insights are clearly faulty.


Diving's not a contest ... neither is posting on the Internet. It's something we do for fun.

I don't care who thinks they're better than me. Who knows ... they might be right.

Why should it matter? Some of the most fun people I dive with aren't nearly as skilled as people I know who I wouldn't want to dive with.

Who's better? Depends on whether you're judging by skill set or by who you can have the most fun spending a few hours with ...

... Bob (Grateful Diver)

FoxHound
April 15th, 2012, 08:35 PM
Diving's not a contest ... neither is posting on the Internet. It's something we do for fun.

I don't care who thinks they're better than me. Who knows ... they might be right.

Why should it matter? Some of the most fun people I dive with aren't nearly as skilled as people I know who I wouldn't want to dive with.

Who's better? Depends on whether you're judging by skill set or by who you can have the most fun spending a few hours with ...

... Bob (Grateful Diver)


Can we get this as a sticky? Well said, wish there were more out there with the same attitude!

OzGriffo
April 15th, 2012, 09:00 PM
BTW, you're always going to have a competing group(s) trying to compare themselves with you looking for you to ADMIT that they are just as good. I don't know that I have a good handle on what makes them want to do this but it could be as simple as professional jealousy. I can't tell you how many times I have heard that this or that forum are better or just as good as ScubaBoard, but if our popularity is any indication then most of those insights are clearly faulty.

It's called Cognitive Dissonance. It's a well known psychological phenomenon. It explains the "fanboi" syndrome you often see on the web.

Cognitive dissonance (http://web.archive.org/web/20050210025742/http://www.dmu.ac.uk/~jamesa/learning/dissonance.htm)

(The original article won't load for me, so I hope this one does)

Roko
April 15th, 2012, 09:00 PM
I think the problem is anytime someone thinks in absolutes, it destroys any possibility for actual useful discussion. Diving isn't binary, there's a possiblity for more than 2 states

The GUE system is a system which works very well for rectreational dives (I won't comment on Tech, since I don't have experience there), allowing for fun, safe dive with a cohesive team. The GUE system works for me so far, and I like it, but ultimately it's just a way to dive, not the only way to dive safely and have fun. At the recreational level, one can dive within the GUE system, and just as easiliy dive with non-GUE divers if they so choose -- Hopefully poor attitudes don't prevent people from doing that, because they cut out a great pool of potential dive buddies who are just as safe and can be attentive buddies, even if the dive team is not technically "DIR"...

stevensamler
April 15th, 2012, 09:37 PM
UTD has a dive program called essentials of recreational diving which i would like to take instead of taking an aow class through the usual agencies. I could be wrong but i think an open water diver looking for more training but not the full on tech training would really benefit from such a class.

Centrals
April 15th, 2012, 09:42 PM
Our little group of GUE divers has a standing set of dives on Wednesday night. A bunch of us get together, and anybody who wants to join us is invited to do so. We get a fair number of newer divers, who enjoy the opportunity to go out with some experienced and solid folks. One of our recent companions is a young man who moved to Seattle rather recently. He is, as we all understand and empathize with, dive-mad, and has been getting out about every other day to dive somewhere, with someone.

He went to dinner with us last night. And he told me, over dinner, that before he moved to Seattle, he'd had a very negative impression of DIR divers -- which he said he had largely gotten off SCUBABOARD. He also said that, of all the people he's dived with since he's moved up here, our group is the nicest one . . . and the MOST FUN to dive with.

I thought it was incredibly sad that he had gotten such a bad impression of DIR people from this board. And I wanted to offer his impression, now that he's MET us, so that other newer divers who have gotten the same impression might know that at least one person has concluded he was wrong.
It doesn't surprise me at all.
My first ever impression with GUE/DIR was pretty NEGATIVE back in around 2001/2. The subsequent exposure made it even worst. So I just avoid them.
Scuba diving answer to "7th Day Adventists"!!!!! A very sarcastic comment from certain UK's quarter but "fairly" accurate nevertheless.
Is GUE/DIR for everyone? Well certainly it is NOT everyone's cup of tea.

Crush
April 15th, 2012, 11:46 PM
I think the problem is anytime someone thinks in absolutes, it destroys any possibility for actual useful discussion. Diving isn't binary, there's a possiblity for more than 2 states.

To my limited experience GUE is binary. It is their way or the highway. I don't disapprove, but that is the way it is. I had to remove some D-rings from my BP&W shoulder straps prior to taking Fundies since I was not trained to carry extra tanks so the D-rings would therefore pose an entanglement hazard. However, my crotch strap had 2 D-rings and, despite the fact that I am not trained to use a DPV, these are not viewed as entanglement hazards...

Roko
April 15th, 2012, 11:54 PM
To my limited experience GUE is binary. It is their way or the highway. I don't disapprove, but that is the way it is. I had to remove some D-rings from my BP&W shoulder straps prior to taking Fundies since I was not trained to carry extra tanks so the D-rings would therefore pose an entanglement hazard. However, my crotch strap had 2 D-rings and, despite the fact that I am not trained to use a DPV, these are not viewed as entanglement hazards...

You're correct that GUE is very much binary, either you're doing it the GUE way, or you're not. I was refering more to the overall diving world, in that the GUE way isn't the only way to safely execute a dive.

I know that rigidity in the GUE system turns a lot of people off from it. (My girlfriend still makes fun of me)

PfcAJ
April 16th, 2012, 12:32 AM
To my limited experience GUE is binary. It is their way or the highway. I don't disapprove, but that is the way it is. I had to remove some D-rings from my BP&W shoulder straps prior to taking Fundies since I was not trained to carry extra tanks so the D-rings would therefore pose an entanglement hazard. However, my crotch strap had 2 D-rings and, despite the fact that I am not trained to use a DPV, these are not viewed as entanglement hazards...

DIR diving revolves around the quite practical 'if you don't need it, don't take it' idea. You don't need more than the standard d-rings if you're diving in a DIR style. I did a dive a few weeks ago that involved 7 (seven) stage bottles and two scooters without the need for any extra d-rings. Learning how to dive with the required equipment is kind of implied upon requesting GUE training, is it not?

The rear d-ring is used for storage of reels and SMBs, and occasionally scooters (I prefer the front), and the front one is usually sewn in, so its kind of pointless to remove it for one dive, only to put it back on another. If you're concerned with it getting caught on stuff or damaging the environment, a small rubberband (like for the backup lights) works well to keep it from getting in the way.

If you decide that extra drings are how you like to roll, go nuts. No one is forcing anything on you. The courses simply teach how we operate, that's all. If one isn't interested in learning that, why sign up for it?

txaggie08
April 16th, 2012, 12:36 AM
You want to know something the system doesn't work fine for?



I could very quickly show you another....public safety diving. However, you apparently only read the first line of my post, quoted it quite randomly, and ignored what I actually said....

BluewaterSail
April 16th, 2012, 01:33 AM
DIR diving revolves around the quite practical 'if you don't need it, don't take it' idea. You don't need more than the standard d-rings if you're diving in a DIR style. I did a dive a few weeks ago that involved 7 (seven) stage bottles and two scooters without the need for any extra d-rings. Learning how to dive with the required equipment is kind of implied upon requesting GUE training, is it not?

The rear d-ring is used for storage of reels and SMBs, and occasionally scooters (I prefer the front), and the front one is usually sewn in, so its kind of pointless to remove it for one dive, only to put it back on another. If you're concerned with it getting caught on stuff or damaging the environment, a small rubberband (like for the backup lights) works well to keep it from getting in the way.

If you decide that extra drings are how you like to roll, go nuts. No one is forcing anything on you. The courses simply teach how we operate, that's all. If one isn't interested in learning that, why sign up for it?


Rather than going through the trouble of removing a crotch strap d-ring on a dive that it won't be used, or playing with rubber bands, its real easy to run the crotch strap though it, basically putting it inside rather than outside.

TSandM
April 16th, 2012, 01:42 AM
Wow -- we are really running the gamut here, from people who object to a trade name that isn't even used any more, to people who want to argue about the fine points of the gear configuration, to people who can't stand us because WE subscribe to a standardized gear setup that we don't insist anybody else in the world dive, unless they want to :)

I spent a day on a dive boat today in Hood Canal. I had a GUE buddy with me, and we did two really fun dives. We were on a boat with an AOW class, and the glowing faces of those new divers were an absolute delight to see. What it comes down to is that diving is fun; diving well is more fun, and people who are really committed divers tend to be fun, too! Which was my point in starting the thread :)

Heath Sapp
April 16th, 2012, 02:21 AM
I to will say I got a pm from a DIR diver told me that I was a PADI diver so I was not a diver, and wanted to find a way to make myself a better diver. After that P.M. I was very unhappy DIR. After reading this thread maybe I need to do some homework just to find out more!

gsk3
April 16th, 2012, 05:43 AM
To my limited experience GUE is binary. It is their way or the highway. I don't disapprove, but that is the way it is. I had to remove some D-rings from my BP&W shoulder straps prior to taking Fundies since I was not trained to carry extra tanks so the D-rings would therefore pose an entanglement hazard. However, my crotch strap had 2 D-rings and, despite the fact that I am not trained to use a DPV, these are not viewed as entanglement hazards...

This view quickly fades as you move past Fundies. And I'm not sure that the crotch strap d-rings are the best example, since they have all sorts of uses even for rec dives.

NetDoc
April 16th, 2012, 05:47 AM
Wow -- we are really running the gamut here, One should always be careful for what they ask for! :D :D :D

Feedback is a gift, a blessing and sometimes a curse. The thread was started with a mere observation, but there are a number of people with strong feelings on the subject willing to explain their respective perspectives. Given the controversy and even the resultant acrimony of a few, I am not sure that this is the proper forum for this thread, but it is here and things seem to be civil for the most part. Good enough.

The onus then is to determine what is to be done with the feedback. Ignore, embrace or change are three valid responses. Bob suggests that he doesn't care who thinks they are better than him and that diving is not a contest. The "we vs them" attitude expressed by many DIR devotees would seem to belie that sentiment and in fact I have seen Bob as well as TSandM go out of their way to dispel the myths they perceive. You do care, it shows and that's a good thing. I have seen the changes in both of these divers over the years that's a direct result of their caring. They are the finest ambassadors DIR/GUE/UTD could ask for. Add Lamont and you have the three natural leaders of the DIR mindset here on ScubaBoard.

Still and in spite of their efforts, there are a number of people with a really negative perception of DIR and it's various denominations. Some of these are so ingrained and the perceived slights so impossible to right that nothing can be done to correct it. Some are merely a vague feeling of what others have said and yes, some are even legitimate and pointed criticisms about the way things are done and decided. Unfortunately it's not really up to our three leaders to effect changes at the top. That's for JJ and AG among others and even then that kind of change may possibly defeat the original intent of being DIR.

Lest my musings be misconstrued, I have no problems with the DIR mindset. I have dove and will dive again with people who have DIR/GUE/UTD mindsets and I love reading their posts here on ScubaBoard. In fact, you can find me in some of the earlier GUE promotional videos on the net. I've even kidded with JJ that I am their token "Strokes Person". That's not to say that I have always felt this way. I had to come to my own peace when it comes to DIR. It took a dispassionate review of all that seems to encompass the mindset. While I feel no need to go down that path, I do admire most of those who have. Why not? They are great divers and fun to be around.

NWGratefulDiver
April 16th, 2012, 07:03 AM
I to will say I got a pm from a DIR diver told me that I was a PADI diver so I was not a diver, and wanted to find a way to make myself a better diver. After that P.M. I was very unhappy DIR. After reading this thread maybe I need to do some homework just to find out more!

I once worked at a shop that offered GUE classes. I was working as a NAUI instructor, teaching on contract through the shop. I once heard the store manager telling one of my students that they shouldn't waste their money on NAUI classes ... that if they wanted to really learn about diving, they should take a GUE class.

For sure I was unhappy about it. I could've used it as an excuse to assume that GUE was at fault. But by then I knew enough about GUE to know better. The manager was a jerk. He was a jerk before he ever heard of GUE. He's still a jerk. His attitude wasn't the agency's fault ... it was his. There were plenty of other GUE-trained people coming through that shop ... including instructors ... who weren't like that. Why blame them for someone else's bad attitude?

I've also experienced it from the other side ... people looking at my equipment, assuming I must be one of those damned DIR divers, and giving me a hard time. I had a PADI instructor do just that rather publicly at a DUI Dog Days event a few years ago. The idiot didn't even realize that not everyone in a backplate chooses their training from the same agency. To my concern, he was just as much a jerk as the store manager was.

They're everywhere, yanno ... and GUE is no more responsible for the actions of the former than PADI is for the actions of the latter.

... Bob (Grateful Diver)

NetDoc
April 16th, 2012, 07:29 AM
They're everywhere, yanno ... and GUE is no more responsible for the actions of the former than PADI is for the actions of the latter. You only say that because it's true!

danvolker
April 16th, 2012, 07:39 AM
My turn to make things better or worse :-)

Yesterday Sandra and I dove the BHB. Granted it was a weekend, and you know there will be students standing on the bottom in some delicate areas, meaning you try to grin and bare some of the skill based atrocities occurring in front of you.....We had an encounter with the WORST DIVER I had ever seen...and this is saying alot! This guy was already certified, and following a buddy.....We first saw him as he careened by Sandra, kicking a strobe on her camera as he swam by....we were about 8 feet from the wall to the nav channel, and this guy did NOT need to be near us, lot less run over Sandra and her camera. So I got annoyed, and shoved his tank as he rototilled past----he looked at me like...."why" ?....Then went on his way.
The DIR issue.
This guy was swimming almost in a walking position. He was wearing some kind of back inflate BC that allowed the tank to hang far to low behind his butt.... I think this may have been the central issue in his incorrect center of gravity, and his terrible posture in the water collum.
So if there was no DIR in this world, who would even notice that this guy had an equipment configuration that was nearly criminal? {humour, not literal} Where would this guy go or look for examples of bad and good configurations, and for ideas on how to be better in the water?

Yes, pre-DIR there were avenues for this, but not well expressed, or available to everyone. Today, this guy can look at some DIR videos and photos, hear what DIR divers have to say about his configuration, he can then try some of their ideas, and see if he enjoys diving more with the better configuration.

So, as this guy WAS the worst diver I had ever seen in my life, I followed him for about 5 minutes, and shot some video of him. I had a macro lens on, rather than my usual 16 to 35mm, which is regretable, but you can still see the horor unfolding. Litterally, he was in a walking position, doing flutter kick, with fins on the bottom, for hundreds of yards....if there had been delicate corals in his path, instead of just nudibranchs and other tiny marine life, I think someone would need to have pulled him to the surface....Considering Anne Dupont has found oculina corals in the BHB area, it is possible this guy did actually hurt some very special coral.

After the dive ended, I saw this guy and his buddy near my car--they were parked 10 feet away. Maybe I am part of the DIR preception problem, but I could not help myself....I had to say something. I walked over and said hi, and that I had shot some video of him that he might want to see....I added that I was sure that he wanted to be a good diver, and that some day he may very well be, but that at the moment, his gear configuration was destroying any chance he had for diving with any skill....I asked him if he knew any instructors that might be able to help him figure out how to get the weight up higher, and to flatten him out while swimming....he actually knew an instructor attached to a good shop with some GUE trained instructors, so I told him this should be a priority for him, that these guys could make his diving enjoyment much better, and that this could be the best diving decision he could make.

Should I have said anything? Was I being a DIR Nazi? I did remain extremely poilite throughout, I blamed his gear, not him....and at the end, we shook hands, and I think both of these guys will talk to the instructors at JDC.

Pre-DIR, some might have defended this as personal preference. Like this is how he wanted to dive. I think there are "boundaries" now, and DIR can be a helpful boundary area, for a guy like this....
He will never be DIR, barring a major change in his mindset ( regardless of gear, mindset allowed him to be the worst diver I had ever seen)....This mindset he "could get" from DIR, is a change DIR thinking is really responsible for...a kind of change that would have been unlikely without DIR....

An Instructor like Thal could make all the right fixes to this guy without DIR, but my bet is that he would "borrow" from some of the psychology of DIR mindset, in his attempt to describe the way this guy needed to start thinking..
I will pull the video off the camera this morning, and get a clip of it on youtube.....you guys can then tell me how you would have handled this...

When we first began bringing DIR to recreational divers, it was to help them fix major problems that we saw no FIX for in the way things were. Gear was bad, and there was no definable "right way" or "wrong way" to use it prior to 1995....

Simon-
April 16th, 2012, 08:00 AM
This guy was swimming almost in a walking position. He was wearing some kind of back inflate BC that allowed the tank to hang far to low behind his butt.... I think this may have been the central issue in his incorrect center of gravity, and his terrible posture in the water collum.
So if there was no DIR in this world, who would even notice that this guy had an equipment configuration that was nearly criminal? {humour, not literal} Where would this guy go or look for examples of bad and good configurations, and for ideas on how to be better in the water?

Yes, pre-DIR there were avenues for this, but not well expressed, or available to everyone. Today, this guy can look at some DIR videos and photos, hear what DIR divers have to say about his configuration, he can then try some of their ideas, and see if he enjoys diving more with the better configuration.



This may be stoking the fire but, no agency in the world would advocate that sort of trim in diving. None. So the "if there was no DIR ......." falls rather flat. Unless of course you are saying that every other agency actively ecourages poor control and trim.

Better configuration? According to who?

This is where the "elitist" tags come from. No-one else could possibly have decent trim and buoyancy. Heaven forbid I dive with someone who has the kit set differently to mine.

I plan a dive, I carry out the dive to that plan, I get out of the water and go home. I have done it right.

danvolker
April 16th, 2012, 08:13 AM
This may be stoking the fire but, no agency in the world would advocate that sort of trim in diving. None. So the "if there was no DIR ......." falls rather flat. Unless of course you are saying that every other agency actively ecourages poor control and trim.

Better configuration? According to who?

This is where the "elitist" tags come from. No-one else could possibly have decent trim and buoyancy. Heaven forbid I dive with someone who has the kit set differently to mine.


Thanks, this is the response thought I wanted to address.

Back up to 1995, before DIR hit rec.scuba.....

Unless you were WKPP, you had never heard of it, and thoughts about the right or the best or the optimal gear configuration, were poorly defined. There were very strong divers, with good gear configurations, but what was very good in their set ups, was not expressed in any useful way for the masses without the good gear configurations.

Even today, many agencies do not want to touch "optimal gear configuration". However, there are shops selling bad gear combinations, often due to the sale taking place by a kid with little diving knowledge, and then slapped on to the backs of the diver, with little thought. An instructor might wince at the look of some set ups, but if not life threatening, many would not decide it is in their purvey to wade in to this mess.

DIR thought is different. When we see gear that does not work well, or is configured in a way that will restrict function, or cause an unsafe situation, DIR has a direction for this, and a better way.

There were probably 10 to 15 dive instructors that saw this guy during the dive....I would question if any thought he was safe in the water. None said anything to him.... Again, maybe I am part of the problem this thread details ( because I pushed a DIR agenda to a diver that I thought needed help) ...but I felt there was a better way this guy should know about, and I felt it would be wrong not to share it.

Simon-
April 16th, 2012, 08:35 AM
I am not looking for an arguement (surprising for SB I know), but some of the terminology is what I find hard to accept.

Optimal Gear Configuration - this is a selective view. Please tell me how the placement of my SPG or the positioning of a back-up torch is so detrimental to my configuration. I put them where I feel they are best suited for me. Not for anyone else, but for me. It makes my configuration optimal to me.

To use an analogy about dive shops selling poor gear combinations is weak. In every facet of life bad combinations are sold. Look at cars and accessories, look at fashion, interior design etc. Just because you don't like it doesn't mean it's wrong.

I would have hoped that at least one or more of the other instructors would have said something, not agency based, but merely pointing out some tips. I applaud the fact you did speak to him, but does it have to be based on an agency's training?

I would blame him, as opposed to the gear (based on your description). His tank sounds like it was set too low. That can be done with any BCD. To imply, as your post did. that a BP/W (the DIR way) would be the answer to his prayers is wrong. He could still set it low. I am sure when he was trained he wasn't shown to set it that low.

How many people still drive the way the were taught. We all develop habits (some good, some bad). This sounds like a bad one. A new regime of training wouldn't be required, just a little "mate, you might want to try setting your tank a bit higher, it'll get you flatter in the water"

Doc Harry
April 16th, 2012, 09:05 AM
Can we please concentrate on the question at hand, and have a little less vitriol and personal comments when people try to post examples of how they've had negative experiences with the DIR community? Way too much of that, especially in the recent parts of this thread.

TSandM's original post was her attempt to show that people's pre-conceived negative connotations of DIR can be reversed with personal experience with DIR divers.

My posts, and other people's "vitriolic" posts, demonstrate quite the opposite. Pre-conceived negative connotations of DIR were reinforced with personal experience with DIR divers.

I am still willing to give GUE another chance - as I said, as soon as the offer me reimbursement for my previous wasted trips to Florida for GUE-F. ;)

gypsyjim
April 16th, 2012, 09:20 AM
Unless a student is taught the difference or until a diver actually willingly begins to see a difference between body positions, and equipment configurations they simply may have no idea there is any reason to explore variations and techniques beyond what they first were exposed to in their OW class.

Like many here, my first real exposure to even the term DIR was on this board, and there was a lot of negativity on both sides of the discussion. Even the term BP/W seemed to be a flash point. At first my reaction was to watch and read, and then gradually to do a bit of :gas:, just to get folks talking, so I could read and learn more.

It was threw our local SB forum, DNY that I first began to see some Welcoming discussion, with folks posting about their practicing skill sets, their trial and errors, and offering fellow DNY divers to come play with them at the quarry. Once I got the chance to be in the water with a couple of these folks and see them in action I realized there was a significant difference in their diving from anyone else I had ever seen, and a higher ideal, U/W skill wise to shoot for, for myself.

This open discussion in a general scuba forum, and the open offer to anyone involved in the group's various threads to come play with skills in the quarry, without really resorting to the words DIR, really opened the door to more than a few of us just to come out and play. And so learn.


The videotaping of our dives when I did first take a GUE seminar was a real eye opener for me, but I had to be ready to learn before I got there. It is a shame that video taping and self critiquing is not a regular part all OW type training, as starting students right out with such a visual reference for comparison would I believe go a long way toward creating more self aware divers, ever willing to see a need to continually keep improving. You have to see a difference, before you see a need to change.

Crush
April 16th, 2012, 09:25 AM
You're correct that GUE is very much binary, either you're doing it the GUE way, or you're not. I was refering more to the overall diving world, in that the GUE way isn't the only way to safely execute a dive.

My mistake - sorry.


Learning how to dive with the required equipment is kind of implied upon requesting GUE training, is it not?

...

If you decide that extra drings are how you like to roll, go nuts. No one is forcing anything on you. The courses simply teach how we operate, that's all. If one isn't interested in learning that, why sign up for it?

All those extra D-rings that I had pre-Fundies - I never did re-string them into my webbing and so far I have not needed them. As far as I am concerned, GUE is akin to a private club that requires a jacket and tie - if I seek admission to the club knowing the dress code I shouldn't bitch about said dress code, should I?


This view quickly fades as you move past Fundies. And I'm not sure that the crotch strap d-rings are the best example, since they have all sorts of uses even for rec dives.

gsk3, I have no doubt that you are correct. However, many newer divers (take Crewfish13, below, as an example) prefer to understand why, not just what. For example, why does this view quickly fade as you move past Fundies? What "view" are you referring to? That GUE is binary, that beginners love their D-rings, or that crotch straps are an entanglement hazard?


I'll pitch in as well. I understand that most DIR and tech divers on the board are simply trying to be helpful, but can definitely come off as know-it-alls or jerks. I've seen plenty of threads started with "I'm looking for a BCD. I'm thinking about xxx and yyy. What are the pros and cons?" and quickly turn into "Get a BP/W. You'll thank me later", which usually isn't helpful, regardless of the poster's intentions. After all, most of us buying our first set of gear certified in jackets, and that's what we're comfortable in. And to newbs, being comfortable in our gear is extremely important so we can focus on our skills. Same can be said for other pieces of equipment.

Granted, DIR divers tend to have a great deal of experience and there's a lot use newbs can learn from them, but sometimes the conversation feels like trying to explain what we're looking for in a minivan, and the response is "Just save up for a Ferrari."

Maybe someday I'll join the ranks of DIR, but these days DIR sometimes feels like an elitist attitude (even when it's not), and in the meantime, I'm happy just being a :dork2:

---------- Post added April 16th, 2012 at 06:40 AM ----------


When we first began bringing DIR to recreational divers, it was to help them fix major problems that we saw no FIX for in the way things were. Gear was bad, and there was no definable "right way" or "wrong way" to use it prior to 1995....

I am confused by this assertion. The National Association for Cave Diving (NACD) was around since 1968 and I believe that the National Speleological Society Cave Diving Section (NSS-CDS) is about the same age. Were the NACD and NSS-CDS not diving correctly prior to DIR's intervention in 1995?

nimoh
April 16th, 2012, 09:44 AM
I have recently (in the past year) started switching my equipment to DIR and plan on taking fundies later this year. I have some instructors that are DIR divers, which is what got me down the DIR path. I am not nearly knowledgeable enough about DIR, or experienced as a diver to be telling other divers what they should be doing (so I don't).

I do wonder about something though. It seems to me that discussions such as these end up with people that are DIR vs people that are opposed to DIR. I would be curios to hear from someone that went down the DIR path, possibly even went through fundies or beyond, and then after that decided that DIR wasn't for them, and their reasons.

danvolker
April 16th, 2012, 09:50 AM
My mistake - sorry.





---------- Post added April 16th, 2012 at 06:40 AM ----------



I am confused by this assertion. The National Association for Cave Diving (NACD) was around since 1968 and I believe that the National Speleological Society Cave Diving Section (NSS-CDS) is about the same age. Were the NACD and NSS-CDS not diving correctly prior to DIR's intervention in 1995?



In the mid nineties, cave divers were dying like flies. Personal preference was all the rage. George coined the name DIR to separate WKPP and it's style of diving--with perfect track record, from NACD and all the other cave diving groups at the time.

Today is a different world....Today no such disparity exists that would call for a name as potentially obnoxious as DIR. But in the nineties, people were given all sorts of bad advice, and wearing all sorts of configurations which led to many deaths.

We still have the name DIR, and it still indicates a boundary position where gear is a certain way, and diving is done a certain way, and the track record and accomplishments of those using it is very high....I did not put up a post just now, saying DIR is all there is....and today all I am saying is that the original purpose of DIR, to help those that need help, is still valid.

---------- Post added April 16th, 2012 at 09:55 AM ----------

For those that read my initial posts in this thread, here is the video I spoke of. Watch it, and then tell me what you would have done, and whether a DIR mindset might not help this guy...


In the beginning, we were just minding our own business, I was doing macro video of nudibranchs, mantis shrimp, anemonees, and was looking for the oculina coral and the life that was around it.Then, this guy litterally ran over Sandra.

http://youtu.be/UVpD08Ko2DY?hd=1

Scott L
April 16th, 2012, 10:02 AM
For those that read my initial posts in this thread, here is the video I spoke of. Watch it, and then tell me what you would have done, and whether a DIR mindset might not help this guy...


In the beginning, we were just minding our own business, I was doing macro video of nudibranchs, mantis shrimp, anemonees, and was looking for the oculina coral and the life that was around it.Then, this guy litterally ran over Sandra.
Awful - YouTube (http://youtu.be/UVpD08Ko2DY?hd=1)

Yikes! I don't believe he needed the added task of dragging a dive flag...

Crush
April 16th, 2012, 10:03 AM
For those that read my initial posts in this thread, here is the video I spoke of. Watch it, and then tell me what you would have done, and whether a DIR mindset might not help this guy...


In the beginning, we were just minding our own business, I was doing macro video of nudibranchs, mantis shrimp, anemonees, and was looking for the oculina coral and the life that was around it.Then, this guy litterally ran over Sandra.
Awful - YouTube (http://youtu.be/UVpD08Ko2DY?hd=1)

danvolker, I have so far only watched the first minute of your video and I am laughing at my desk. However, I think that you are mistaken. That guy is not an awful diver - he is just doing an aquacize class - he is moving from A to B expending as much energy as possible and really working the quads. :)

danvolker
April 16th, 2012, 10:06 AM
Yikes! I don't believe he needed the added task of dragging a dive flag...
And apparently he decided that he could prevent his long guages from getting caught on anything, by walking upright on the bottom....

So is the BC part of the problem...or just the way he configured it? Thoughts?

---------- Post added April 16th, 2012 at 10:09 AM ----------


danvolker, I have so far only watched the first minute of your video and I am laughing at my desk. However, I think that you are mistaken. That guy is not an awful diver - he is just doing an aquacize class - he is moving from A to B expending as much energy as possible and really working the quads. :)

Crush, you may be right....and he did look really beat in the parking lot, after his 25 minute long "workout".
If the women that Sandra calls the nudi-girls ( always motionless and on the bottom shooting nudibranchs--about 10 of them) had seen this guy, I think they may have beaten him severely, or at least given him a tongue lashing :-)

danvolker
April 16th, 2012, 10:22 AM
Me...not for me...one word...spearfishing. DIR and spearfishing just dont jive very well...if at all.

I got in to diving with George Irvine and Bill Mee due to my Deep Spearfishing.....they liked diving with me, for the added adventures. George would spearfish with me sometimes, and I will say that when you are stringing a 40 pound grey grouper, that is still kicking a bit, it is nice to have your DIR buddy watching your back ( in this case, 2 DIR buddies). I would shoot several fish, George would usually shoot at least one and grab lobsters over shooting.

Watching George following a big grouper into a passageway on the RB Johnson, at around 250 feet deep....hanging in "mid air" when needed to perfectly follow the fish in a tight and silty area, was mesmerizing....watching him work the line, not bumping in to anything, as we penetrated further, was amazing...I wanted that skill level....I started copying stuff he was doing in the water collum, and switching my gear configurations to more closely match his...it all helped, and my ability to get to fish inside wrecks went up exponentially, and my skills just on the reef went up as well.
It was fun to try something that I had never done, that gave me a potentially better way to do something that was hard to do.

You don't need to be DIR to spearfish at 100 or even 200 feet deep...but it can make it more fun, and safer. I have stories :-)

nimoh
April 16th, 2012, 10:29 AM
the guy in the video seemed to be showing some improvement by the end of the dive, getting up off the bottom. I think you made the right call politely informing him that his diving could improve.

danvolker
April 16th, 2012, 10:38 AM
the guy in the video seemed to be showing some improvement by the end of the dive, getting up off the bottom. I think you made the right call politely informing him that his diving could improve.

When you watch something like this unfolding, you wonder if it is appropriate to say something. I really am trying hard to be more like TS&M in discussing how a person dives. BHB does not yet have true Park protection status..but this is more of a lag in awareness by government, one that I am certain will be corrected. There is nothing else like this in the intracoastal waterway, or any reef on the ocean that we have been to.
It is an area that concentrates life that is rare everywhere else. It is a nursery ground, and it even has oculina ( deep water nursery ground coral--and what is it doing here ? )
This guy is damaging the bottom...not just for an instant, but for over 20 minutes straight! He later was amazed to hear that anything at all lived on the bottom..He thought it was all dead. Was he at risk for an accident? Maybe he could survive at the BHB Park, but what about those skills on an 80 foot reef? He told me he was using 21 pounds of lead, in the weight pockets of the BC. There was an awful lot of "very wrong" going on....

Scott L
April 16th, 2012, 10:42 AM
And apparently he decided that he could prevent his long guages from getting caught on anything, by walking upright on the bottom....

So is the BC part of the problem...or just the way he configured it? Thoughts?

Not only is his console not clipped onto his BCD to avoid dangling, he has not properly routed the hose through the BCD's upper-left hose channel, which would take away a lot of extra length. Of course, I would suggest that he transitioned to a wrist mounted computer/SPG gauge configuration and attach his octo somewhere in his upper body triangle if a neck bungee was out of the question...

danvolker
April 16th, 2012, 11:01 AM
Not only is his console not clipped onto his BCD to avoid dangling, he has not properly routed the hose through the BCD's upper-left hose channel, which would take away a lot of extra length. Of course, I would suggest that he transitioned to a wrist mounted computer/SPG gauge configuration and attach his octo somewhere in his upper body triangle if a neck bungee was out of the question...



Exactly....and in the scheme of things, those of us, of the "DIR Persuasion", are more likely to look at this guy and to make some kind and helpful comments to him, about what he might do to his present configuration, to make him a better and safer diver. And in the old days, one of our newcomers may well have been rude in the way they critiqued his gear config.....But this is TODAY....most of us are trying hard not to offend...even PfcAJ :-)

When I spoke with this guy, it became apparent that no one had ever remarked about his diving before......
So here is a DIR issue.....We will help, when no one else will :-)

nimoh
April 16th, 2012, 11:06 AM
I'll preface this post that I am working towards being a DIR diver, however, there is one tenet of DIR that I don't agree with, and that is "don't dive with unsafe divers".

I would dive with this guy, and try to help him be better (not necessarily trying to convert him to DIR). If he had no interest in being better, then, yes, I wouldn't be diving with him.

Incidentally, (what appears to be) his buddy is not much better :)

PfcAJ
April 16th, 2012, 11:22 AM
One who is unsafe in one environment (deeper, reduced vis) are might be relatively reasonable in another (shallow, clear, etc). In OW, ill dive with almost anyone. As the complexity of the dive increases, the number of folks who I'll do that dive with subsequently decreases.

I think 'don't dive with unsafe divers' is a pretty sound recommendation.

NWGratefulDiver
April 16th, 2012, 11:24 AM
The DIR issue.
This guy was swimming almost in a walking position. He was wearing some kind of back inflate BC that allowed the tank to hang far to low behind his butt.... I think this may have been the central issue in his incorrect center of gravity, and his terrible posture in the water collum.
So if there was no DIR in this world, who would even notice that this guy had an equipment configuration that was nearly criminal? {humour, not literal} Where would this guy go or look for examples of bad and good configurations, and for ideas on how to be better in the water?


Dan ... first off, you're addressing this as a DIR issue. It's not ... and addressing it as such only creates the very misimpression of DIR that so many are describing here.

This is NOT a DIR issue at all ... it's an issue of improperly using the equipment the person is wearing.

A BCD that "allows" a tank too low describes pretty much any BCD that uses a single tank strap ... and, if improperly adjusted, can also occur with the dual-strap BCD.

ANY BCD can be adjusted for proper trim or balance. It doesn't have to be a BP/W. The latter offers several advantages to the diver who is going to be considering dives appropriate to its use ... even in a recreational setting. But suggesting that the BCD is responsible for a person's bad trim is essentially saying you think people should use equipment to solve a skills problem.

The problem doesn't lie with the gear choice ... it lies with how the gear is being used. And it very well (and more likely) lies with the fact that this person ... who has grown accustomed to moving while in a vertical orientation his whole life ... was never taught how to move any other way. Neither of those problems is endemic to the choice of gear. Nor would a different BCD choice necessarily improve that person's posture ... if that's how he's used to moving, he'll simply make whatever adjustments are required to keep moving that way.

The problem must be resolved by finding and addressing the root causes ... not blaming it on the gear ...

... Bob (Grateful Diver)

nimoh
April 16th, 2012, 11:31 AM
One who is unsafe in one environment (deeper, reduced vis) are might be relatively reasonable in another (shallow, clear, etc). In OW, ill dive with almost anyone. As the complexity of the dive increases, the number of folks who I'll do that dive with subsequently decreases.

I think 'don't dive with unsafe divers' is a pretty sound recommendation.

I agree, I was referring to the guy in the video in my post, and thinking about 40' dives or so. I probably would be more selective on complex dives as well.

Also, I meant to say I don't completely agree with "don't dive with unsafe divers" in every situation, implying that there are exceptions to this rule in my mind, but agree that it is a sound recommendation for the most part.

fjpatrum
April 16th, 2012, 11:31 AM
Diving's not a contest ... neither is posting on the Internet. It's something we do for fun.

I don't care who thinks they're better than me. Who knows ... they might be right.

Why should it matter? Some of the most fun people I dive with aren't nearly as skilled as people I know who I wouldn't want to dive with.

Who's better? Depends on whether you're judging by skill set or by who you can have the most fun spending a few hours with ...

... Bob (Grateful Diver)
There's a quote in the movie 'Step Into Liquid' that I think is perfectly applicable here... "Who's the best surfer (diver) in the world? The one having the most fun."

lamont
April 16th, 2012, 11:41 AM
Now, I really don't give a rat's ass about whether it is DIR or not, that neither defines nor circumscribes my diving world. I only bring up the example to demonstrate how what is touted to be a holistic system can, with respect to a trivial issue, quickly degenerate into a reductionist one. I really don't care how John, or Lamont dive, per se, but I do believe, that as a thinking diver, I have an obligation to point out (if just for the benefit of new divers) that BS is being distributed and that confusion is rampant. If there is this much confusion and angst concerning a nose block, does that not make one wonder about more sweeping and important dictates?

Thal, up your reading comprehension.

I just posted out dives with a FFM that have to be done with an FFM that can't be considered DIR.

I don't get online and whine about how DIR must be universal across all kinds of diving and since I've found a particular edge condition that requires a FFM that DIR must change itself to accomodate this case. Its just outside of the scope.

And you've misunderstood holistic. It is holistic in that it encompasses the gear, the procedures, the diver's own preparation (fitness, experience, etc), and the whole team doing the particular dive. It does not claim to be perfectly *universal* and apply to every recreational dive and diver possible, which is a different concept entirely, and a pretty stupid idea to try to take on.

NWGratefulDiver
April 16th, 2012, 11:54 AM
In the beginning, we were just minding our own business, I was doing macro video of nudibranchs, mantis shrimp, anemonees, and was looking for the oculina coral and the life that was around it.Then, this guy litterally ran over Sandra.

http://youtu.be/UVpD08Ko2DY?hd=1

... that's clearly not an equipment problem, Dan ... that guy would look just as bad in a BP/W. Clearly he either was never taught anything about how to move himself through the water, or he decided to ignore everything he was taught. This fellow looks like he'd be more comfortable on a bicycle ... or a hiking trail ... with his skills it wouldn't matter what gear he was wearing, he's lacking skills he should have learned before he was ever granted a c-card ...

... Bob (Grateful Diver)

TSandM
April 16th, 2012, 12:00 PM
"Unsafe divers" is a nebulous term. I wouldn't do a deep dive with someone who was diving a tank that wouldn't allow them to keep safe gas reserves for the planned dive. I wouldn't go diving with someone who had habits like the photographer we met in Indonesia, who would stay down until his tank was EMPTY and then come up on his DM's gas (the resort assigned him a personal DM for this reason). Unsafe diving is often a product of attitude, rather than skill; new divers with really poor skills are often attentive and careful, and less "unsafe" than cocky people with better technique.

I would, and have gone diving with people like Dan describes. How do people improve, if no one with more experience will help them? Not only that, but the Wednesday dives that were the genesis of this thread in the first place . . . are FOR this purpose!

And no, you don't have to change to a GUE gear configuration to solve weight and balance problems. But if you do, the problems are solved in the process, which is a nice side effect of the gear, and is the reason why that type of setup is very popular here in the PNW, even among people who haven't even heard of GUE. A lot of other problems go away at the same time, which is one of the reasons we do tend to be evangelistic about our gear! It is not the only way to dive comfortably or well, but it's an awfully easy one. Or, as the shop owner Bob was talking about once told me, "DIR is just such a SIMPLE way to dive."

nimoh
April 16th, 2012, 12:14 PM
"Unsafe divers" is a nebulous term. I wouldn't do a deep dive with someone who was diving a tank that wouldn't allow them to keep safe gas reserves for the planned dive. I wouldn't go diving with someone who had habits like the photographer we met in Indonesia, who would stay down until his tank was EMPTY and then come up on his DM's gas (the resort assigned him a personal DM for this reason). Unsafe diving is often a product of attitude, rather than skill; new divers with really poor skills are often attentive and careful, and less "unsafe" than cocky people with better technique.

I would, and have gone diving with people like Dan describes. How do people improve, if no one with more experience will help them? Not only that, but the Wednesday dives that were the genesis of this thread in the first place . . . are FOR this purpose!

And no, you don't have to change to a GUE gear configuration to solve weight and balance problems. But if you do, the problems are solved in the process, which is a nice side effect of the gear, and is the reason why that type of setup is very popular here in the PNW, even among people who haven't even heard of GUE. A lot of other problems go away at the same time, which is one of the reasons we do tend to be evangelistic about our gear! It is not the only way to dive comfortably or well, but it's an awfully easy one. Or, as the shop owner Bob was talking about once told me, "DIR is just such a SIMPLE way to dive."

I have never heard of "don't dive with unsafe divers" explained this way before, perhaps I agree with it more than I thought

NWGratefulDiver
April 16th, 2012, 12:24 PM
I would, and have gone diving with people like Dan describes. How do people improve, if no one with more experience will help them? Not only that, but the Wednesday dives that were the genesis of this thread in the first place . . . are FOR this purpose!

... which is why I support them. One of the very best ways to get someone to improve isn't to preach at them or tell them what they're doing wrong ... it's simply to set a good example and show them what's possible. Most folks will decide all on their own that they want some of that ... then evangelism becomes unnecessary, you just have to point them in a direction where they can find it.



And no, you don't have to change to a GUE gear configuration to solve weight and balance problems. But if you do, the problems are solved in the process, which is a nice side effect of the gear, and is the reason why that type of setup is very popular here in the PNW, even among people who haven't even heard of GUE. A lot of other problems go away at the same time, which is one of the reasons we do tend to be evangelistic about our gear! It is not the only way to dive comfortably or well, but it's an awfully easy one.

It depends. If you are shown how to set the gear up properly, it solves a lot of problems. If you configure it improperly, it creates a whole new set of problems ... which I'm certain you've seen. The DIR configuration is an elegant approach to equipment configuration ... but it would be a mistake to assume that changing equipment is going to make someone a better diver. The tools don't define the craft ... but there's a reason why craftsmen in all disciplines choose appropriate and quality tools to achieve a certain level of performance.



Or, as the shop owner Bob was talking about once told me, "DIR is just such a SIMPLE way to dive."
Just to be clear ... the shop manager I was referring to earlier wasn't the owner ...

... Bob (Grateful Diver)

---------- Post added April 16th, 2012 at 09:25 AM ----------


I have never heard of "don't dive with unsafe divers" explained this way before, perhaps I agree with it more than I thought

... knowledge is such an enlightening thing ... :D

... Bob (Grateful Diver)

gypsyjim
April 16th, 2012, 12:40 PM
http://youtu.be/UVpD08Ko2DY?hd=1

Are you even certain this fellow ever certified at all? Looks more like he stumbled across a yard sale deal on gear, and figured he'd take it for a stroll. Sort of a: "I mean, how hard could this diving thing be anyway?"

Wow. Talk about destroying the reef.

lamont
April 16th, 2012, 12:55 PM
I have never heard of "don't dive with unsafe divers" explained this way before, perhaps I agree with it more than I thought

It used to be "don't dive with strokes" and that meme was changed to "unsafe divers" to make the point that its more about mindset and in direct opposition to the other way the meme was evolving which was "don't dive with non-DIR divers (since they're all strokes)".

And that guy, irregardless of how bad he looks, isn't actually a stroke (or isn't necessarily a stroke). He just doesn't know any better. Its the egocentric ones who think they're a badass tech/cave diver and know everything and have little understanding of their own limitations and are hell bent on pushing every limit there is who are the dangerous ones. Those are the ones you want to step back and stay out of their way until they have a CO2 hit or some kind of incident and wind up selling all their dive gear to focus more on their family.

There are actually some GUE divers I know who fall under that category that I won't dive with. Agency and gear config aren't foolproof by any means.

Divenomad
April 16th, 2012, 12:55 PM
I have not read this entire thread, but my experience has been there are all kinds of people doing their dives in their own way. I think it's possible that DIR and GUE attracts some folks who are looking for something absolutist, and are looking for a way to "obtain the high ground" but thats not a DIR or GUE problem, that's a personality issue for the individual. Some people are jerks, and DIR and GUE are their particular lens for BEING jerks. I've found such people in every human activity I have ever seen. That being said, I am not this type of diver, nor is it likely i will ever be, due to a very small minority (total strangers) who decided it was their dive god given right to verbally abuse me on a beach for the crime of using one small aspect of DIR configuration without using the whole system. (short SPG backup clipped to a D ring on my left waist)

That last time I was treated that way, it was a drill sergeant, who had the excuse of just doing his job. You embrace the philosophy, you inevitably run into this type, and I just don't need it. Someone said earlier the best diver is the one having the most fun. I have not interest in arguing philosophy, i just want to go diving.

Just my opinion.

JamesK
April 16th, 2012, 12:55 PM
Man, I had this long post wrote up for a reply to this and my computer shutdown. Uh well. My brain hurts from reading this thread anyway.

Who cares?! Plain and simple. Who gives a flying rat's butthole? DIR is a sound philosophy. It is a holistic approach towards diving that makes sense! The gear configuration is well thought out and has a reason behind each piece. It works! So do many other styles. People on both side of the argument need to chill out. Funny thing is most of the whining in this thread is from non-DIR divers who simply want to bash it. If you don't like it, don't freggin do it.

When new divers are referred to me to help mentor them, I hand them my copy of "Doing It Right; The Fundamentals of Better Diving". That copy has got some miles on it! I tell them to read it. It will help them understand why I pick things the way I do, and why I dive the way I do. Do I say, "If you don't dive this way you are going to DIE!" Nope.



OK, so who is the first to scream, "BUT BUT BUT, your avatar shows sidemount! You are not DIR!"

nimoh
April 16th, 2012, 01:05 PM
Man, I had this long post wrote up for a reply to this and my computer shutdown. Uh well. My brain hurts from reading this thread anyway.

Who cares?! Plain and simple. Who gives a flying rat's butthole? DIR is a sound philosophy. It is a holistic approach towards diving that makes sense! The gear configuration is well thought out and has a reason behind each piece. It works! So do many other styles. People on both side of the argument need to chill out. Funny thing is most of the whining in this thread is from non-DIR divers who simply want to bash it. If you don't like it, don't freggin do it.

When new divers are referred to me to help mentor them, I hand them my copy of "Doing It Right; The Fundamentals of Better Diving". That copy has got some miles on it! I tell them to read it. It will help them understand why I pick things the way I do, and why I dive the way I do. Do I say, "If you don't dive this way you are going to DIE!" Nope.



OK, so who is the first to scream, "BUT BUT BUT, your avatar shows sidemount! You are not DIR!"

All things evolve, one day you may be regarded as one of the pioneers of DIR sidemount diving :)

Lead_carrier
April 16th, 2012, 01:05 PM
"....... And no, you don't have to change to a GUE gear configuration to solve weight and balance problems. But if you do, the problems are solved in the process, which is a nice side effect of the gear, and is the reason why that type of setup is very popular here in the PNW, even among people who haven't even heard of GUE. A lot of other problems go away at the same time, which is one of the reasons we do tend to be evangelistic about our gear! It is not the only way to dive comfortably or well, but it's an awfully easy one. Or, as the shop owner Bob was talking about once told me, "DIR is just such a SIMPLE way to dive."

With all due respect TSandM, I do not believe that simply swapping to a dir gear configuration will solve weight and balance configuration problems. It very well might possibly help them, but time must still be taken to figure out the proper balance and weighting regardless of the bcd type being used. For instance, if someone is wearing their tank to low with a jacket, they can still wear it too low with a bp/w. Will dual straps help, probably but a lot of jackets have them and given half a chance, there's still a lot of us that can still mount a tank too low. Doing a different gear config will probably help if for no other reason than it will usually make a diver be more concious of what their doing and how they are doing it. If just swapping gear would solve bouyancy, balance and weighting problems then it would put a lot of gear manufacturers out of business.

JamesK
April 16th, 2012, 01:13 PM
All things evolve, one day you may be regarded as one of the pioneers of DIR sidemount diving :)

LOL!! I think AG is already working on this!

Lead_carrier
April 16th, 2012, 01:16 PM
For those that read my initial posts in this thread, here is the video I spoke of. Watch it, and then tell me what you would have done, and whether a DIR mindset might not help this guy...


In the beginning, we were just minding our own business, I was doing macro video of nudibranchs, mantis shrimp, anemonees, and was looking for the oculina coral and the life that was around it.Then, this guy litterally ran over Sandra.

http://youtu.be/UVpD08Ko2DY?hd=1

Being or not being DIR has nothing to do with this guy. It is a lack of brain cells being engaged that is to blame for this nut.

What would I have done? The same thing that I actually do. I would have swam over, grasped his tank valve and gently raised hiim off the bottom. I honestly don't think this guy would have had the foggiest idea that he was being raised. Then got his attention and signaled to him that the bottom was not for walking on. Once we got back to shore, I would gladly discuss any issues he had with me or my actions. Hopefully, he would understand the whys of everything that happened. If not, oh well. On the next dive I wouldn't be so gentle in my raising of the dead.

RickyF
April 16th, 2012, 01:20 PM
After watching this guy I think I figured out what is wrong......He doesn't know how to swim, so he walks!! How can you possibly get certified having supposedly mastered all the skill sets required and not have better control of your trim than that. How did he complete the fin pivot? Yes, he does need help not condemnation, but how in the world did he ever get certified at that skill level? Personally, I would love to work with someone like that to help them improve, starting back in the pool.

Scott L
April 16th, 2012, 01:32 PM
... that's clearly not an equipment problem, Dan ... that guy would look just as bad in a BP/W. Clearly he either was never taught anything about how to move himself through the water, or he decided to ignore everything he was taught. This fellow looks like he'd be more comfortable on a bicycle ... or a hiking trail ... with his skills it wouldn't matter what gear he was wearing, he's lacking skills he should have learned before he was ever granted a c-card ...

... Bob (Grateful Diver)

Wasn't this thread's purpose to be nice to beginners? I have reported you to Lamont. :D

Tigerman
April 16th, 2012, 01:35 PM
After watching this guy I think I figured out what is wrong......He doesn't know how to swim, so he walks!! How can you possibly get certified having supposedly mastered all the skill sets required and not have better control of your trim than that. How did he complete the fin pivot? Yes, he does need help not condemnation, but how in the world did he ever get certified at that skill level? Personally, I would love to work with someone like that to help them improve, starting back in the pool.
First question really is if he IS infact certified. Its not like its hard to buy gear and jump in without a c-card. Its not smart, but its easy..

JamesK
April 16th, 2012, 01:42 PM
I have seen plenty of divers that look like that fresh out of OW class.

dbulmer
April 16th, 2012, 01:56 PM
I think Dan Volker mentioned earlier that the diver was carrying a lot of weight - that is not going to help him with buoyancy/trim. The diver is task loaded with a float - the buddy appears oblivious to the bloke. The bloke tries to keep up with his buddy kicking up stuff as he goes along.

That could have been me .. once . That Dan pointed out issues to the diver is to be commended. Most of us would just shut up and say nothing.
That the diver might have listened is also to be commended - some people might not have been prepared to listen at all.

boulderjohn
April 16th, 2012, 02:00 PM
I really hesitated before joining this thread, and I in fact cringed when I saw Lynne start it, for I knew that it would turn into what it is, with many posts confirming and extending the belief that brought her such sadness. My own feelings on this are very mixed and in a state of reflection.

My earliest technical diving training was DIR, although some will no doubt argue that it doesn't count because I was only on the JV team (UTD--and yes, I have been slighted for that.) When I decided to get cave certification, I went through NSS-CDS, with one of the most long-serving cave instructors in the business. The first thing he had me do was set up my gear and explain why I did it that way. It was, of course, strictly DIR, and he had no problem with any of it. He himself had only a few differences, and he explained what they were and why he did them. They seemed to make sense to me, but for the most part I stayed with my DIR setup throughout my training. We did have some conversations, though, about the difference between doing what makes sense to you and doing what you are told, even if it doesn't necessarily make sense to the diver.

As I progressed in my trimix training, I made the decision (for very practical reasons that are off topic here) to cross over to TDI. Once again I was asked to show my gear configuration and practices and justify it, and once again the instructor accepted it and then explained the differences in his gear and practices. I thought he had some good points. Throughout my training for my trimix and advanced trimix certifications, I did many dives with a variety of tech divers on the boats. You would have to know DIR to see the differences and realize that I was the only DIR diver on those trips, but they all seemed to be very competent, they all seemed safe, and they all had a good time. We had some chats about the differences. Not a one of them knew that they were card-carrying strokes because they used 80% O2 for a deco gas, and the ones I showed that famed article were quite amused. (Because everyone else was using 80%, I did as well for gas matching purposes, and I lived to tell about it.)

I recently took more course work from my TDI instructor, who owns one of the most well-known dive shops in South Florida. The shop's customer base is primarily technical, and they carry a lot of gear by Dive Rite and Hollis. He told me he recently had someone apply for a position as an instructor. As he showed the guy around, the guy started off by telling him that he was a DIR diver, apparently assuming that would impress the owner. As he looked at the tech gear on display, the guy further tried to impress the owner by telling him what crap it was, and how a lot of it was really unacceptable for good, safe, DIR diving. (And this guy was looking for a job!) In telling me the story, knowing my DIR background, the shop owner got angry all over again, and he asked me for an explanation for that attitude. I had none.

The shop with which I now work is about to announce a new offering, a program divers can take to learn good trim and propulsion skills. I will be the instructor. Divers can take it with different approaches, depending upon their goals. They can go full bore into BP/W, long hose--the works. They can also take it in standard recreational gear--we just have to be able to move weights to solve trim problems. I will look at their gear and talk about options, helping them make the best possible choices for the diving they intend to do, whether it is just to be the best possible recreational divers they can be or go on to full technical training. Thus, anyone around here can get the training people associate with DIR without needing to go to either of the accepted DIR agencies to get it. I don't intend to use the term DIR in my instruction unless the student asks about it, and I hope they will instead focus on the skills and equipment that will help make them the best possible divers they can be.

NWGratefulDiver
April 16th, 2012, 02:06 PM
Wasn't this thread's purpose to be nice to beginners? I have reported you to Lamont. :D

I am nice to beginners ... I won't let my students out of a pool until they show better control than that. And I spend a pretty fair amount of time and effort helping other beginner divers develop their skills so they don't dive like that fellow.

It's because I'm a nice guy, and don't want them to hurt themselves, anybody else, or the environment they're diving in.

How much nicer would you want me to be?

... Bob (Grateful Diver)

Scott L
April 16th, 2012, 02:07 PM
I am nice to beginners ... I won't let my students out of a pool until they show better control than that. And I spend a pretty fair amount of time and effort helping other beginner divers develop their skills so they don't dive like that fellow.

It's because I'm a nice guy, and don't want them to hurt themselves, anybody else, or the environment they're diving in.

How much nicer would you want me to be?

... Bob (Grateful Diver)

I was just kidding. You should know that by now. :)

NWGratefulDiver
April 16th, 2012, 02:10 PM
I was just kidding. You should know that by now. :)

Of course ... (I forgot the smiley) ... :D

... Bob (Grateful Diver)

NetDoc
April 16th, 2012, 02:11 PM
It used to be "don't dive with strokes" Too many believe that the term stroke applies to non-DIR divers and that's not entirely true. It actually applies to those who consider themselves DIR divers but whose ego stops them from developing the proper mindset. Out of sheer frustration, strokes took to calling non-DIR divers strokes because they just couldn't comprehend that GI3 was talking about them. Unfortunately, many of the non-DIR community never understood the implicit irony and took it personally! Of course, that doesn't stop us non-DIR folk from using it to poke a little fun at our DIR friends and use it in any way we see fit. :D

danvolker
April 16th, 2012, 03:22 PM
... that's clearly not an equipment problem, Dan ... that guy would look just as bad in a BP/W. Clearly he either was never taught anything about how to move himself through the water, or he decided to ignore everything he was taught. This fellow looks like he'd be more comfortable on a bicycle ... or a hiking trail ... with his skills it wouldn't matter what gear he was wearing, he's lacking skills he should have learned before he was ever granted a c-card ...

... Bob (Grateful Diver)

Bob,
If you had been in my place, what would you have said?
I decided that if I had any chance of getting this guy to listen, that I had to blame something other than "him"...In America, no one wants to admit something was their fault....which is why there are so many lawsuits....why if you tripped on somebodies lawn, it was their fault for having uneven grass.
Hoping to have him open his mind, the closest option seemed to be to blame this on the gear configuration.....while this was probably his fault, it could easily be whoever first set it up for him--or who sold it without setting it up for him. I wanted to use DIR ideas, but new he was in no way a candidate for bp/wing....Configuration of gear would be the topic.

His initial reaction was standoffish, but he warmed up as I explained that no one could dive horizontally with a rig confgured like his.....
I never told him he had to have a bp/wing....what I did say, was that he needed to find a good instructor that could help him figure out how to move the weight around, and how to get horizontal in the water. He said he knew some instructors at Jupiter Dive Center, and in fact, this is a great place for high level PADI instructors that have been through GUE Fundies....so they do know what to look at, and how to fix him.
I told him how great JDC was, and how important it was for him to do this soon. I offered him the video via youtube, but he did not want to see himself.
I hope he does visit JDC, but at least now he knows that the way he is diving is not something he can continue to do.....we also talked about all the nudibranchs and corals and other marine life living on the bottom, and he was shocked about this...He and most students, apparently think the bottom is dead. They never really look at what they are seeing....He did not even know I was shooting video of him, even though you can see at one point I am right in front of him shooting a close up !!! If he can't see me, what chance does a nudibranch have ? :-)

NetDoc
April 16th, 2012, 03:46 PM
If you had been in my place, what would you have said? I'm not Bob, even on a good day, but I believe his point was that this guy's failure to achieve neutral buoyancy has nothing to do with him not being DIR. Using the video of a crappy diver to prove the necessity of DIR is like that current Geico commercial with the people doing the taste test. It simply doesn't apply.


H3oSvSX483w

nimoh
April 16th, 2012, 04:05 PM
anytime you see a diver like in the video, the goal should be to help them not dive like that.

If it was constructive to call him an idiot, then I would do that. Dan saw an opportunity to blame his gear, and sounds like he may have achieved the goal of having the guy seek out some instruction (not necessarily DIR).

Thalassamania
April 16th, 2012, 04:05 PM
And apparently he decided that he could prevent his long guages from getting caught on anything, by walking upright on the bottom....

So is the BC part of the problem...or just the way he configured it? Thoughts?
Almost by definition it has to be how he configured it, else just changing the BC would (by definition) fix the problem and that would then be naught but that DIR anathema, "an equipment solution to a skill problem.":D

Not only is his console not clipped onto his BCD to avoid dangling, he has not properly routed the hose through the BCD's upper-left hose channel, which would take away a lot of extra length. Of course, I would suggest that he transitioned to a wrist mounted computer/SPG gauge configuration and attach his octo somewhere in his upper body triangle if a neck bungee was out of the question...

If his protocol is to surrender the primary, the location of the secondary is his option and the "triangle" becomes irrelevant. In fact, "hinding" it a bit might be a good choice so as to focus his buddy's attention on the primary.

One who is unsafe in one environment (deeper, reduced vis) are might be relatively reasonable in another (shallow, clear, etc). In OW, ill dive with almost anyone. As the complexity of the dive increases, the number of folks who I'll do that dive with subsequently decreases.

I think 'don't dive with unsafe divers' is a pretty sound recommendation.
Agreed, the question is how to access the "unsafe diver." The branding of everyone whose equipment differs in any way, regardless of their skill and ability, as an "unsafe diver" kind of goes to the root of this discussion.

Dan ... first off, you're addressing this as a DIR issue. It's not ... and addressing it as such only creates the very misimpression of DIR that so many are describing here.

This is NOT a DIR issue at all ... it's an issue of improperly using the equipment the person is wearing.

A BCD that "allows" a tank too low describes pretty much any BCD that uses a single tank strap ... and, if improperly adjusted, can also occur with the dual-strap BCD.

ANY BCD can be adjusted for proper trim or balance. It doesn't have to be a BP/W. The latter offers several advantages to the diver who is going to be considering dives appropriate to its use ... even in a recreational setting. But suggesting that the BCD is responsible for a person's bad trim is essentially saying you think people should use equipment to solve a skills problem.

The problem doesn't lie with the gear choice ... it lies with how the gear is being used. And it very well (and more likely) lies with the fact that this person ... who has grown accustomed to moving while in a vertical orientation his whole life ... was never taught how to move any other way. Neither of those problems is endemic to the choice of gear. Nor would a different BCD choice necessarily improve that person's posture ... if that's how he's used to moving, he'll simply make whatever adjustments are required to keep moving that way.

The problem must be resolved by finding and addressing the root causes ... not blaming it on the gear ...

... Bob (Grateful Diver)
Exactly, it is a skill problem. Other gear might force him into a slightly better mold, but he's still going to be a problem diver, even if outfitted in all Halcyon, Atomic and ScubaPro (all in black, of course).

There's a quote in the movie 'Step Into Liquid' that I think is perfectly applicable here... "Who's the best surfer (diver) in the world? The one having the most fun."
Fun may, or may not, be the goal. Sometimes I dive for fun, often I do not and my goal is to complete a piece of work while minimized the hazard.

...

And you've misunderstood holistic. It is holistic in that it encompasses the gear, the procedures, the diver's own preparation (fitness, experience, etc), and the whole team doing the particular dive. It does not claim to be perfectly *universal* and apply to every recreational dive and diver possible, which is a different concept entirely, and a pretty stupid idea to try to take on.
You express the issue far better than anyone else has so far. Enough DIR divers embody the, "stupid idea," to create a less than favorable view of anything that smacks of DIR in the eyes of many non-DIR divers.

"Unsafe divers" is a nebulous term. I wouldn't do a deep dive with someone who was diving a tank that wouldn't allow them to keep safe gas reserves for the planned dive. I wouldn't go diving with someone who had habits like the photographer we met in Indonesia, who would stay down until his tank was EMPTY and then come up on his DM's gas (the resort assigned him a personal DM for this reason). Unsafe diving is often a product of attitude, rather than skill; new divers with really poor skills are often attentive and careful, and less "unsafe" than cocky people with better technique.

I would, and have gone diving with people like Dan describes. How do people improve, if no one with more experience will help them? Not only that, but the Wednesday dives that were the genesis of this thread in the first place . . . are FOR this purpose!

And no, you don't have to change to a GUE gear configuration to solve weight and balance problems. But if you do, the problems are solved in the process, which is a nice side effect of the gear, and is the reason why that type of setup is very popular here in the PNW, even among people who haven't even heard of GUE. A lot of other problems go away at the same time, which is one of the reasons we do tend to be evangelistic about our gear! It is not the only way to dive comfortably or well, but it's an awfully easy one. Or, as the shop owner Bob was talking about once told me, "DIR is just such a SIMPLE way to dive."
While I agree that outfitting a diver with gear that, for example, "forces" them into a stable horizontal attitude can often make them APPEAR to be a better diver than they are, as I noted earlier, that is just an equipment solution for a skill problem.

Man, I had this long post wrote up for a reply to this and my computer shutdown. Uh well. My brain hurts from reading this thread anyway.

Who cares?! Plain and simple. Who gives a flying rat's butthole? DIR is a sound philosophy. It is a holistic approach towards diving that makes sense! The gear configuration is well thought out and has a reason behind each piece. It works! So do many other styles. People on both side of the argument need to chill out. Funny thing is most of the whining in this thread is from non-DIR divers who simply want to bash it. If you don't like it, don't freggin do it.

When new divers are referred to me to help mentor them, I hand them my copy of "Doing It Right; The Fundamentals of Better Diving". That copy has got some miles on it! I tell them to read it. It will help them understand why I pick things the way I do, and why I dive the way I do. Do I say, "If you don't dive this way you are going to DIE!" Nope.



OK, so who is the first to scream, "BUT BUT BUT, your avatar shows sidemount! You are not DIR!"
The issue is not what people dive with, or without, it is the idea (almost invented by the DIR faction) that, "If you don't dive this way you are going to DIE!" Glad to hear that you do not share that attitude.

With all due respect TSandM, I do not believe that simply swapping to a dir gear configuration will solve weight and balance configuration problems. It very well might possibly help them, but time must still be taken to figure out the proper balance and weighting regardless of the bcd type being used. For instance, if someone is wearing their tank to low with a jacket, they can still wear it too low with a bp/w. Will dual straps help, probably but a lot of jackets have them and given half a chance, there's still a lot of us that can still mount a tank too low. Doing a different gear config will probably help if for no other reason than it will usually make a diver be more concious of what their doing and how they are doing it. If just swapping gear would solve bouyancy, balance and weighting problems then it would put a lot of gear manufacturers out of business.
One of my students, many years ago, did a bunch of work in our tow tank to study BC drag, while that is not directly apropos, we did notice (though not study directly) some stability differences between designs. At the time (this is just before the phaseout of horsecollars) one of the things that many manufacturers were striving for was a BC design that permitted a diver carrying about eight pints of air, to have as little problem as possible in maintaining, without a minimum of effort, any combination of pitch, roll and yaw. ScubaPro, at the time, was heavily advertising how their triple-doughnut design fulfilled this criterion. We did notice that the BC that most closely resembled today's BP/W the Watergill At-Pack had a significant tendency to push a diver into a horizontal plane (thus minimizing cross-section dependent drag. BTW: the flapping of the wing material added a lot of drag). This tendency was also noticed by many divers and was used as a, "sales kill" (e.g., it will only float you face up at the surface). So, in any case, I think the answer to the question of will, "simply swapping to a dir gear configuration will solve weight and balance configuration problems?" is YES, in part, it will.

I have seen plenty of divers that look like that fresh out of OW class.
We've all seen lots of divers long out of their OW class that look the same.

boulderjohn
April 16th, 2012, 04:32 PM
... that DIR anathema, "an equipment solution to a skill problem.":D

I never once liked this statement, and I dearly wish it would go away.

Everything in scuba is arguably to some extent an equipment solution to a skill problem. If we had the skill to breathe under water whilst seeing where we were going and were able to make good time doing it, we would not need a scuba unit, mask, or fins. While that is an absurd, extreme example, it is true to some extent of every piece of scuba equipment. We can dive with a tank cradled in our arms if we wanted to--a BCD simply makes it all easier. We can propel ourselves with fins anywhere we want, but many DIR divers use scooters without apology. Every piece of equipment we use in scuba makes our diving easier in some way, so every piece of equipment is in a way an equipment solution to a skill problem.

For me, the issue is this: does this equipment provide an unnecessary ease while at the same time creating a potential problem, such as a failure point? Does the potential problem override the added ease? If it is a potential failure, how great is the potential for that failure, and how serious is the failure should it occur?

To me, those are the critical questions that must be considered. A simple phrase like "equipment solution to a skill problem" short circuits that thinking, much as the bleating of the sheep in Animal Farm drowns out rational discussion.

stevensamler
April 16th, 2012, 04:47 PM
the guy in the video seemed to be showing some improvement by the end of the dive, getting up off the bottom. I think you made the right call politely informing him that his diving could improve.

I think he blew through his al/80 so fast that it made him slightly positive at shallower depth , that's what got him off the bottom. You would think common sense would prevail and this diver would change his diving technique and configuration , the guy must have been exhausted and probably has sore toes.

danvolker
April 16th, 2012, 04:48 PM
I'm not Bob, even on a good day, but I believe his point was that this guy's failure to achieve neutral buoyancy has nothing to do with him not being DIR. Using the video of a crappy diver to prove the necessity of DIR is like that current Geico commercial with the people doing the taste test. It simply doesn't apply.





Pete,
The post TS&M made was about why DIR has such a bad connotation in some circles...
I am trying to illustrate something.....Yesterday at the BHB, the dive area was packed...Probably at least a dozen instructors were there , and a very large number of good divers. Even though this guy cut right through the dive classes, and a great many divers saw him and how bad he was, no one said anything. No one wanted to "rock the boat"...or no one wanted a confrontation, or ...no one felt like it was appropriate for them to say anything.
I was the only one that decided to bother with this..that decided to attempt to help this guy.
You have to consider the most likely response, even if you are polite, is that the guy is going to tell you to screw off.

In any event, seeing the world through a DIR mindset, I think there is more incentive to "try and help", to try and say something that might make this guy change.

So my point is that while DIR gets a bad rap, our efforts have helped many people. Back when we first started talking about DIR ideas around 1996 or so, it was not-- "you need a bp/wing" or "you need Fundies".........It was more along the lines of "your hoses are wrong--here is why, and try this, you may like it better".....or...."you are swimming head up and feet down....there is a better way"...or, of course, the "whole discussion of the long hose primary, and how buddy based diving can improve adventure and safety". Halcyon was not even available to anyone outside of us, for almost a year after Robert came up with the design....but we were still trying to help people with DIR ideas, that cost nothing....but that made sense....Maybe DIR people are just hated because we are the ones that say something. ???

nimoh
April 16th, 2012, 04:49 PM
my computer is an equipment solution to my skill problem of not being able to communicate directly with the internet :)

boulderjohn
April 16th, 2012, 04:52 PM
[/I][/B]So my point is that while DIR gets a bad rap, our efforts have helped many people. Back when we first started talking about DIR ideas around 1996 or so, it was not-- "you need a bp/wing" or "you need Fundies"............Maybe DIR people are just hated because we are the ones that say something. ???

Maybe it has to do with calling the people you were trying to help then "farm animal stupid" if they disagreed with you. That might have had something to do with it back then, too.

lowviz
April 16th, 2012, 04:57 PM
This thread is finally starting to make some sense. Reduction to core values.

Any dive agency that intentionally brands itself as being "the best" will necessarily have problems in the "warm and fuzzy" arena. Where is the surprise in this?

danvolker
April 16th, 2012, 05:06 PM
Maybe it has to do with calling the people you were trying to help then "farm animal stupid" if they disagreed with you. That might have had something to do with it back then, too.

Well, that first was used to describe Bill Renaker ( his concept that "you are the most important person" and his teachings on why it is OK to leave a buddy in a cave at the first hint of trouble) , or a small number of other north Floridians that took great pleasure in doing things George considered extreme endangerment, and most of you would as well...George did have a way with words though, you have to admit :-)

I don't believe I ever used this on an individual , ever.... I may have made a few broad brush references to a small mumber of the north Florida crowd that George and the WKPP was upset with --in posts on Cavers or the Tech list... but this had nothing in common with my efforts to help recreational divers to experience some of our DIR ideas.....

BDSC
April 16th, 2012, 05:07 PM
He said he knew some instructors at Jupiter Dive Center, and in fact, this is a great place for high level PADI instructors that have been through GUE Fundies....so they do know what to look at, and how to fix him.

So let me ask you Dan, would those same high level PADI instructors know what to look for and how to fix him if they didn't have GUE Fundies? Would other high level PADI instructors who have not been through GUE Fundies know what to look for? Would just PADI training be enough for them to recognize the guys problem?

nimoh
April 16th, 2012, 05:12 PM
So let me ask you Dan, would those same high level PADI instructors know what to look for and how to fix him if they didn't have GUE Fundies? Would other high level PADI instructors who have not been through GUE Fundies know what to look for? Would just PADI training be enough for them to recognize the guys problem?

I think there are OW students that could fix him :)

Crush
April 16th, 2012, 05:14 PM
TSandM has managed to start a thread which has distilled and concentrated years of SB threads into one thread which describes a dominating aspect of SB. Now if she could only start similar threads on the topics of pony bottles/Air2 and split fins we could all go home, never to come here again. :)

NWGratefulDiver
April 16th, 2012, 05:17 PM
I never once liked this statement, and I dearly wish it would go away.

Everything in scuba is arguably to some extent an equipment solution to a skill problem. If we had the skill to breathe under water whilst seeing where we were going and were able to make good time doing it, we would not need a scuba unit, mask, or fins. While that is an absurd, extreme example, it is true to some extent of every piece of scuba equipment. We can dive with a tank cradled in our arms if we wanted to--a BCD simply makes it all easier. We can propel ourselves with fins anywhere we want, but many DIR divers use scooters without apology. Every piece of equipment we use in scuba makes our diving easier in some way, so every piece of equipment is in a way an equipment solution to a skill problem.

For me, the issue is this: does this equipment provide an unnecessary ease while at the same time creating a potential problem, such as a failure point? Does the potential problem override the added ease? If it is a potential failure, how great is the potential for that failure, and how serious is the failure should it occur?

To me, those are the critical questions that must be considered. A simple phrase like "equipment solution to a skill problem" short circuits that thinking, much as the bleating of the sheep in Animal Farm drowns out rational discussion.

I use a similar explanation to my students when talking about equipment choices, except I use the term "convenience factor" ... one must always weigh the benefits of convenience against the potential drawbacks of that convenience. A common example is a purge valve in a mask. What problem does it solve? How hard would it be to solve that problem if the convenience were taken away? And what are the drawbacks ... real and potential ... to adding the convenience.

There are many such choices to be made in scuba ... and not all of them are going to be the same optimal choices for each diver. In the end, we all need to decide what conveniences matter to us, and what drawbacks ... real and potential ... we are willing to put up with in order to enjoy those conveniences.

... Bob (Grateful Diver)

mathauck0814
April 16th, 2012, 05:19 PM
TSandM has managed to start a thread which has distilled and concentrated years of SB threads into one thread which describes a dominating aspect of SB. Now if she could only start similar threads on the topics of pony bottles/Air2 and split fins we could all go home, never to come here again. :)

It seems that TSandM's question of what could change that would engender a more favorable impression of "DIR" divers has been answered by Dan; those "DIR" divers could be more instructional and less obnoxious in their attempts to extol the virtues of their methods. My beef is generally with the presentation of these ideas, not with their content, so I think Dan's is a reasonable suggestion.

BDSC
April 16th, 2012, 05:22 PM
we could all go home, never to come here again. :)

I am home but would rather be diving. :depressed:

danvolker
April 16th, 2012, 05:22 PM
So let me ask you Dan, would those same high level PADI instructors know what to look for and how to fix him if they didn't have GUE Fundies? Would other high level PADI instructors who have not been through GUE Fundies know what to look for? Would just PADI training be enough for them to recognize the guys problem?

I actually think over 80% of all instructors from any agency, could have figured out the biggest problems, and fixed them for this guy.
I do not have to be politically correct when I speak to people at the BHB, and so I will use my personal feeling that a PADI or NAUI instructor, or NASE, or whatever, that has gone through Fundies, will have a better handle on perfecting trim than that same person had they NOT gone through this.
If someone asks, "Dan, what instructor do you recommend"... why should I have to recommend someone I don't even know anything about?
Why can't I recommend what I like? If someone asks you, I imagine YOU will recommend whoever YOU like....

NetDoc
April 16th, 2012, 05:24 PM
In any event, seeing the world through a DIR mindset, I think there is more incentive to "try and help", to try and say something that might make this guy change. Rly? I'm not DIR and have that mindset. In fact, I would suggest that many, many people here on ScubaBoard aren't DIR and are very motivated to help people change. I trained a student this past weekend and invited her mom to come dive with us. Why would I double my problems? Because, I was certain (knowing who certified her) that her skills were less than adequate. In fact, I worked on the mom more than my student. My student worked on her mom as well. Why on earth would I want to have my student consistently buddy up with a less than competent diver?

Yes, I have taken time out from my classes to help other divers out, but that's an exception. I will point out certain divers to my students to show how I DON'T want them dive. Like the class kneeling in the sand last week as I was guiding my Discover Diving clients. The reason I don't go straighten out more divers is that I have a commitment to the ones in my care. Their training comes first and I don't always have time to take care of the other divers floundering around me. That's not a DIR issue. BTW, my DSD's buoyancy was better than the DM with the video camera taking vids of the class kneeling in the sand. We've heard it said so many times here on ScubaBoard that it's almost cliche': It's not the agency: it's the instructor! All agencies claim to be the "best" in one regard or another. Don't believe me? Just ask them. My OW water students have a superior skill set than most of their counterparts simply because I demand that.

BTW, without tooting my own horn (toot, toot), I bet ScubaBoard has made a larger impact on overall diver safety than the DIR philosophy has. Just my own completely biased opinion there. :D :D :D

NWGratefulDiver
April 16th, 2012, 05:26 PM
Pete,
The post TS&M made was about why DIR has such a bad connotation in some circles...
I am trying to illustrate something.....Yesterday at the BHB, the dive area was packed...Probably at least a dozen instructors were there , and a very large number of good divers. Even though this guy cut right through the dive classes, and a great many divers saw him and how bad he was, no one said anything. No one wanted to "rock the boat"...or no one wanted a confrontation, or ...no one felt like it was appropriate for them to say anything.
I was the only one that decided to bother with this..that decided to attempt to help this guy.
You have to consider the most likely response, even if you are polite, is that the guy is going to tell you to screw off.

In any event, seeing the world through a DIR mindset, I think there is more incentive to "try and help", to try and say something that might make this guy change.

So my point is that while DIR gets a bad rap, our efforts have helped many people. Back when we first started talking about DIR ideas around 1996 or so, it was not-- "you need a bp/wing" or "you need Fundies".........It was more along the lines of "your hoses are wrong--here is why, and try this, you may like it better".....or...."you are swimming head up and feet down....there is a better way"...or, of course, the "whole discussion of the long hose primary, and how buddy based diving can improve adventure and safety". Halcyon was not even available to anyone outside of us, for almost a year after Robert came up with the design....but we were still trying to help people with DIR ideas, that cost nothing....but that made sense....Maybe DIR people are just hated because we are the ones that say something. ???

Nah ... I think it has more to do with how it gets said. There's a big difference in how you'll be perceived if you're judgmental vs respectful.

This isn't a DIR thing either ... I was on a liveaboard recently with a fellow who, as a ScubaPro dealer, went on and on about how much better his equipment was than mine. It took real effort to maintain a polite facade.

I think most people appreciate helpful advice if it's presented in a way that first gives them the choice between hearing it or not ... and then is offered in a manner that's courteous and helpful. Sometimes it takes effort ... but the payoff is worth it ...

... Bob (Grateful Diver)

---------- Post added April 16th, 2012 at 02:35 PM ----------


This thread is finally starting to make some sense. Reduction to core values.

Any dive agency that intentionally brands itself as being "the best" will necessarily have problems in the "warm and fuzzy" arena. Where is the surprise in this?


I'm not sure I buy into that logic ... everybody markets themselves as "the best" in one way or another. For example ...

As a PADI Diver, you carry the most respected and sought after scuba credentials in the world.

Basic Online & Advanced Professional Scuba Diving Certification Courses - PADI Scuba Diving Training Organization (http://www.padi.com/scuba/padi-courses/default.aspx)

NAUI’s global reputation for the best in training and educational products reflects its core values of quality dive training through education.

NAUI Comp Overview (http://www.naui.org/comp_overview.aspx)

... Bob (Grateful Diver)

---------- Post added April 16th, 2012 at 02:37 PM ----------


TSandM has managed to start a thread which has distilled and concentrated years of SB threads into one thread which describes a dominating aspect of SB. Now if she could only start similar threads on the topics of pony bottles/Air2 and split fins we could all go home, never to come here again. :)

... what would be the fun in that?

... Bob (Grateful Diver)

danvolker
April 16th, 2012, 05:37 PM
Rly? I'm not DIR and have that mindset. In fact, I would suggest that many, many people here on ScubaBoard aren't DIR and are very motivated to help people change. I trained a student this past weekend and invited her mom to come dive with us. Why would I double my problems? Because, I was certain (knowing who certified her) that her skills were less than adequate. In fact, I worked on the mom more than my student. My student worked on her mom as well. Why on earth would I want to have my student consistently buddy up with a less than competent diver?

Yes, I have taken time out from my classes to help other divers out, but that's an exception. I will point out certain divers to my students to show how I DON'T want them dive. Like the class kneeling in the sand last week as I was guiding my Discover Diving clients. The reason I don't go straighten out more divers is that I have a commitment to the ones in my care. Their training comes first and I don't always have time to take care of the other divers floundering around me. That's not a DIR issue. BTW, my DSD's buoyancy was better than the DM with the video camera taking vids of the class kneeling in the sand. We've heard it said so many times here on ScubaBoard that it's almost cliche': It's not the agency: it's the instructor! All agencies claim to be the "best" in one regard or another. Don't believe me? Just ask them. My OW water students have a superior skill set than most of their counterparts simply because I demand that.

BTW, without tooting my own horn (toot, toot), I bet ScubaBoard has made a larger impact on overall diver safety than the DIR philosophy has. Just my own completely biased opinion there. :D :D :D
Actually Pete, I think you are more DIR than you let on....as much of DIR is a mindset you could have entirely independently of George, WKPP, GUE, or any of us.

As to SB.....I think Scubaboard was the most effective media ever to put out DIR ideas, in a manner that was not offensive, and to get them discussed to the point of real understanding. In that sense, as the leader of this media, you have a position in DIR potentially more important than that which George had. :-)

nimoh
April 16th, 2012, 05:38 PM
This isn't a DIR thing either ... I was on a liveaboard recently with a fellow who, as a ScubaPro dealer, went on and on about how much better his equipment was than mine. It took real effort to maintain a polite facade.

whether it is DIR or Scubapro, there is a big difference between participating in a discussion and listening to a sales pitch

Doomnova
April 16th, 2012, 06:00 PM
I think there are OW students that could fix him :)

Actually there is a member of the scuba club here who pulled a similar dives (it was my 3rd dive after OW). It rpretty much started out us getting in our gear setups and checking our buddy teams. I got pairs up with the diver i question. I asked how much weight how is it setup. 15lbs in 2 pockets and 20 on his belt. I was going in my head after reading the PPB portion of my AOW course materials that he shouldn't need that much in a 2 piece 7mm wetsuit. I mentioned that he saidI'm very floaty. As the others were done and it was a pretty warm day I decided to leave it at that. Now the break water walk for those who don't know can be upto 1km or .625miles we walked out to between flags 3 and 4 which is about 75% of the distance out. Along the way we noted that my buddy was lagging behind alot. One of the DM's who wasn't diving that day was walking with him. Every asked what was his problem and I said 50lbs of weight + gear... the general comment from the rest of the group was "what is he out to do skin a boat or something" I just kept my mouth shut. We had been standing out in the sun in ful gear for about 10 min by the time he got to us. So the rest of the group had jumped in the water to cool off and I just sat down on the break water with my feet in cool off ( it gets a little warm in a drysuit). He's winded doubled over by the time he gets out to us. I suggest the others to get started with the dive while we get in and give my buddy time to rest up. Every decided to wait.

The dive starts about 5 min later. I was pretty much horizontal in the water as I always have been. I note my buddy A is sitting about 75 degrees up from the horizontal and fighting to keep fro sinking to the bottom. I ask if he's ok and indicate for him to inflate his BCD. He indicates it is. As the bottom at this area of the breakwater is about 90ft below I signal to him we should go up and turn back. He indicates no and says he is fine 9the on thing he did have was good hand signals). So I choose to accept his judgement even though I'm thinking its not correct. But being fresh out of OW and him having ~30 dives over the last 5 years as he told me later I figured I'll just differ to his judgement. The dive continues and after about 10 min into the dive he signals half air. I look at mine and I'm not even at 2300 yet (we both had 2900ish to start). So we turn back and when it comes to our safety stop I end up having to give him my backup since hes' down to 200PSI.....

After we get to the surface he's like wow you look so natural you must have like 50 dives under your belt I replied no that was my 7th including my OW and my second in a drysuit. So we talk and hes like how come I burned through my air so fast... I told him in all honesty its your weighting and your trim. Your completely out of position and to be honest very much over weighted. I said here is a point to carrying an extra lb or two but there is a point to over kill. That he was in my opinion unsafe with his amount of weight as I was concerned that if something happened and he was down much deeper that 50ft where we were and could not ditch his weight for one reason or another(thinking absolute worst case here) that he might not be able to get back up. I think I went a bit over board there but I felt I needed to punch this point home to him looking back at it now. So Iwent over the weighting guidelines and with a storm blowing in we didn't have time to sit down and do a weight check. But I strong suggested he get a weight check done during his next dive and make it in the shallows. As the club has good DM's I knew they could do that and talked it over with the 2 we had there that day and they agreed to pass on the information to the rest the next time he signed up for a dive. In this case it was really diver negligence/ignorance. We have since had a few chats and he says my suggestions have all helped him out a ton either through referring him to sites with good demonstrations of skills and reason to and why for doing this as they are done. Giving him advice on how to fix some issues I have had and fixed and suggestions about picking 3 thing to work on each dive. From what I have heard he has fixed alot of these issues including dumping ~15lbs of weight from his gear. He said to me thanks for giving him a boot in the butt an getting him on a path to being a better diver.

NetDoc
April 16th, 2012, 06:17 PM
In that sense, as the leader of this media, you have a position in DIR potentially more important than that which George had. :-) Thank you for the kind words. Like I said: I'm kinda DIR's Strokes Person. :D :D :D

There is much that I do that would never, ever be accepted as being DIR. I am way too fluid in my gear choice and diving style. Heck, I rarely dive a BP&Wing anymore and I often side mount!
:shocked2:


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