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Discussion in 'New Divers & Those Considering Diving' started by Jody Freitas, Oct 6, 2020.

  1. Jody Freitas

    Jody Freitas Registered

    # of Dives: 0 - 24
    Location: 01510
    So definitely want to move up and continue training. I have been trained with PADI SSI and NAUI at this point. It appears that the advanced certification has a few required courses and a few elective courses. Is that right? I know I want Deep, Nav, and Night, but was wondering what others did and why? Also will probably need a pony bottle setup for deep, so what are people doing there?
  2. CanadaDan

    CanadaDan DMC ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Winnipeg, MB Canada
    A Buoyancy specialty would be a great choice. (eg PADI's Peak Performance Buoyancy)

    Depending on your local water temps drysuit may be a good option as well.

    I just DM'd a Deep cert. The student was not required to own or carry a pony bottle. We did stage a pony at the safety stop but that was not part of the student's requirement. This was a PADI program, I am unware of the other agency's requirements.
  3. Barnaby'sDad

    Barnaby'sDad ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 50 - 99
    Location: Virginia
    Select an instructor and training agency and talk with them about specialties. They will likely have some input on that.

    On the pony bottle...talk to your instructor. Mine was good enough to let me use one of his (I didn’t have to run out and buy one at that point).
  4. lexvil

    lexvil ScubaBoard Sponsor ScubaBoard Sponsor

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: jamestown, ca.
    Stop overthinking the training, go diving.
  5. arew+4

    arew+4 Contributor

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Pa
    Dive, dive, dive. At less than 24 dives, more experience is worth more than more training.

    Why do you want advanced certification?
    Do you want to do deeper dives? Wreck dives? Cave dives?

    Before pursuing additional training, are you comfortable planning and executing a dive as the senior member of a buddy team.
    Cdncoldwater likes this.
  6. Grogus

    Grogus Old, Fat and Happy ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 50 - 99
    Location: Houston, TX
    You can get caught up in a lot of specialty/elective courses and drop a healthy amount of $$$. I try to look for courses that are critical to the advancement of my skill tree. (Dry Suit, Sidemount, extended range...)

    One thing I would suggest is to go dive with your favorite DM outside of a class setting to let them review your skills and offer suggestions to improve your diving experience. It was probably the most effective thing I have done, and it allowed me to improve my trim, buoyancy and breathing without having to sit and do computer classes... My DM did receive a healthy tip, but it was still cheeper than the classes and money well spent.

    Plus I have never been to a dive operation where they have asked if I have a buoyancy or navigation specialty endorsement. They are interested in my OW and AOW.
    eleniel, Dark Wolf and Jody Freitas like this.
  7. Barnaby'sDad

    Barnaby'sDad ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 50 - 99
    Location: Virginia
    Speaking from experience (I was in OP’s shoes a year and a half ago)...it’s difficult to “dive, dive, dive” when you can’t find a buddy. In my area at least...not a whole lot of folks want to buddy up with a brand new diver. Why? Locally...most everyone that I run into are tech divers. They don’t want a buddy that they’re going to have to babysit. They hear OW cert and x < 20 dives and are like “nope.”

    Once I got an AOW cert and 20+ dives under my belt, I had no issue findIng a buddy. Sure...I got a lot out of AOW and I enjoyed the course, but one thing it did for me was open up doors. In terms of finding buddies and opening up diving opportunities. Ex. Deeper stuff.

    I agree that divers shouldn’t get caught up in the “buy a card” thing with certs that you haven’t thought over thoroughly, but I think there are a number of good reasons to get your AOW cert early on.
  8. Marie13

    Marie13 Great Lakes Mermaid ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Great Lakes
    I did the SDI Advanced course that was 4 separate specialties. I believe SSI has similar. More in depth than the “sampler platter” AOW. I did deep, wreck, nav, night. Wreck was my favorite. I had a pony bottle, but it’s not too uncommon for Great Lakes wreck divers to carry them or even on folder quarry dives. What are your local diving conditions like? I did my Advanced over a summer and did one specialty a month. Had about 50 dives total when I finished.

    Instructors let people borrow ponies not uncommonly.

    What classes have you had beyond OW?
    Jody Freitas likes this.
  9. lexvil

    lexvil ScubaBoard Sponsor ScubaBoard Sponsor

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: jamestown, ca.
    This is true enough, finding a great dive buddy takes time but paying for one isn’t always the best answer, the OP has training from 3 agencies and isn’t AOW yet, maybe it’s overthinking? Nothing wrong with picking an agency and moving toward the AOW while looking for someone to buddy up with.
  10. Barnaby'sDad

    Barnaby'sDad ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 50 - 99
    Location: Virginia
    It is definitely not ideal, but if you want to live and dive in an area where most recreational divers only use the quarry for their cert dives and pre-vacation shakedown dives and the remainder are in drysuits for 6+ months of the year...you’ve got to do what you’ve got to do.

    IIRC from another thread, the OP had a significant gap from previous training/diving experience.
    lexvil likes this.

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