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Dive and let dive... dealing with different styles of diving.

Discussion in 'Basic Scuba' started by The Chairman, Feb 28, 2018.

  1. The Chairman

    The Chairman Chairman of the Board Staff Member

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location: Cave Country!
    We divers are passionate about our diving and almost to a fault. We tend to like what we like and abhor most everything else. We divide ourselves into cults without even realizing it. Shortly upon reading the threads and posts here on ScubaBoard, you soon learn that a Back Plate and Wing is the ONLY BCD to consider, that PDCs will rot your brain and that if you dive with split fins, you will surely die. For the record, I don't believe any of those things but you would think that these are immutable truths by the sheer volume of postings to that effect. For the record #2, it's way OK if you do believe any or all of those things.


    The good book tells us that "as iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another". Think about that for a moment. That means we're not all going to agree and as we discuss those differences, we can expect a few sparks. The only way to improve is to evaluate and possibly adopt new ideas and strategies. As I approach the 49th anniversary of my first dive in June, I can tell you that my diving has changed for the better in so many ways. Yay! Some of those changes took a lot of time to evolve while others happened overnight. I am definitely a better, safer and more environmentally sensitive diver compared to that first plunge in Lake Underhill so many years ago. Just ask me! :D


    The point is that I've developed a unique approach to my diving and even my teaching. I'm proud of that approach too, but I've also learned to bite my tongue when I see people diving differently than I do. Dive and let dive. Why? Mostly it's because I'm not the Scuba Police. While I like the way I dive there are no laws suggesting that this is the only way to dive. Moreover, since a lot of what I have learned has been through trial, error and watching others do it right, I expect a lot of other divers are the same way. They would rather see a sermon any day than to hear one. Examples are huge and much of my teaching is summed up by telling my students to imitate me as much as they can. I set the example every second I'm in the water, especially when I'm with students. I can't tell you how many times people come up to me to ask how I look so effortless in the water. That's cool and you can bet I don't mind speaking at that point. On the other hand, unless I see them hurt the environment, I won't try to shame other divers into doing things my way. I'll gladly show you how I dive, but I'm not going to lambast you for diving differently than I do, even if you are wearing split fins! :D Dive and let dive.


    The same goes for teaching. I see instructors make their classes kneel all the time. I gave that up over a dozen years ago. Sure, it makes me shake my head and I will point it out to my class that they aren't allowed to kneel like that. But I'm not going to stick my nose into the other instructor's business and tell them how to run their class. No, indeed. I will set the example. I will talk to them about if they ask and many have. My OW class simply does not resemble other OW classes and often they'll simply ask me what class I'm teaching. I still won't mock or shame another instructor. I'm not the Scuba Police. Teach and let teach. I have and will approach an instructor to the side if I see an unsafe practice or if their students are standing, sitting or kneeling on the reef. Yes, I have a line that I don't want to see crossed, but for the most part, I dive and let dive.


    The same goes here on ScubaBoard. Post and let post. How many times have we seen a person ask about a particular BCD and get hit with 25 posts about how superior BP&Wings are. It's funny. But it's not. Are you right? To you, sure. But in a thread about a specific BCD, you're way off topic. How many times have we read people condemning a particular BCD and it turns out they've never dove one. Tell us what you do know, instead. It's not a bad BCD just because you didn't pick it. Recently we had a thread about a coming IDC and inviting others to join in on the fun. The first post was a hijack about how that poster didn't like that particular agency. Rly? If you don't have something good to say: sit on your hands! The OP didn't ask if anyone liked or disliked their agency, but they were looking for like-minded people to become an instructor with them. Dive and let dive. Post and let post. Don't let your need to grind an ax be a wet blanket for everyone else. Stay on topic. Read the OP (original post) to see that you are. If you have something that you want to say find a thread about that topic or start your own! Post and let post. Also, if a person doesn't agree with you: THAT'S OK. It would be a boring place if we all posted the same thing. Don't call them a name. Don't impugn their ancestors. Tell us what & why you believe what you believe and refrain from telling us what & why they believe differently. They can tell us if they so choose. Post and let post.


    Let's face it. We all love to dive. Most of the differences between us are mere nuances. Let's not blow them up into being something more than they are. Since this is Basic Etiquette for a dive boat or even a forum, I decided to put it in our Basic Scuba Forum. Dive and let dive. Teach and let teach. Post and let post.


    Attached Files:

  2. BoltSnap

    BoltSnap Dive Charter

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: Nomad
    But these BP/W, no-kneeling, trimmed, neutrally buoyant Nazis are a pain in the neck freaks!! I think they should be put in a weight integrated jacket BC's with 100lbs of lead, split fins totally naked and released into the arctic water wilderness and let them try to survive on their own for good without any access to internet, especially SB and FB.

    Last edited: Feb 28, 2018
  3. drbill

    drbill The Lorax for the Kelp Forest Scuba Legend

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
    Location: Santa Catalina Island, CA
    I have my own "style" when diving. I don't care what others think about it. Likewise I don't concern myself with the gear other diver's use. IIdon't use a BP when diving single tanks because it doesn't feel comfortable to me. I prefer a soft harness and wing because it is more comfortable to me. Many friends dive BP/W and that's just fine with me. I think dry suits are a PITA in the "toasty" waters of SoCal, but understand that others, especially instructors who while teaching may be more stationary and not generate muscle heat. Also those who get cold easily or lack sufficient bioprene.

    Generally, the only things that I criticize about other divers relate to the impacts on our reefs and other ecosystems. I have little tolerance for poaching or those whose poor skills result in damage to the marine environment.
    RyanT, gypsyjim, JBFG and 8 others like this.
  4. Kharon

    Kharon Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Upstate NY
    +1. I've never understood why I should care "what the neighbors think". Something my mother deeply cared about if I tried to wear scuffed shoes without polishing them or jeans with a small tear.

    ++1. Except instead of a wing I use an orally inflated snorkel vest with dump valve under my harness. It works for me. One of the SDI course manuals (maybe Solo) emphasized that the only good answer to the question "why is your gear set up that way?" is "because it works for me and it's what I'm comfortable with."

    +++1 on attempting to keep people from impacting the ecosystem. Though I strenuously try to avoid seeing such things. For example, after a number of boat dives on Bonaire I will never get on another boat there. Cruise ship divers and people with no buoyancy or trim control smashing and trashing the reef and sometimes each other (and me).
    The Chairman likes this.
  5. The Chairman

    The Chairman Chairman of the Board Staff Member

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location: Cave Country!
    This is why I love our invasions. Crappy divers get sorted out pretty quickly into good divers. :D Our Bonaire trip was fun.
  6. Akimbo

    Akimbo Just a diver Staff Member ScubaBoard Supporter

    Nothing changes. The diving elite when I started were convinced that this concept was the only safe and proper way to dive. The US Navy is really effective at instilling a sense of superiority in working divers and combat swimmers, which serves an important operational purpose.


    Like everyone else, I bought into the group-think like every other young sailor -- until they put me in one of these. There are hundreds of reasons to go underwater and there are dozens of optimum styles for every one of them.
  7. Kharon

    Kharon Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Upstate NY
    Wish I could go on one, but my explosive snoring precludes sharing a room and I can't afford the double price or single suppliment. Same for liveaboards. Oh well, I don't mind renting a small apartment on Bonaire for less than I would pay for a cheap motel room where I live and far, far less than most places in the US.
    The Chairman likes this.
  8. aquacat8

    aquacat8 Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Savannah, GA
    That is such a great attitude Pete! I love the variety of gear and if I could afford it I’d have lots of different rigs. “Gear shaming” someone who just spent a lot of money to get into our sport is no way to welcome newcomers... and from my observation some of the great old timers can (and probably have) cheerfully gone diving just about any way! Look at those vintage dive photos! Fluorescent colors make me happy!
    lunula, RainPilot and The Chairman like this.
  9. ScubaWithTurk

    ScubaWithTurk Bubble Blowing Buddha

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Huntington Beach, CA
    This is a wonderful post Pete!

    As someone who has come here to learn more about diving I appreciate it. There are many ways to do things and for us newbies it can be daunting to be told X will kill you or that you aren't a real diver unless you use Y.

    I have been able to get some amazing knowledge from here and met people who have helped me and are still helping me to this day.

    As someone who is now beginning to dive sidemount, the posts on hose routing can be challenging to get through. I am very confused as to what to use and have decided to just start trying out different ways to route the houses, different lengths, etc until I find what works for me! (still might not post a picture here :D)

    People are passionate about their diving and the gear that they use to do it. That is a positive but can become a negative if that passion turns to blind fanaticism.

    The passion other SB members have is why I stay here. Hopefully we can all work less on telling people what they NEED to dive and generate more level-headed discussions about why we dive the gear we do. The dive industry and gear will keep moving forward and it is up to us to keep an open mind instead of alienating those who don't look just like us underwater.

    That is as long as they aren't damaging the ecosystem...if they are well then I will have to resort to this:

    RainPilot and The Chairman like this.
  10. covediver

    covediver Solo Diver

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location: Alaska
    lots to think about here. I have heard it said (by me) the hardest thing on a diver's gear is not the corrosive effect of salt watersea, it is other divers. for me, diving is one of the few activities that allows self expression. You want to dive with a BPW, fine. stab jacket, ok. You like big knives and even bigger watches, go for it. You want to crash into a live reef....er, that is where you will be taken aside by me for a discussion. See, I learned by other divers doing the same for me when my technique could be improved.

    Trouble with scuba police are they are not authorized by anyone but themselves but believe that they act under the color of authority. I recall a few years back where the teenage diver was pilloried quite publicly for legally taking an octo from a Washington dive site. Taking the octo was probably not the smartest thing he could have done. Today, we would call the treatment he received cyberbullying--a term that was not in wide use at the time of the incident. Remember the adage, praise in public; criticize in private.

    Committing a transgression, which I have done, I would not want to be walking down the beach with someone behind you ringing a bell and chanting "shame...shame...shame"
    Last edited: Feb 28, 2018

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