• Welcome to ScubaBoard


  1. Welcome to ScubaBoard, the world's largest scuba diving community. Registration is not required to read the forums, but we encourage you to join. Joining has its benefits and enables you to participate in the discussions.

    Benefits of registering include

    • Ability to post and comment on topics and discussions.
    • A Free photo gallery to share your dive photos with the world.
    • You can make this box go away

    Joining is quick and easy. Login or Register now by clicking on the button

No tables no buddy breathing?

Discussion in 'SSI: Scuba Schools International' started by SIUegyptiandiver, Oct 12, 2010.

  1. SIUegyptiandiver

    SIUegyptiandiver Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Southern Illinois
    69
    12
    8
    Overall, I am very impressed with SSIs training program. I have been diving lately with many very well trained SSI divers in a local quarry. I have an ancient NAUI certification and am probably an old crumungeon, but I still believe that learning the tables AND buddy breathing are a good idea.

    I have heard the arguments against both and have to politely disagree. I have been diving for over 26 years and had a diver with 30 more years experience than me tell me that he wont teach buddy breathing because he doesnt want someone "grabbing his primary out of his mouth".

    Well, Im not an instructor but I can see his point. However, it seems to me that teaching buddy breathing just adds one more tool to the diver's skill set and that can never be a bad thing. What do you do if the octopus stinks or just fails? Its not used very often by most divers, as we usually only take a couple of breaths off of it before we enter the water. I will teach my newly certified son how to buddy breathe so at least he has been exposed to the skill.

    As far as not teaching the tables....complete rubbish. My son's instructor insisted that even though SSI did not require it, that she would include it in his training. That helped me confirm my opinion that she was a quality instructor. If you want to know why teaching the tables is critical see the discussion currently happening in the dive computer forum about whether or not a computer is a good idea.

    I welcome open debate on the subject.

    SIUED
     
  2. toddthecat

    toddthecat Dive Shop

    # of Dives:
    Location: Aztec, NM
    630
    244
    0
    My two cents:

    I've been diving for 10 years now and I am a PADI Instructor. PADI has buddy breathing as an optional skill for open water divers. In addition, they have recently changed Open Water to allow for the use of computers to plan dives and they omit tables and even the eRDP.

    Buddy breathing:
    I do completely agree that it is a nice skill to add to the toolbox. The likelihood of ever needing to use it is very small BUT it does exist and I'm not arguing that point. I do not teach it to my open water students but I do explain it in detail and I always tell every student that if they want me to teach it to them, I will be glad to do so. While it seems easy it really is fairly complex and requires a bit of practice to do right. Being optional for OW makes sense but I wouldn't disagree if it were required for Advanced OW. At the moment it isn't required until Instructor.

    Tables:
    I had no problem with the switch from the RDP to the eRDP. The tables can confuse people quite a bit and the eRDP made it a lot easier. However, I do NOT agree with only teaching dive computers. All divers should be able to use a table, even if it is an eRDP. Relying solely on a computer, which can fail, is a very bad idea...
     
  3. tstormdiver

    tstormdiver Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
    Location: Kentucky
    6,171
    1,126
    113
    Buddy breathing: has been relegated to an optional instead of mandatory skill to teach because of the octo. Even if the octo "stinks" (I'm assuming you mean doesn't breathe well) it still breathes & can get you to the surface. In fact most are designed to breathe harder to help prevent accidental free flow & depletion of one's air source. When a buddy gives OOA (except maybe in the instance of a planned drill), it should be considered an emergency situation (no matter how much air the donor has) & the dive is over. Both divers should be heading to the surface in a safe manner. I am not going to say it *couldn't * happen, but for the most part, most, if not all, modern regulators are designed to fail open, meaning that they will free flow & give you too much air, rather than no air. A free flowing regulator can still be breathed to the surface (I've done it for real, before) without injury, if the diver knows how (another optional skill). Isn't equipment inspection & check- outs supposed to be part of the pre- dive self & buddy checks? That given,.... what are truly the chances of that happening? Saying that, I will commonly demonstrate buddy breathing & will practice it 1 on 1 with a student, if they so wish, so that at least they have a concept of what it is.

    Dive Tables: This is one I can say I do agree with you on. Even though our shop has gone to computer diving, I still elect to teach the tables, plus the computers. I do this for 2 reasons. 1. The students should have at least a basic understanding of decompression theory & how it relates to their dives, even using a computer. I want them to understand why their computer says what it does, not just follow it blindly. 2. Knowing how to work tables can allow them to dive even if their computer fails (floods or battery dies), if they wait the mandatory 48 hrs required to completely rid the body of excess N2. Missing some diving is better than missing the rest of the diving for the trip. Let's be realistic, though, diving is going to computers & that trend is not likely to reverse.
     
  4. SIUegyptiandiver

    SIUegyptiandiver Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Southern Illinois
    69
    12
    8
    Thanks guys, I appreciate input on this discussion, especially from instructors. I think we are pretty much on the same page. I dont ever plan on diving without a computer again and in 26 years Ive never had to share air in a buddy breathing OR octo-sharing situation.

    I RELUCTANTLY added an octo to my reg 15 years ago, since my opinion had previously been that if I have an alternate air source, even divers that were NOT my buddy might grab it from me....Of course when I got certified, not many divers had an octo...now that it has been the industry standard for many years Im far more comfortable in having one on my rig.

    In addition, my current octo breathes as well as my primary and I would be just as comfortable using it as my primary if I should have a failure of said primary. Agreed, this would be reason to terminate the dive regardless of whether or not someone was sharing my octo.

    All that being said, we've come a long way from the back pack/pressure gauge/watch era and I welcome new advances that promote safety.

    I just dont see the need to give up EVERYTHING that time has taught us in lieu of technology.

    Dave
     
  5. tstormdiver

    tstormdiver Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
    Location: Kentucky
    6,171
    1,126
    113
    Something I forgot to say, was we do teach our students to donate their primary regulator, because yes, it is possible that it may be snatched in a desperate OOA situation. We also bungee the octos on a necklace just below the student's chin, so that they have their back- up right there, if they need it. This said, we also explain that not every diver dives their octos like this & if they choose to rent their equipment, that it may be located in a different area (primarily the right hip).

    My octo is a second stage identical to my first stage- a Scubapro S600 (breathing resistance controls are turned in such a way as to prevent accidental free flow). Both regulators will breathe the same when the controls are in the same position. I figured, in an OOA situation, I wasn't going to cheat myself on air.

    They haven't given up everything, many of the same techniques are still around, just those in which technology HAS mad it safer.:wink:
     
  6. Johnny Mojo

    Johnny Mojo Nassau Grouper

    # of Dives: 25 - 49
    Location: TN
    105
    2
    0
    Quick question for the original poster. Did you mean to say that SSI did NOT require teaching the tables in the course? I'm PADI from a long time ago and recently sat through my daughter's whole SSI class and accompanied her on her check out dives.

    Not only DID they teach the tables, but upon completion of her check out dives her instructor checked all of her table references and calculations and made her correct mistakes that were made. I distinctly remember tables being presented and taught in the class, as they had very large versions that sat on an easel while students worked table problems and palnned a 3 dive day. I guess if someone there had said "we are not required to teach these tables" in class, I would have "required" myself to jerk her butt up out of there and take her someplace else. Could this have been the instructor stating an opinion? That seems pretty odd to me that an organization in this industry responsible for teaching would intentionally omit this very important information/skill. Just looking for some clarification from the original post I guess.

    All of that said, I was very impressed with her particular SSI experience. The shop and entire staff was and is very good and she walked away with a firm undeerstanding of dive fundamentals from which she can and will hopefully build a lifetime of enjoyment and continued learning.

    J.
     
  7. tstormdiver

    tstormdiver Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
    Location: Kentucky
    6,171
    1,126
    113
    SSI no longer makes teaching dive tables mandatory. They are now advocating the teaching of proper dive computer use. The section on tables has been moved to an appendix in the back of the Open water Diver's manual. The tables can still be taught as an option, at the instructor's discretion.
     
  8. Johnny Mojo

    Johnny Mojo Nassau Grouper

    # of Dives: 25 - 49
    Location: TN
    105
    2
    0
    WOW, thanks for the information TSD. That is very good to know. I'm serious, if they had said we aren't gonna teach the tables, I would have gotten her up and out of there fast. As I said earlier, I was impressed with the SSI program and have been thinking of doing some specialties with them and then AOW or something.

    I just don't understand why tables would not be high on the priority list of a certifying agency. I'm sure someone will pop in and say that it is all marketing etc. but I also believe that there is a certian level of responsibility required of the certifying agency. Knowing tables, working tables and abiding by the tables is in my mind the only way to establish consistency and thus reliability. Am i missing something?

    J.
     
  9. SIUegyptiandiver

    SIUegyptiandiver Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Southern Illinois
    69
    12
    8
    Yes, JM, see tammy's discussion. I was a bit concerned with my son's lessons until the instructor informed me of her intent to ABSOLUTELY teach him the tables.

    Overall, I am very impressed with SSI, its just this one issue that I had the most concern with, which is why I made the initial post.

    Before every dive, even if we are BOTH diving computers, I go through a thorough dive plan with my son so he has a better understanding of how the tables work and how computers extend your dive time.

    Sounds like your daughter had an excellent instructor, which, imho, is what I have seen in all of the SSI instructors I have met thus far.

    I too, accompanied my son in all of his classroom work, pool sessions and OW dives. SSI has my hands-down, no question, utmost approval rating.

    I am not an instructor, but took a college class (16 weeks long) for my OW cert and another class (16 weeks long) for my AOW cert. We learned everything from dive physiology to CPR to rescue diver to navigation to underwater mouth-to-mouth recessitation (yes, I had to kiss my dive buddy for 5 min of m-t-m respiration then switch partners from air taker to air bringer).

    My instruction was as thorough as any I've ever seen, but SSI did a very good job at covering many of the highlights of my 32 weeks of training in just a few short weeks.

    As a result, my 13 year old son is now a good diver who just needs more dives to get to be a proficient diver. I look forward to many years of good diving with my new dive buddy.
     
  10. toddthecat

    toddthecat Dive Shop

    # of Dives:
    Location: Aztec, NM
    630
    244
    0
    tstorm, I totally agree with what you said about understanding the fundamentals of decompression theory. Anyone can look at a computer on their wrist that is beeping and flashing and know they need to ascend. But do they know WHY the computer is telling them to ascend? That's important stuff. If someone just responds to the lights and beeps they will be more likely to ignore them and extend the dive not realizing the danger they are putting themselves in.
     

Share This Page