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Open Water Certified Today: Now What?

Discussion in 'New Divers and Those Considering Diving' started by tplyons, Jul 8, 2012.

  1. tplyons

    tplyons Manta Ray

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: East Stroudsburg, PA
    Hi all,

    New to this forum and scuba diving. Today, I completed my PADI Open Water Diver course and am now certified. Yay!

    About me: I'm 25 years old, diving with a good friend. We both want to get into wreck diving on the Jersey shore. My friend recently bought his own gear and I will once my company sends my tuition reimbursement check. I did my open water dives with the gear I plan to purchase later on.

    As far as training, what are the next steps? What order should I do it in? I'm open water certified and will be getting Enriched Air Diver in two weeks (part of a promotion my dive shop was running, so I'm getting it out of the way). The next two AOW classes I can't make due to scheduling conflicts, but am looking to take one towards the end of August.

    What certifications should I get next? I know I want to get AOW, Deep Diver, Wreck Diver, UW Photography. What other certifications are recommended?

    I just picked up a season pass to the quarry my LDS is at almost every weekend and will be tagging along whenever possible for experience. Just wondering what I should concentrate on to get to my end goal in the most efficient way possible.

  2. chrpai

    chrpai Great White

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location: Cedar Park, TX
    Find a good buddy mentor, get good advice on what gear to buy (typically not what the LDS sells or what they suggest you buy) and go diving with that mentor a lot at that local quarry. That's the only way to get your diving skills to develop and mature. Take the Nitrox class and possibly the AOW class but don't worry about all those other specialities.
  3. mathauck0814

    mathauck0814 Assistant Instructor

    Go diving, spend your money on gear. Additional training will be necessary in time. Knock down a few hundred dives within your current training and go from there.
  4. Mitchell Teeters

    Mitchell Teeters ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Cookeville, TN, (AKA God's Country)
    Dive dive dive dive. Have fun and welcome.

    Sent from my DROID X2
  5. Insta-Gator

    Insta-Gator Just Keep Breathing ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Venice, Florida
    Just dive every chance you get to grow your experience. Then after a while schedule an AOW class to reaffirm and add to your current skills.
  6. TSandM

    TSandM Missed and loved by many. Rest in Peace ScubaBoard Supporter

    What you should do for training depends a lot on what you feel you need. The most important thing for learning to dive well is to dive a lot; if taking a bunch of classes is going to mean your fun diving is really sporadic, I'd cut back on classes.

    The Nitrox cert is good, because Nitrox is useful . .. but not so much at the OW level. If you had problems with your buoyancy control in your OW class, you might benefit from a PPB class. If you find, by doing a few fun dives, that you have trouble with your compass, a Nav specialty might help.

    It is never a BAD idea to do your first deep dives with some experienced supervision, because none of us knows, until we go there, how depth will affect our thinking. (My husband had a student for the deep dive in AOW who became severely erratic and poorly responsive to signals at 80 feet -- we physically had to turn him around and swim him shallower before he woke up and started diving again.)

    Classes are fun, and if they're well taught, you will learn something from any class you take. But the most important thing is to get out there and dive, and see what the problems you have are, and plan your education from there.
  7. skankpile

    skankpile Barracuda

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location: Sugarland, TX (SW Houston)
    Welcome to your new habit. As you gain buddies with the same addiction and start planning vacations with your new friends and stop talking to your family & children you'll gain a clear understanding on what your next steps will be.

    sarcasm.. kindof, but cheaper than coke.
    stevensamler likes this.
  8. oly5050user

    oly5050user Dive Travel Professional

    # of Dives: 5,000 - ∞
    Location: Westchester NY
    That is actually not good or the best advise..For someone starting out the LDS can be there to assist you. Just because some people think of the LDS as an evil place it is not necessarily true. If you found a LDS that you feel comfortable about, one that greets you by name and listens to your needs, there when you need them, then you should use their local experience on advise on how to gear yourself..After all, part of the reason you took classes there is to learn to dive. Part of the class is to include gear selection for the type of diving YOU may have in mind. You paid for professional training and part of the instructors/LDS job is to assist you and give you benefits and features of different types of gear along with all the positives and negatives that go along with it..Anything else and you just may short change yourself. Really upsets me when someone does not avail themselves of this service and purchases gear inappropriate for their type of diving and abilities.
    Here at the facility I teach out of we LISTEN to what the consumer has to say about their goals in diving. We take into account the type of diving they plan to do and their physical abilities that they have/ or not have for the activity. We also take into account their budget and give them alternatives that may work out for them.
    CindyMac, Ordie, ErikNYC and 2 others like this.
  9. FiremanIRFD

    FiremanIRFD Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 25 - 49
    Location: Iron Ridge, Wisconsin, United States
    Try and find a local dive club. Don't sell yourself on specialty classes before you take AOW, some of them do not offer as much substance as others. Wreck diver is recommended if they get into penetration (it is optional) UW Photography in my own opinion is not worth card they charge for, its has to much focus on old film type camera shooting.
  10. chrpai

    chrpai Great White

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location: Cedar Park, TX
    The advice is solid, it just doesn't match the LDS / PRO agenda. I don't hate LDS's and I really don't care if my advice upsets you. LDSs and Pro's are not the sole fountain of knowledge and experience.

    If an LDS actually does all the things that you say versus sell overpriced stroke gear to the newly minted OW diver while selling them on the need for a bunch of merit badge classes then I say hooray. But far more do the latter and a new OW diver doesn't have the knowledge and experience to know the difference.

    That's where the experienced mentor comes in. If your shop is what it says he very well may bring that diver to you. If you aren't, then he'll direct him to online companies that sell good stuff at better prices. Either way they will be diving in the quarry building experience and getting ready for wreck diving.

    I would have saved a boatload of money if someone had taken me aside 12 years ago.
    SOMD Diver, nimoh, Gudu and 1 other person like this.

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