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Padi Self reliant diver course

Discussion in 'Solo Divers' started by Herb-alaska, Mar 26, 2015.

  1. EFX

    EFX ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: North Central Florida
    Don't let the PADI nay-sayers sway you. The fact that PADI doesn't specifically say "solo" is of little consequence. Here is some info from the 2 couses:

    This course is an introduction to self-reliant diving that helps student divers develop the skills, knowledge and techniques necessary to rely on themselves first, whether or not they are diving with a partner, including:
    • The value and application of the buddy system
    • The philosophy of, and motivation for, diving without a partner
    • Potential risks of diving alone, and how to manage those riskis
    • The value of equipment redundancy and what back-up equipment is needed.
    • Dive planning and gas management

    1. Be certified as a PADI Advanced Open Water Diver or have a qualifying certification from another traning organization
    2. Have a minimum 100 logged dives
    3. Be 18 years of age or older
    4. Successfully complete a dive skills assessment by a PADI Self-Reliant Diver Specialty Instructor

    The certified SDI Advanced Diver (or equivalent) who is interested in learning how to dive independent of a dive buddy, or looking to strengthen your buddy team diving skills.

    Course prerequisites:
    •Minimum age 21
    •Certified SDI Advanced Diver or equivalent
    •Provide proof of 100 logged dives
    What you can expect to learn:
    The SDI Solo Diver course takes an in-depth look at all of the following and more:
    •Why solo dive?
    •History of buddy diving
    •Pros and cons of buddy diving and solo diving
    •Legal liability assumed by buddy diving
    •How to use the SDI Solo Diving waiver and release
    •Who must solo dive?
    •The solo diving mentality
    •When not to solo dive
    •Equipment for solo diving
    •Planning and conducting a solo dive
    •Management of solo diving emergencies
    •Review the SDI Solo Diver Liability Release and Express Assumption of Risk Agreement Form

    Some of the required skills you will have to demonstrate include all of the following and more:
    •200 metres/600 feet surface swim in full scuba equipment, configured for local diving conditions; must be non-stop and performed in an open water environment
    •Demonstrate adequate pre-dive planning
    •Plan dive limits based on personal air consumption rate
    •Plan exact dive
    •Properly execute the planned dive within all predetermined limits
    •Equipment configuration appropriate for solo diving
    •Proper descent/ascent rates
    •Proper safety stop procedures
    •Monitoring of decompression status equipment; tables, computers, equipment, etc.
    •Navigation skills – demonstrate proficiency of navigation with compass
    •Demonstrate emergency change over to redundant air supply (not to exceed 30 metres/100 feet)
    •Deploy surface marker buoy (SMB)
    •Use of audible signaling device

    I took the PADI self-reliant course and was taught/performed everything listed under SDI above. Despite my card saying self-reliant, it has not been rejected so far. Talk to your potential instructor to make sure they cover the above material (SDI has the more detailed list).
  2. DogDiver

    DogDiver Manta Ray

    # of Dives: 5,000 - ∞
    Location: Branford, Florida
    Forget PADI, NAUI, SSI, SDI and take a cavern and intro course from NACD, NSSCDS, IAnTD or TDI.

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  3. scubadada

    scubadada Diver Staff Member ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Philadelphia and Boynton Beach
    Hi Herb-Alaska,

    My situation was very much like yours. I did the SDI Solo Diver course at about 760 dives after solo diving the majority of my dives for many years. I mainly wanted a highly accepted card to be able to solo dive without hassle as a traveler. I did not have high expectations for the course. I did the manual and self tests before the 1:1 class and spent the morning reviewing concepts. The afternoon was 2 dives working through the skills set. Though the dives were not particularly challenging, they included some extra skills like doff and don on bottom and in mid-water, blackout mask swim, extended maskless swim, single fin swim.... All in all is was not a waste of a day and the card has proved valuable in solo diving without challenge.
  4. Lopez116

    Lopez116 Manta Ray

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Orange County, CA
    Ultimately isn't the card only as good as the location and/or operator you want to use it with?

    I've thought about getting this cert for innocuous shore dives, but the two places I dive the most (Cayman Islands and Laguna Beach, CA) don't allow solo diving anyway.

    I guess there's not much I can do about that other than dive someplace else...
  5. drrich2

    drrich2 ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Southwestern Kentucky
    The SDI course has a manual which I considered worthwhile. If I recall correctly, the PADI version does not. Whichever you take, that SDI Solo Diver manual could be worthwhile.

    Omisson likes this.
  6. Nemrod

    Nemrod Solo Diver

    It is certainly of consequence. One card specifically states SOLO DIVER and the other does not. Self reliant does not mean solo but solo certainly means exactly that, alone, solo. Since the whole point of taking either of these courses is to be allowed to dive solo, why would you not take the course that is for solo diving?

    Anyone who is really qualified to solo dive should already have the skills and experience when they enter the course. The course should only review and affirm what the solo diver is already doing and maybe air a few bad habits. You cannot learn how to solo dive from a course, maybe I am wrong but I am of that opinion.

    Therefore anyone signing up for such a course could only need the course for the legitimacy represented by presenting the SOLO card to a dive operator. What do you want that card to say, self reliant or SOLO? Self reliant stops short of solo by implication and perception regardless of the course materials.


    ---------- Post added March 26th, 2015 at 06:58 PM ----------

    Oddly I have dived solo in the Caymans. I just jumped in and went.


    ---------- Post added March 26th, 2015 at 07:05 PM ----------

    Why would a diver take a cavern diving course if their goal is being able to solo dive from charter boats or resort locations? Not sure I understand this advice?

  7. Omisson

    Omisson Public Safety Diver

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Whitestone, New York, United States
    You obviously didn't read the posts carefully.

    No one has disparaged the PADI course. The problem is in recognition - we can name half a dozen dive ops that won't take the card from PADI because of the name choice.

    They have been posted in threads here for the last few years.

    That's not a slight to PADI - it's making the OP aware of the reality on the ground... Or rather... In the water...
    Nemrod likes this.
  8. justbillin

    justbillin Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Nashville, TN
    I did it through SDI just because it says “Solo Diver”. Even with the card, many operators will not let you dive solo, and the operators that do allow solo diving may not let you to do it if you have never gone out with them before.
  9. EFX

    EFX ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: North Central Florida
    I don't want to get into a semantics war but the intention of the PADI course is to train divers to dive alone, AKA solo. I was trained according to SDI standards despite my instructor being a PADI course director and my having a PADI self-reliant certification card.

    ---------- Post added March 27th, 2015 at 12:26 PM ----------

    And you didn't read what the op posted. He wanted to know if the PADI course would be a waste of time if the course did not teach any useful skills. I responded that I received useful skills but added a response that made it clear that it depends on the instructor.
  10. Nemrod

    Nemrod Solo Diver

    It is not me you need to argue semantics with but the dive operators who will question that a card that does not specificaly state solo could be a solo certification. Words have meaning and padi is clearly splitting hairs here to imply solo without actually stating solo. Good luck with that. N
    Bigd2722, drrich2 and Omisson like this.

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