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Split from Catalina Diver died.. Advanced Certification is a joke

Discussion in 'Advanced Scuba' started by Teamcasa, Nov 5, 2009.

  1. Ytsejam

    Ytsejam Registered

    # of Dives: 25 - 49
    Location: Greece
    54
    0
    This sums up my OW experience in the warm waters of the Med. I came out of it with the ability to breathe underwater, the realization that OW c-card didn't make me a diver, and the desire and determination to become one.

    Recently I dove with 2 friends from my OW class. Since OW they went on to AOW and Rescue, while me and another friend did the UTD Essentials and are working on our skills so we can start UTD Rec2 (our last 8 dives have been nothing but practice on boyancy, kicks, awareness, shooting an SMB, and the UTD basic 6). Is it boring to go through 2 tanks doing nothing but practice in the shallows? Yes. Is it rewarding? Hell, yeah!

    I'm nowhere near competent in any of the above yet, but the difference between my buddy and me and the other 2 was plain to see throughout our dive. Especially when we shot our SMB and ascended the last 6 meters, horizontal and facing each other, making 1 minute stops every meter and holding depth using nothing but our lungs.

    Ditto to all the above. I've only have had 2 instructors. I still dive with the first one, but I regard him as an experienced co-diver, not a mentor. My current instructor is a true inspiration to me, a visualization of the kind of diver I want to be and the kind of diving I want to do.

    Safe dives, Montana Diver.
     
  2. SkimFisher

    SkimFisher Contributor

    831
    33
    I think the S&R portion is a very good idea.

    We did our Nav and S&R the same day in some of the nastiest water imaginable - a residential canal. Zero viz.

    I had to press the compass against my mask to read it and literally HAD to rely on my buddy to do the swimming and count the cycles.

    Working with the reels in that kind of bad viz for S&R was good as well. One of the residents came out and said that the last time he saw divers in that canal they were from the sheriff's office and were looking for a body. I feel like I really left that class with some knowledge and gained some experience.

    I like being challenged like that and put in an uncomfortable situation. I think that's the only way you truly learn.
     
  3. Mount.n.girl

    Mount.n.girl Registered

    # of Dives: 0 - 24
    Location: Fresno, CA, USA
    11
    0
    I am a new SSI OW (now Specialty) diver with 17 dives to date. I have taken 3 specialty courses and am waiting to take my deep diving coarse and dive, plus my 7 more dives to achieve my Advanced status. My wonderful instructor, will NOT let me go deep diving with him, until he knows I am ready and have enough knowledge and experience to dive that deep and really be ready to be classified as an AOW diver. I am watched very carefully by the instructors (Mike) at Bobs Dive Shop in Fresno CA. The more I dive with him, the more knowledge and confidence I acquire. I am very fortunate to have the truly total caring professionals to guide me though my long learning process. Thanks you Mike Bannon , Chuck Robinson and Bobs Dive shop, for keeping my life safe through repetative safety procedures and not letting me advance until he knows I have the right skills.
    Maureen Abston
     
  4. Coldwater_Canuck

    Coldwater_Canuck Contributor

    # of Dives: 25 - 49
    Location: Seattle or Ontario
    629
    0
    Most of advanced was just a waste of time, not necessarily dangerous. Except the "deep" dive, which I am totally against for a few reasons:

    1. AOW is taken way too soon (some people will take it after their 4 OW dives)
    2. You are now certified to 100 feet after a single dive
    3. PADI's preparation for it is an absolute joke. The chapter on Deep Diving in Adventures in Diving isn't worth the paper it's written on.

    I'm fortunate my AOW didn't end with me in a chamber, by far the deep was the most dagnerous dive of my life. After the bad (although very fortunate for me) outcome of that dive, I didn't dive deep for awhile, and then slowly started going deeper and now feel that I can safely to a dive to 100 feet.

    Recreational deep diving isn't something to be taught, it should be accomplished by progressively going slightly deeper. With the exception of narcosis, deep diving is no different than dives under 60 feet except when things go wrong the outcome can be much worse and air management has less room for error. That's why, to me, the most important "training" for deep diving is just becoming a better diver, more comfortable with your equipment. better at responding to emergencies, knowing air consumption better, etc.

    Get rid of these stupid depth limits with certifications. Tell someone out of OW they should stay within 50 feet to start. And then let the diver progressively get deeper. Doing one (dangerous) trained dive to 100 feet doesn't mean that one day you were safe at only 60 feet and the next your are safe at 100 feet.

    Make Rescue Diver the course to follow OW, it is far more valuable, less dangerous, and doesn't need AOW to be completed.
     
  5. acwest

    acwest Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
    99
    1
    Our club runs a 12 week course for $350, but our instructors work for free, which makes more than a bit of a difference...
     
  6. newmanl

    newmanl Contributor

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
    Location: Port Coquitlam, BC
    146
    53
    I'm not sure exactly where I read it, maybe this thread, but it would seem that courses (and in particular the one being discussed here) suffer from the fact they must make money.

    I learnt to dive with a club and some years later taught for the same club, and other than a few very minor expenses on the club's behalf, I recieved no compensation for teaching courses. To be honest, and despite the generally accepted professional credo of not "giving away your services", even touted by my certifing agency, I never really thought about being paid or not, I just wanted to teach in a setting I thought provided the best environment in which to train people to become divers. The club's operating revenue came through membership dues, social events and other fund raisers. The club might have also made a few bucks running a dive schedule - shore dives and boat charters throughout the diving season. The point is, the courses were not set up in such a way to make as much money as possible. Which meant the course were long and detailed, the spin-off benefits of which included time for the student to get to know their instructors, AI's, DM's as well as their fellow students. I'd argue, it made for a much more enjoyable process/experience. It may also serve to keep them diving.

    Maybe scuba instruction has become too commericalized - the focus having shifted from long courses where the bottom line didn't really mean too much to those shortened by profit and competition - an evolution of sorts.

    As with another industry I'm familiar with - the stores likely see clubs as direct competition - they both teach and they both run a diving calendar. The only major difference being that clubs rarely sell dive gear. With the internet, stores are not the only ones selling gear these days. I'd be willing to guess that there are easier retail businesses to be involved in.

    Maybe scuba instruction should be the sole domain of clubs... :wink:

    A 12 week course for $350, now that's a deal!

    Lee
    NAUI 7908
     
  7. Dadali

    Dadali Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Turkey
    19
    0
    I must have to agree with money = card. If you have the money take a few course then they gıve you the card. I have seen so many examples. Not with one agency but many. Can't say everyone out there is doing this. As much that I have seen a lot of bad examples I have also seen very good ones. There needs to be a tighter regulations around this. Just my 2 cents.
     
  8. DCBC

    DCBC Banned

    4,443
    932
    The 1970's diver program was divided into several sections. This allowed easy and relatively inexpensive entry into diving. People did not have to make a major commitment to "learning how to dive." No stipulation was made on the card that they needed supervision. They cut down the training even further and added the supervision clause.

    The problem (as I see it) is that what would have been defined as "a student only partially through their training program" were given certification cards. If they came back to take more training, great, greater revenue generation. But what about those that didn't? Now we have many divers in this category that are often supervised by a small number of DMs, who often don't have the diving experience to be in such a position.
     
  9. DCBC

    DCBC Banned

    4,443
    932
    Thanks Lee, I agree. I too was Club trained and now teach for free at a Club. Unfortunately many people today want the quick, easy and cheap. They don't care much about having to learn. Such is the case in a Society that seems to be based upon quick gratification.
     
  10. darkmed5

    darkmed5 Registered

    11
    0
    I agree. It is joke.
     

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