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sport chalet

Discussion in 'New Divers & Those Considering Diving' started by cakemoto, May 5, 2010.

  1. BarrelRoll

    BarrelRoll Regular of the Pub

    # of Dives: 0 - 24
    Location: Dallas
    159
    0
    0
    Let me make this perfectly clear -- I could give a crap if you get certified at Sports Chalet, Mom and Pop's Dive Shop, or Costco.

    I'm simply stating that grabbing some random instructor without any frame of reference is a bad idea. You're more likely to find a lackadaisical instructor at a major chain because it's easier for someone to get lost in the shuffle.

    Learn to comprehend what you read before you jump on your holier than thou soap box.
     
  2. wadedeeper

    wadedeeper Nassau Grouper

    # of Dives:
    Location: California
    89
    3
    0
    Seems that BarrelRoll has a little Head up A$$ Syndrome. He starts off by saying he doesn’t care, but in all his posts, he seems to care enough to post it…

    So I guess the best thing to do is address his self-ignorance with a little comparison.

    LDS vs Sports Chalet (SC)
    1. LDS has about 2-3 regular instructors / SC has a few thousand including part time instructors
    2. LDS has part-time employees that may not know what they’re selling just like SC having part-time employees also not knowing…but each also has people that do know.
    3. LDS has a very limited selection of manufacturers and cost is usually higher, SC has a wider variety of manufacturers and costs are lower.
    4. Class costs are typically higher at a LDS than at a SC.

    LDS vs SC is about the same in all comparisons except that a LDS costs more and often forces you into gear they sell just to make a dime. SC may have someone from another department help, but from my experience, if they don't know they get the right person. I have also been helped by some “kids” who didn’t know what they were selling at both LDS & SC so you can’t argue that either.

    I find that most people wanting to be mad at SC do so based on hearsay or stupid little incidents they use as ammunition for their bitter hatred. I neither work at SC nor have I ever taught there, but I do know a number of instructors personally and they are of the highest caliber and have the best teaching records with students referring countless others to them.

    Lastly, BarrelRoll, you mentioned that I should
    Well…it seems you are the one that backtracked on what you stated…by stating that you don’t care…when you clearly do. As for comprehending what you read…I think its pretty clear which of us understands and which wants to stomp their feet and throw a tantrum about the big bad SC. Did they steal your lunch money or something? Do you need a hug? Its ok to have an opinion…too bad yours is pretty transparent and unsubstantiated. Oh, and lastly, next time you want to provide a basis for your argument, put in something with a bit more substance…claiming SC is bad because they are big is dumb, calling them cookiecutter…well that was funny! Seems to me that Dive training is entirely cookiecutter in that they all provide the same general information and that its up to the instructor to add any additional training aides or information. I usually add video I shoot, or pictures I took to get people excited, but I had to adhere to the training materials in general.
     
  3. drbill

    drbill The Lorax for the Kelp Forest Scuba Legend

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
    Location: Santa Catalina Island, CA
    22,788
    5,959
    113
    As others have stated, it is the instructor that matters the most. I have seen outstanding instructors associated with Sports Chalet stores... and downright terrible ones. You would probably have better luck at a local dive shop where the owner's reputation is on the line for the instructors he or she chooses to keep on staff.
     
  4. fnfalman

    fnfalman Orca

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Southern California, USA
    5,271
    727
    113
    I've met good help and good instructors at Sport Chalet. At least honest help, anyway. Most SC helps are certified but not regular divers. Most LDS I've been to have helps who are regular divers. That doesn't really mean much because one can log lots of dives and doesn't have a clue.

    Granted that Sport Chalet gears tend to be a few bucks cheaper than an LDS selling the same thing, but most of the gears at Sport Chalet also tend to be more generic.

    I've purchased at both LDS and Sport Chalet, so I vote with my wallet depending on what I'm buying.

    As always, caveat emptor.

    Spend some money at whomever pleases you and let's go diving.
     
  5. cakemoto

    cakemoto Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 0 - 24
    Location: sfv
    38
    0
    0
    I'm on it!going to the local lds tonight to sign up.i will let you guys know soon.thanks
    cant wait to start diving......
     
  6. BarrelRoll

    BarrelRoll Regular of the Pub

    # of Dives: 0 - 24
    Location: Dallas
    159
    0
    0
    Says the guy with internet tough guy syndrome.

    If you have an opinion, state it. If you just want to get in an interweb fight, leave the darkness of your parents basement every once in awhile.
     
  7. wadedeeper

    wadedeeper Nassau Grouper

    # of Dives:
    Location: California
    89
    3
    0
    Good luck Cakemoto...have fun and take it slow. Don't forget to ask questions if you have them.

    You'll have a blast and couldn't time it better...water is warming up and there's lots to see.

    Happy Diving!!
     
  8. k374

    k374 Manta Ray

    # of Dives: 50 - 99
    Location: Greater Los Angeles
    539
    6
    18
    I did my OW from an LDS and my Nitrox from SC. Overall, I just had a much better experience from the LDS, even though I did initially have issues with an instructor the LDS was genuinely interested in making things right which they did and made sure I was satisfied. SC on the other hand acted completely uninterested, never returned my calls despite giving me the wrong Nitrox book and really could not care less...which leads me to believe they are more of a "wholesale" type operation. I will never get any instruction from Sport Chalet again.. but as a tank renting place it's fine..they are close by and it works. I plan to do my AOW at my LDS.

    Bottom line in my experience, Sport Chalet has very poor customer service and follow through which is reason enough to avoid getting any training from them.
     
  9. GQMedic

    GQMedic NAUI Instructor

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: SoCal. (Yeah, baybee)
    678
    2
    18
    Like ANY place where SCUBA is taught, there are great instructors and then the occasional not so great instructor.

    OP, sorry you ended up with one that was of the later, I am glad you continued on somewhere else to get the instruction you sought, SCUBA is a BLAST!

    As to Sport Chalet, while they are a "PADI Shop", they have some great instructors as well as the not so great instructor, I have had the pleasure of knowing a few of their instructors, including a NAUI Instructor that did his cross over to PADI and went to work at Sport Chalet, in essence, quality instruction CAN be had at Sport Chalet.

    With the above said, I wish to correct an erroneous bit of info where Sport Chalet is downed as a place where poor instruction is offered. Sport Chalet DOES in fact cert MANY PADI divers, when you do that volume of business, the odds increase of a not so good instructor making it through the cracks in standards, unfortunately.

    Never the less, Happy Bubble Blowing!
     
  10. GQMedic

    GQMedic NAUI Instructor

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: SoCal. (Yeah, baybee)
    678
    2
    18
    Glad you had a good experience from your LDS, I am glad you pointed out the customer service aspect, an LDS has a reputation to both promote and protect, where a large chain plays a numbers game, but please remember, there are those within SC that WILL provide the same level of CS.

    I should also point out that I am NOT a SC employee or a PADI Instructor, I am a freelance NAUI Instructor.
     

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