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Discussion in 'Solo Divers' started by Blackfrogfeet, Feb 19, 2021.

  1. Wibble

    Wibble Contributor

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: UK
    Beg to differ. Self-reliant means someone who can handle being alone for part of the dive; lost buddy, setting the shot, continuing if the buddy's surfaced early.

    Solo means exactly that: solo. Nobody else to help. Rock up, dive, get out, go home -- nobody else around. There's nobody to help, nobody to do a 'buddy check', nobody to carry your kit, etc.

    Thinking of a solo dive I did in Loch Ness. Dark, cold and very very alone with the imagination running wild!
    Cdncoldwater and Marie13 like this.
  2. Wibble

    Wibble Contributor

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: UK
    Just to make clear -- which I probably wasn't...

    There is huge value to Self-Reliant Diver (SRD) which all divers should attain when they pass through the novice stage. Not least because most people will find themselves diving alone at some point. Apart from anything else, it gives them confidence to not rush to ascend, possibly unsafely.

    To be honest, SRD ought to be a pre-requisite to the Rescue Diver course, certainly when searching for a lost diver.

    (By recognised, it's the lakes where they require the Solo Diver card and don't accept SRD).
    Marie13 likes this.
  3. VikingDives

    VikingDives Mostly Harmless ScubaBoard Sponsor

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: New Mexico
    Just to restate what you've said, self-reliance (which here I assume you mean solo diving regardless of flavor) is more difficult than technical diving with a buddy. Neither PADI nor SDI condone doing pinnacle dives solo, so you should be very comfortable in the environment before you do a solo dive. So, assume that a diver is doing a 30 meter dive in a place the diver is comfortable with. No overhead environments, three minutes give or take, to the surface and a redundant air source of sufficient quantity to exit the dive safely in the event of a problem with breathing gas.

    Now take the same diver doing a tech dive with say a 15 minute deco obligation and a buddy. If either has a problem both are expected to have sufficient gas to solve the problem on their own. The only scenarios that I can come up with where it may be more complicated for the solo diver is if that diver were to become entangled or were to have a medical issue that resulted in a loss of consciousness. To be fair, if the technical diver lost consciousness there's not much his buddy can do for him, short of foregoing his deco stop. Is there some additional risk? Yes, but it isn't terrible or insurmountable.

    Then you argue divers should just pick up all the skills on their own and then come in for an assessment? Ok. That's not really the easiest or safest path to mastery of any skill. I assume you don't mean that, but rather that certification should not be a given. What would you have a diver do? The standards for Solo and Self-reliant require more dives and presumably maturity (based on age) than technical training. What's missing?

    So in the face of evidence, you're arguing that self-reliance is bad because of the name (and because it's PADI) and therefore must require lower standards? Gotcha. Perhaps you should change your W to a Qu?
    Wibble likes this.
  4. TMHeimer

    TMHeimer Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Dartmouth,NS,Canada(Eastern Passage-Atlantic)
    Solo-Self Reliant-- Want someone to debate the difference (maybe Young Sheldon?). Or is it maybe semantics?
  5. TMHeimer

    TMHeimer Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Dartmouth,NS,Canada(Eastern Passage-Atlantic)
    Agree completely. Assuming you live somewhere other than Halifax, which has only PADI and only recently one instructor Solo certified (in the Caribbean), and can afford it.
    Cdncoldwater likes this.
  6. Wibble

    Wibble Contributor

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: UK
    We're all products of our experience and our normal diving habits. I spend most of my diving off of "independent boats" in cold, green water with frequent poor visibility on wrecks where you bring the right skills and kit with you to do the dive you've booked. It's up to you to know if you've the right experience for the dive; nobody else will ask you. If you need a buddy, you bring one. There's plenty of friends and chatter on the boat, but they're nearly all independent divers, few diving in buddy pairs. Most divers on those boats are very experienced having dived for tens of years.

    One of the events that shaped my attitude towards solo diving was loosing a diver who sat next to me on a boat. I don't want to go into the details of this incident, but suffice it to say that the diver had an appalling dive kit configuration and was obviously not ready to solo dive (we suspect the diver's gas wasn't turned on). I've been over that incident many times and have concluded that next time I see such a config I have to call it out. Hence I've developed a rather uncompromising attitude to solo diving skills and kit. I sincerely apologise if that comes over as a bit arrogant.
    Cdncoldwater likes this.
  7. Julius SCHMIDT

    Julius SCHMIDT Contributor

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Alexandra Headland
    Here's the difference, from their books, the difference is massive, the philosophy resides on opposing poles


    Self-Reliant Diver

    Distinctive Specialty Course Instructor Guide

    General Purpose

    The purpose of the Self-Reliant Diver specialty course is to recognize and
    accept the role of the buddy system and its contributions to diver safety
    while identifying and developing self-reliance and independence while
    diving. There are two reasons for an experienced diver to take the

    Self-Reliant diver course:

    •To develop the skills of planning and carrying out dives without a partner when preferred or necessary.

    •To sharpen skills of diving self-reliance, making the diver a stronger partner in a dive pair or team.

    This course covers when diving alone may be applicable, and the need to compensate for those situations, including dive planning, life support system readiness, adaptive training, equipment and responsibility.

    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 risks.

    •The value of equipment redundancy and what back-up equipment is needed.

    •Dive planning and gas management.



    Cdncoldwater likes this.
  8. AdivingBel

    AdivingBel Diver

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Missouri
    LOL...there is supposed to be a /s, right? Look at the prerequisites and the actual curriculum for the cert. They are virtually the same. Folks that quibble over this stuff are the same ones that get bent out of shape over the A in AOW. Geez...:facepalm:
    VikingDives likes this.
  9. TMHeimer

    TMHeimer Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Dartmouth,NS,Canada(Eastern Passage-Atlantic)
    Self Reliant quote #1 on the list: "To develop the skills of planning and carrying out dives without a partner when preferred or necessary". Uhhh, to dive solo? But let's not call it that.
    drrich2 likes this.
  10. drrich2

    drrich2 ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Southwestern Kentucky
    I suspect 2 factors were in play....

    1.) PADI had a rep. for historically being anti-solo.

    2.) SDI, an agency many hadn't heard of or had paid little attention to, came out with a solo diver course that found demand. More divers started taking notice of SDI, and taking that course. While they were there, they got introduced to an alternative to PADI for a range of other courses.

    It's not unlike if Wal-mart discovered they didn't carry something a lot of customers wanted, but found at Target...and some took a liking to Target.

    If PADI didn't want to 'eat crow' or lose more business to SDI, options were limited. Coming up with 'self-reliant diver' is surprisingly inventive under the circumstances.
    Esprise Me and VikingDives like this.

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