Diver that is anyway……..
I finally got round to having the time and money to complete my divemaster and i couldn’t be happier although a little chilly…. Braving the cold winter waters of the UK was a test, one i may not repeat, but a test at that. It was worth it in the end….even if my fingers did nearly fall off! Many thanks to the guys at my local dive club Essex School of Diving and my Instructor (and student!!) Steve Greaves.
So why did I want to become a dive master??
Well in the world of diving, I personally felt that I was never given any respect as a diver even as an advanced or rescue diver with over 100 open water dives. That’s because in the hierarchy it really means nothing, people can get to rescue diver with little over 20 dives under their belt in less than 1 month. And it’s true I always thought I was a great diver, but not until I did my divemaster did I feel a massive confidence boost that I didn’t even realise I needed. I think diving before I was blissfully unaware or forcefully ignoring things that could go wrong. I dreaded check dives where I had to take my mask off and dreaded if an accident happened where it would be knocked off during a dive. Now however after being trained to instructor standard in the PADI skills I can comfortably remove my mask without second thought without panicking or rushing to get it back on ASAP. Saying that however braving Stoney Cove waters for the first time in 5 degree surface temp waters did push me slightly out of comfort, but more for the fact of the cold shock to the face rather than the lack of confidence in my skills.
So is becoming a PADI Divemaster for everyone?? Well, probably not, although the experience you gain is invaluable, there are also yearly fees which could end up costing in the long run, however to become a master scuba diver you just add new specialities and don’t practise those basic PADI essential skills, that’s why I think to become a better diver it’s an invaluable experience.
So where too next…. Well I’m not really interested in a career in diving, I love to dive and I use diving as a tool for work, therefore the next qualifications are those that will benefit my recreational experience and career…. Therefore next courses in line are;
Nitrox – Enriched Air …..Diving with Nitrox gives you more no decompression dive time, increases your knowledge on diving physiology and is a pre requisite for rebreather training…. all in all a step to becoming a more knowledgeable and safer diver.
Full Face Mask Diver …. Essential for communication underwater, if you ever wonder what all those nature documentary presenters are donning in the field then this is it… A whole new set of skills to learn as if you lose your mask, you lose your mask and vice versa.
Rebreather…. Had a play on my instructor Steve’s Poseidon MK6 last weekend and loved it! Rebreathers are a great way to increase bottom time and stay stealth underwater to get those great photographic captures and get up close and personal with marine life.
P.S If you ever decide to brave UK waters in under 5 degrees C, don a dry suit and gloves that are 5mm and fit, i had the choice of 5mm that were too big or 3mm gloves that were to thin, therefore my fingers were a little worse for wear and dives slightly less enjoyable. But its a learning curve!!