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Dive Master Training, Swim Test went back in class

Discussion in 'Going Pro' started by SentinelAce, Nov 26, 2018.

  1. American Digger In Europe

    American Digger In Europe Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Germany
    59
    39
    18
    I'm a 59 (almost) year old disabled diver. My left ankle is fused at a 90 degree angle and has zero flexion. I passed my OWD Swim Test with flying colors by doing a combat side-stroke.

    I ran into some problems, however, when I did my Dive Con 800 meter snorkel swim. Since my left ankle is fused, it causes serious drag while swimming on the surface. It acts like a water brake and basically, I'm propelling myself forward with one leg! I still completed the swim on time, but with seconds to spare, but in order to do so, I had to use my arms and was exhausted at the end of the swim.

    I use a goofy looking modified kick under the water, but it is comfortable and works for me. If I make a surface swim and do it on my back, I can outkick just about anyone in my club. Once I turn on my stomach, I slow down by at least 30 percent. It's physically impossible for me to maintain my speed.

    It's really frustrating but there is nothing I can do about it.
     
    Sam Miller III likes this.
  2. TMHeimer

    TMHeimer Divemaster

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Dartmouth,NS,Canada(Eastern Passage-Atlantic)
    12,021
    2,550
    113
    I commend you for finding a way to make the grade on the tests. Just curious-- Was there any concern that your disability may impede you when making an emergency rescue?
     
    Seaweed Doc likes this.
  3. caruso

    caruso Banned

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Long Island, NY
    1,662
    1,189
    113
    This was my thought as well when I started reading this thread. As a DM you may be responsible to save a life. As harsh as this may sound, if you're marginal on the swim test I don't want you leading my dive.
     
  4. TMHeimer

    TMHeimer Divemaster

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Dartmouth,NS,Canada(Eastern Passage-Atlantic)
    12,021
    2,550
    113
    My thought was he aced the regular swim test with the combat side stroke. But had trouble with the 800 mask/fin/snorkel. This is the one you'd use for a rescue--who cares how well you swim without fins. I'd have to give serious thought about rescuing a fully geared up diver without my fins, then dragging him 200 yards. But I've pontificated enough over the years on that.
     
    caruso likes this.
  5. caruso

    caruso Banned

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Long Island, NY
    1,662
    1,189
    113
    I guess it's a way of determining a divers level of fitness and function when in a situation where they are exposed to high task overloading.
     
  6. tursiops

    tursiops Marine Scientist and Master Instructor ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
    Location: U.S. East Coast
    7,777
    5,422
    113
    You mean you did the dives solo? Hmmm....
     
  7. TMHeimer

    TMHeimer Divemaster

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Dartmouth,NS,Canada(Eastern Passage-Atlantic)
    12,021
    2,550
    113
    To be honest (one should never say that as it means at times you aren't), the site was one I was very familiar with. And only 15 minutes away as opposed to a 150 mile round trip to do it with a buddy at the standard sites areas near Halifax. In fact, doing it close to home eliminated the problem of actually finding a shore site down there that had yet to be mapped. In fact, some DMs over time elected to map a wreck from the local charter boat, but you'd run out of those at some point too.
    The shop uses these maps on their website to promote local diving.
    I used compass and kick cycles and noted depth, bottom topography, etc. The only complaint from my instructor was not enough on land attractiveness, so I made it prettier. Did it in 3 separate dives. Maybe an 8 hour day from start to finish, as opposed to a 15-16 hour one.
    Not exactly sure what I learned from that and how it related to my duties once I started assisting OW courses. I had already taken the NAV specialty. Maybe it has more relevance to DMs who work on charters, or it could just be one of those task loading components.
     
  8. TMHeimer

    TMHeimer Divemaster

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Dartmouth,NS,Canada(Eastern Passage-Atlantic)
    12,021
    2,550
    113
    Yeah, good a reason as any. Though the "swim" test is part of the "Stamina" tests (with PADI), so officially it may be to determine stamina (strength?). Task overloading with no practical dive-related purpose would more likely be the equipment exchange.
     
  9. American Digger In Europe

    American Digger In Europe Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Germany
    59
    39
    18
    I have no concerns about my ability to conduct a rescue. I made one two weeks ago and had to tow a 240 pound exhausted diver 100 meters to shore. I'm ex- US Army Special Forces and mentally stronger than most.

    My ankle doesn't affect my swim speed while underwater or kicking on my back. Like I said, I can outswim almost everyone in my dive club underwater or kicking on my back. It's only surface swimming with the snorkel that slows me down.
     
    Graeme Fraser and Diving Dubai like this.
  10. American Digger In Europe

    American Digger In Europe Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Germany
    59
    39
    18
    And that is your prerogative. I will say this, however. I take personal responsibility for every diver in the group I'm leading. While some would say it's not my LEGAL responsibility, I consider it to be my MORAL responsibility. Most diving accidents occur under the water, where my disability has no effect on my ability to react swiftly and correctly. I have no difficulty towing very heavy divers over distance.

    But if you still don't want me to lead your dive because I completed my 800 meter surface swim in 14:30, I would honor your concerns and ask another DM to lead your group. No issues.
     
    Graeme Fraser and Diving Dubai like this.

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