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Experience as a trainee divemaster

Discussion in 'Basic Scuba Discussions' started by swim93, Nov 1, 2014.

  1. Carl_F

    Carl_F Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Seneca, SC
    Each shop and instructor is different. My shop has the students assemble and transport the gear themselves. (We don't have an onsite pool.) I help ensure the instructor has a tank, get the O2, extra weights, and help the students get their gear together. The instructors I work with May not say anything at the moment but at the end of the night or other times they express their appreciation.

    Give it a chance but as RJP says, learn from the instructor including what you won't do as an instructor yourself.
  2. Dive Right In Scuba 2

    Dive Right In Scuba 2 ScubaBoard Business Sponsor ScubaBoard Business Sponsor

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Illinois
    When I did my DM many moons ago it was an amazing experience. Amazing in the sense that it showed me exactly what type of instructor I didn't want to be. I dreaded every day of going in to the shop because I knew exactly how I was going to be treated. If doing the DM program makes you resent a sport that you once loved, that may be an indicator to rethink your mentor.
  3. radtype

    radtype PADI Pro

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Kentucky
    I was very fortunate when I went through the divemaster program. The instructors treated me like they were training me and not free help. I worked with 2 different instructors and they were great.

    I am am fortunate in that I get to assist with their classes now. They were and still are good mentors and role models.

    There are are too many good instructors. If you don't like your setup find someone else to work with.
  4. DivemasterDennis

    DivemasterDennis DivemasterDennis ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Lakewood, Colorado
    As a dovemaster candidate yo will learn from everyone you work with. Some will teach how to do things right, some will offer examples of what not to do. Being exposed to different approaches and attitudes is a good thing. Don't mimic on person, but draw the best from each. As your experience and competence grow, you will be in a position to engage in discussion with instructors and suggest things based on your reaction to what they say and do. You need the training, the experience and the know how to before you can expect your comments to considered by others. Hang in there. It will come.
    Divemaster Dennis
  5. SKMoss

    SKMoss Nassau Grouper

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: So Cal
    +1 to RJP, Mike, and Dennis. Learn from everyone you meet. Good, bad or indifferent. DM is a certification, not a hazing ritual. You have the standards, look them up.

    The instructor might just be pushing you a little to see what your willingness to serve is. If it continues, you need to make some decisions. Don't let this ruin SCUBA for you.
  6. supergaijin

    supergaijin Dive Shop

    It's not normal IMO. A little help goes a long way- there may have been a time issue but the instructor sounds like a bit of a prick.
    That's not normal either.... well it shouldn't be normal. Some instructors have no idea how to actually instruct. Teaching 'naturals' to dive is easy- the hard part is training the strugglers.

    Either way, it sounds here as if you're training under a mediocre instructor at best. DM training should be training- it takes a huge amount of time and effort to train DM's. Certain people think the training will happen by osmosis.
  7. boulderjohn

    boulderjohn Technical Instructor ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Boulder, CO
    Our shop's pool work is done at a local recreation center, which means hauling gear to and from the site. Every instructor I know does things the same way. Any professionals working that day show up at the shop and work together to load the van and then unload it at the site. They then begin working together to do what has to be done to distribute materials at the site. Once students arrive, the instructor(s) begin working with the students while the DMs do whatever else needs to be done before assisting students with gear setup, etc. After class work is done, the professionals all work together to gather material to be moved back to the van. Each instructor divvies up that work a little differently. For example, I will have the DM demonstrate how to wash the gear and then supervise that process because I am tired of instructing at that point and would prefer to haul gear while that is going on.

    I think the grunt work that does on before and after the instructor is working with the students needs to be shared as much as possible. In many cases, though, the grunt work will fall to the DM. For example, after the OW dives, the instructor needs to debrief, log dives, sign logbooks, sign papers, etc. It would be silly to have the DM standing around watching the whole time that is going on, so a lot of grunt work will naturally have to be done by the DM.
    TSandM and They call me Tater like this.
  8. raftingtigger

    raftingtigger Divemaster

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Woodland, CA, USA
    I would agree if the OP were a DM already, but they are a DM trainee. They are PAYING to learn to lead certified divers and to help with classes. They will get more TRAINING by sitting in on or participating in the debrief than by hauling gear around.

    When the other students have gone, the DM trainee can certainly help with the gear, but it shouldn't be at the expense of their own training -- which isn't on how to haul gear in any outline I have ever seen.
    scooterintexas and Jim Lapenta like this.
  9. muzikbiz22

    muzikbiz22 Manta Ray

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location: Southern California
    Part of the training IS grunt work, it's that simple. A new soldier in training, doesn't spend all of his time learning just how to shoot a gun. He also gets to "learn" how to scrub toilets, dig a latrine, do some push-ups, change a tire, sleep in mud and adhere to every single order given to him by his DI.
    They call me Tater likes this.
  10. raftingtigger

    raftingtigger Divemaster

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Woodland, CA, USA
    Oops, my bad. While I know that a soldier is 'owned' by their government and part of the grunt work is to build discipline and an unthinking response to orders, I didn't know that the dive shop 'owned' the DM trainee. I was under the impression that the DM trainee was a paying student.

    Maybe I'm confusing "paying student" with "will do anything asked to get a job".
    scooterintexas and Jim Lapenta like this.

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