Minimalist versus "Train as you Fight" . . . Which way do you go?

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Tigerman

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I just don't log dives
I dont want to go cqb in an eod suit, so Ill take different kits and train using them :wink:

Same goes for my scubadiving. I wont go diving in the red sea with the same gear as I use in close to freezing water temps and below freezing airtemps..
Ill still have my regulators in the same spots as well as the tank, but the weights will be of varying ammount and distribution..


Jax said:
However, you always have the same helmet, first aid pouch, anti-nerve agent pouch, antii-chemical suits, protective mask, weapon, helment . . . etc. One always keeps that gear, practices with it, and whether its 100F or 0F, you will train in it.
Nope.. I would change anything from my weapon to what gear I carry dependent on the mission..
Last I checked a sniper rifle was no good for CQB and a MP5 was a rather crappy sniper rifle..
 
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TSandM

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I guess I can't think of a diving situation where split-second automatic responses are called for underwater.

There was a recent "Near misses" story recounted on the Cave Diver forum, where a diver had had a regulator problem and couldn't find her backup reg. Her necklace had stretched out and the reg was out of position and caught in some of her other gear. She therefore couldn't find a working regulator to breathe. In the process of receiving one from her buddy (and remember, sidemount divers don't expect to have to do this) she lost buoyancy control and awareness of the line. The passage was big enough to lose the line. The result could have been bad.

I think there's value in being able to find all of your gear with your eyes closed, or when distracted and dealing with other things.

Jax, I have never reached for something that wasn't there, because so far, if I've decided I didn't need it on that dive, I haven't needed it.
 

Dashrynn

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Besides exposure protection changes, my recreational dive setup remains the same. I can be very forgetful, why add or subtract gear and then one day forget it?

I don't need a slate, change of lights, or anything like that normally. In the navy we had the same motto as the army but if what I really need can be used throughout every recreational dive but still isn't 1000 pieces of gear.

And for an example of my recreational gear setup.....bp/w, 1 backup light inner tubed to harness, 1 can light, 1 dive computer, 1 compass, 1 knife in nylon sheath threaded on bp/w harness belt, 1 scooter, smb. Has stayed the same for over 100 dives (and yes scooter always comes along)

This works for me, may not for you but it does for me.
 

Thalassamania

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There was a recent "Near misses" story recounted on the Cave Diver forum, where a diver had had a regulator problem and couldn't find her backup reg. Her necklace had stretched out and the reg was out of position and caught in some of her other gear. She therefore couldn't find a working regulator to breathe. In the process of receiving one from her buddy (and remember, sidemount divers don't expect to have to do this) she lost buoyancy control and awareness of the line. The passage was big enough to lose the line. The result could have been bad.

I think there's value in being able to find all of your gear with your eyes closed, or when distracted and dealing with her things.
I agree that there's value in being able to find all of your gear with your eyes closed, or when distracted and dealing with other things, but the idea of drill, drill, drill has proven to be dangerous also. I think back to a case I read where a diver lost his bite on his regulator and was last seen sinking out of sight on a Caribbean wall doing repeated and unsuccessful arm sweeps in a vain attempt to recover it. Like the case that you cited, a major problem was the loss of focus on buoyancy control.

But the lessons I take away from your citation (and I was not there, nor did I read a first hand report) are:
  1. Your gear should be working, regulator problems are almost unheard of.
  2. Why couldn't she find her auxiliary? That's a prime responsibility. Training problem? Practice problem? What?
  3. Her necklace stretched out on that one dive? Maintenance problem? BTW: that's another reason I don't like securing things, when things go bad things you expect to find in a predefined place are not there, and then things get really bad, because you never practiced what to do when that happens.
I would stress, stop, think, then act ... and act slowly. It is not the problem that presents that kills, it is the inappropriate response of the unthinking diver ... which is often a "practiced response" that did not work as expected. Know your gear intimately, drill with your eyes closed, but don't expect that auxiliary to be sitting right below your chin where it always is when you drill; when things go really bad, it will be because you really need that auxiliary and for some reason it is not where you where sure it was going to be.

That woman would have been better off to relax and think and to reach to where her auxiliary first stage was and then get her second stage. Her problem was reliance on a necklace that was no reliable, drilling the shift to an auxiliary was no substitute for learning how to think her way through a possibly tough spot.
 

lowviz

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..............It is not the problem that presents that kills, it is the inappropriate response of the unthinking diver ... which is often a "practiced response" that did not work as expected. ..............

Wow. Another one of those creepy feelings finally put to words.

I just, today, got a copy of Sheck Exley's Basic Cave Diving -a blueprint for survival. I wanted to see what the thinking was "back in the day". (And after the rash of cave deaths.) Now there was someone who took the time and energy to think things through.

Rote memorization is so efficient and seductive, but not always the best way to survive. Much to think about...
 

herman

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Reading over the thread, I have to admit I don't see the big deal in keeping your gear the same for every dive, sounds down right boring to me. Unlike most of you, my gear depends on the dive, what I want to accomplish on the dive and what I feel like diving that day. My rig varies from day to day and sometimes between dives in a day from a simple 50s vintage single stage double hose, tank with a J valve and 50s era harness (no BC) to a drysuit, back inflate BC and a long hose Apeks/bungied octo. I can find all my gear any time and know how to use it all, swapping gear is not a problem. I have no problems remembering what I am diving, how it works and where it all is from dive to dive. It's my gear and I put it on. Rather than depending on repative training which can cause it's own set problems, I prefer the know my gear and think about what I am doing, instant response to a problem UW is almost never needed, calm cool thinking about the issue is. I see no reason to take unneeded gear just to keep it the same. Why would I ever need a SMB and reel in the quarry or my primary lights when diving on a daylight 30 ft reef with my camera in my hand....the strobe has a spotting light if I really need one. Its equipment I will not need, adds extra weight, requires me to add air to my BC, adds drag, creates danglies and if nothing else increases the wear and tear on the item. For divers who are all about streamlining, reducing danglies and efficient diving, it seems odd to me that they promote the very thing they preach against. I am not suggesting that you should not carry needed safety gear when appropriate, I certainly do but why carry all the extra junk when there is no possibility I will need it.
 
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Jaydubya

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have you ever found yourself reaching for something and it not be there?

I never found myself reaching for my SMB in a cave.
 

TSandM

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I certainly do but why carry all the extra junk when there is no possibility I will need it.

I don't! And, although DIR hasn't been mentioned here, I just want to add that there is no requirement to carry gear that will not be needed for the dive; in fact, quite the contrary.
 

tr3a

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Most local diving as little as possible, wetsuit, mask, fins, cylinder w/ double hose reg (strapped directly to my back. Sometimes I add an SPG. Usually have a depth gauge & watch.
For travel I add a BPW with a more modern reg (although I may start bringing my 2 hoser as well).
 

lowviz

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Thalassamania raised a disturbing thought, mindless reliance on standard practiced responses may be fatal.

Simply thinking through everything is completely unacceptable also, or we could all learn to be divers just by reading books.

The truth is usually somewhere nearer the middle. So is it "deftly applying practiced routines to the problem at hand while assessing the results with a functional brain"?

To me, this would imply a greater weight on the "minimalist" side of Jax's question.
 
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