Split from Catalina Diver died.. Advanced Certification is a joke

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Teamcasa

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Split From http://www.scubaboard.com/forums/ac...0-catalina-diver-died-today-w-instructor.html

.... Advanced Certification as provided by PADI is a joke and allowing students to take this certification with less than 10 dives is worse.


Dwayne, this isn't meant as a troll. I'm just curious to undertand your rationale.

Without addressing the first half of the sentence I quoted (no sense muddying this thread further), the second half of your statement has piqued my curiosity.

If you think allowing people to take the PADI AOW (NAUI has the same prerequisite, BTW) with less than 10 dives is not right, what do you suggest they do to get enough underwater time to be ready for the class? I'm assuming that you think they ought to have more than10 dives under their belt before they take the AOW.

And if I'm right, that begs this question: With whom do they do these other dives to get them to have enough logged dives so that, from your perspective, they're "ready" for AOW?

The reason this intrigues me is that you essentially seem to be saying that getting experience diving on their own with a buddy is going to be safer/preferable to getting that experience under the eye of an instructor.

And I don't think it would be fair to say that because, in this case, the diver died under the supervision of an instructor, that proves your point. The more salient question to ponder would be what would have happened had this same situation developed and the diver was with another new-ish diver.

From what I know of the particulars, the instructor here did everything she could to react to and alleviate the situation. I can't imagine a non professional-level person reacting as quickly. And even though the final outcome might have been the same, I'm still wrestling with what your logic might be.

Anyhow, just curious if you'd care to expand on your thoughts.

(But if what you meant to say was that calling someone - NAUI, PADI, or any other cert flavor - an "Advanced" diver with 10 dives under their belt is lunancy, then I'm in total agreement with you.)

- Ken
 

DandyDon

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[-]Didn't Padi change the name to "Adventures in diving"...?[/-] Edit: wrong

Additional training after OW seems like a very good idea. Called the card holder an Advanced diver is incorrect I think, a bad habit with divers. I call it an AOW out of habit and while I agree it's just a card and not really proof of much, it does show that the diver did more than just OW - a good attitude with some benefit.
 
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DwayneJ

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If you think allowing people to take the PADI AOW (NAUI has the same prerequisite, BTW) with less than 10 dives is not right, what do you suggest they do to get enough underwater time to be ready for the class? I'm assuming that you think they ought to have more than10 dives under their belt before they take the AOW.

I am an absolute believer in continued training and gaining experience with experienced divers/instructors. Diving with a few recent certified divers have clearly show me that basic certification is not good enough - Lack of buoyancy control and lack of situational awareness.

And if I'm right, that begs this question: With whom do they do these other dives to get them to have enough logged dives so that, from your perspective, they're "ready" for AOW?

Clearly my buddies need help and experience and I am happy to help by being a good buddy and likewise continued training with an instructor is a great idea.

The reason this intrigues me is that you essentially seem to be saying that getting experience diving on their own with a buddy is going to be safer/preferable to getting that experience under the eye of an instructor.

Certainly diving with experienced divers is exactly what a beginner diver needs. Likewise, diving with an instructor with the focus on overall skills improvement is a fantastic idea. There should be more focus on taking an instructor with you diving as a teacher/guide vs selling a simple course. "Advanced Open Water" is an awful course because it implies by completing 5 dives, a student has advanced skills.

And I don't think it would be fair to say that because, in this case, the diver died under the supervision of an instructor, that proves your point. The more salient question to ponder would be what would have happened had this same situation developed and the diver was with another new-ish diver.

I know the instructor was exceptional and I would have no hesitation taking instruction from the individual today. I had a near drowning experience at 12 after sucking down a snorkel of sea water. An adult dragged me all the way to the beach and I fought them all the way. Adult on adult whether a new diver, experienced diver, or instructor - if panic sets in, the best chance of survival is likely with a diver who is stronger, can keep you at depth, keep your regulator in your mouth, and slowly ascend.

From what I know of the particulars, the instructor here did everything she could to react to and alleviate the situation. I can't imagine a non professional-level person reacting as quickly. And even though the final outcome might have been the same, I'm still wrestling with what your logic might be.

I heard the same about the instructor - If an adult panics due to depth, medical issue, equipment failure, based on my own experience as a kid, I am sure it would be close to impossible to stop the student.

Anyhow, just curious if you'd care to expand on your thoughts.

(But if what you meant to say was that calling someone - NAUI, PADI, or any other cert flavor - an "Advanced" diver with 10 dives under their belt is lunancy, then I'm in total agreement with you.)

Exactly what I am saying.
 
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fnfalman

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Other than the LA County Advance Course, I have yet to see any AOW curriculum from any of the standard agency that's worth a damn. They're no more than a few guided dives. I suppose with SSI, they won't issue you The Card until you get 24-dives in, but you can still take the course right out of OW.

So, let's be clear about it. AOW is a cert and it isn't an indication of anybody being an "advanced " diver. Heck, I feel pretty damn comfortable in the water nowadays but I am far from being an "advanced" diver.
 

DwayneJ

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Didn't Padi change the name to "Adventures in diving"...?

Additional training after OW seems like a very good idea. Called the card holder an Advanced diver is incorrect I think, a bad habit with divers. I call it an AOW out of habit and while I agree it's just a card and not really proof of much, it does show that the diver did more than just OW - a good attitude with some benefit.

Advanced Open Water Diver Course from PADI Professional Scuba Divers' Training Organization
 

TSandM

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I have said this a lot of times. When I finished OW, I was unsafe to dive without supervision. I immediately took AOW, and what it amounted to, really, was the remedial time I should have spent in OW. I didn't learn a whole lot, but I got five more supervised dives, and by the end of it, I wasn't diving well, but I don't think I was as unsafe as I was five dives earlier. (I still hadn't done a descent without landing on my back, but once I did that, I rolled over and went diving . . . )

One of the issues is the name, but the other is the required deep dive. I think many people going straight from OW to AOW are not in any way fit to dive to 100 fsw. I wasn't, although my deep dive was uneventful. I could not have coped with ANY issue at 100 feet, but I would have been unlikely to panic, as time has proven that I am unlikely to panic, period. But having worked with some of my husband's OW students, the thought of taking them to a hundred feet absolutely terrifies me. Going deep with people who are taking the AOW class because they lack confidence, or have awful buoyancy control, seems to me to be an invitation to problems -- and an awful lot of incident reports I have read seem to have to do with AOW deep dives.

I think the class should be termed OW 2, and should leave out the deep dive and have a couple of PPB dives mandatory instead. Just my two cents' worth.
 

DandyDon

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Leejnd

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I am in full agreement with Ken that PADI AOW is a good next step for beginner divers. When my husband and I did our OW, we really bonded with our instructors, and a couple other people in our class. We all agreed to go forward with our AOW together, with the same two instructors. We ended up with four of us divers, and two instructors, doing all of our post-OW dives together...with two trained professionals, instead of just us beginners.

We did more than just the required dives -- it's been 4 years now so I can't remember exactly how many we did -- but the point is that we didn't go off on our own, without an instructor, until we'd done quite a number of dives supervised by professionals.

I have no problem with that at all. We picked up, and reinforced, more OW skills from our AOW dives than we did from our OW dives, when we were still trying to just get used to the strangeness of breathing underwater!

We did have a few laughs at the fact that it was called "Advanced" - we all knew that we were far from Advanced divers. But having spent all that time with instructors before going off on our own, we definitely felt far more capable of doing so than if we had done a bunch of dives on our own before we went and did our AOW.

I personally believe that removing the word "Advanced" would solve the problem completely. Even so, honestly, I can't see any reason for DwaynJ's objection to allowing divers with less than 10 dives to do AOW.
 

D_B

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For anyone who has taken the course .. did you feel like you were an advanced diver afterwords? .. I think few would have the mistaken opinion that they were ... I did not, no one in my class thought that, and it was not due to the instructors lack of skill

The course book is called Adventures In Diving , as been said in many threads, it allows you to experience dives with an instructor in different areas to see what might interest you

It's very dependant on the instructor teaching it as to how safe you are, and what you learn from it
 

newmanl

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Really, I'm not sure what people expect when the OW course is essentially two weekends. Even tennis lessons for that amount of time will only have you still spending more time chasing the ball around than enjoying a good volley of back and forth. Adding an AOW right afterwards is simply loading the student with skills and tasks they are not prepared to handle. As I've said to anyone who will listen, the basic OW diver, right after the course finishes, survives not because they are well-prepared and confident divers, but because nothing goes wrong.

So where's the blame to be laid? I'd suggest squarely on the shoulders of the students themselves. Let's face it, no one wants to take, or would take, a 13 week basic openwater course so they can do a dive or two on their up-coming honeymoon to Fiji. There is simply no time in the present course to adequately prepare someone, anyone, to scuba dive with a buddy of comparable experience without a diving professional as a guide. Now I know why divers on vacation get lead around like school kids on a field trip to the local museum.

Get all of the agencies to up the standards - start by lengthening the courses so that there is time to develop an adequate level of watermanship (swimming, treading water, etc.), time to use confidence-building exercises and perform basic skills enough times that it starts to become second-nature and the number of incidences will go down and the enjoyment up.

Unfortunately, this issue is here to stay, just look at driver's licences. No one fails, everyone gets to drive and then all of us good drivers moan and complain about how terrible the system is. I think the industry has simply responded to a very competitive marketplace and the losers are the consumers themselves.

Sorry, but this thread touched a nerve...

Lee
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