When is it okay to abandon your dive buddy?

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Julius SCHMIDT

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We were swimming in the open ocean through narrow rocks, and at 32.6 metres after fighting my way through a hole, tubbsy behind me got stuck so off I swam. 32.6 m was welded into my brain in order to attempt to find him in the mish mash of tunnels and caves and overhangs and the probably 30m extra I had to travel down up and around to be somewhere near where we started. Saw his bubbles for a bit and then I didn't and then to my relief saw that he had joined another group of dicers. I'm nobodys buddy, and was probably more concerned about being labeled as the guy that "lost" his buddy than he was about being stuck

All this happens either very quickly in slow motion, or slowly in quick motion



Great dive site, don't do it enough, think I might book it now
 

Aura

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That’s a very good point but difficult to do in a general sense — to explain to students the limitations of the buddy system and why you should aim to be self sufficient.
The primary problem with the buddy system seems to be miscommunication. The reason for why this thread was created in the first place was because Scoobajay and her spouse seem to have different opinions on what they expect their buddy to be.
Agencies teach the buddy system, so most new divers expect to use it. I don't think it's wrong for a newer diver to "rely" on a more experienced buddy when diving in increasingly difficult environments and developing their skills, so long as both people are in agreement. And I don't think it's strange that new or rusty divers would prefer to dive with someone who's willing to look after them (not babysit, but just to glance once in a while to make sure they're still there).
I guess I disagree with a lot of people here on this topic. Self sufficiency is great, but nobody is born an expert, even if some were certified so long ago that they seem to have forgotten.
 

Rukkian

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Both my courses were PADI. When I was only OW certified, I didn't have a sufficient understanding of deco limits, but none of my dives were long or deep enough for it to be relevant (I'm saying this in retrospect, at the time I just didn't know). I've since bought a computer and learned how to use it.

I think this is a dangerous attitude, regardless of a diver's training and experience.
You must have fell through the cracks. I did my padi ow in 2018, and the elearning definitely talked about ndl and tables. We also had to demonstrate to our instructor during the review session how to fill out a dive plan and the corresponding nitrogen levels and ndl time on subsequent dives. We also went over why a computer is a much better choice due to multi-level dives being more difficult to accurately plan using tables.

As to buddies, I like to dive with others because that is part of the fun. It is an opportunity to hang out with like minded individuals, and I hope that I am a good buddy. I have had people that needed help. 2 different people that were out of gas. There are times that I wish my wife would dive, but I know that we would run into some of the same issues as the op, and it would also be much more expensive, and probably limit my diving purchases.
 

Aura

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You must have fell through the cracks. I did my padi ow in 2018, and the elearning definitely talked about ndl and tables.
I think you're right. I just found my old OW manual and remember being told to read chapters 1+2+3, and ignore 4+5 as they were AOW material. Chapter 4+5 are the ones containing info about computers and tables. And I learned nothing from AOW as that was a total disaster.
Ignore what I said, all my courses seem to have been very substandard.
 

Rukkian

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I think you're right. I just found my old OW manual and remember being told to read chapters 1+2+3, and ignore 4+5 as they were AOW material. Chapter 4+5 are the ones containing info about computers and tables. And I learned nothing from AOW as that was a total disaster.
Ignore what I said, all my courses seem to have been very substandard.
That is definitely not correct, your instructor was not following standards at all. There are no part of the ow course that is covered in the aow course. The aow course is really only about a sampler course of different specialties.
 

BoltSnap

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The aow course is really only about a sampler course of different specialties


This isn't always the case with all instructors and, especially, dive agencies. AOW for some maybe a "sampler" course but for others it is about actual more advanced skills and knowledge.
 

Rukkian

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This isn't always the case with all instructors and, especially, dive agencies. AOW for some maybe a "sampler" course but for others it is about actual more advanced skills and knowledge.
This was about padi, which I am familiar, and what he took, and what we were discussing. He said his ow instructor told him not to do the last 2 chapters of ow and they would be covered in aow, which is absolutely not correct. I understand different agencies have different things, but this was specifically about his experience with Padi OW and AOW.
 

Taliena

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My aow was also a course I did not learn anything. But this was not the fault of the instructor. I already knew during my ow that I wanted to do technical diving. So I joined a cmas club to do 2* after ow asap. But they promised a lot, but did not do. And as part of building experience I had decided that I had to do some icediving, so I needed aow. As I am was not rich and the club also costed some money I started to do deeper dives (24m) and nightdives myself. And then people started complaigning, but I still don't understand why. I was able to do my aow/2* but nobody had time. Then they said that 2* was not finished before winter and it was already end of october, so I had to choose an instructor for aow. And I did. But I had already 55 dives, and it was just a lot of fun. But with already 20 nightdives and deep dives (this was a normal combination for me), it was not something new in the aow course. The navigation also not as I always navigate dives.
So sometimes you don't learn from a course, but is not the instructors fault. The same happened with my normoxic trimix. I had a 51m certs, adv. rec. trimix and the normoxic trimix was also done with 1 decogas and only went to 54m (I already had been). When I became instructor years later I decided to only teach normoxic with 2 decogases, even if 1 is allowed in standards (it is a 1 or 2 choice).
 
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