Opinions & comments

Outside comments, debates, chronics

Selling Yourself Short: Your Skills Are Worth Nothing and You Work for Free

Salaries and benefits for new scuba instructors vary widely but, generally speaking, diving jobs are not well paid, and this is another reason why you really need to have a vocation for teaching in order to survive in this line of work.

At some point, many keen divers entertain the notion of giving up their 9-to-5 job and following the dream of becoming a professional scuba diver, making a living from their hobby and combining work with passion. After all, the advertisements for instructor courses in the dive magazines make it sound easy. All you have to do is sign up, fork out the dough and take the plunge. What could possibly go wrong?

What Does It Take to be a "Good Diver"? Part II

Technical diver in Lake Baikal, Russia. Photo by Andrey Bizyukin.

You are chatting with a diving friend and the conversation turns to mutual acquaintances. “Do you know Bob and Carol?” your friend asks. “Oh yes, good divers!” you reply. We will usually refer to someone as a good diver when they are not around. We will rarely say it to their face. And it is something that we all rather hope people say about us behind our backs.

What Does It Take to Be a “Good Diver?” — Part One

You are chatting with a diving friend and the conversation turns to mutual acquaintances. “Do you know Bob and Carol?” your friend asks. “Oh yes, good divers!” you reply. We will usually refer to someone as a good diver when they are not around. We will rarely say it to their face. And it is something that we all rather hope people say about us behind our backs.

Transferring Anticipation Skills to Problem Resolution

Adding some realism to your training protocol also requires adding spontaneity, distraction and surprise. This is not as hard as it seems, but it can be dangerous for instructor and student if not well-controlled.

Mike Ange discuss methods of building a safer and more comfortable diver at the more advanced levels by preventing the diver from anticipating issues before they occur. While this may sound contradictory to the earlier articles in this series, in reality, it is taking those skills to the next level.

Analyzing the Obvious II: Retaining Divers by Building a Comfort Zone

In the first article in this series, we discussed the importance of building the diver’s comfort zone and how the comfort level of the newly trained diver affects his or her long-term participation in the sport. This begs the questions: how much impact does drop-out actually have on the sport; and what can the instructor do to correct the problem?

Preconditioning for Safer Scuba Diving

This column is adapted from a chapter in my book, Scuba Physiological – Think you know all about Scuba Medicine? Think Again! The chapters in this book were originally written by scientists in the field of decompression research as part of a three-year project called PHYPODE (Physiology of Decompression). My (self-appointed) task was to rewrite their sometimes-complex research in a form accessible to all divers.

Analyzing the Obvious—It's About Anticipation

Is diving safe? This is a question as old as the sport itself and the potentially accurate answers fill an entire spectrum of responses. Over the past 17 years, I have studied this question intently, publishing numerous case studies and articles in addition to several books. In the last third of that period, this study was for the purposes of an academic paper in a degree program. Here is the definitive answer: It depends.