Open water diving, or more popularly known as scuba diving, is an adventurous, beautiful, and breathtaking experience to be had.
Scuba diving can be an experience of a lifetime. Most people who partake in recreational scuba diving love to try it again or even become open water diving professionals themselves.
But as exhilarating as scuba diving is, it can also be dangerous if done without any knowledge or basic training. That is where open water certifications come in, and PADI open water certification for divers is one of the best to start with.
Why Get an Open Water Diving Certification?
If you’re thinking of not going through with any open water diving certification, then that is a bad idea. Not only is it safer to get a certificate, but it also mentally and physically prepares you for the actual open water dive.
A lot of countries do not even permit open water diving without any certification, and some might even ask for advanced certifications. If you think that you won’t have the time required to complete the courses, then there are always alternatives available.
You can enroll in the course near your home and then continue it at your vacation destination. This is a good way to both save time and get some practice in familiar waters. These are Referral courses.
If you’re already at your holiday spot and don’t have much time to spare, then you could go with the PADI Scuba Diver Course. It is shorter than the PADI Open Water Certification.
What is the PADI Open Water Certification?
PADI is an acronym for the Professional Association of Diving Instructors. It’s one of the largest and most recognized Dive Certification organizations and has centers and resorts in more than 180 countries.
PADI certifications are globally recognized and are accepted almost everywhere. It has more dive shops affiliated with it than any other agency. A Referral course can easily be transferred with PADI as it is well-known.
PADI open water diver certification is the basic course one needs to complete before proceeding with scuba diving. The Open water diver certification allows divers to dive down to 18 meters or 40 feet in the water. You can see corals and experience the underwater world in all its glory.
It is a mandatory course before going for Open Water Diving or buying any gear, without which permits may not be given. It is like getting a permit when you’re learning to drive.
Specifications of PADI Open Water Diver Certification
The PADI open water diver certification course costs A$220.
The course takes up to 4 to 7 days and is rolled out in 3 parts-
- Knowledge development
- Confined water dives
- Open water dives
There are some requirements of the course one needs to fill before they can be eligible to take it.
- You need to be ten years of age or older
- You need to be healthy and free from any medical issues
- You need to be able to swim comfortably
- You need to be ready to commit to around 8 to 15 hours to the course
The course is available in more than 26 languages. To find out if your language is available, you need to contact your nearest PADI dive center.
You will also need basic scuba gear that includes a gas tank, masks, fins, a wet suit, snorkel, regulator, and a buoyancy control device. You can either buy them or rent them out.
If you’re a student, you can also earn extra college credit for completing PADI open water diver certification. The American Council on Education has recommended college credit for 25 PADI courses.
The 3 parts of the course focus on equipping the beginner diver with both important theoretical knowledge and practical experience. This is provided using books and DVDs along with the instructions of your instructor.
You would need to thoroughly study the book and take up quizzes, tests, and complete all 5 chapters in the textbook. Video and demonstrations are also available. You will then have to give an exam and pass it.
The knowledge development course can be taken online or in a classroom. It is the best way to understand and be aware of the fundamental open water diving principles.
PADI also offers e-learning courses for the first component of the course. You could complete it at home and then proceed with the in-water training.
Confines Water Dives
The confined water dives will take place in a pool with your scheduled instructor. You will have to complete 5 pool dives with your instructor.
The in-water diving in both open water and confined water prepares you well for your adventure. The confined water diving practice equips you with scuba diving skills, and you can learn how to assemble and use your diving gear during the sessions.
The instructor will be available to answer your questions and help you with getting comfortable in your scuba gear and with using the equipment.
You will be taught the basic scuba skills and learn them before proceeding towards open water dives
Open Water Dives
These can be carried out with your instructor in open waters and lakes around your locality. This will help you understand what kind of experience awaits you and how deep you will be going.
It is a great way to test out your confidence with your scuba gear and your understanding of using the equipment. It will help you get accustomed to being surrounded by water while diving deep. You’ll be able to learn how to correctly use the tank and how to deal with hiccups that may come up.
You’ll be taught hand signals and ways to combat a flooded mask, cramps, and proper ways of ascending and descending in the open water.
Without proper training, one could seriously injure themselves accidentally. You are unaware of most of the conditions and restrictions one has to consider when diving without any prior knowledge or experience, which makes it extremely dangerous.
So procuring a PADI open water diver certification is as much for your safety as it is for having a scenic and magical experience underwater.
A diver could injure their lungs accidentally if they were to hold their breath deep underwater and ascend quickly. This is why training and practice can be a lifesaver, particularly for beginner divers.
PADI dive centers are spread across various resorts, and one can easily enroll and complete their open water certification course. Having an instructor with you is extremely useful and reassuring.
And after completing the certification, you can easily dive with a diving buddy and have fun on your adventures. But being stressed about your own life can take away your enjoyment. So PADI open water certification is a great choice to experience both open water diving and a great vacation. No matter where you are.