I always liken the open water diver course to completing your driving test. Sitting with your instructor learning all the essential skills you must know to become a safe and confident driver. The similarities when becoming a diver for the first time are very similar.
Let me explain…When I learned how to drive I practiced all the maneuvers until I had mastered them then completed and passed my driving test. It wasn’t really until I was driving on my own that I really started to “learn” how to drive. Different situations would come up that I would have to learn how to deal with. Its very much like continuing your underwater adventure after the open water.
Its not really until dives 3-4 of the open water course that you hear your students say for the first time I felt completely relaxed down there. With anything, it takes time to become comfortable in new surroundings. Especially if those new surroundings involve you being 18 meters underwater surrounded by many different types of species!!!
Continuing your education allows you to do bigger and better things. Now that you are relaxed and comfortable with being underwater you can begin to open many more doors in your underwater adventure. Go deeper, dive at night, explore a shipwreck, improve your buoyancy. The list is endless. So sign up and complete an adventure dive or even better the advanced course! One of my good friends on the island just completed a dive to 165meters in Egypt, obviously the technical diving is a completely different genre of the underwater environment all together, this just shows you how far you can go!!!!
Every time my students begin their Open water course I warn them that this sport can be highly addictive. Many laugh it off and don’t believe you. The same people come up to you 3 days later pleading to do more. The addiction has hit!
Continuing your adventure can completely change your life forever, I am proof of this. When I started my Open water course in 2008 if someone was to tell me I was to be a dive instructor on a paradise island I would have sent them to a mental institute. Now I am planning to continue my own life adventure and am considering Technical deep courses in Dahab, Egypt next year. 100m here I come, after that….Caves!!!! Many have heard the saying “the sky is the limit”, maybe I will change it to “underwater is the limit”…
Cheers for now, Gordon MacBride