Tuesday 28 June 2016

Dive Professionals Zero to Hero- Not for me!!!

This is my first season working as a Divemaster and I absolutely love my job. 

My role involves assisting on courses, which vary between recreational and technical diving. 

I can lead Discover scuba dives and love to see the amazement on people’s faces after they have breathed underwater for the first time. 

I guide certified divers around our local dive sites and handle the logistics, for example filling tanks, washing and sorting kit as well as the general tidying up of the dive centre.

My next step professionally would be to become an instructor, and many people have asked me if I plan to take the course this year. However, this is an area I feel particularly strongly about not rushing into.  

Many candidates go straight into their instructor training after completing their Divemaster certification with not many dives under their belt. Having completed my 300th dive a few weeks ago, I have more than surpassed the required number of dives to become an open water Scuba Instructor, which demands 60 logged dives. However, I still feel I lack the experience to move up the rankings just yet. I have always told myself I would wait until I had logged at least 500 dives before I even contemplated becoming an instructor.

The reasoning behind this, is that by working as a divemaster for a few seasons, it will allow me to build up my dives, level of experience, confidence and competence in the water. This is vital when the lives of students/customers are in my hands. Just because you carry professional status as a divemaster or an instructor, it does not carry any prestige into the level of diver that you are and your ability in the water. 

Furthermore, I believe that not rushing into anything too quickly will give me a wider knowledge base to begin teaching with in the future,  as I can reflect on my experiences, which will hopefully come to my advantage when sitting my instructor exams.

By working alongside two fantastic instructors, I’m constantly learning new things every day,  It isn’t always dive related, but valuable life skills as well, such as finding out who you are as a person and how to interact with different groups of people. 

It’s also things you can’t necessarily be taught by passing an exam, such as how to read and react to a particular situation as every customer is different. Situations such as a diver panicking underwater or if a student is struggling with a certain skill. 

You can do course after course, but I feel this cannot be substituted for experience. Every dive you do, whether for pleasure or training, you will learn from,

I am in this for the long run as diving is now my career.  The sea will always be there, so why rush into it when I can take my time, enjoy it and grow as a professional along the way.

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