Do You Need a SCUBA Skills Update?
You love SCUBA, but life happens and you haven't been in the water for a while. How do you know when you need a SCUBA Skills Update?
Let's dive into why and when you might want to consider refreshing your SCUBA skills with a SCUBA Skills Update!
A little more information about what I covered in the divecast. Here goes...
What is a SCUBA Skills Update?
While different training agencies will have differences, the basic point of an update is to refresh your SCUBA skills.
What you might expect to review:
- Basic Physics of Diving
- Assembling Your Gear
- Basic In-Water Skill Review
- Handling Problems
When does your SCUBA certification expire?
In a word? Never. SCUBA is a lifetime certification; however, diving responsibly means keeping your knowledge, skills and equipment up to date and only diving within your level of experience, skill and comfort. An update provides a refresher for your knowledge, a chance to hone your skills and in the water you can determine any gear repairs or replacements needed before an open water dive.
When MUST you get a SCUBA Skills Update?
There are no specific rules about when divers MUST get an update or refresher. After being out of the water for a while it is a good idea to evaluate your knowledge, skills and equipment prior to your next open water dive.
When SHOULD you consider getting a SCUBA Skills Update?
You'll find a common theme here. There are no hard and fast rules about this either. It's all about your personal comfort in the water.
Six to Twelve Months Out of the Water - Get your gear on, get in the pool and brush the algae off. If you feel good... go diving!
> Twelve Months Out of the Water - If you're a recreational diver that is diving occasionally on vacation I'd recommend doing an update. If you're an experienced diver that's had to step away for a bit then refer to the earlier idea - get in the pool.
You can't go wrong getting an update. It will refresh your knowledge and skills and give you a chance to ask a dive professional any questions you may have. Everything you do to increase your skills and confidence will help you relax and enjoy your next dive even more than your last one!
My students have always gotten benefit from a SCUBA skills update and been happy they did it!
Gear Junkie's Garage
The ability to take care of our own problems is an important principle of diving. That's why I made the decision a long time ago to purchase and maintain a first aid kit that goes with me whenever I'm diving locally (or driving to a destination). The kits available from Divers Alert Network are well thought out and inexpensive and any money they make goes to a great cause.
Having a first aid kit not only allows you to help yourself but it also allows you to help out your divebuddy or others in an emergency... or a splinter.
Tip of the Week
Safety is our own responsibility as recreational divers. When we're on a boat or at a group event it's easy to let the responsibility for safety slip into 'someone else's'. Yes, the crew of a boat and organizers of an event surely have an obligation to consider safety but that does not absolve us, as individual divers, from taking responsibility for our own safety both in and out of the water.
- Pay attention to the dive briefing.
- Look over the dive site yourself (entry, exit, landmarks... etc.).
- Ask where the 1st Aid Kit is.
- Ask where the O2 Kit is.
If you're not trained in first aid and 02 consider that as a future SCUBA training but find out who is.
SSI SCUBA Skills Update: https://www.divessi.com/en/get-certified/scuba-diving/scuba-skills-update
PADI SCUBA Refresher: https://www.padi.com/courses/reactivate
DAN First Aid Kits: https://apps.dan.org/dive-store/?catNo=13
The surface interval's over...
get out there and dive!