The advanced open water scuba diver certification course

Clint Leung

Once the basic open water scuba diving certification has been successfully completed by new divers, there should be some consideration to taking the next training level up which is the advanced open water course. Prior to that, it is probably a good idea to get some more experience as a new scuba diver right after the basic certification by doing several easy beginner level dives to further sharpen the basic skills and to appreciate the new underwater world. This can be easily done with a week of scuba diving at a destination where there are plenty of easier dive sites such as the Florida Keys. There's no rush to do the more difficult dives for now.

Although it is quite possible to do deeper and more advance level dives as one gets more experience in diving without taking another course, it is much more ideal to get introduced to more difficult dives with an instructor. Deep dives, night dives, drift dives and dive sites with moderate currents can be too challenging for new divers. Even though many advanced dives are very exciting and rewarding, doing them without proper training can be dangerous. There's no such thing as getting too much education and training in scuba diving.

The advanced scuba diver course was designed to help divers get the proper training for advanced dives as well as developing further skills including underwater navigation, safety, search and recovery. The advanced open water is also a very fun course to take. It does require some reading with a manual that will be supplied by the dive instructor but unlike the basic open water certification course, no written exam is required. The advanced course is mostly practical as it consists of several open water dives with a dive instructor over two days. Each open water dive during the advanced course will feature different types of dive skills. One will work on improving navigation while another will involve a deep dive. Other dives may include diving on wrecks, night diving and some basic rescue techniques.

All major scuba diving training certification agencies such as NAUI, PADI and SSI will have an advanced scuba diver course. All dive schools and operators that have scuba training will have the advanced course available. At many dive destinations, some dive operators will insist upon a minimum of advanced open water certification in order to take charter dive trips which involve higher level dive sites. For example, the deeper shipwreck dives of the Spiegel Grove, Duane and the Bibb located off Key Largo all require advanced or higher certification cards before the local dive operators will allow divers on those particular dives.


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About the Author
2006 All rights reserved
Clint Leung is a NAUI certified Master and Rescue Scuba Diver. He is also owner of Free Spirit Activewear (http://www.FreeSpiritActivewear.com ), an online retailer/designer specializing in premium quality scuba diving activewear. Free Spirit Activewear has numerous information resource articles on scuba diving as well as free eCards.