Scuba Diving Refresher Courses
Open water dive courses offer the basic scuba diving certification, equipping one with the knowledge necessary to become an independent diver.
The junior courses are offered to anyone older than 10 years (most countries) and the full Open Water Course is available to those who are 15 years and older. The junior dive certification is upgraded automatically to Open Water Certification as soon as the diver reaches the age of 15. The course duration will vary depending on whether the diver is taking a course at a dive resort (3 - 5 days) or as a part time course (weeks or months)
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Once certified as an Open Water diver, you will be able to dive a depth of 18 metres/60 feet and a Junior Open Water Diver 12 metres/40 feet.
Although the Open Water certification doesnít have to ever be renewed, if you havenít dived in several years, it is advised that if you participate in a "Scuba Review". This is basically a short refresher course done with a professional diver and can form part of your first time back in the water.
Most divers will gladly venture forth into the ocean again without having done any recent dives, perhaps not since the previous summer. They are adamant that they do not need a refresher course. This is probably partially true, as divers will remember the basics of scuba diving, without a refresher course, as diving is relatively easy. However a refresher course, completed under the supervision of a trained instructor will definitely be beneficial as divers need to understand that safety in the water requires commitment and regular review of relevant emergency skills. Without these refresher courses, important information can be forgotten, jeopardizing the chances of an entirely safe and enjoyable dive. In fact many divers are actually rather anxious when embarking on a dive after a long period of time. Refresher courses help the diver to feel more confident about his knowledge and skills, and this helps to alleviate potential stress levels related to the dive.
Refresher courses become more important in older scuba divers who may have left diving for a decade or more before returning. Often there will be people who are at least 15 years outdated when it comes to scuba diving. In this amount of time a lot could change both in terms of the training methods and procedures used when diving and the equipment being used, dive equipment is constantly evolving and itís of utmost importance that those who have been out of the game for extended periods make sure theyíre aware just how their equipment works and gain a knowledge of current gear.
As the diver is merely reviewing the information already attained previously, the refresher courses are relatively short, lasting only half a day or perhaps a full day, depending on the individual needs of the diver.
The majority of refresher courses includes various dive theories, skill practice as well as supervised open water dives. When completing the refresher course, the instructor may assess the knowledge of the diver by giving a short test. This way he can tell exactly what areas of revision need to be covered. The diver needs to feel confident about emergency procedures, equalization, buoyancy and the use of dive tables to mention but a few.
Skills such as disassembly, ascent and descent procedures as well as navigation will be covered by the instructor during the refresher course.
After completing the refresher course, your safe return to diving, should ideally include a shallow and relatively easy dive, supervised by a qualified instructor.
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