When you join a BSAC course you will see that diving skills are taught progressively so that each new experience is built upon step by step. Following basic training in the safety of a swimming pool or protected area, students soon complete their first open water dives to achieve Ocean Diver certification. This progression continues to Sports Diver and beyond, where open water skills and techniques are further developed and experience gained.
This course provides you with the essential knowledge and skills needed to prepare for open water diving. Learning to dive is all about learning to use your equipment properly and safely. The Ocean Diver training course concentrates on preparing you for this in the safety of a swimming pool or sheltered water and then introducing you to open water in a controlled and safe manner. This also gives you the opportunity to practice safety skills in the company of a qualified instructor or experienced diver.
In Sports Diver training, the emphasis is on building a sound foundation of open water diving skills and experience through a series of structured practical lessons. Once you have gained this open water experience with a qualified instructor, you are ready to take part in dives with other Sports Divers or those of higher grades.
Dive Leader training concentrates on the responsibilities and safety aspects of leading other divers on an open water dive. Practical lessons in rescue management and rescue skills will give you the confidence and ability to deal with those unforeseen emergencies. Leading a dive will develop your enjoyment, confidence and experience as a diver.
The Advanced Diver course further develops your knowledge and skills. You will gain experience in planning and organising dives at different sites and under different circumstances. Additional experience will be gained in using small boats, chart-work. navigation and many other related skills. The BSAC consider this grade a fully trained diver.
Annual fees currently stand at £135.50. These include subscription to the national governing body (BSAC), SCUBA the monthly magazine and membership of the Basildon branch. For new divers a fee of £85 covers the cost of your training packs for Ocean Diver and Sports Diver, logbook, decompression tables and registration with BSAC. Additionally, a set of scuba equipment can be hired for the first 6 months for £110.
Do I have to buy a lot of gear?
Eventually, yes you do. You may spend between £500 and £1500 on a full set of kit. Initially, all you need is a mask and fins. After 1 to 3 months in the pool and classroom, you need a suit and weight belt for open water diving. After about 6 months, you should be ready to qualify as an Ocean Diver and will need the rest of your kit. This approach to accumulating kit gives time to save or use birthdays, Christmas and discounts available to keep down the cost. It also gives opportunities to discuss, observe and even borrow different items of kit before you buy. You are always welcome to take more experienced divers with you when you buy and there is often good second-hand kit available within the club or through neighbouring clubs with whom we have links.
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