Every diver has thought about it, whether standing on the deck of a dive boat after a beautiful day of tropical diving or flipping through the travel section of a dive magazine on a freezing winter night: Tossing off the shackles of everyday life, and becoming a dive professional. After all, what could be better than a life of warm tropical seas, cool ocean breezes and sharing your love for the sport of diving? The motivations of Instructors and Divemasters vary a great deal. Some hope to earn enough to pay for their hobby; some just want to dive as much as possible; and some turn it into a full-time career. And not all of them want to move to the tropics. As a diving professional, you can find work almost anywhere, from your local dive shop or university diving program to exotic live-aboards or island resorts. The benefits are undeniable. Of course, like everything in life, working in the dive industry isn't always a bed of roses. You take on a lot of responsibility for the safety and well-being of the students or divers in your charge, and for that reason, your skills and knowledge will be verified before turning you loose as a Divemaster or Instructor. You also need quite a bit of experience before you can start the process. A lot of questions come up among divers seriously considering professional training. So, if you're thinking about taking the plunge, here are the answers to help you get started.
What's the first step for turning pro?
There's a common misconception in the diving world that Instructor classes are where divers learn the bulk of their
professional-level underwater skills. Not true. The Divemaster course or Dive Control Specialist course, is the real divers' boot camp. It's the first professional-level certification and the place where you learn dive management skills such as how to lead and navigate dives, assist students above and below the water and manage diving emergencies. You'll also get in-depth academic education about the physics and physiology of diving, and you'll perfect your personal diving skills like buoyancy control, mask clearing and out-of-air procedures until you can effectively demonstrate them to students in a training environment. Part of your training is in the classroom, but a lot of it is in the water. And, of course, you are tested. At the end of your divemaster training, you are expected to have Instructor-level knowledge in all of the academic subjects and to demonstrate safe supervision and control of divers in real-world environments. You'll also be tested physically to ensure you have appropriate swimming skills and the endurance to safely rescue distressed divers in emergency situations.
At PDI we firmly believe that preparation is the key to success.
This web site, as well as the homework you will receive before you
start your course, will ensure that you are prepared.