Day One: An easy start to the course, you are asked meet up in the afternoon. Everyone gathers into the class room where you can meet your Instructor and the other students in the group. These are the people you will spend the next few days with. First of all you will get the paper work out of the way and the Instructor will run the the schedule for the course, also answer any questions you may already have. Then you will just sit back and watch a couple of DVD’s, these will introduce you to the dive theory that you will need to know to become an Open Water diver.
Day Two: Time to get wet!! So the following morning you will meet up with your group and begin confined water training. Firstly you will learn how to set up your equipment. Then with use of DJL’s very own swimming pool, practice some breathing techniques using the regulator. Once you are comfortable, you then start doing some skills underwater. These skills are things you should be able to do during a dive, to make you more comfortable and to keep you safe. Its always good fun, there’s no rush as we have the facilities on site. Should you want more practice at any of the skills, no problem!
After a lunch break you will come back into the class room for a theory session. So you will go over the information looked at on day one, then move on to learning about how to dive safely, what’s happening to our bodies whilst diving and how to plan dives properly. Its not like being back at school, the theory sessions are still good fun. It’s a great chance to sit and chat about diving, getting you more excited for you first dives in the open water.
Day Three: In the morning you will meet up again, now its time for the exam! Most people hate the word exam, but don’t panic. It’s 50 questions, multiple choice and you need to score 75% to pass. Now if you’ve understood the information given to you in the class room, then you shouldn’t have much trouble with the exam. Once that is out the way, its all about the diving!
The afternoon on day 3 is where you get to head out into the sea. So a 2 minute walk to the beach where you board a long tail boat. This will then take you out to our dive boat, which is moored up just off Sairee beach. There will be two dive sites in the schedule for the afternoon. Max depth of 12m for the first two dives. The first dive you go down, its a chance just to get used to swimming around underwater, practice buoyancy control and see what Koh Tao’s marine life has to offer. On the second dive, you will be asked to do some of the skills you learnt in the swimming pool. Just to show that you are comfortable and capable of doing them safely in the open water, once they are completed you get a tour of the dive site and another chance to practice buoyancy control.
Day Four: This is an early start on the last day of the course. Meet at 6:30am, it is early, not many people enjoy waking up too early, especially when your on holiday, however, once you’re up and you head out for the last two dives of the course you really don’t mind. The sun is shinning, the island is quiet, and when you get in the water it makes it all worth it. On the morning dives we get a chance to go a bit further out to some awesome dives sites like Chumphon Pinnacle or South West Pinnacle. There is an abundance of activity from the marine life in the mornings and there’s always a chance of seeing something special like a Whale Shark or a Turtle. Now you get the chance to go down to the max depth of 18m. You will complete two dives this morning, including some skills and sightseeing! Quite often a Videographer will come along on this day, filming the group on land, on the boat and underwater. They will spend the afternoon piecing it together and putting music to the shots.
You’ll be back at the shop after a great mornings diving at around 11:30am. Time for a bit of lunch and relax by the pool or whatever you fancy, the afternoon is yours. You’ll then meet up in the evening in the bar, for some celebratory drinks with your instructor and to see the movie from the morning dives. You will be the stars of the show, the bar is often busy, and the videos definitely draw a crowd. So there’s more people to congratulate you on becoming an Open Water diver!!
Bob – Master Scuba Diver Instructor