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Crystal Dive > News Archive > 2015 > June 22nd
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Need Some Direction In Your Life?

 

Knowing where you are and where you want to be underwater can be the difference between a poor dive and a great dive. Having problems when navigating underwater is a common problem for novice and inexperienced scuba divers.

 

Being a good underwater navigator is not about being lucky, it's all about learning new skills and applying these new skills correctly.

 

Some Underwater Navigation Tips

 

Plan Ahead

 

Every scuba dive needs a plan and everyone on your dive needs to be aware of this. A good dive brief - use a dive site map if possible - will make for a more organised and safe experience. A key point to the brief is to determine which diver will be the leader as they will be responsible for ensuring the path you plan is followed.

 

Scuba Diving - Navigation

 

It's not practical for both buddies to navigate as this can lead to confusion and possible separation. If you are unsure about a specific dive site, speak to your local dive shop for information, tips and local area orientation.

 

Alternatively ask if they can organise a PADI Discover Local Diving experience.

 

Enhance Your Compass Skills

 

Remember back to your PADI Open Water course? You completed a navigation task – a reciprocal heading to be specific- both on the surface and underwater using a compass. Forgotten? You can always ask a local PADI Professional for a quick refresh on the correct procedure for setting your bezel then have a practice on land before the dive.

 

Scuba Diving - Navigation

 

Alternatively take the next step and complete the PADI Advanced Open Water course. This will improve your compass skills and make you a more proficient underwater navigator.

 

During the course one of the mandatory dives is the Underwater Navigator Adventure dive. During this dive you will learn how to navigate using both natural navigation techniques and a compass. You will learn about estimating distance underwater and how to navigate a square.

 

Have A Look Around

 

Whilst having a compass is a basic piece of scuba equipment, you should not just follow it blindly. Looking around taking natural references can be just as useful on a dive and help you get around a dive site.

 

For instance, here on Koh Tao the weather is generally nice, clear and sunny meaning on our morning dives the sun rises in the east making it a big compass in the sky. Take note of any distinct features you see such as large coral gardens or rock formations - obviously don't take notes of fish; they move about..!!

 

Go Slow

 

Swim slowly! Not only will you see more and have a longer dive but the likelihood you deviate from your plan is reduced meaning it's less likely you will get lost. Being relaxed when scuba diving will mean you will be able to estimate distance more effectively as you count your fin kicks, a skill you learn during your Advanced Open water navigation dive.

 

Become a Navigation Specialist

 

Become an underwater navigation guru by completing the PADI Underwater Navigation Specialty course and have all your dive buddies wanting you to be their dive leader! Depending on your certification level you would complete either 2 or 3 training dives solely dedicated to enhancing you navigation skills. Learn how to use your compass as accurately as a Pro, as you navigate complex patterns underwater.

 

Scuba Diving - Navigation

 

We will show you how to create underwater maps so you become familiar with the natural references and eventually know the site like the back of your hand.

 

Completing this course will give you a head start if you wish to become a PADI Divemaster, providing the foundations of a great skill set you can fall back on when taking out paying customers.

 

The PADI Underwater Navigation Specialty can also be used as one of the 5 PADI Specialty courses required if you are working towards becoming a PADI Master Scuba Diver – the highest non professional rating within the PADI system of recreational diver training.

 

Author: Neil Davidson (PADI MSDT #294100)

 

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..June 2015

 

What Is A Dive Log?
"As scuba divers we use and maintain a dive log, often referred to as a log book, to record information related to each dive...."
30-06-2015
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Are You Afraid Of The Dark?
"Do you often wonder what aquatic creatures come out at night but are too afraid of the thought of swimming in the darkness?...."
28-06-2015
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Need Direction In Your Life?
"Knowing where you are and where you want to be underwater can be the difference between a poor dive and a great dive...."
22-06-2015
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Extend Your Limits!
"Every certified diver knows there are limits to the time you can spend underwater. Air supply is the most obvious one...."
06-06-2015
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Be AWARE!
"Are you interested in becoming an eco friendly diver? Crystal Dive is heavily involved with Marine conservation...."
03-06-2015
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full News Archive >>>

 

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