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#8006 - 02/26/11 04:26 PM Re: Solo Diving [Re: Charon]
BobG Offline
veteran

Registered: 06/18/05
Posts: 424
Loc: Irvine, CA
You make good points. The SDI class isn't a normal recognised class by most standards, although is a good class and introduction. No class can fully prepare a diver for every single condition they might experience.

But, regardless of what everybody said here, there are still more industry accepted reasons to use the buddy system than not. And yes, this is just ONE example, but over the years I've performed 3 rescues where another diver had fishing line (twice) or Kelp (once) wrapped in a manor around them that they could neither reach nor swim free of. And even though gear R&R is a skill taught by training agencies, far and away the vast majority of divers of ALL levels are neither comfortable nor competent at it in the open water.

These 2 of these 3 people were fairly to extremely experienced divers with years of diving under their weightbelts. One was a stranger. But of the 2 I don't feel either would have had a happy, positive outcome of their predicament without my intervention. Over the years there have also been the cramped divers I've towed to shore. Sure, they can reach the surface and lay there, hoping somebody assists them before a boat hits them, but without a buddy it makes for a long and very miserable experience.

Then of course there is the experience and enjoyment of it. If you find that ALL the other divers in the world are a burden and just tend to get into your way, then quite possibly I'd say the issue lies with the constant to that equation.

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#8012 - 03/05/11 06:24 AM Re: Solo Diving [Re: BobG]
Charon Offline
new diver

Registered: 02/23/11
Posts: 4
[quote=BobG]The SDI class isn't a normal recognised class by most standards, although is a good class and introduction.[/quote]

Quite wrong. SDI's course is certainly a valid certification.


[quote=BobG]But, regardless of what everybody said here, there are still more industry accepted reasons to use the buddy system than not.[/quote]

Actually, not true. It used to be but not any more. There are many more reasons to be able to dive self-sufficiently than to depend on a mostly fictional buddy.


[quote=BobG] ...where another diver had fishing line (twice) or Kelp (once) wrapped in a manor around them that they could neither reach nor swim free of. And even though gear R&R is a skill taught by training agencies, far and away the vast majority of divers of ALL levels are neither comfortable nor competent at it in the open water.[/quote]

The SDI course covers this. If they got tangled they were careless. If they couldn't free themselves they were not properly equipped. Moreover, if they are not comfortable nor competent they shouldn't even consider diving solo.


[quote=BobG]Then of course there is the experience and enjoyment of it. If you find that ALL the other divers in the world are a burden and just tend to get into your way, then quite possibly I'd say the issue lies with the constant to that equation. [/quote]

The issue is that I'm selfish enough to want to dive without encumbering myself. It's an expensive sport, both in the cost of equipment and in travel. Why should I detract from my enjoyment by following an outdated recommendation when I have all the equipment and skills necessary to dive solo.

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#8022 - 03/18/11 11:26 AM Re: Solo Diving [Re: Charon]
BobG Offline
veteran

Registered: 06/18/05
Posts: 424
Loc: Irvine, CA
This is an argument that goes round and round, and regardless of my personal feelings on it, there won't be a solution to it any time soon. Nobody in MOST places is going to stop you. There are municipalities such as Laguna Beach, Ca. where it's against the law. 'nuff said there.

What is meant by a recognised class by most standards is that MOST agencies do not recognise nor offer the class. If you vacation at a PADI facility someplace in the world and flash that card thinking you're going to solo dive, chances are you're going to be disappointed. I'm well aware of the class, owning one of the VERY early TDI/SDI instructor numbers (a 3 digit one). I've also earned the ratings of Course Director for another agency and Master Instructor for a third, so I'm pretty well aware of their stances as well at this time. There are reasons for and against that both sides see as valid, so it boils down to your choice.

Again, no matter what my personal choice on the topic is, I can tell you this without a doubt. And it comes from 30+ years of experience in this sport. Regardless of what level diver you think you are, regardless of your ability to manage a crisis ABOVE the water, regardless of every single possible bit of pre-planning you may think you've covered, it only takes ONE situation underwater that a buddy may or may not have been able to assist with, for the solo diver to be PERMANANTLY dead. If you are willing to take that risk, you may dive many years and laugh it all off. Great. It's your choice. But this sport sees divers pass every year, and just as many of them are some of the most experienced our sport has to show, as are new ones.

It simply is not worth the risk for 99.9% of the divers enjoying our sport.

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