FREQUENTLY ASKED

SCUBA QUESTIONS

“There are no foolish questions and no man becomes a fool until he has stopped asking questions.” 

Scuba Diving is an exhilarating activity that is ranked highly on the bucket list for many people to experience. Even so, many are put off by misconceived ideas. 'Its dangerous', 'Its difficult' or 'Its expensive'. We try to dispel those thoughts and more with a comprehensive list of frequently asked questions.

How Deep Can I Go?


That depends on your certification level, age and experience. As a certified PADI Open Water diver you will be qualified to dive to a maximum depth of 18 metres, in conditions similar to, or better than those you are trained/experienced in. As a certified PADI Advanced Open Water Diver you will be qualified to dive to a maximum depth of 30 metres, in conditions similar to, or better than those you are trained/experienced in. As a PADI Deep Diver you will be qualified to dive to a maximum depth of 40 metres, in conditions similar to, or better than those you are trained/experienced in. Depths deeper than 40 metres are considered as Technical Diving and require additional Technical Divier training and equipment. PADI offer a wide range of Technical Training programs, including the use of mixed gases and rebreathers.




What Are The Age Restrictions For Scuba Diving?


The minimum age to become certified as a PADI diver is 10. The PADI Junior Open Water Diver certification is available for those aged between the ages of 10 & 14. Ten & eleven year olds must dive with a certified parent/guardian or PADI Professional to a maximum depth of 12 metres. Those aged between 12 and 14 must dive with a certified adult to a maximum depth of 18 metres. Those aged 15 and over are classed as adults, with no upper age limit. The PADI Bubblemaker & PADI Seal Team programs allow children from the age of 8 to experience Scuba Diving in the safe confines of a swimming pool.




Do I Have To Be A Good Swimmer?


No, you don't have to be a strong swimmer. Scuba divers move completely differently to swimmers and are propelled underwater by using fins, making movement easier. Furthermore a Scuba Diver has a constant supply of air, making it far easier to breathe than it is when swimming. Many of the Scuba experience programs for both children and adults do not have any swimming ability prerequisites to take part. All that is required is a level of comfort in and around water. During the PADI Open Water Diver program however, there is a requirement that you are able to swim a distance of 200 metres (non-stop) and complete a 10 minute tread water/float. There is no time limit on the 200 metre swim and no particular stroke required.




How Long Does A Scuba Dive Last?


The duration of a Scuba Dive can vary, depending on the environment, conditions, depth, cylinder size and breathing rate of the diver. Generally a typical dive would last between 30 to 60 minutes.




Are There Any Medical Restrictions?


Whilst there are some medical conditions that would unfortunately prevent you from taking part, not all medical issues would be a barrier to you enjoying Scuba Diving. Prior to taking part in any activity involving Scuba, there is a medical screening to ensure that any existing medical conditions are considered prior to approval being made. Before taking part in any Scuba experience or Scuba course, you will be asked to complete the medical questionnaire. If you answer 'Yes' to any of the conditons listed, then you would need to get approval from your GP or a diving physician before you could be accepted onto any Scuba program. Please contact us if you have any concerns or questions.




Is Scuba Diving Safe?


Yes, Scuba Diving is safe. Of course, as with any adventurous sport or activity there is an element of risk involved. However with the correct training and by sticking to safe diving guidelines, Scuba Diving is a very safe activity.




What Does PADI Stand For?


PADI is synonymous with Scuba Diving so it's not surprising to hear people say phrases like 'I want to do my PADI' or 'I've got my PADI'. So what does PADI stand for? PADI is an acronym which stands for 'Professional Association Of Dive Instructors' and is the worlds most popular scuba diving training agency with certifications being recognised worldwide.




How Long Does Certification Last?


PADI recreational certifications never expire, they last a lifetime. However it is highly recommended and encouraged to keep your skills and knowledge fresh by either diving regularly or by completing the PADI ReActivate program if it has been a while since you last dived. PADI professional certifications however are slightly different. PADI Divemasters and PADI Instructors are required to renew an annual membership with PADI to allow them to act as a PADI Professional . If a period of time elapses without renewing, then PADI Divemasters and PADI Instructors may require remedial training to ensure that they are updated with any program changes that may have occurred since they were a renewed PADI member.




Will My Certification Be Recognised Worldwide?


Yes, the PADI certification is the most recognised diver certification globally. Since 1967 PADI have issued over 27 million certifications and continue to certify over 1 million divers each and every year. With over 6600 PADI Dive Centres & Resorts in 186 countires, PADI has more than 137,000 professional members worldwide ready share the amazing underwater world.




Do I Need To Own My Own Equipment?


No. Whilst it's always best & highly recommended to have your own equipment, it isn't necessary that you do so to enrol onto course or take part in recreational diving. Many dive shops, dive centres and resorts offer equipment rental, making it convenient and affordable to enjoy this amazing activity. Full equipment hire is included in all of our recreational dive courses at no extra cost. However it is highly recommended that students enrolling on the PADI entry level courses have their own mask, fins & snorkel. With so much choice on the market, it can be a minefield when you are looking into purchasing your own dive equipment. We are always available to give the best impartial advice should you have any questions regarding equipment selection.




Do I Always Have To Dive With An Instructor?


No. Upon certifying as a PADI Junior Open Water/PADI Open Water Diver you are free to explore the amazing underwater realm woth a dive buddy completely independent of a dive professional. We do however always dive with another certified diver, mainly for safety reasons, but it's also way more fun and convenient to do so. There are a few exceptions to this, whereby additional training, experience and equipment requirements would allow you to dive solo. This type of diving is more advanced and should not be attempted unless suitably trained and equipped to do so.




Can I Dive On My Own?


No. Generally speaking it's accepted practice to dive with another suitablly certified diver, mainly for safety reasons, but it's also way more fun and convenient to do so. There are a few exceptions to this, whereby additional training, experience and equipment requirements would allow you to dive solo. This type of diving is more technical & advanced and should not be attempted unless suitably trained and equipped to do so. Both the PADI Self Reliant course and PADI Technical courses cover the additional training and equipment considerations needed in order to be able to carry out solo diving.




Is It Hard To Learn To Scuba Dive?


Not at all, in fact it's never been easier to learn to scuba dive with a multitude of learning materials available in various formats. PADI are at the forefront of diver education and continually expand its traning materials to suit the needs of students. Whether its an online or app based method or the more traditional textbook & DVD approach you'd preferred method of learning can be catered for. Whichever method you choose, you'll find the design and layout of the course material easy to understand and follow. All of this is backed up by your Professional PADI Instructor to ensure that you understanding of the material is complete. As for the practical side of diving, the skills required are broken down into an easy to follow format allowing you the time to master each skill at a pace that is comfortable to you.




How Do I Become Certified To Scuba Dive?


There are many options available to start you on that amazing journey of discovery. If you have never tried Scuba diving before, it is highly recommended that you take part in the PADI Discover Scuba experience. This allows you to experience the thrill of breathing underwater in a fun & exciting Scuba adventure. The program is designed for complete beginners to give you a taste of the exciting and weightless aquatic environment. However if you've already experienced Scuba or you instinctively know that it's for you, then the first step is to enrol onto one of the entry level programs. The most popular entry level certification program is the PADI Open Water Diver course. You'll have loads of fun and adventure as you cover​ theory, pool sessions & open water dives. Upon certification you'll have the freedom of diving completely independent of a dive professional to a maximum depth of 18 metres. If the thought of diving in the UK is not appealing to you, you have time constraints or you have an amazing holiday booked and you'd love to complete your open water dives amongst the colourful coral reefs, then the PADI Open Water Referral program is for you. This is a subset of the PADI Open Water course and includes everything from that course with the exception of the 4 open water dives. These can be completed within a 12 month period by a PADI professional at a destination of your choice. The PADI Scuba Dver course is a subset of the PADI Open Water Diver course. PADI Scuba Divers are trained to dive under the direct supervision of a PADI Divemaster, Assistant Instructor or Instructor to a maximum depth of 12 metres/40 feet. However they are qualified to dive independantly of a PADI professional.




How Much Does It Cost To Learn To Scuba Dive?


For many the dream of scuba diving is high on that bucket list. Starting from as little as £30, you can experience the amazing world of scuba diving. There are not many bucket list activities you could tick off for such an affordable price. Compared to many other adventure sports, learning to dive can be great value for money starting from as little as £300 for an entry level certification course. This includes all equipment hire, tuition fees, air fills, training materials and certification fees.A small price to pay for the lifetime of exploration that this will enable.




I Have Nobody To Do A Course With. Can I Sign Up On My Own?


Absolutely!!!!! Even though it's a great activity to do with family or friends, it's also an amazing way of making new friends that share the passion of the underwater world. Scuba diving is not just an adventure sport, it's a lifestyle and a very social one at that. So many lifelong friendships have been forged by the joint interest of the aquatic realm. Many dive centres offer a local dive club that allow you to get involved with dive trips, activities and social events with like minded people. Come along and find out for yourself just how friendly the diving community really is.





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info@scubacourses.co.uk
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Joiners Square, Hanley,
Stoke-On-Trent, Staffordshire,
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