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heydn62
06-25-2008, 17:10
Just recently completed OW certification with my son. I'm looking forward to having some fun dives now, but would like to be better at controlling my buoyancy. I thought I would take the PPB class, but the guy who runs the LDS told me I should consider doing the AOW class instead. He's not pushy about it, and would gladly do just the PPB, but they do the AOW for free (just $$$ for books and checkout dives). I really just want to be a better diver for our cruise in October (cozumel & cayman). Any advice going one way or the other?

Empacher
06-25-2008, 17:13
I would do the AOW. It will allow you the freedom of deeper dives. PPB is a module in AOW

mwhities
06-25-2008, 17:13
I'd take the AOW and then the PPB as well. Both are very good training courses.

What dates are you in Cozumel in October? My family and I will be there the 11th through the 18th in October.

Michael

Charles R
06-25-2008, 17:16
I say take the AOW as long as the LDS will make sure that the PPB is one of you electives. if after the 5 dives for AOW you still need more work with an instucter go for the PPB class.

texdiveguy
06-25-2008, 17:21
Congratulations on your O/W program with your son!!

As to PPB this is a skill that will develop over time spent doing those fun dives you mentioned.

The specialty class would offer you a bit more in-depth refinement of your current skill level.....the AOW PPB dive/s will just hit on the highlights.

I really think that good PPB comes with time diving and not generally learned in a class....so the key thing is to dive as often as you can prior to your trip in October.

Also nothing wrong in taking either or both courses over the months ahead!

thesmoothdome
06-25-2008, 17:33
Agree with all that has been stated. Take the AOW. Just being in the water more will help you improve your bouyancy. If after a few more dives, you're still iffy, then by all means take a PPB.

bensr
06-25-2008, 17:52
As everyone has said, take the AOW. But I agree with texdiveguy--the best way to become proficient with buoyancy is to dive lots and to practice your buoyancy. Ask your LDS about fun dives or club dives--that way you may be able to get out with some more experienced divers who would be willing to give you some tips.

Finally, if you are learning to dive in colder water, you will be that much better off; you'll probably find buoyancy control relatively easy in the Caribbean.

Have fun!

crgjpg
06-25-2008, 19:14
I agree with everyone. Take the AOW it give you a little bit more training in several areas. Plus it is free. Once you get the book, you can also read up on the other areas beside the 5 you use. The more you practice the skills the better you will get. I did my AOW and I am thinking of taking the PPB or atleast get a copy of the book.

heydn62
06-26-2008, 00:53
Thanks to all for the advice. Initially it seemed kind of silly to become "advanced" when I've yet to get in the water since my check off dives, but I guess it makes more sense in the whole scheme of things. Wish I had more of a chance to dive, but not a lot of opportunity around here (Atlanta).


I'd take the AOW and then the PPB as well. Both are very good training courses.

What dates are you in Cozumel in October? My family and I will be there the 11th through the 18th in October.

Michael

I believe we hit Cozumel October 10. I've booked with Alison from scubawithalison based on recomendations here and on cruisecritic. We'll try not to scare away all the good stuff. :smiley20:

bensr
06-26-2008, 01:06
Overall it's experience that will make you truly an "advanced" diver and you need a lot more than 8-10 dives to be "advanced" in my opinion. But the PADI advanced course will allow you to further practice your skills and learn some others under the supervision and tutelage of an instructor. That being said, I think it's a bit of a money grab by PADI although it has some benefits (which really should just be incorporated into the OW course). As mentioned above, one of the major benefits is that you will "be allowed" to dive up to 130 ft, as opposed to 60ft with OW cert only, though I doubt this is enforced regularly in places like Mexico. If you do the AOW, make sure your instructor takes you on a dive that's actually deep--not 61 ft or even 70ft, but something more like 90-100 ft (so long as you're comfortable with it).

[quote=heydn62;191630]Thanks to all for the advice. Initially it seemed kind of silly to become "advanced" when I've yet to get in the water since my check off dives, but I guess it makes more sense in the whole scheme of things. Wish I had more of a chance to dive, but not a lot of opportunity around here (Atlanta).

mselizann
06-26-2008, 07:50
I say AOW first- you will learn alot, and if all goes well gain some confidence your diving
do the PPB after- it is good as a "polisher"

Dive-aholic
06-26-2008, 08:22
Don't do either right now. Get out there and dive. My guess is you won't learn much from either of those courses, unfortunately. Most LDSs give you the basic cookie cutter courses. You can buy the book, read through it, and learn from that. There are lots of divers in the Atlanta area. Find a mentor that will go diving with you and give you great first hand experience advice. And if you get the chance to get away, come down to the Florida panhandle and I'll show you some of the local water holes.

CompuDude
06-26-2008, 14:23
Overall it's experience that will make you truly an "advanced" diver and you need a lot more than 8-10 dives to be "advanced" in my opinion. But the PADI advanced course will allow you to further practice your skills and learn some others under the supervision and tutelage of an instructor. That being said, I think it's a bit of a money grab by PADI although it has some benefits (which really should just be incorporated into the OW course). As mentioned above, one of the major benefits is that you will "be allowed" to dive up to 130 ft, as opposed to 60ft with OW cert only, though I doubt this is enforced regularly in places like Mexico. If you do the AOW, make sure your instructor takes you on a dive that's actually deep--not 61 ft or even 70ft, but something more like 90-100 ft (so long as you're comfortable with it).

That's not accurate... AOW "allows" you to go to 100', not 130. 130 needs the Deep specialty.

But even this is not entirely accurate, since these "limits" we're discussing are actually only training limits. There are no limits... other than common sense and a fear of death... that prevent someone with only a basic OW cert from going to 130'. It's not smart, but there's nothing stopping you.

That said, many dive ops and charters will not allow divers without AOW to do certain dives, especially those deeper than 60'. So despite no actual rules about it from the gov't or PADI, if the boat you're on is enforcing their own interpretation, you're still stuck.

So while I agree the OP needs to get out there and dive, of the two choices I'd definitely go with AOW. Add PPB specialty a little later down the road, if she feels she would still benefit. Also realize the PPB class is very much only as good as the instructor. If they're just going by the book, the class is pretty fluffy and little will be gained. It takes a really good instructor with a very good understanding of how to teach this critical skill to really gain from this class.

heydn62
06-27-2008, 13:33
[quote=bensr;191633]
So while I agree the OP needs to get out there and dive, of the two choices I'd definitely go with AOW. Add PPB specialty a little later down the road, if she feels she would still benefit.

Did I come across a bit feminine? Guess I need to get one of "them there testerone shots."

"Hey, how about those Bears? Heckuva game Heckuva game!" (obscure movie reference - 10 points to anyone who can identify)

bensr
06-27-2008, 14:03
For the record, the below implies that I thought you were a "she" when in reality I never had any doubts that you were, in fact, Arnold Schwarzenegger.

I'm guessing Bad News Bears!

And here's one for you although I may have already given it away:
"Get to the choppa!"




So while I agree the OP needs to get out there and dive, of the two choices I'd definitely go with AOW. Add PPB specialty a little later down the road, if she feels she would still benefit.

Did I come across a bit feminine? Guess I need to get one of "them there testerone shots."

"Hey, how about those Bears? Heckuva game Heckuva game!" (obscure movie reference - 10 points to anyone who can identify)

heydn62
06-27-2008, 14:46
For the record, the below implies that I thought you were a "she" when in reality I never had any doubts that you were, in fact, Arnold Schwarzenegger.

I'm guessing Bad News Bears!

And here's one for you although I may have already given it away:
"Get to the choppa!"

Predator

although I must admit, I googled it to be sure



"Hey, how about those Bears? Heckuva game Heckuva game!" (obscure movie reference - 10 points to anyone who can identify)
And here's the actual dialog from the movie I'm talking about:


Why did you kiss my ear?
Why are you holding my hand?
Where's your other hand?
Between two pillows.
Those aren't pillows!
Aah! Oh, no! Ooh! Oh! Oh! Oh!
See that Bears' game last week?
Hell of a game.
They're going all the way.




All right guys... you're getting a bit off topic here

CompuDude
06-27-2008, 15:54
So while I agree the OP needs to get out there and dive, of the two choices I'd definitely go with AOW. Add PPB specialty a little later down the road, if she feels she would still benefit.

Did I come across a bit feminine? Guess I need to get one of "them there testerone shots."

"Hey, how about those Bears? Heckuva game Heckuva game!" (obscure movie reference - 10 points to anyone who can identify)

Whoops, my bad, sorry. Nor sure where I picked up the she. Maybe I had Hayden Panettiere on the brain. ;)

crgjpg
06-27-2008, 15:55
I do not know what exactly is in the PPB course. I don't know how much more could be taught about Bouyancy from the AOW course. I am thinking about getting the PPB book and reading it. I think that PPB is a skill that needs to be developed though experience from diving.

heydn62
06-27-2008, 17:10
I do not know what exactly is in the PPB course. I don't know how much more could be taught about Bouyancy from the AOW course. I am thinking about getting the PPB book and reading it. I think that PPB is a skill that needs to be developed though experience from diving.

The owner of the local shop told me there is no book for PPB with PADI, just a video.

dive10killer
06-27-2008, 17:31
Get in some dives, then take AOW and if you still need it..Take the PPB!

Sansho
06-27-2008, 19:13
AOW, with PPB. It's a great way to get more instructed dives in. The 'advanced' moniker is misleading. It is a logical next step after OW.

DallasMarineBio
06-27-2008, 19:35
I agree with a lot of the above posters, do your AOW so you will have the freedom to dive many of the deeper sites when you travel (most boats will at least require this for many sitesin the 60-100 range), and as for PPB, skip it, save your money and just dive more, precision buoyancy comes from experience...one of the best training tools is to just swim around in pools, if you can maintain your buoyancy in 3' of water where the buoyancy shifts are magnified, you'll be better prepared for OW diving.

Put a couple large hula hoops in the deep end of a pool zip tied together and weighted on one end, practice swimming through them without catching on anything, try swimming from the deep to shallow ends repeatedly with one hand planted firmly at your side and one on your inflator, and just practive hovering and swimming 6"-12" off the bottom in 3-5' of water. Precision control over your buoyancy comes with practice- make a deliberate effort never to touch the bottom and just keep gaining experience.

...oh, and remember to have fun while gaining that experience!

CompuDude
06-27-2008, 19:52
AOW, with PPB. It's a great way to get more instructed dives in. The 'advanced' moniker is misleading. It is a logical next step after OW.

The electives in AOW are only "intros" to the individual specialties, not the full course. There is a lot more info in the full course than in the lite version you get with AOW.

That said, yes. Best to do both... if the second fuller version is needed.

And agreed, re AOW not really meaning "advanced" (in the sense of the word most people would think).

Dive-aholic
06-29-2008, 13:56
Most full courses don't give much more than the AOW "intro" dives. There are some instructors out there that provide good courses. You just need to interview the instructors and find out what kind of course is being offered. The AOW and specialty dives I did when I first started diving weren't worth the value of the card they were printed on. I only wish I had known better back then.

As for AOW giving you access to deeper sites, yes, this is true. But one dive to 65' or even 95' doesn't make up for experience. Doing one "deep" dive should be enough to give access. Build up your experience. Do a bunch of dives at the deepest depth you been to so far, then go 5' deeper and do some dives there, then another 5'. Keep progressing slowly like that. That will make you a better diver, not one dive to between 60 and 100'.

Damselfish
06-29-2008, 23:03
agree with AOW with PPB as one of the electives, followed by PPB if you still feel you need it.

wondering though, you said "but they do the AOW for free (just $$$ for books and checkout dives)" - so how much do they charge for the books and checkout dives? Because AOW is mostly about reading the book and doing the dives, there isn't much classroom. Calling it free may be a bit misleading.

heydn62
06-30-2008, 09:59
agree with AOW with PPB as one of the electives, followed by PPB if you still feel you need it.

wondering though, you said "but they do the AOW for free (just $$$ for books and checkout dives)" - so how much do they charge for the books and checkout dives? Because AOW is mostly about reading the book and doing the dives, there isn't much classroom. Calling it free may be a bit misleading.

They offer this to people who do their OW training through them. It is dependent on booking the checkout dives with them.

georoc01
06-30-2008, 11:21
AOW, with PPB. It's a great way to get more instructed dives in. The 'advanced' moniker is misleading. It is a logical next step after OW.

The electives in AOW are only "intros" to the individual specialties, not the full course. There is a lot more info in the full course than in the lite version you get with AOW.

That said, yes. Best to do both... if the second fuller version is needed.

And agreed, re AOW not really meaning "advanced" (in the sense of the word most people would think).

It really depends on the Specialty. I found for say PPB and Altitude, there wasn't much more in the full course.

However, for Nav and Deep, there was definitely much more that we covered in the full course.

Martin2
07-01-2008, 16:48
Go with the AOW and see how you feel from there. There have been several ops that have required we have our AOW to dive with them. While it may or may not be useful for you to take the courses, they allow access to some of the dives sites you may want to dive.

digitalman
07-04-2008, 00:16
Congrats on the OW cert. I've did both AOW and PPB in a month's time of each other. If I had to choose one, I'd go for the AOW due to the other skills offered. PPB will come with time, and you'll open yourself up for more opportunities (deep & night experience) with the AOW card.