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Darthwader
07-05-2009, 09:35
a few questions about certifying agencies this morning:

I know the scuba industry does a pretty good job of self-regulating, but how do the different agencies get along?

has anyone ever heard of an agency not recognizing another agency's certification?

If your certifying agency disolves, is your c-card still valid?

are basic standards mostly the same; OW, AOW, etc?

fire diver
07-05-2009, 10:15
The only one I have heard of is GUE. They make you go througha validation with one of thier instructors before giving you the equivilent card from them.

All others seem to acknowlege each others cards.

Darthwader
07-05-2009, 10:40
The only one I have heard of is GUE. They make you go througha validation with one of thier instructors before giving you the equivilent card from them.

All others seem to acknowlege each others cards.
that makes perfect sense to me. sounds like they're checking out the diver more than the agency.

comet24
07-05-2009, 10:53
As far as rec. certs. you can take your OW with any of the big names(PADI, NAUI, SSI, SDI, YMCA do they still have there own cert?) and then do your AOW with another.

I did my OW in college and it was SSI. I didn't even know there where other agencies back then. Over ten years latter I did my AOW when I got back into diving. It was PADI simply because that's what the shop was near my office and I liked there employees and instructors.

Darthwader
07-05-2009, 10:59
As far as rec. certs. you can take your OW with any of the big names(PADI, NAUI, SSI, SDI, YMCA do they still have there own cert?) and then do your AOW with another.

I did my OW in college and it was SSI. I didn't even know there where other agencies back then. Over ten years latter I did my AOW when I got back into diving. It was PADI simply because that's what the shop was near my office and I liked there employees and instructors.
I'll probably get my AOW with PADI since that's the next closest dive shop. besides, it'll give me a different perspective as well.
I'd really like to get some GUE training justy because of all the great things I've read about their standards.

nrembis
07-05-2009, 11:05
I just saw a man having to get recertified at my LDS because he was YMCA certified and is no longer valid/accepted so was getting PADI now, I didnt ask too much about it, so dont really know other than what the man told me, what a bummer :(

comet24
07-05-2009, 11:21
I just saw a man having to get recertified at my LDS because he was YMCA certified and is no longer valid/accepted so was getting PADI now, I didnt ask too much about it, so dont really know other than what the man told me, what a bummer :(

If this is true the shop is screwing him unless he hasn't been diving in years and should take a class again anyway. Just because an agency is no longer around doesn't mean their training was no good. I don't think most places would have issue with a YMCA card as long as the person was an active diver.

nrembis
07-05-2009, 11:33
I just saw a man having to get recertified at my LDS because he was YMCA certified and is no longer valid/accepted so was getting PADI now, I didnt ask too much about it, so dont really know other than what the man told me, what a bummer :(

If this is true the shop is screwing him unless he hasn't been diving in years and should take a class again anyway. Just because an agency is no longer around doesn't mean their training was no good. I don't think most places would have issue with a YMCA card as long as the person was an active diver.

I don't know too much about YMCA, but I have heard thru the years of several folks with YMCA cards not being recognized, especially outside the USA when going on trips, now I imagine it will be even more so.

fire diver
07-05-2009, 12:41
I would laugh my way out of a shop that said a YMCA card is no longer any good. They were one of the FIRST certification agencies around. They were also known for extremely tough, boot-camp like classes.

scubarobin
07-06-2009, 08:22
I would laugh my way out of a shop that said a YMCA card is no longer any good. They were one of the FIRST certification agencies around. They were also known for extremely tough, boot-camp like classes.

I agree that YMCA cards should be recognized outside of US but I have heard that in some countries they are not.

As far as the other comment about a diver having to get certified PADI OW again as the dive shop wouldn't recognize his YMCA cert - it just may be that he hasn't been diving in so long that they recommended he do the whole course again. This does happen as gear and all the skills have changed so much over the years, it is important for divers to learn what how to use an octo (back in the early years, divers had to buddy breathe if their reg failed), also, procedures for out-of-air and bouyancy (way back they didn't even use BCs, just a weight belt and hope for the best!).

One guy on a dive trip with us told us skills he did when he got certified back in the 60s, most of which we now consider unsafe and unnecessary as we have redundant equipment. He also didn't learn about safety stops and refused to do them even though the dive op insisted. He was first back on boat every dive and would ask us why we were in deco. We would tell him we weren't, we were doing a 3min safety stop... What's that? he would ask every dive, and we would explain it again. It's just a safety factor to off-gas as much as possible before ascending. :smiley29:

I have seen people like this come into our LDS, and want to go diving..... one guy showed he had a valid C-card which was 30+ yrs old and he hadn't been diving in that long. He wanted to rent gear -- we pulled out a BC and reg, he had no idea what to do! He kept asking us if the BC was use to help jet him to the surface at the end of the dive. We kept telling him NO, that would get him killed. He didn't remember anything about that, nitrogen bubbles, safe ascents, nothing!!! I didn't want to rent him any gear, I thought he was unsafe. But the LDS manager told me to go ahead, if he died we had no responsibility. :smiley5: (I don't work at this dive shop anymore!)

Personally, I would like to see dive certs have an expiration date - like a drivers license. I think too many people forget much of what they learned in class and should be required to go back through shortened version of the course every few years just to refresh their skills.

Just my 2 cents.
robin:smiley20:

neugierig
07-06-2009, 09:26
i was a padi ow, then got a naui aow. no problems with reciprocity.

as for dissolved agencies, you might encounter problems in other countries. in the philippines for example, im not sure if shops will accept ymca or sdi certs. even if your skills are still current. maybe a logbook will help.

navyhmc
07-06-2009, 13:30
I would laugh my way out of a shop that said a YMCA card is no longer any good. They were one of the FIRST certification agencies around. They were also known for extremely tough, boot-camp like classes.

That is totally true Fire. There was a required 25 yard u/w swim w/mask and fins as well as a few other not-so-easy skills to perfect.

I agree that if I showed a YMCA card and was informed that I needed to re-take the course, I'd be finding a new shop-plain and simple. I took my YMCA card all around the world and never had a problem. The only place I had even a minor issue was in Egypt and with a translator's help, I was diving in 15 minutes.

CompuDude
07-06-2009, 18:59
Ignorance knows no bounds. YMCA certs are only good as long as the operator knows that they existed and are/were a legit cert agency.

Because they're not as well known, if they haven't heard of them, valid or not you can be SOL.

There have been stories of NAUI cards that weren't recognized... the dive op (or at least the uneducated person behind the desk) apparently kept asking to see the "PADI card". Amazing, but it does happen. PADI has such a lock on the international dive community that some people (isolated souls that they are) simply don't realize there is any other agency. They'll learn eventually, one would hope, but that's little comfort when you're there being denied a dive.

Back in the real world (or at least, back in the US), the reality is all recreational agencies recognize all certs through at least Rescue. After that, getting into DiveMaster and other professional certs, or getting into the realm of technical diving, reciprocity is no longer the norm. Quite the opposite... at the pro and technical levels, reciprocity is somewhat rare, as protocols differ among agencies at it matters more at that level.

DMWiz
07-06-2009, 21:07
I just saw a man having to get recertified at my LDS because he was YMCA certified and is no longer valid/accepted so was getting PADI now, I didnt ask too much about it, so dont really know other than what the man told me, what a bummer :(

If this is true the shop is screwing him unless he hasn't been diving in years and should take a class again anyway. Just because an agency is no longer around doesn't mean their training was no good. I don't think most places would have issue with a YMCA card as long as the person was an active diver.

I don't know too much about YMCA, but I have heard thru the years of several folks with YMCA cards not being recognized, especially outside the USA when going on trips, now I imagine it will be even more so.

Didn't YMCA become SEI Diving (http://www.seidiving.org/)? And I believe you can even get a new card if you were once certified by YMCA.

CompuDude
07-06-2009, 21:43
Didn't YMCA become SEI Diving (http://www.seidiving.org/)? And I believe you can even get a new card if you were once certified by YMCA.

Yes, they were going to be Y! Scuba or something like that, but the YMCA was worried about liability by association and made them change it. Pity.

DMWiz
07-06-2009, 21:55
Didn't YMCA become SEI Diving (http://www.seidiving.org/)? And I believe you can even get a new card if you were once certified by YMCA.

Yes, they were going to be Y! Scuba or something like that, but the YMCA was worried about liability by association and made them change it. Pity.

Y Scuba sounds much better IMO! You actually have to dig around a bit to find any link between SEI and Y. I wonder if this is also by design and fear of liability?

Rockhound76
07-07-2009, 08:07
I was certified by NASDS in 1976. I have never had a problem with acceptance of my cards anywhere in the US, Mexico or the Caribbean. Last year, I added a NAUI Nitrox Card, but still like to use my NASDS certs for air diving. Mostly because of the looks I get. My cards still have my original photo on them.

Of course, I am much better looking now. LOL.

scubadiver888
07-07-2009, 09:40
I would laugh my way out of a shop that said a YMCA card is no longer any good. They were one of the FIRST certification agencies around. They were also known for extremely tough, boot-camp like classes.

Personally, I would like to see dive certs have an expiration date - like a drivers license. I think too many people forget much of what they learned in class and should be required to go back through shortened version of the course every few years just to refresh their skills.

Just my 2 cents.
robin:smiley20:

Last time I was in the Caribbean there were two guys from a dive club in Belgium. Their c-cards had an expiry date. It actually became an issue with the dive operator because (a) he hadn't heard of the agency before and (b) the expiry date made him think it was something like a Discover Scuba card. Turns out they were the best divers in the group.

navyhmc
07-07-2009, 10:10
I was certified by NASDS in 1976. I have never had a problem with acceptance of my cards anywhere in the US, Mexico or the Caribbean. Last year, I added a NAUI Nitrox Card, but still like to use my NASDS certs for air diving. Mostly because of the looks I get. My cards still have my original photo on them.

Of course, I am much better looking now. LOL.

I get that when Ipull out my 1984 PADI AOW. :smiley36: Maybe I'll show my 1980 OW sometime...:smilie39:

Darthwader
07-07-2009, 11:32
I was certified by NASDS in 1976. I have never had a problem with acceptance of my cards anywhere in the US, Mexico or the Caribbean. Last year, I added a NAUI Nitrox Card, but still like to use my NASDS certs for air diving. Mostly because of the looks I get. My cards still have my original photo on them.

Of course, I am much better looking now. LOL.

I get that when Ipull out my 1984 PADI AOW. :smiley36: Maybe I'll show my 1980 OW sometime...:smilie39:

Wait a minute. . . you're supposed to put your OWN picture on the card?

Rockhound76
07-07-2009, 14:15
[quote=navyhmc;312657]
Wait a minute. . . you're supposed to put your OWN picture on the card?


Funny. We have to wear ID badges at my office. I looked down at the ID card of a woman I work with and the photo on her card was of Urma Thurmond.

She said that in 7 years, I was the only person who noticed. I pointed out that I was obsessed with Urma. I wanted to ask if she could "be" Urma for me, but she was one of our attorneys and I managed to throttle that impulse...

CompuDude
07-07-2009, 16:15
Wait a minute. . . you're supposed to put your OWN picture on the card?

Funny. We have to wear ID badges at my office. I looked down at the ID card of a woman I work with and the photo on her card was of Urma Thurmond.

She said that in 7 years, I was the only person who noticed. I pointed out that I was obsessed with Urma. I wanted to ask if she could "be" Urma for me, but she was one of our attorneys and I managed to throttle that impulse...

Cute story. Although, do you mean Uma Thurman? I dunno who Urma Thurmond is... so I'm not sure whether I can get behind an obsession or not. :smiley2:

Rockhound76
07-09-2009, 08:49
Wait a minute. . . you're supposed to put your OWN picture on the card?

Funny. We have to wear ID badges at my office. I looked down at the ID card of a woman I work with and the photo on her card was of Urma Thurmond.

She said that in 7 years, I was the only person who noticed. I pointed out that I was obsessed with Urma. I wanted to ask if she could "be" Urma for me, but she was one of our attorneys and I managed to throttle that impulse...

Cute story. Although, do you mean Uma Thurman? I dunno who Urma Thurmond is... so I'm not sure whether I can get behind an obsession or not. :smiley2:

I guest I be needin to put UMA in ma spel chucker...LOL.

Darthwader
07-09-2009, 10:22
Wait a minute. . . you're supposed to put your OWN picture on the card?

Funny. We have to wear ID badges at my office. I looked down at the ID card of a woman I work with and the photo on her card was of Urma Thurmond.

She said that in 7 years, I was the only person who noticed. I pointed out that I was obsessed with Urma. I wanted to ask if she could "be" Urma for me, but she was one of our attorneys and I managed to throttle that impulse...

Cute story. Although, do you mean Uma Thurman? I dunno who Urma Thurmond is... so I'm not sure whether I can get behind an obsession or not. :smiley2:

I guest I be needin to put UMA in ma spel chucker...LOL.

Uma, Urma, what's in a nomiker?

CompuDude
07-09-2009, 11:46
Uma, Urma, what's in a nomiker?

I'm met an old lady named Urma before.

*shudder*

She was no Uma!

Zeagle Eagle
07-10-2009, 18:15
[quote=fire diver;312052]I
Personally, I would like to see dive certs have an expiration date - like a drivers license. I think too many people forget much of what they learned in class and should be required to go back through shortened version of the course every few years just to refresh their skills.

Just my 2 cents.
robin:smiley20:

I got my first pair of jet fins in 1967 and have been diving ever since. Thats over 40 years since I got my "C" card. I will put my skills up against any newbie fresh out of training any day of the week. No way that I want the added cost of getting recertified every two years. There is no way I should be penalized for the short comings of others. There is always going to be stupid people on dive boats just like there is on the road. I think 40+ years of incident/accident free diving should be enough.

How would you like to take an automobile driving test (road test) every two years?

Figure out a better way to make this sport safer and I will support you; but, re certifying (short course) is not it.

I do think that continuing online education (free or a nominal cost) would be a good idea. I regularly try to educate myself on the new aspects of our sport and also try to learn from the stories and mistakes of others.

BTW, most states do not require a driving test. They just want to get the money. I do mine online every 4 or 6 years. Don't ask for a TAX that you can never get rid of.

CompuDude
07-10-2009, 18:46
I'm all for some sort of recert.

It doesn't have to be a cost thing, unless it's genuinely only a dollar for a sticker.

But I DO think divers should have to prove they've done at least a couple dives over the course of, say 3 years. If not, mandatory refresher course.

It can be simple, something like showing a log book. Can it be faked? Of course! But who are you fooling? How much work did you just do to save a buck?

If you ARE diving regularly, there's no issues... pay your dollar, get the sticker, go on diving. A couple of dives over 3 years is not what I would call regularly, but it does prevent the situation where someone literally hasn't set foot in the water in 10 years (or worse) slaps down a C card and demands service.

I've advocated a system like this before. It doesn't have to be perfect. It doesn't have to be fool proof. But it would be a LOT better than the lifetime-cert-no-matter-what system we have now.

navyhmc
07-10-2009, 19:32
I have to disagree with the re-cert concept. To me, it would seem that it will only mean I have to put more money out to dive. At some point in time, we all have to accept personal responsibility and accountability. I've been an AOW for literally 25 years. What's to keep a shop or charter from coming up to me and saying "Wow...maybe you need a refresher, you could have gun decked all these dives in you log, we'll let you go on the charter AFTER you've shelled out another $250 for the refreshed course"?

Who's to say where that would end? Enough folks have made the statement that PADI means "Put Another Dollar In" talk about increasing the cash outlay to dive.

CD, I find that I usually agree with you on subjects 110%, but can't on this one. IF a recert system is in place, it has to be perfect and has to be fool-proof. I find that the current self-policing system works well and the industry as a whole does a good job.

I do know that a number of operators check and see if a diver has done a few dives-there's the check and balance in the system. They have then done a quick skills check to ensure that those divers can still function as well as they should-there's the balance to the system.

The fact is that in a lot of things in life, I have to re-certify on a regular basis: My EMS certification, my DL, my Amature Radio license, etc. I have always enjoyed the fact that my C-card is good, no matter what. I personally want to keep it that way.

Coastie6
07-11-2009, 10:20
I would laugh my way out of a shop that said a YMCA card is no longer any good. They were one of the FIRST certification agencies around. They were also known for extremely tough, boot-camp like classes.

Fire Diver :smiley20: I took my OW certification with YMCA 30-years ago. I'd tell the shop to "kiss my arse" as I walked through their doors for the last time. Sounds like its more about money than "safety".

The classes then were "boot camp like" lots of diver harassment drills to ensure you could handle having your regulator ripped from your mouth or your mask flooded at depth. Doubt agencies could get away with that stuff in the "kinder, gentler, PC, wussified world we now live in.

My YMCA OW cert. is just as valid as my PADI AOW cert.

Just my 2 cents!

CompuDude
07-11-2009, 14:25
I would laugh my way out of a shop that said a YMCA card is no longer any good. They were one of the FIRST certification agencies around. They were also known for extremely tough, boot-camp like classes.

Fire Diver :smiley20: I took my OW certification with YMCA 30-years ago. I'd tell the shop to "kiss my arse" as I walked through their doors for the last time. Sounds like its more about money than "safety".

The classes then were "boot camp like" lots of diver harassment drills to ensure you could handle having your regulator ripped from your mouth or your mask flooded at depth. Doubt agencies could get away with that stuff in the "kinder, gentler, PC, wussified world we now live in.

My YMCA OW cert. is just as valid as my PADI AOW cert.

Just my 2 cents!

Your YMCA cert is only as "valid" as the guy holding the keys to the boat says it is.

There's no doubt that it's superior training in every way to what's offered by most agencies today, but that's not going to help you if the guy behind the counter at the resort has never heard of it, and decides you're trying to pull a fast one.

Coastie6
07-13-2009, 05:23
"Your YMCA cert is only as "valid" as the guy holding the keys to the boat says it is."

Agreed. Which is why I've always owned my own boat or done my homework before traveling somewhere. Even with a PADI certification, I would not dive with an operation that suggested my YMCA cert. was not "valid".

Any dive operation has the right to not allow you on their boat, but nrembis said in his post that a guy at his LDS had to get re-certified because his YMCA certification is no longer valid/accepted. That's pure BS and a diver has the right to spend his/her cash with the operation of their choice. I'd just find another shop with staff knowledgeable enough to know what a YMCA cert. is.

mitsuguy
07-13-2009, 06:03
I find that the current self-policing system works well and the industry as a whole does a good job.

I wish you could see the side of the industry from my point of view...

I seriously believe the only reason there aren't more diving related deaths is because the divemasters are around when most divers who have lost their sense of skills and awareness are diving actually have problems... Also, I'd say, there is a bit of luck involved...

I would hate to count the number of divers I lead on dives that do not have a timing device, computer, and never ever look at their depth gauge... They have no regard for decompression sickness... Even the ones that do have a computer, many times, completely disregard them... Not too long ago, third dive of the day for a big group, some divers were deeper than they should have been... The DM leading the group knew from his computer that he was close to his NDL's, so, when they got back to the boat to do safety stops, he asked if their computers were OK to ascend... Everyone signalled ok, but when asking about it on the boat, one of them said "yah, my computer said something about 8 minutes at 15 feet, but I just did my 3 minute stop and came up"

I'd also hate to count the number of divers setting up their own gear that I've watched put the BCD on backwards (literally put the cummerbund around the tank), put the reg on backwards (yoke screw into the hole on the valve, and regs on wrong side), forget to hook up low pressure inflator, and, my favorite one - not testing anything until seconds before jumping in the water... I've seen high pressure hoses blow, o-rings pop out, you name it...

Again, I would love to have a recertification system, maybe even a free one... We do a basic refresher, go over gear setup, basic important skills (reg removal/recovery, mask flooding, alternate air source use and anything else they are not comfortable with), talk about tables, then go on a shore dive for $60... If someone wants a full scuba tune up, book included, all 20 skills plus a dive, it's $100... Reasonable, I think... But, shouldn't be required if they have been doing dives recently... Honestly, there are some people that have taken a year or two off of diving that are better than some that dive every couple weeks... The problem is the above examples I gave...

fire diver
07-13-2009, 08:55
I think that Mitsu probably sees the worst of the worst though. He works in one of the locations where people who dive once a year go. Even though he sees a large number of these attempted darwinian divers, I think they are still in the vast minority.

I would also say that it's almost non-existant problem in the inland states. Divers who are willing to dive in 5-10 foot vis lakes, are the ones who dive repeately thorughout the year and understand thier gear.

All that being said, I think an expiration on certs wouldn't be a bad thing (provided the cost was nominal to renew).

No Misses
07-13-2009, 09:49
I don't think that there should be any re-certification.

People need to be responsible for their own actions.

WARNING - HIJACKING IN PROGRESS!!!

It all comes back to our litigation based society. Playgrounds are made safe so that children never have to learn the consequences of taking risks. As adults, society continues to help these morons stumble along like Mr. Magoo.

Why does all of our dive gear have disclaimers stating that diving is a risky activity and care should be taken to prevent injury/death? blah blah blah...

If you are too stupid to understand that you can not breathe water, you may want to stay in the shallow end of the gene pool.

I used to sky dive. It has been >15 years since I last jumped out of an airplane. Do I feel confident that I could do it today without a refresher? Yes. Would I try any fancy maneuvering/formations (linking with others)? No. I would run myself through the basics first.

It is the same with diving. Some people can pick it right back up, others need a refresher. Don’t penalize the competent individuals just because there are morons out there.

In diving, morons are self limiting. The trick is not to get sucked into saving them from themselves. Darwin had a good theory on this.

EOR (End of Rant)

CompuDude
07-13-2009, 16:10
I think that Mitsu probably sees the worst of the worst though. He works in one of the locations where people who dive once a year go. Even though he sees a large number of these attempted darwinian divers, I think they are still in the vast minority.

I would also say that it's almost non-existant problem in the inland states. Divers who are willing to dive in 5-10 foot vis lakes, are the ones who dive repeately thorughout the year and understand thier gear.

All that being said, I think an expiration on certs wouldn't be a bad thing (provided the cost was nominal to renew).

I would agree with you, but a few months ago I was on a local boat here in SoCal. There was a diver on board who was laughing with his friends about how he didn't have a computer... or a watch... or a depth gauge. Apparently, he had "never needed one before" because "the DM's always take care of that stuff for me".

Apparently he usually dives exclusively warm water with DM's who lead the groups. He's a certified diver, and actually not completely terrible in the water, so he felt confident to join some friends for some local diving. There was just one little problem...

Of course, a re-cert system would do little or nothing to protect someone like this, since he was a fully certified diver who HAD been diving in the past year... in the past 6 months, even. He just had no idea of how to manage his own diving, because he had never had to.

mitsuguy
07-13-2009, 21:28
I think that Mitsu probably sees the worst of the worst though. He works in one of the locations where people who dive once a year go. Even though he sees a large number of these attempted darwinian divers, I think they are still in the vast minority.

I would also say that it's almost non-existant problem in the inland states. Divers who are willing to dive in 5-10 foot vis lakes, are the ones who dive repeately thorughout the year and understand thier gear.

All that being said, I think an expiration on certs wouldn't be a bad thing (provided the cost was nominal to renew).

I know for almost certain I see the worst of the worst... However, I don't believe them to be in the minority...

I would say on average, most divers dive once (being a dive trip or vacation with diving) or less per year... I would bet that you, as well as many of the others on this board are actually in the minority, that being, that we dive quite often, and in less than ideal conditions... However, it's people like us that carry a very high percentage of the dives completed...

I am completely making this up, but, in my head, I would estimate that 10% of the "active" divers in this world actually perform somewhere around 50% of the total number of dives per year, leaving the remaining percentage (90) to do the remainder of the dives...

scubadiver888
07-14-2009, 10:13
I think that Mitsu probably sees the worst of the worst though. He works in one of the locations where people who dive once a year go. Even though he sees a large number of these attempted darwinian divers, I think they are still in the vast minority.

I would also say that it's almost non-existant problem in the inland states. Divers who are willing to dive in 5-10 foot vis lakes, are the ones who dive repeately thorughout the year and understand thier gear.

All that being said, I think an expiration on certs wouldn't be a bad thing (provided the cost was nominal to renew).

I know for almost certain I see the worst of the worst... However, I don't believe them to be in the minority...

I would say on average, most divers dive once (being a dive trip or vacation with diving) or less per year... I would bet that you, as well as many of the others on this board are actually in the minority, that being, that we dive quite often, and in less than ideal conditions... However, it's people like us that carry a very high percentage of the dives completed...

I am completely making this up, but, in my head, I would estimate that 10% of the "active" divers in this world actually perform somewhere around 50% of the total number of dives per year, leaving the remaining percentage (90) to do the remainder of the dives...

I have read DEMA reports that show 65% of people dive less than 10 times a year and approximately 35% of people are diving less than 4 times a year.

The participants in these studies are going to be people attending DEMA shows or requesting information from DEMA and therefore higher than the national averages. The last study I read had something like 2.4 million people in the survey but PADI records there are 17 million divers PADI certified divers world wide. They have no idea how many are active.

Anecdotally, coming home from a dive I usually meet 3 or 4 different people who are 'divers' but they turn out to be people who dive on vacation or they got certified years ago and went diving once or twice since then.

I was one of them. I was certified in 2001. From 2001 to 2006, all my diving was on vacation. I would dive maybe twice on a week long vacation. All dives were led by a DM or OWSI. I think I had 12 dives (including my OW certification dives) by the beginning of 2007. Last year I got AOW and EANx certification. This year I got my Rescue Diver certification. I help out at my LDS and enrolled in the DM course this year. I have 50+ dives now. Last time I went on vacation I got in 14 dives in.

Apparently, I'm the exception to the rule. I have not seen any of the 'vacation' divers who were in my AOW or EANx classes at the shop getting a fill. I have seen two of the OW students go on to do non-guided dives. Most people get the class and pool work here. Dive once or twice open water here and either drop out or switch to getting their open water dives in the Caribbean and become vacation divers.

There is a definitely distinction. Some people dive once or twice a year. Other people dive 20 or 50 times a year. Doesn't really seem like there is anything in between.

in_cavediver
07-14-2009, 12:03
I'm all for some sort of recert.

It doesn't have to be a cost thing, unless it's genuinely only a dollar for a sticker.

But I DO think divers should have to prove they've done at least a couple dives over the course of, say 3 years. If not, mandatory refresher course.

It can be simple, something like showing a log book. Can it be faked? Of course! But who are you fooling? How much work did you just do to save a buck?

If you ARE diving regularly, there's no issues... pay your dollar, get the sticker, go on diving. A couple of dives over 3 years is not what I would call regularly, but it does prevent the situation where someone literally hasn't set foot in the water in 10 years (or worse) slaps down a C card and demands service.

I've advocated a system like this before. It doesn't have to be perfect. It doesn't have to be fool proof. But it would be a LOT better than the lifetime-cert-no-matter-what system we have now.

The failure is that you don't have to have C-card to dive. This is very different than say driving or flying where you do have to have a license.

Less regulation is better. A C-card means you have been trained. Nothing more, nothing less. Only an in-water eval can tell you how well you have been trained.

CompuDude
07-14-2009, 12:32
The failure is that you don't have to have C-card to dive. This is very different than say driving or flying where you do have to have a license.

Less regulation is better. A C-card means you have been trained. Nothing more, nothing less. Only an in-water eval can tell you how well you have been trained.

But my proposed change to the current system (like that'll happen) doesn't change a thing from that standpoint... there still are (would be) no laws on diving. It's all industry-based, just like now. You don't need a license to jump out of a plane, either, but like scuba, it's mostly self-policing. Most people, however, have more common sense about jumping out of a plane compared to jumping into the water.

Very little hurt, considerable help.

in_cavediver
07-15-2009, 05:59
The failure is that you don't have to have C-card to dive. This is very different than say driving or flying where you do have to have a license.

Less regulation is better. A C-card means you have been trained. Nothing more, nothing less. Only an in-water eval can tell you how well you have been trained.

But my proposed change to the current system (like that'll happen) doesn't change a thing from that standpoint... there still are (would be) no laws on diving. It's all industry-based, just like now. You don't need a license to jump out of a plane, either, but like scuba, it's mostly self-policing. Most people, however, have more common sense about jumping out of a plane compared to jumping into the water.

Very little hurt, considerable help.

I don't know. I still see it as a PIA for those who are active. Maybe its that I don't see 'those divers' that I really don't want the extra hassle. I guess the other part is I have no relationship with a Dive Shop right now - unless you count ST or Cave Excursions, both 800+ miles away. It would be a major PIA for us to 'renew' our certs. (I'd bet at least one of agencies I have cards with wouldn't do it so I'd let my BOW lapse and simply dive on my cave or trimix cards......)

I see my cards, which are dated, as simply a means to show I was trained to do something. What happens in the intervening time, well, that's what log books are for. Can it be faked - yep. Most of the time its not though. Why not encourage some personal responsibility here?

CompuDude
07-15-2009, 12:05
The failure is that you don't have to have C-card to dive. This is very different than say driving or flying where you do have to have a license.

Less regulation is better. A C-card means you have been trained. Nothing more, nothing less. Only an in-water eval can tell you how well you have been trained.

But my proposed change to the current system (like that'll happen) doesn't change a thing from that standpoint... there still are (would be) no laws on diving. It's all industry-based, just like now. You don't need a license to jump out of a plane, either, but like scuba, it's mostly self-policing. Most people, however, have more common sense about jumping out of a plane compared to jumping into the water.

Very little hurt, considerable help.

I don't know. I still see it as a PIA for those who are active. Maybe its that I don't see 'those divers' that I really don't want the extra hassle. I guess the other part is I have no relationship with a Dive Shop right now - unless you count ST or Cave Excursions, both 800+ miles away. It would be a major PIA for us to 'renew' our certs. (I'd bet at least one of agencies I have cards with wouldn't do it so I'd let my BOW lapse and simply dive on my cave or trimix cards......)

I see my cards, which are dated, as simply a means to show I was trained to do something. What happens in the intervening time, well, that's what log books are for. Can it be faked - yep. Most of the time its not though. Why not encourage some personal responsibility here?

Frankly because personal responsibility has failed, leaving us with the current situation.

I'm referring solely to rec certs, of course... how you handle cave and tec certs is entirely different. Swinging by a shop once per year, if you even need to, and showing a log book (frankly, taking one look at most of us, someone would likely just hand over the sticker), shouldn't be that big of a deal, even for someone who has to drive a way to closest shop. You gotta get fills, right? (And if you have your own fill station, no one's checking your cards anyway... nor do you really fall under any of the problem categories)

gNats
07-15-2009, 12:32
I find that the current self-policing system works well and the industry as a whole does a good job.

<snip>
I'd also hate to count the number of divers setting up their own gear that I've watched put the BCD on backwards (literally put the cummerbund around the tank), put the reg on backwards (yoke screw into the hole on the valve, and regs on wrong side), forget to hook up low pressure inflator, and, my favorite one - not testing anything until seconds before jumping in the water... I've seen high pressure hoses blow, o-rings pop out, you name it...

Again, I would love to have a recertification system, maybe even a free one... We do a basic refresher, go over gear setup, basic important skills (reg removal/recovery, mask flooding, alternate air source use and anything else they are not comfortable with), talk about tables, then go on a shore dive for $60... If someone wants a full scuba tune up, book included, all 20 skills plus a dive, it's $100... Reasonable, I think... But, shouldn't be required if they have been doing dives recently... Honestly, there are some people that have taken a year or two off of diving that are better than some that dive every couple weeks... The problem is the above examples I gave... </snip>

I was really surprised during my first trip to Bonaire last January.

First, I stayed at DivFlamingo - other resorts may handle it differently.

Before we could dive, we had to attend an informational seminar on diving on Bonaire. Lots of really good information regarding where to dive, conditions to expect, house (resort) dive boat protocals, shore diving, etc.

Then we had our "checkout" dive. This was my first dive in salt water in a new 5mm suit to boot. (PS - I also had less than 20 dives total to my name). I had a somewhat good guess to the amount of weighting I would need, but wasn't quite sure how close I would be.

I was very surprised that the "checkout" dives were sans any DMs or other resort personnel. They made weights available to us, told us to jump in, and correct ourselves. After making me attend almost a 90 minute presentation, I was sort of stumped that the actual in-water diving was so "on your own".

Needless to say - during my first boat dive that I was SERIOUSLY overweighted by almost 4 lbs. On my frame, that is a lot of weight. I felt I needed that weight to submerge without realizing that I was nervous diving outside of the quarry and the new 5 mil was very buoyant.

gNats
07-15-2009, 12:38
I would agree with you, but a few months ago I was on a local boat here in SoCal. There was a diver on board who was laughing with his friends about how he didn't have a computer... or a watch... or a depth gauge. Apparently, he had "never needed one before" because "the DM's always take care of that stuff for me".

Wow CompuDude,

That diver sounds like most women diving with their husbands/SOs.

It's not me. NO WAY. I set up MY OWN GEAR thank you and know when my safety stop has ended. But, surprisingly, it sounds like the way a lot of men describe their diving wives/girlfriends.

Maybe resort DMs need to be less enabling.

:smilie40:

gNats
07-15-2009, 12:44
<snip>
I have read DEMA reports that show 65% of people dive less than 10 times a year and approximately 35% of people are diving less than 4 times a year.</snip>

Wow. So, if I have completed 45 dives already this year, does that place me in the minority of divers? That's 6.something dives per month.

Does that make me speeeeshul?

Warning: Sarcasm coming

My (I-don't-know-why-you-do-this-to-my-heart-non-diving) Mommy and Daddy would be so proud. :smiley2:

scubadiver888
07-15-2009, 13:30
<snip>
I have read DEMA reports that show 65% of people dive less than 10 times a year and approximately 35% of people are diving less than 4 times a year.</snip>

Wow. So, if I have completed 45 dives already this year, does that place me in the minority of divers? That's 6.something dives per month.

Does that make me speeeeshul?

Warning: Sarcasm coming

My (I-don't-know-why-you-do-this-to-my-heart-non-diving) Mommy and Daddy would be so proud. :smiley2:

Absolutely. I was the majority a few years ago. I would have years with zero dives. I still see people like I used to be.

Last year I went to the Caribbean on a cruise and dove twice a day every day we were in port (20 dives).

Most the other divers came out once (2 dives). A few came out twice (4 dives). One person decided she didn't want to dive even though she came out on the dive boat (0 dives). One person dove once on a two tank dive (1 dive). The only two people who dove as much as me were two founding members of a European dive club (the President and Vice-President).

in_cavediver
07-16-2009, 05:41
Frankly because personal responsibility has failed, leaving us with the current situation.

I'm referring solely to rec certs, of course... how you handle cave and tec certs is entirely different. Swinging by a shop once per year, if you even need to, and showing a log book (frankly, taking one look at most of us, someone would likely just hand over the sticker), shouldn't be that big of a deal, even for someone who has to drive a way to closest shop. You gotta get fills, right? (And if you have your own fill station, no one's checking your cards anyway... nor do you really fall under any of the problem categories)

I think we simply disagree on this one.

I can't imagine a shop will to take on the liability of giving a 'sticker' saying you are current just by a logbook alone. If they did - its the current system now. I see a dive with us or pay for a 'checkout' dive or 'refresher' to get the sticker.

JCAT
07-16-2009, 07:09
I dove with a different shop a couple of weeks ago since they were going to an interesting site. After the dives I returned the tanks to the store and their regulars were standing around the counter with their logbooks.

They were receiving stickers for number of dives and getting the pages embossed. (Notary type seal) . When I inquired as to what the purpose was, I was told it was a SSI (Scuba Schools International) policy. (I was certed by SDI/TDI and crossed over to PADI so I had never seen this before)

I think that this is just overkill and more layers of hoop jumping, going to also agree with what Navy,fire, and no misses posted earlier as well.

cheers

CompuDude
07-16-2009, 13:00
Frankly because personal responsibility has failed, leaving us with the current situation.

I'm referring solely to rec certs, of course... how you handle cave and tec certs is entirely different. Swinging by a shop once per year, if you even need to, and showing a log book (frankly, taking one look at most of us, someone would likely just hand over the sticker), shouldn't be that big of a deal, even for someone who has to drive a way to closest shop. You gotta get fills, right? (And if you have your own fill station, no one's checking your cards anyway... nor do you really fall under any of the problem categories)

I think we simply disagree on this one.

I can't imagine a shop will to take on the liability of giving a 'sticker' saying you are current just by a logbook alone. If they did - its the current system now. I see a dive with us or pay for a 'checkout' dive or 'refresher' to get the sticker.

I'm fine with disagreeing.

As for simply checking logbooks, that's all that's done now (if they even bother). It suffices for PADI to allow members into the technical ranks, too. Any place today that insists on a certain number of dives or recent experience is fine with looking at a logbook.

If someone cares enough to spend the time and effort into faking logbook entries, they're only hurting themselves. Plus, at worst, there's NO difference between them in that scenario, and them today.

I'm not advocating a sticker system should replace all need for checkout dives, btw, just adding one more minor barrier to keep the worst of the offenders from hurting themselves or others.

No worries if you disagree, of course... my hotline to PADI, NAUI and SSI's board of directors doesn't seem to be working at the moment anyway. ;)

in_cavediver
07-16-2009, 17:02
No worries if you disagree, of course... my hotline to PADI, NAUI and SSI's board of directors doesn't seem to be working at the moment anyway. ;)

They cut mine off - something about being a malcontent.....

Scuba Pete
07-17-2009, 15:37
This conversation is alot like the Gun control debate. Lets put more restrictions on the good people just in case the bad people are stupid. A sticker is not going to do anything other than cause headaches for all involved and wont solve anything. If someone wants to fake a certification and their logbook, that is why there are the darwin awards. I say let them take them selves out of the gene pool voluntarily.

cummings66
07-17-2009, 16:52
The flaw in your logic is, if they take themselves out of the gene pool they might very well take you with them, or your friend, wife, husband, etc. You can't tell what they're going to do and most of us might risk our lives without knowing it by attempting a rescue for which they're not prepared.

IMO take rescue as soon as you can so that if you decide to help you have some tools to work with. Might save you...

Coastie6
07-17-2009, 21:37
I dove with a different shop a couple of weeks ago since they were going to an interesting site. After the dives I returned the tanks to the store and their regulars were standing around the counter with their logbooks.

They were receiving stickers for number of dives and getting the pages embossed. (Notary type seal) . When I inquired as to what the purpose was, I was told it was a SSI (Scuba Schools International) policy. (I was certed by SDI/TDI and crossed over to PADI so I had never seen this before)

I think that this is just overkill and more layers of hoop jumping, going to also agree with what Navy,fire, and no misses posted earlier as well.

cheers

I sure liked diving a whole lot more when I started 30-years ago with my "non-valid" YMCA OW cert. A whole lot less people were doing it then and there sure weren't any "stickers" to earn for you log book. My 4-year old has a bunch of Dora stickers, I'll have to fight her for them, but can I use them?

Splitlip is right, "Diving sucks. Don't try it." :smiley2:

scubasamurai
07-31-2009, 22:11
I just saw a man having to get recertified at my LDS because he was YMCA certified and is no longer valid/accepted so was getting PADI now, I didnt ask too much about it, so dont really know other than what the man told me, what a bummer :(

ymca is like the gold standard, their card is still recognized and is still good. they no longer do new certs, but to have a shop tell him this, i would find a new shop for sure

Zeagle Eagle
08-01-2009, 08:55
I just saw a man having to get recertified at my LDS because he was YMCA certified and is no longer valid/accepted so was getting PADI now, I didnt ask too much about it, so dont really know other than what the man told me, what a bummer :(

ymca is like the gold standard, their card is still recognized and is still good. they no longer do new certs, but to have a shop tell him this, i would find a new shop for sure
Gold Standard?

YMCA of the USA recently announced that it will discontinue the scuba certification program on December 31, 2008.
YMCA of the USA has offered the scuba program for fifty years, and it has touched the lives of many YMCA members and volunteers. We are proud to have had the opportunity to prepare and certify so many participants for safe and responsible diving.
Although the scuba program will close, the lifetime scuba certification will remain valid and YMCA of the USA will continue to assist those with fulfillment of a lost certification card from 1984 to the present. If you received your YMCA Scuba certification prior to 1984, you will need to retake the Scuba course or take a refresher course as fulfilling a lost card that was received prior to 1984 is no longer a service we will offer. We apologize for the inconvenience.

They may have been the gold standard; but, not anymore.

fire diver
08-01-2009, 12:47
I disagree. I think they still ARE the gold standard. Just becuase they are no longer issuing certifications, doesn'y mean that the current C-card issuing agencies have training equal to what the "Y" required. The only reason they went out is becuase too many people prefer to go the easy, one weekend, $99 special from the LDS that will be out of business next year.

Zeagle Eagle
08-01-2009, 13:45
I disagree. I think they still ARE the gold standard. Just becuase they are no longer issuing certifications, doesn'y mean that the current C-card issuing agencies have training equal to what the "Y" required. The only reason they went out is becuase too many people prefer to go the easy, one weekend, $99 special from the LDS that will be out of business next year.

I do not imply that the current C card agencies have training equal to what the Y required. I agree that people prefer the easy way; but, the Y is no longer in the Scuba training business.

I know they used to be the standard. They used to have the best training. They used to be the best; but. you can't be the standard if you aren't in the business anymore.

I think it is a loss for all of us. It was good, safe, reliable, training that produced good divers.

Incidentally, my local Y is offering Scuba training; but, you get a PADI course and a PADI cert.

fire diver
08-01-2009, 14:38
I still disagree. A standard is a standard for a reason, because it's the goal. It doesn't matter if the agency no longer exists. As long we can still strive towards that goal, then they are still the standard.

navyhmc
08-01-2009, 23:50
True 'dat fire diver!!!

Coastie6
08-02-2009, 09:17
Although the scuba program will close, the lifetime scuba certification will remain valid and YMCA of the USA will continue to assist those with fulfillment of a lost certification card from 1984 to the present. If you received your YMCA Scuba certification prior to 1984, you will need to retake the Scuba course or take a refresher course as fulfilling a lost card that was received prior to 1984 is no longer a service we will offer. We apologize for the inconvenience.

They may have been the gold standard; but, not anymore.

Dang, I guess I better take good care of that old C-card. I agree with fire diver, still a gold standard other agencies should aspire to. It was about more than the money for the Y. Thankfully, there are a lot of good instructors with other agencies out there working hard to ensure they certify competent divers. I may be a bit cynical, but not really sure that's always the primary goal of some of their certifying agencies.

Zeagle Eagle
08-02-2009, 13:20
I still disagree. A standard is a standard for a reason, because it's the goal. It doesn't matter if the agency no longer exists. As long we can still strive towards that goal, then they are still the standard.
The more I think about it, the more I tend to agree with you.

BTW, I have been reading a few posts intimating that the YMCA Scuba program might not be as dead as we think it is. There is a cadre of folk out there that are working diligently to resurrect the program. Let's hope they are successful.

Coastie6
08-02-2009, 17:55
BTW, I have been reading a few posts intimating that the YMCA Scuba program might not be as dead as we think it is. There is a cadre of folk out there that are working diligently to resurrect the program. Let's hope they are successful.

Great news. Who is spearheading this effort? Like to lend them some support.

CompuDude
08-03-2009, 13:08
BTW, I have been reading a few posts intimating that the YMCA Scuba program might not be as dead as we think it is. There is a cadre of folk out there that are working diligently to resurrect the program. Let's hope they are successful.

Great news. Who is spearheading this effort? Like to lend them some support.

SEI Diving Home Page (http://www.seidiving.org/)

Many of the core original YMCA instructors are working together to get this program running.

Google turned up this announcement:

The Scuba Connection: The demise of YMCA Scuba & the birth of SEI Diving (http://tsc-gr.********.com/2008/12/demise-of-ymca-scuba-birth-of-sei.html)

Coastie6
08-05-2009, 20:45
BTW, I have been reading a few posts intimating that the YMCA Scuba program might not be as dead as we think it is. There is a cadre of folk out there that are working diligently to resurrect the program. Let's hope they are successful.

Great news. Who is spearheading this effort? Like to lend them some support.

SEI Diving Home Page (http://www.seidiving.org/)

Many of the core original YMCA instructors are working together to get this program running.

Google turned up this announcement:

The Scuba Connection: The demise of YMCA Scuba & the birth of SEI Diving (http://tsc-gr.********.com/2008/12/demise-of-ymca-scuba-birth-of-sei.html)

Thanks CompuDude!

I like the SEI Philosophy especially #1 & #3. Kind of speaks to my earlier comment regarding the YMCA philosophy. :smiley20:

Copied from The Scuba Connection: The demise of YMCA Scuba & the birth of SEI Diving (http://tsc-gr.********.com/2008/12/demise-of-ymca-scuba-birth-of-sei.html)
SEI Diving Philosophy

The desire to share an experience rather than sell a sport
A concern for people and what they feel and how they learn
A program dedicated to safety through education rather than marketing
A course of instruction that maximizes the ability of each individual
A course that teaches students and their buddies to become independently competent in the water and out.
Our students become divers that can safely enjoy our recreational activity throughout the world to the fullest.

navyhmc
08-06-2009, 04:25
Interesting to say the least. Would love to see the cirriculum.