Recreationally Technical ??

To discuss recreational diving, training, standards and continuing education.

Recreationally Technical ??

Postby Drip » Sat May 22, 2010 10:49 am

ScubaDog has mad me think a bit, along with a Thread in another Forum about the "...average duration of a Diver in the Industry?" (which has been estimated at 4 years).

I've noticed that a lot of Divers upon this Forum have gone onto being Instructors (which is great) and gone onto owning/using a lot of gear that is traditionally associated with Tech-Diving (which is also great).
This has been bothering me for a very long time, in fact it has been in the back of my mind since I started diving. Why I let it bother me in the first place - I dunno :roll: - maybe because I have always had a 'cultural' view upon all things (sometimes much to my disadvantage)?

Anyway - I was wondering what you guys think?

Is there a line to be drawn between Recreational and Technical Diving and have you guys lost your Recreational 'Mojo' with your submergence into Technical?
(Its easier to differentiate between Commercial and Recreational, as it is between Technical and Free/Spear)
What is exactly Recreational? (and is it just a Tropical, rather than Temperate, treat?)
Is it just a stepping-stone of progression towards Technical like an Open-Water to Rescue Diver or does it move away into a sperate species of Diver altogether?
Has a lot of Technical gear actually been swallowed into the Recreational world instead ( - common these days to see a lot of Recreational Divers with Rebreathers these days) ?

:|
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Re: Recreationally Technical ??

Postby ScubaDog » Sat May 22, 2010 3:22 pm

I think it is more a spectrum and where you put yourself along it. When I first dived rebreathers and twins back in 92. Recreational diving was single tank NDL and anything else was unheard of in NZ, except on J C Undersea World. Now some people are learning how to dive on rebreathers. Nitrox is an option for any diver with a cert (which can be gotten without getting wet) and the gas is free in a lot of places. Trimix is available and is pushed by some, for dives as shallow as 30m for a clear head.

So the lines are being increasingly blurred, and some of the tech side fits very nicely for some types of recreational diving. But I really have to say that there is certainly something to be said for rolling off the back of the boat in a wetsuit on a single tank for a fun dip with no run times, blending, or building before hand.

By the way, my diving was originally in the mil. I went back to recreational diving when I left in 98 and started back on twins in 2000 and rebreather in 09
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Re: Recreationally Technical ??

Postby ChuckyBob » Sat May 22, 2010 3:31 pm

I dive below the "recreational limits",
I dive solo.
I dive with twins and stage,
I dive a home made CCR rebreather ( Its well past the point of a modified military rebreather now).

But I still consider my self a recreational diver. Why? Because I do it for a recreation. I dont do it commercially and I dont do it for the "technical aspect of it ( what ever that is).


I personally dont like the terms recreational and technical.
The reason I don't like the terms is that they end up pigeon holing you.
Example.
A OW student asks why they are using yoke valves and BCD's instead of DIN and BP/W's.
The answer is usually given as " Because that's technical gear and you don't need it for recreational diving".
But the simple truth is these items (and other "technical gear") are just as suitable for rec as tech. They certainly dont need to cost any more.
Perhaps its just all part of a cunning plan for the industry to sell you more gear as you grow into the sport instead of just starting of with decent gear in the first place.

From what I understand of the BSAC model there is no such line drawn between rec and tec. I think this is well demonstrated by the fact you can do decompression dives fairly early on in the training.
Lets face it doing deco is not as scary as the rec agency's make it out to be. As TDI say every dive is a deco dive
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Re: Recreationally Technical ??

Postby silent solutions » Sun May 23, 2010 5:33 pm

Pete wrote:
ScubaDog wrote:Nitrox is an option for any diver with a cert (which can be gotten without getting wet)


PADI require two nitrox dives now. Im sure the others will follow suit, if they havent already done so.

When did this come in?A shop here had been giving the nitrox cert quite recently without being wet as long as they could show they could analyse the gas.
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Re: Recreationally Technical ??

Postby ScubaDog » Sun May 23, 2010 6:44 pm

SSI standards have it that no wet dives required, they are optional
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Re: Recreationally Technical ??

Postby Andy » Mon May 24, 2010 1:07 pm

ChuckyBob wrote:But I still consider my self a recreational diver. Why? Because I do it for a recreation. I dont do it commercially and I dont do it for the "technical aspect of it ( what ever that is).


Man, I am so getting in to the habit of agreeing with you Greg.... can you post something that I will disagree with just so I can keep my hand in?? :lol:

As for as I am concerned, the "classifications" of diving would be:

Commercial
Scientific
Military
Recreational
.... and possible "Occupational"

All diving that is done for fun is recreational, I'm doing 50m dives for the fun of it - not because of the "technical" challenge.

Within that classification of "recreational", what you do and how you do it will vary - it's about having the right tools for the right job.



Pete wrote:
silent solutions wrote:When did this come in?A shop here had been giving the nitrox cert quite recently without being wet as long as they could show they could analyse the gas.


Im not sure when it came into effect, but I know its this year... very recent though as it was spoken of at the member update.


PADI haven't required actual dives for a nitrox course for some time now, at least two years. That hasn't changed this year, so no dives are required at all.

What has changed this year is that PADI no longer require the teaching of tables in a Nitrox course - which puts it in the same box as the SDI Computer Nitrox Diver course. This has been done to bring it in line with the PADI OW course, for which again tables are now entirely optional.

Personally, I think this is a big mistake - maybe PADI see tables as an end, whereas I see them as a means. There is so much stuff you can teach around tables that improves a divers understanding. The classic one in the nitrox course is the question where if you use the EAN36 tables rather than calculate EADs that you get an available no-deco time difference of something like 38 minutes. Not easy to write off as a "rounding error", so it's a great way of introducing divers to what is actually going on in the underlying model.
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Re: Recreationally Technical ??

Postby Andy » Mon May 24, 2010 1:14 pm

Drip wrote:Is there a line to be drawn between Recreational and Technical Diving and have you guys lost your Recreational 'Mojo' with your submergence into Technical?



Sorry, Jase - I realised that I hadn't really answered your main question in my last post.

I certainly haven't lost my "recreational mojo" as you call it. There is something very liberating and enjoyable about doing shallow, single tank dives. Whilst I am still probably more stringent in terms of my planning for those dives than many people, there's a lot less constraints then I would place on a deeper, multigas dive. It's just plain fun and easy, slip into the single rig and skip gaily down the beach with no encumbrance, of course do an equipment check - because those are fun too - and then pootle around at 10-15m for an hour or so, take a few photos or whatever you fancy doing.

I look forward to those dives, in some ways, because I'm not doing them often enough - but when they do come around, I am all in! :D
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Re: Recreationally Technical ??

Postby Andy » Mon May 24, 2010 2:15 pm

Pete wrote:Hmmm, are you sure Andy?

EANx Specialty outline from the 2010 PDF.
Training Dive Requirements
Minimum Open Water Training: 2 Enriched Air Dives




99.99% sure. I don't have the specialty instructor manual for the revised EANx course, but there's not been anything in the training bulletins to rescind the standards change that made dives optional. That would be a major change in direction for PADI and would have got quite a fanfare. In Q3 last year, when the new course was introduced, the TB did say "During the required predive planning (or simulation) and practical application...", the reference to simulation suggests that the dives are still optional.

The 2010 materials are a bit weird, so in the main DIM it does say "two training dives" but the optional aspect of it has slipped over in to the ratios column.
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Re: Recreationally Technical ??

Postby ChuckyBob » Mon May 24, 2010 5:10 pm

Andy wrote:
ChuckyBob wrote:But I still consider my self a recreational diver. Why? Because I do it for a recreation. I dont do it commercially and I dont do it for the "technical aspect of it ( what ever that is).


Man, I am so getting in to the habit of agreeing with you Greg....


Im glad you have finally seen the light Andy.
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Re: Recreationally Technical ??

Postby Andy » Mon May 24, 2010 5:22 pm

ChuckyBob wrote:Im glad you have finally seen the light Andy.



I have. And it's still HID..... :lol:
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Re: Recreationally Technical ??

Postby ChuckyBob » Mon May 24, 2010 6:13 pm

That will soon pass, dont worry about it.
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Re: Recreationally Technical ??

Postby Andy » Tue May 25, 2010 12:06 am

The dives for the tables version of the course are also optional - the manual was written a while ago, and there was a standards change since the release of that which overrides the manual. I can't remember which year, but it's a major enough change that it will be a Q3 training bulletin. Probably 2007, or maybe 2008.

The last training bulletin made it clear that you could still teach tables and that all materials were valid - but you were not supposed to use the older (2005) instructor manual. It's a bit of an odd situation, so you can use the older student manuals that has tables questions in the knowledge reviews.... but you must use the new instructor manual, which doesn't have the answers to those old KR questions. It's unfortunately a bit of a mess-up on PADI's behalf. :roll:

Still, the TDI nitrox course is always an option! :D
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Re: Recreationally Technical ??

Postby tara » Tue May 25, 2010 10:32 am

i have the new Specialty Instructor Manual here - was there something you wanted to know?
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Re: Recreationally Technical ??

Postby Andy » Tue May 25, 2010 10:45 am

tara wrote:i have the new Specialty Instructor Manual here - was there something you wanted to know?


Does it have the answers for the old student manual knowledge reviews? I am at a bit of a loss to know how you can use the new instructor manual to teach the old course unless it has! :D
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Re: Recreationally Technical ??

Postby tara » Tue May 25, 2010 10:50 am

no it doesnt
there is only one knowledge review now.

i have the old specialty manual as well and it is quite different.
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