PADI will let anybody dive now; back when I got certified, only the strong made it...
Keith Wright - PADI Basic Scuba Diver/Chef
February 10, 2006 at 00:41:39
I just happened upon this forum due to a Google search on some topics I was discussing with an instructor the other day.
You see, I have been considering becoming an instructor. I moved back to Fort Lauderdale after ten years inthe mountains of Western North Carolina and thought that becoming an instructor would marry my hobby with a profession. I have been using the same dive shop since 1988. I have been diving on the Jim Atria (considered a technical dive at 132 feet) the Mercedez and a whole slew of 75 ft plus dives. I'v dove the Keys, Cayman, and Kauai. My logbook is as good as a c-card throughout the Carribean and many look at it and remember professionals, long since retired from the South Florida diving community.
I was discussing the AOW class that the instructor was planning when the subject of my certification came up...I pulled out "the source of frequent ridicule" and showed it to her. She said that I was limited to a 40 foot depth and only with a dive professional! She called PADI in CA and they informed her that I had to do dives 3 and 4...fin pivot, hover, partial and full clear! I about freaked out! I had to do a damn ditch and don in open ocean and harassment studying for a month of classes in diving physics and equipment...
I had turned 15 less than two months before my certification in 4/1/76. I have experienced conditions in dive training that NO student in current BASIC or OW certification has ever experienced and nobody has EVER questioned my certification level. They actually look at it in awe knowing what the courses back then entailed. Fortunately, the instructor is not going to charge me for the dive...I only have to PROVE the skills I learned 30 years ago in open water, pay for the PIC Card and the boat ticket. THEN I can go for my AOW Cert.
What a crock! I used to assist demonstrating fin pivots and hover for the instructors as my friends and lovers took courses at the shop! I flood my mask at 100 feet to just cool off my face. I agree. PADI will let anybody dive now. Back when I got certified. Only the strong made it...and at 15, I was pretty proud of myself. My father dropped out of the class!