So, you’ve become certified as an open water diver and perhaps taken an advanced open water course? Well, I’m sure that at this point in your diving adventures the local dive shop that you regularly walked into has made at least one, if not multiple attempts to get you to sign up for a Rescue Diver Course. Well, with that in mind…the big question is should you? I know that personally I took a Rescue Diver course mainly because it was a requirement to become a Divemaster, but did it turn out that it actually helped me as a diver? Well, let’s take a close look at whether or not taking a Rescue Diver course will actually be a useful endeavor.
First off, like I said previously taking the Rescue Diver course was a requirement for me to go onto taking the Dive Master course and becoming a dive professional. It makes sense right? I need to have quality rescue skills if I am to be entrusted with the safety of divers in the water. So with that in mind, taking a Rescue Diver course is a good idea if you ever plan on becoming a dive professional at any point in the future. So, there’s that…if you are going to be responsible for other divers you need training in Rescue. Which is why I took the course, but I was quick to find that I gained so much more from the course.
So, you don’t plan on ever being a dive professional. I completely understand, insurance, association fees and putting an element of work into your leisure activity isn’t for everyone. The question then remains, do you want to be a better diver and dive buddy? Do you want to have the confidence to go into a dive knowing that you can handle a stressful situation before it becomes a full blown emergency? More so, do you want to have the skills to be able to survive an actual dive emergency? Well, if these questions are answered in the affirmative then perhaps there still exists a reason to take a Rescue Diver course. For me, the skills I learned in the course actually made me a more competent diver. By learning how to rescue my buddy and deal with situations in a slow, calm and methodical manner I quickly realized the true value of taking the course that went beyond another check in the box on my way to becoming a dive professional.
No matter that your reason for taking the Rescue Diver course, you will learn techniques for how to handle emergencies both underwater and on the surface, self rescue, coordinating a search and rescue/recovery effort in addition to becoming a more competent and safe diver overall. So the big question here is, no matter what your reasons why would you not want or need to take a Rescue Diver course? Your own as well as your buddy’s safety may very well depend on your skills!