A PADI Divemaster wears many hats: gear-wrangler, underwater guide, photographer, and sometimes even counselor. Over time, each divemaster develops a personal style, specializing in their own interests be it fish identification, or perhaps local history. Below are a few types of divemasters you may encounter:
The Comedian – The comedian divemaster delivers a dive briefing full of one-liners with the timing of a standup comic. The jokes aren’t always funny, but what they lack in quality, they make up for in quantity.
The Navigator – Even when visibility is so bad you can’t see your own fins, The Navigator somehow manages to bring the group back within a few meters of the exit point. At dive sites with a near-featureless bottom, The Navigator always finds the rocky outcropping full of life in a literal sea of nothingness.
The Prankster – If you’ve ever found yourself mobbed by fish only to discover someone put a cheese sandwich in your BC pocket – you’ve met the prankster DM. Other signature moves include Kool-Aid powder in the dive bootie and talc powder handprints in inappropriate places.
The Scout – The Scout was a shark in previous life. This divemaster can spot the faintest flicker of a big animal in the blue, and ably steers your dive group away from herds of others.
The Documentarian – The Documentarian divemaster has one eye on the group and the other behind the camera. This type of divemaster ensures every guest has a photo or video to post on social media after the dive, and challenges the Fish Whisperer as the most popular type of DM.
The Fish Whisperer – When The Fish Whisperer divemaster is around, all the bucket list animals come out to say hello. This type of DM can coax an eel out of its hole, speak fluent whale, and get their teeth cleaned by shrimp.
The Storyteller – A Storyteller DM knows the backstory of every shipwreck, and the origins of every dive site name. Their stories are so entertaining, you won’t want to know whether they’re true or not.
The Most Fascinating Divemaster in the Ocean – The Most Fascinating DM has “been there, dove that.” This DM learned to dive before boats were invented, and Conservation International insisted they start a digital logbook to preserve the world’s forests. This DM was there when Bikini Atoll was a one-piece and once met a Cousteau.
The Cat Herder – You’re always in good hands when diving with The Cat Herder. These DMs have developed an eerie prescience: able to predict when a diver is going to or chase a fish into the depths, or linger too long photographing a coral head. The Cat Herder is always ready to wake a diver from their trance and bring them safely back to the group.
The Medic – Whether you have an earache, a scrape or a stingy spot, The Medic divemaster is always prepared with a kind word and something to soothe the pain.
The Critter Nerd – A Critter Nerd knows the difference between a nudibranch and a flat worm and can identify their favorite marine gastropod mollusk – in Latin. They’re typically good friends with The Fish Whisperer who helps unite the nerd with the nembrotha lineolata.
The Mechanic – The Q of kit, the MacGyver of maritime activities, The Mechanic once made a rebreather from an old microwave and some surgical tubing. Whenever The Mechanic is around, no one misses a dive due to a gear problem.
The Concierge – More valuable above water than below, The Concierge knows the best place to fuel up before a morning dive, or unwind after a long day at the beach.
If you’re a PADI Divemaster looking to develop your personal style or discover your savant skill, enroll in a continuing education course such as: