5 Ways Becoming a PADI Dive Instructor Benefits You in the Real World

There’s a lot more to being a PADI Instructor than being a great diver (but of course that helps). A good instructor is also: an engaging public speaker, someone who can anticipate a student’s needs, and someone who can break down complicated topics into easy-to-understand chunks.

These skills, learned in the PADI Instructor Development Course (IDC), are also incredibly helpful in the real world. Instructor candidates tell us frequently how PADI instructor training improved their ability to communicate ideas, bolstered their confidence in public speaking, and taught them how to give constructive criticism to others. For example: at the PADI Office, it’s not uncommon for staff members to (half-jokingly) use an IDC technique to enforce office etiquette:

“I really liked the way you – keep the break room clean. However, I noticed someone forgot to – make more coffee when the pot is empty. Remember, it’s important to keep your co-workers caffeinated.”

While some people are natural instructors, many people begin their PADI Instructor course wondering, “how on earth am I going to teach someone how to breathe underwater?” That’s where a PADI Course Director gets to work his or her magic. Using the PADI system of education, instructor candidates learn how to organize and present information, conduct skill development sessions, and manage open water dive training. By the end of the IDC, instructor candidates walk away with a noggin full of knowledge and the ability to confidently explain and present information.

In addition to improving your public speaking and in-water skills, the IDC is a great way to network with interesting people. Divers who go through a Divemaster or IDC course learn a lot about each other, grow together, and form a special bond.

If you’re dissatisfied with your current job, becoming a PADI Instructor will level-up key job skills and open new doors. PADI Dive Instructors are the most sought after scuba professionals in the world. Once you’re a PADI Pro, a quick look at the job board on the PADI Pros Site pulls up jobs in dozens of countries.

Even if being a full-time scuba instructor isn’t your cup of tea, working part-time as an instructor or dive guide is a great way to supplement other freelance work close to home or in a tropical paradise. You may also be able to earn college credit. Last, but certainly not least, being a PADI Pro and transforming the lives of others is extremely rewarding.

Learn more about becoming a dive instructor, or peruse some of the scuba diving careers available to PADI Pros. Or, contact your local PADI Dive Center or Resort to enroll in an upcoming Divemaster or IDC course.

A PADI Divemaster Certification is just the Beginning

Working in a PADI Dive Center, Rescue Diver Lucy Crow not only gained her PADI Divemaster qualification but so much more.

“I started working with Ocean Turtle Diving doing some work experience. I had wanted to to do my PADI Divemaster for a while and decided that it was a great opportunity to start it with them. I must say that it was one of the best experiences of my diving life.

I am not a big reader most days, however, I started reading the Divemaster Manual and found it so interesting. If there were bits that I didn’t understand or had questions on, I knew that I would have the team’s full support to help me out.

It came to the theory exam day and because of my PADI Instructor’s support I felt confident about what I had learnt. I went in with a smile. We sat down as a group and went through the manual. There were three students there and we were all as happy as each other. We then completed the exam and all came out smiling. I could now focus on getting through the pool sessions and becoming fit enough to meet these performance requirements.

By January I had not only completed my PADI Divemaster course but also all of the training in the dive centre itself. I really enjoyed learning the ins and outs of how the dive centre ran and meeting new and exciting customers almost every day. There was always something new to learn.  I asked if I could continue to work there and was given an amazing opportunity for a Saturday job. Over six months later I am still working at the dive centre and love it.

Being a PADI Divemaster is not only about having professional level knowledge but also about being aware that people learning to dive may be nervous or scared. The best thing about working in the dive centre has been the staff and the customers combined. It is like my second family here. They have built up not only my knowledge of diving but my confidence overall.”

PADI Divemaster Teaching Opportunities Expanded

As an Active status PADI Divemaster, you will be able to find work all over the world in an endless supply of exciting locations. World-class house reefs become your office and not just another desktop screen saver. The world is your oyster! Where will your adventure as a PADI Divemaster take you?

What you can do as an authorised PADI Divemaster:

  • Supervise training and non-training related diving activities
  • Conduct dive briefings, scuba reviews, PADI ReActivate and skin diver course
  • Assist in Discover Scuba Diving programs and lead additional dives
  • Lead Discover Local Diving programs
  • Teach these specialty courses without dives:
    • Equipment Specialist
    • Coral Reef Conservation
    • Project AWARE Specialist
    • PADI Distinctive Specialty Diver courses that don’t include dives
    • Digital Underwater Photographer
    • Emergency Oxygen Provider

Take a look at the Third Quarter 2017 Training Bulletin to find out how to qualify to teach these specialty courses. Stand out from the crowd and expand your PADI Divemaster teaching opportunities…who knows where your next PADI Pro Adventure will take you!

 

 

Living the Divemaster Life – Birgitta Mueck

Born and raised on the island of Orust, on the west coast of Sweden, Birgitta Mueck’s love and curiosity for the wilderness led her to become an underwater camera operator, guide, PADI Divemaster and PADI AmbassaDiver. 

Picture Credit: Nanna Mueck

We caught up with Birgitta to find out more about her adventures as a                   PADI Divemaster !  


When did you know that you wanted to become a PADI Divemaster?

The idea of becoming a PADI Divemaster is something that slowly and steadily grew with me. Whilst working as an underwater camera operator, we produced films to help promote interest and understanding for life hidden beneath the waves. Becoming a PADI Divemaster felt like a great opportunity to be able to share these wonderful experiences as-well as my love and admiration for the ocean with others. Not much beats the feeling of sharing amazing experiences – it inspires, spreads smiles, creates friendships and gives unforgettable moments.

When and where did you become a PADI Divemaster?

I signed up for my PADI Divemaster course at Blue Adventures Diving in Crete, Greece during the summer of 2012. Completing the PADI Divemaster course and working with Blue Adventures Diving was both very inspiring and lots of fun, a summer I look back on with a big smile!

Describe a typical day in your working life as a PADI Divemaster?

No day is the same, you meet so many wonderful people and experience something new every day. Regardless if working at dive centers or on live-a-boards, the days differ a lot depending on the setup, where you are and the local conditions which may vary daily. As I alternate between warm waters and freezing cold latitudes, such as Antarctica and the Arctic, my daily activities differ a lot. Having variety is also why I enjoy working as a PADI Divemaster so much!

Picture Credit: Antonis Markakos                                                                                                                    Great memories from Crete where Birgitta spent 6 wonderful months as a PADI Divemaster back in 2012

What have been your most memorable moments working as a PADI Divemaster?

That is a hard one as being a PADI Divemaster offers countless memorable moments. Dancing sea lions showing off in Antarctica, intimate curious Orca encounters in Northern Norway, beautiful and exciting cavern dives in the Mediterranean Sea to name a few… When working as a PADI Divemaster, the most important thing for me is that all guests have fun. Seeing their big smiles and their eagerness for more adventure, are my most memorable moments as a PADI Divemaster.

In 3 words, can you describe your experience being a Divemaster so far?

Fun, Social, Outdoors!

Picture Credit: Edik Skarina                                                                                                                           “Through my work I want to share my immense passion for the wonderful planet we are living on, to inspirit life, raise awareness and inspire others” Birgitta says.

What are your diving plans for the future?

I just returned to Sweden from a 6 month long sail and film expedition in Northern Norway, where we spent most of the winter filming for our ongoing film production which is a collaboration with Swedish National Television. For now, my next diving plans involve more diving and filming around the Swedish west coast and Norway. Due to my many different assignments and my own adventure projects, my life differs a lot each year. When possible, I like to keep myself flexible without planning ahead too much so I have more freedom to take up new opportunities as and when they arise.

I am  excited about many more upcoming adventures and am very much looking forward to continuing sharing my passion for wildlife and the underwater world, and spreading even more smiles as a PADI Divemaster!

Kuredu Express – One dive site, endless experiences

A favourite dive site of many guests, Kuredu Express is full of surprises – the varied topography coupled with the ever-changing current conditions mean it’s never the same dive twice. This well-known site is dived by Prodivers Kuredu 3-4 times a week, and during the last 10 years we’ve dived it a whopping 2337 times!

What makes Kuredu Express so alluring?

Currents

The ‘Express’ part of the site’s name comes from the currents that flow here – sometimes fast and furious, sometimes mild and mellow but often quickly changing. The outreef current and channel currents each play their part in how the site is dived, adding to the variety of diving on offer here. Due to the rapid changes in currents, divers can encounter a vast variety of marine life which makes diving on Kuredu Express a special and unique experience. With the right conditions this site can be accessible to most qualified divers.

Topography

It’s a dramatic site with three distinct areas – the sandy channel, the corner with large terraces and the huge overhangs or bays at the start of the outreef.

Sharks!

Famous as having one of the largest shark populations in the Lhaviyani Atoll, with the right conditions the shark action here can be mind blowing, but there’s more to the life on Kuredu Express than just sharks… there’s an enormous quantity of schooling fish, eagle rays, sting rays, napoleon, tuna and, on rare occasions, even hammerhead sharks. Turtles, moray eels, and even leaf fish have been found here too. If it’s the sharks that interest you, learn about them prior to a dive with them during our Maldivian Shark and Ray Diver course, a PADI Distinctive Specialty.

Great photographic opportunities

With a small current divers can take their time exploring the overhangs and getting great shots with blue water background and, when the current is pumping, simply hang on and enjoy the show unfold at the corner as the pelagic photobomb your every shot!

Location

Just 5 minutes from Kuredu jetty – it doesn’t get much more convenient than this.

On 12th April 2017, Laurie Miller, 40 time repeater guest on Kuredu, dived Kuredu Express for the 150th time. He is a passionate diver and his knowledge of marine life is impressive. We asked Laurie to share his views about our beloved Kuredu Express:

What is it about Kuredu Express that fascinates you?

“It’s like doing 3 dives in one. First you have the deep channel with nice overhangs where strong currents present the opportunity to see some of the bigger fish, then you have the outreef where we usually see the big Napoleons and lastly the bays where the fish life is booming.”

What are your most memorable moments on Kuredu Express?

“When the sharks are swimming between the divers. First time I’ve ever seen a Blacktip reef shark was on Express. One of the few places where you will find the Palette Surgeonfish, a.k.a. Blue Tang, a.k.a. Dory. I’ve seen the peacock flounder there as well.”

How would you sum up Kuredu Express?

“It’s a different experience with new challenges every time you do it because of the different currents.”

We left Laurie to enjoy the rest of his 40th stay on Kuredu, in fact he’s still here, enjoying diving free of charge as a special perk for visiting 40 times. Check out our generous Repeater Discount Program and you could follow in Laurie’s footsteps

The Art of a Good Dive Briefing

Thomas Fuller was an English clergyman from the 17th century with a flair for catchy sayings, such as “If you command wisely, you’ll be obeyed cheerfully”. As PADI Divemasters, you don’t necessarily command people – but your advice, direction (and ok, yes – occasionally your orders!) are regularly required by the divers you look after.

We caught up with PADI EMEA Instructor Examiner, Rich Somerset, for some tips on how to give a good dive briefing.


“Everyone has their own style and most of us develop our approach as we gain experience. As a new Divemaster, I was painfully shy when confronted with large groups of divers. I shamelessly took ideas, phrases and jokes from my more knowledgeable colleagues and found that I gradually gained confidence. Eventually I listened to the dive briefings of the newest dive guides at the store and realised that they had started borrowing comments from my dive briefings to build theirs; perhaps it is all part of the natural development of the art of dive briefing?”

So, Rich, in your opinion what will help PADI Divemasters give a really good dive brief?

“Make it accurate. Well duh! Actually, this may seem obvious, but it’s worth remembering that if you don’t give a briefing that is correct, everything else is wasted.  Winging it on any presentation is a bad idea. A good start  to ensure you deliver a comprehensive and to the point dive briefing is to review your Divemaster materials, particularly the briefing slates. Sometimes there are variables in diving that we cannot always account for: if you don’t know which way the current is going, either find out in advance, or be honest and make sure your divers are prepared to react to the conditions they face in the water.

Be visual. One of the best dive briefings I saw was delivered by an Egyptian Divemaster, who created a 3D model of the dive site on the dive deck from towels. Now we are not all as creative as that, but even if your art skills leave little to be desired, having some kind of diagram makes a big difference. Whiteboards are reasonably tough, inexpensive and waterproof, so they are the choice for most dive guides.

Be clear. We often have groups of divers who speak a range of languages. My greatest fault with my first dive briefings was a tendency to talk really really fast. I only realised this when one of my colleagues, who was trying to translate my briefing to part of a group, pointed it out. It takes a conscious effort to pace yourself; you need to slow down and remember to speak at a normal pace, or sometimes even a little slower.

Relax. Usually, we are far harder on ourselves than other people would be – don’t beat yourself up worrying about delivering a brief; if you pause or stutter over a word here or there, your divers won’t notice or mind.”

So if you find dive briefings a challenge, try throwing one or more of these tips into the next one you deliver; you may be surprised by how much of a difference it makes!

You can re-order your Divemaster Dive Briefing Slates (product number 60207) by contacting the PADI EMEA Sales Department at: sales.emea@padi.com

Can the “Best” Divemasters come from the “Worst” Divers?

By John Kinsella

Perhaps an instructor’s most important role is training fellow dive professionals; running a PADI® Divemaster course, as the book succinctly says, demands nothing less than your best effort. Ditto for the DM candidates.

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Speaking of effort, a recent candidate got me thinking about what it takes to make a really great PADI Divemaster. This person had to work hard at every step of the journey to PADI professional. Throughout the progression, from Open Water, to Advanced Open Water and Rescue, nothing came easy, but equally, nothing was allowed to get in the way. Often, skills had to be practiced time and time again to develop mastery; sometimes even to the consternation of fellow candidates who flew through the required skills and exercises. This was real world affirmation of the benefits of performance-based training.

It wasn’t easy for the DM training staff either; they had to put in extra effort too. From counseling sessions to restore confidence when if flagged to the extra time needed to make sure skills were performed comfortably and confidently, the trainers went the extra mile. What was notable in this context was how willing and selfless they were in response to the tremendous efforts the candidate made.

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The end result was that, with considerable time and effort, and constant good humor, this candidate prevailed and I have yet to meet someone who was more delighted with success. But the best was yet to come. I think, more than anything, it is the inherent understanding of the challenges people sometimes face and overcome while learning new dive skills, and the consequent empathy, that helped this new divemaster really blossom and become an invaluable and committed dive shop team member and one of the most popular divemasters with customers.

For those involved with professional development, and that should include all PADI Members, the basic message is clear. Sometimes it takes a bit of extra effort to help a DM (or other) candidate succeed. But work hard with people who try hard and the rewards can be worth it.

5 Reasons Why Being a PADI Divemaster is Awesome!

For many, achieving the PADI Divemaster certification is the ultimate dream. It offers the opportunity to travel and dive in some of the most exotic locations around the world, whilst sharing dive knowledge and skills with others one guided dive at a time.

Here are 5 reasons why working as a PADI Divemaster will continue to rock your underwater world.

1. While some jump straight from PADI Divemaster to PADI Open Water Scuba Instructor, you may wish to enjoy the long run, take your time and enjoy the ride. As a PADI Divemaster you will strengthen your dive skills and knowledge base, learning from peers at many dive locations around the world.

2. As a PADI Divemaster you have the opportunity to work in various locations around the world including dive resorts, live aboards, private yachts and cruise ships. The role of a PADI Divemaster is a varied one; meeting and greeting customers, socialising and entertaining, organising and supervising diving activities, assisting instructors, conducting some programmes independently, filling cylinders, maybe even helping in the dive shop. A big part of being a PADI Divemaster is leading others on underwater adventures. It is a lifestyle like no other. It is totally unrivalled and you get paid for doing what you love!

3. PADI Divemasters are role models, mentoring and motivating divers everywhere. Seeing the expressions of divers while experiencing the underwater world is something you will not forget.

4. You can participate in Marine Conservation Projects; a great way to get an insider’s view into the issues facing marine ecosystems. As a PADI Divemaster you can choose to get up close and dive with marine animals or conduct research on the underwater environment. Either way this experience is sure to be life changing.

5. Being a PADI Divemaster can open more doors and opportunities. Are you good with your hands? Many Dive Centres find PADI Divemasters who can repair and service regulators, cylinders, and work on compressors extremely useful. Perhaps photography is your talent? Remember, many divers are willing to pay a separate Divemaster to go out and photograph their dives. If you’ve got your Captain’s license or are multilingual you will no doubt be a highly sought after dive professional.

So, what are you waiting for? Jump in and enjoy the PADI Divemaster ride!  You might just learn something new.

 

Welcome PADI Divemasters!

“You have the best job in the world!” Every PADI Divemaster has, at some point, heard this statement from an envious diver who is faced with an impending return to the drudgery of day-to-day life. As PADI Professionals we know that these guys don’t see everything – all the early starts, the endless cylinder filling, the challenging moments that arise on dives – but deep down, we also know they are right.

You get to scuba dive as part of your work and that is pretty amazing!

There are PADI Divemasters on every continent who are diving in conditions of every kind and working with people from across the planet. You are however all linked by one common bond; your love of scuba diving and the lifestyle it has given you.

The PADI Divemaster Zone is for you – it aims to bring together the stories and knowledge of an enormously diverse group of PADI Professionals, specifically PADI Divemasters. You will find practical information and advice from the PADI Office, PADI Ambassadivers and also collective experiences from peers around the world.

So whether you are a seasoned Divemaster, or aspiring to join the Instructor ranks of PADI Professionals, welcome!

 

New PADI Divemaster promotional video available

PADI has just published a brand new promotional video on the PADI Producer YouTube Channel. The video focuses on the PADI Divemaster course, inspiring new and existing divers to take the next step and Go Pro.

Here’s a few ideas on how you can use this great new tool to help drive your business:

  • Share the video across your website and social media channels to inspire existing customers and even their non-diving friends to choose the PADI Professional lifestyle.
  • Play the video on-screen in your store to attract the attention of visitors to your shop who might be thinking of their next steps in diving.
  • Show the video as part of a final presentation at the end of the PADI Rescue Diver course to inspire your new Rescue Divers to  continue their adventures with you.
  • Include the video in an email newsletter targeted at your existing Rescue Divers along with a limited edition promotional offer to encourage course bookings.

The video link can be copied here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YE26EF5fy6Y

Check out the video below!