The Open Water Diver Course is your entry into the world of scuba certification, making you a certified scuba diver. If you are someone who enjoys being in the water and wants to explore the remaining 70% of our planet, then this course is meant for you. This is also a gateway to professional scuba diving for those of you who want to take it further and pursue scuba as a career option. During your Open Water course, which will span over a period of 4 days, you will learn a number of skills which will enable you to assemble and use your own scuba equipment and gear, manage your buoyancy, handle common issues that might arise and overall make you a more skilled and confident diver. The course will be conducted by a highly trained and certified scuba instructor. By the end of the course, you will have the required knowledge and certification for you to dive anywhere in the world. We are offering the opportunity to start your scuba certification in the depths of the ocean in Puducherry, on India’s east coast. Closely located to Chennai, Puducherry is easily accessible by road from the airport and the railway station. Not only is it easier to reach but it is also a great diving destination for entry level scuba certification. Waters off the coast of Puducherry create ideal conditions to become a confident scuba diver, subjecting you to just the right amount of current and swell. The underwater world in Puducherry is also rich in marine biodiversity allowing you to spot batfish, octopuses and even whale sharks if you are out on a lucky day! Unlike other dive destinations which are seasonal, Puducherry has suitable conditions for diving throughout the year. While diving activities are conducted on a regular basis, the best time to dive is between February to April for calm water conditions and high visibility underwater. There are certain prerequisite skills to sign up for the Open Water course. One should be able to swim 200m comfortably and float for 10 minutes apart from being medically fit to take up the course. There is also a theory eLearning course which has to be completed prior to reaching the dive destination. Your practical skills will only begin once these requirements have been met. Important Note: In case you are travelling by air, please check with us before booking your flight. It is recommended that you do not fly for 24 hours after your last dive to avoid any issues pertaining to decompression sickness.
Please note, we also offer a 2 day Discover Scuba Diving program for those who want to experience scuba diving before committing to a certificate course.
Introduction and Confined Water Skills
Duration: 4-5 hours
The first day is reserved to make your way to Puducherry. The drive from the Chennai airport takes around 3 hours - the road goes by the sea, giving you a taste of the coastal life. The drive takes you through many small towns and villages with tea shops which can serve as worthy pit-stops, if you might need any. Once in Puducherry, you can check into your hotel and have lunch. If you are willing to explore, Puducherry is home to beautiful artisanal cafes and restaurants which offer a variety of cuisines.
Post lunch, we assist you to the dive shop to brief you about the program and all that is in store for you for the next two days. Once this is done, your assigned instructor takes your sizing to provide you with the perfect fit for your Buoyancy Control Device (BCD), wetsuit, fins and snorkel mask. The number weights you are required to wear will also be determined simultaneously. It is important to have the right size and weights to ensure that your dive experience is comfortable and enjoyable.
You are then acquainted with the equipment and your instructor will teach you how to assemble the gear. As an Open Water student, you will assemble and handle all your equipment by yourself on the boat and in the water. Therefore, it is extremely important to pay attention and learn the process in great detail. You will be asked to demonstrate the assembly of your gear 2-3 times to ensure you are thorough with the process.
Once you have perfected assembling the gear, it’s time to get into the pool! This is where your swimming and floating abilities will be put to test. Your swim test requires you to swim 200m at a stretch and your float test requires you to float for 10 minutes. Please note that it is mandatory to clear these tests before moving on to your confined water skills.
For the confined water skills, you will wear all your scuba equipment and get into the shallow end of the pool. As part of the training, you will be taught hand signals and 24 different skills which your instructor will first demonstrate and ask you to repeat. These are taught over a period of two days. On this day, your training is limited to the skills taught in the shallow water. The shallow water skills include learning hand signals, use, clearance and recovery of the regulator, mask clearance, removal and replacement among a few others. Each skill is technical in its own way and your instructor will be guiding you throughout the training. It is important that you take your own time and do not hesitate from asking questions or requesting the instructor to repeat a skill until you are comfortable.
Once the pool session for the day is completed, you can help yourself to some refreshments that will be provided to you at the dive shop. Your dive instructor will then inform you about the schedule for the next day and your reporting time.
You can spend the rest of the evening exploring Puducherry’s beaches, french colonies and markets.
Confined Water Skills
Duration: 4-5 hours
Today will be a long and challenging day so have an early breakfast and arrive at the dive shop at a time indicated by your instructor. Day 2 of your confined water skills will begin on the deeper end of the pool. On this day, you learn the remaining skills which include equalising, cramp release, neutral buoyancy, no mask swim, emergency ascent procedures to name a few. The skills you learn today are extremely important in the process of making you a confident and safe diver. It is completely natural if you are overwhelmed during the learning process, so be sure to ask your instructor for breaks and take your own time in perfecting each skill. This will help you be more calm and confident when you are in the ocean.
Once your confined water skills are completed, you will be taught how to disassemble your equipment and you are good to jump into the ocean!
Be sure to get lots of rest and eat well in order to be fit for your ocean dives tomorrow. The instructor will inform you about the timing at which the boat is scheduled to depart from the jetty. Please make sure you arrive accordingly and on time at the dive shop so we can escort you to the boat. The boat rides in Puducherry can get a little rocky and if you are someone who experiences motion sickness then inform your instructor so they can give you medicines to help with the same.
Dive 1 & 2 of Open Water Dives
Duration: 4-5 hours
Are you ready to hit the waters and put your skills to test? Today you will officially open the account for your dives! There are two dives scheduled for today, during which you will perform the skills you learnt over the past two days. We will be diving to a maximum depth of 18m. Enroute the dive site, the instructor will brief you about the first dive and skills that you have to perform underwater. You are given a dive computer, the functioning of which shall be explained to you by your instructor. You and your instructor then proceed to kit up and put your gear in place.
On arriving at the dive site, your instructor demonstrates an entry method into the water (giant stride or roll back), which you will repeat. Once you are at the mooring line with your instructor, you perform a buddy check to make sure both of your equipment and gear is in place and in good working condition. During your descent, ensure you start equalising very early and at regular intervals. When you reach the desired depth, your instructor will ask you to perform the skills mentioned by him. Upon successfully completing these skills, you can swim around the dive site and see the underwater plants and marine life which are a treat to the eyes.
Each dive lasts 35-40 minutes depending on your air consumption. Once your instructor signals for ascent, you both will make a safety stop between 5m to 3m for 3 minutes. You learn about the safety stop during your theory and your instructor will also explain its importance to you.
There will be a surface interval between your dives, during which you can get some rest and hydrate yourself well for the next dive.
The same process is repeated for the second dive where you perform a different set of skills as indicated by your instructor. Amidst all the skill performance do not forget to enjoy the underwater world and explore the dive site to its full extent! While it is normal to be anxious about clearing the skills, try to not worry about them too much. Have fun during the dive and your instructor will be with you throughout.
We head back for the day and get ample rest and lots of food to energise ourselves for tomorrow!
Dive 3 & 4 of Open Water Dives
Duration: 4-5 hours
Today is the day you get certified as an Open Water Diver! Similar to yesterday, there will be two dives scheduled, each with different skill sets that you will perform. After yesterday, you will be more comfortable and accustomed to breathing and using your equipment under water. Spend as much time as you can swimming around the reef to spot different species of marine life. Whether or not you decide to dive further, you will learn that each dive is unique in its own way and it is important that you make the best of it.
Upon completing both your dives for the day, celebrations await! You are now an Open Water Diver, certified to dive anywhere in the world! You have come a long way and learnt so much in the process of becoming a certified scuba diver.
After getting some rest and having some snacks stocked up on the boat, we head back to the dive shop. At the dive shop, your instructor will provide you with feedback about your performance and the aspects on which you can improve. You will receive a log book in which you should log your dives with all the relevant information. Your dive instructor will guide you through it. They will then proceed to officially certify you and provide you with a Professional Association of Dive Instructors (PADI) certificate that is recognised in dive centres across the world.
You can spend the rest of your day in Puducherry and celebrate your achievement to the maximum extent possible!
If you're looking to do a Discover Scuba Diving program, then no, swimming skills are not a prerequisite. However, you should be able to swim 200m and float for 10 minutes to take part in the Open Water Diver course.
As a Discover Scuba Diver, one will be diving to a maximum depth of 12m or 40 ft. As an Open Water Diver, one will be diving to a maximum depth of 30m or 100 ft.
Yes, you can. It is recommended that you use a menstrual cup or tampon while diving.
If you are someone who experiences motion sickness, it is highly likely that you will get seasick. However, this is very common on the boat and we prescribe medicines to avoid the same.
Carry a towel, change of clothes, sunscreen and a bottle of water.
The dive package does not include your transfers from the airport/railway station, accommodation and food. Please make arrangements for the same. You can reach out to us for any assistance in making these arrangements.
The minimum age requirement is 10 years and there is no upper limit.
The course costs include the rental fee for scuba equipment. However, you may choose to purchase your own equipment as you progress further and plan to take up scuba professionally.
No, you should not be diving in the event that you are experiencing symptoms of cold, cough or throat pain. It could lead to complications during the dive, so it's best to avoid it.
All Open Water and Advanced Open Water divers will be certified by PADI at the end of their course. The Discover Scuba Diving program is not a PADI certified course but you will be receiving a certificate from us for completing the same.
There is no fitness benchmark as such to be able to scuba dive. However, an average fitness level will help you dive better and enjoy your time underwater. Those enrolling for the Open Water course need to be able to swim 200m and float for 10 minutes.
Yes, you can still dive if you wear prescription glasses. Vision underwater is a lot more magnified so people with low power do not have to wear lenses or prescription masks while diving. However, if your power is high, you might need your lenses or a prescription mask. Please check with our dive professionals about the same during your enrollment.
Typically, dives last anywhere between 30-45 mins. It could be less or more than that depending on your air consumption underwater.
No, running out of air underwater is extremely unlikely as you and the dive professional assisting you would constantly keep tabs on how much air you have left using the gauge which is part of your equipment.
Yes. It is a safe diving practice to let your instructor or dive professional know in case of any issue or discomfort that you are facing. The first goal of scuba diving is to always return safely back to the surface. Please do not hesitate from ending the dive in such situations.
Cancellations up to 30 days prior to departure date
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Cancellations up to 5 days prior to departure date
Cancellations less than 5 days prior to departure
Prajjwal Rawat 07 September 2022
Regulator Recovery is a common skill taught to people who sign up for Discover Scuba Diving and the Open Water Diver course. As a diver, it is important that you know how to recover the regulator inRead More