Is it worth doing an Advanced Scuba Diver Course?

Is it worth doing the Advanced Open Water Diver course? This is a question I often hear from students who have just completed the basic scuba diving course. It also often creates a misunderstanding that the advanced course, is for… advanced divers.

We need to make one thing clear at the outset. Diving is a never-ending adventure and the learning never ends. Today we are going to talk about the second step on a diver’s educational path, namely the Advanced Course. I will try to answer the questions why it is worth completing this course and whether it can be done right after the Open Water Diver course. Here we go!

Is it worth doing an PADI Advanced course?

There is a part of divers who immediately swallowed the so-called “bug” and want to dive a lot and improve their qualifications. A large number of divers immediately after completing basic training immediately sign up for the Advanced Open Water Diver course. Certainly with each dive you will begin to feel more and more confident under the surface of the water.

Slowly you begin to get used to your new surroundings, you feel more joy in the diving itself, and the exercises performed during the Open Water Diver course turn out to be almost trivial. And suddenly you get the desire to expand your skills and see what’s deeper, what a wreck resting on the bottom hides, what life is like on a coral reef in the middle of the night, or the simple desire to increase your no-decompression times. If similar thoughts and desires are going through your mind, it’s a sign that you should seriously consider the PADI Advanced Open Water Diver course.

Why should you become an advanced diver?

The most important reason for becoming a PADI Advanced Open Water Diver is the change in maximum depth to 30 meters. This is almost the second as much as you get after the basic course. As a reminder, it is worth adding that after the OWD course, any diver can dive to a depth of 18 meters. Being at greater depths can make us euphoric, and we will certainly experience completely different sensations and emotions than during a shallower dive.

scuba diving course padi aowd
What is the Advanced Scuba course?

But of course, it’s not just depth that’s important. In fact, the most important thing is the experience and additional skills you will gain on the advanced scuba diving course. During the course you will work on your perfect buoyancy and perform many interesting exercises. All of this is designed to prepare you for even more interesting dives that you will be able to make as an advanced diver.

What will you learn on the Advanced Diver course?

During the PADI Advanced Open Water diver course you will be able to practice previously learned skills at greater depths, see for yourself what nitrogen narcosis is and how to deal with it. You will experience how pressure at a depth of 30 meters affects you and the objects around you. You’ll see why it’s a good idea to use a diving flashlight, even if you’re diving during the day. In addition, you will learn how to use a dive compass and gain knowledge about the physical aspects of being at greater depths. Or maybe even learn to use underwater scooters – DPV.

What are the requirements for the PADI AOWD course?

The first and most important criterion is age. The minimum age is 12 to obtain the PADI Junior AOWD degree. Then the depth limit is limited to 21 meters. If you are older than 15, then the depth limit is 30 meters.

padi advanced open water course
How to start the PADI advanced course?

The second criterion is that you must have PADI Open Water Diver license or equivalent credentials from other scuba diving organization. This is a kind of confirmation that you have mastered the basics of diving and are ready to upgrade your qualifications. In addition, you should be in good mental and physical condition with no health problems.

We dive into the unknown

During Advanced Open Water Diver training, you will perform 5 dives, over two days. According to the standards and credit requirements, it is mandatory to perform a deep dive and a navigation dive. You will be able to choose the other three types of dives on your own from those available at the dive center.

At our authorized PADI dive center in Costa Rica, we perform Peak Performance Buoyancy, Fish ID and Search and Recovery dives as part of the advanced course. We also have other options, by special request.

Deep diving

Deep diving is a mandatory part of the advanced diver course. As you already know, after this course your depth limit will be increased to 30m. This does not mean that you have to reach this limit during the course. However, the rule is that this dive must be made to a depth greater than 18 meters.

To show you the difference in deep dives, before the dive the instructor will ask you to perform a simple exercise. Depending on the conditions, this could be writing your name on a slate or arranging numbers in the correct order. You will then perform the same exercise at a depth of about 30 meters. You will be surprised and amazed at the difference in the time it takes to perform the same exercise on the surface and underwater.

how to start diving padi course
PADI Advanced Course

With this exercise you will learn in practice what nitrogen narcosis is, which occurs during deep dives. Nitrogen narcosis, despite the complicated name, is nothing dangerous. It occurs as a result of the action of nitrogen on our body under the influence of increased pressure at greater depth. Most divers experience it as a state of slight stupor, slowed thinking or cheerfulness. This state passes after a few minutes or when the depth is reduced. However, it is important for you to become familiar with this effect and not be afraid of it in the future.

Underwater navigation

During a navigation dive, you will learn how to operate a diving compass and how natural navigation can be used. However, before you grab the compass underwater, you will do some simple exercises on the surface. You will walk with the compass “on azimuth”.

These exercises are really cool and fun as long as they are conducted by an experienced and good instructor. And underwater navigation is one of the most important skills. Can you imagine going to the other side of the world to dive, and then getting lost underwater and seeing nothing more than sand…?

Can I do the advanced course right after the basic course?

Of course you can! An advanced course does not mean that you have to be an advanced diver to start it. This name is a bit unfortunate, as it often causes consternation among students. Advanced diving course means that after the course you will be more advanced in diving techniques and your knowledge will be much greater than after the basic course. Often we combine these two courses into one big course that lasts 5 days. So it doesn’t matter how many dives you have, between courses. You can start it right after completing the PADI Open Water diver course.

PADI Advanced Diver Course – let’s recap

An advanced scuba diving course is the next step to being a good and knowledgeable diver. Diving is a lot of fun and safe, but you are responsible for how you behave underwater. And for that you need knowledge and good training. Therefore, make yourself a diving gift and sign up for the PADI Advanced Open Water diver course now.