Why you should become a certified Open Water Diver
Did you ever had an urge to explore the ocean from another point of view than from the outside of the aquarium? To be able to swim with every kind of underwater species together, and not simply standing beside them, watching their weightlessness? It`s like little astronauts flying in their own universe. I had the urge for as long as I remember. Snorkeling is a good way to start to explore this universe: with many galaxies of coral reefs, fishes, ship wrecks and deep blue waters. But, like an astronaut with only his helmet on, your possibilities in the water are limited with just your snorkel. For me, it was time to put my space suit on. Next, I want to share with you the best reasons why everybody should get on his/her scuba equipment and become a certified Open Water Diver, and, especially why you should do it with Ocean Lovers here in Taganga, Colombia.
Finding the right dive center to get certified is very important. Because, on one hand you want professionals who can help you learn this amazing sport, help with your problems and overcome your fears, and most important care about you; on the other hand, you want to have good dive sites for seeing the really cool stuff. These are the reasons I did my Open Water here in Taganga with Ocean Lovers. For beginners, it is just perfect. From the start of the course until the end, I was well-prepared because of my instructors. Also, we have been diving in Tayrona National Park, which has ideal conditions: little current, great mix of corals and fish and good visibility. Also, of course, the family-like atmosphere and sometimes having a cold beer after the dive made it to a fantastic time for me.
As I told you before, diving is all about exploring something unexplored. This doesn´t change after the first dive or the 100th dive. Even for the divemaster’s or instructors I talked to, there is always something new to see. Of course, not everybody is sure if diving is for them. In that case, I recommend a discovery dive. It is like an introduction program to scuba diving and gives you a first taste of this fabulous world below the ocean surface. I’m sure it will help you with your decision. The good thing about this opportunity is that this dive can be credited towards your Open Water certification, if you decide to take that step. I think in everybody there is a little explorer; so, take this chance and make at least the first step and see yourself.
Eventually, after you take your first steps with a discovery dive, you might feel it´s not enough. You want more. At first, the discovery dives are great, because you can submerge into a different world; but, when you start your trip around the world to explore more galaxies, you might want to take more control of your safety. Therefore, an Open Water certification will help you gain knowledge and learn about be a safe and responsible diver. Being sure with what you doing underwater is the most important part of diving, especially when you are diving with your friends and family. The course helped me feel safer and much more comfortable underwater. This will have a big impact on how much I can enjoy my future dives.
Are you wondering what kind of knowledge and skills will be waiting for you learn? Well, in the three days it´s important for you to do your homework. There is some theoretical part of the course, that I have done with the PADI E-Learning App. I have actually started with it a few days before I met my instructor and get in the water. With the App it was very easy to study; I could take all the time I needed to review the exercises and then pass the final exam without any difficulties. On the first day of my training my instructor explained me all about the diving equipment and how to use it, and then we went to practice a lot of different exercises in shallow water. Some of them I found more challenging than others but my instructor was very patient and took the time to repeat them if needed. The second day was really exciting as I was going to do my first open water dives. A few of the learned skills from the day before I had to demonstrate during the dives, and I also learned from the start on how to dive with a dive computer and how to use an underwater compass, which made me feel a lot in control of where I am. On the third and final day of my course I went down to 18 meters depth and felt I got a great insight of our oceans. For getting certified you need a minimum of 4 open water dives. During all this dives you will perform some skills that you learned at the beginning and in each dive it feels to be easier and that you have more control about yourself in the water, and most importantly you will enjoy each time more the beauty of the underwater universe.
Getting certified, especially here in Taganga, has been the best decision of my life, and I will never regret it. So, don’t wait and start your own little expedition in our oceans.