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padi instructor course
furion1983 - 8/21/2015 3:02 PM
Category: Training
Replies: 7

I Am getting ready to take on the idc next month. Just wondering if anyone can give some advice to me about being a good instructor. My background of teaching is more or less military weapons use and saftey. Now I know I cant talk to cilvians the same way and I have been out for ten years so Im pretty much adjusted to it. Im certified through nase now just as an advanced diver/nitrox and I had a really good teacher. I want to be like/better than him not saying there is anything wrong with his teachings just saying. what should I really hone in on. I wanna be the best I can be. So reality is whats the do’s and dont’s. Thanks in advance
furion1983 - 8/22/2015 6:55 AM
Thanks. Thats probably the best answer I’ll ever get on this. Answered things I didnt ask which was on point. Yes your right agency does not make a good instructor. The only reason I’m switching is because my va will pay for the padi course where nase has not set nothing up for that. I feel I got a good base from my teacher and I feel that I picked some things up from him. I have noticed watching a few classes is that most people will think if that person can do it I can do it. My teacher well he gets everyone to think that he only has one leg. Which that alone put myself at ease. Im a competitive person by nature and seeing him with one leg doing it instantly made me think if he can i can and now its hard to get me out of the water no because of that. Well I’m not trying to write a book here but your response was dead on what i was looking for Thank you.
SeaGoat - 8/22/2015 1:16 PM
Tamara put it very well.

The one thing I would add is patience. When I began to dive, I was afraid of putting my head under water (Yes, seriously!) and it took me almost 6 months to get through Open Water training. During this time, I had two instructors and both of them gave the impression of having all the time in the world for me and let me work through my issues at my own pace. Ten years later, I became an instructor myself and I have never seen another diver have as many problems as I did. In hindsight, I think I forced them to learn new teaching techniques and I was an excellent problem child for their dive master candidates.

I encourage my students to let me know when they are uncomfortable in their gear or even a bit nervous. Usually just a small adjustment or a different explanation will make them more comfortable and, in turn, make your job easier underwater.

Finally, never underestimate the power of eye contact or touch. One of my instructors let me hold his hand and it really put me at ease. He said he did it because he could always tell how a student was doing according to whether they tensed up or relaxed. I do it all the time now.
RAWalker - 8/24/2015 2:15 PM
Take what Tstordiver wrote and combine it with a solid prescriptive learning/teaching program such as PADI’s and from the onset resolve to be conservative with your student ratio and not cut any corners.
Safety first.
Finally consider; that although we love the sport and want to pass it on to as many people as possible... The sport is not for everyone. In some cases the best thing you can do is be honest with a student who would present a danger to themselves and their buddies.
Cheshirecat - 8/25/2015 12:38 PM
I agree with Tamara and Angi. Patience goes a long way in making a good instuctor. I have experienced those with and those without. Now, don’t get me wrong, I have yet to encounter any instructor who was just downright rude and unwilling to work with me. It was more the subtle actions they had that let me know whether they were impatient or willing to let me take it at my own pace. For instance, I had a group of four, yes four...instructors that took a group down and left me at the surface to decend when I was ready. I felt really bad and I truly was attempting to get it together. On the other hand, I had an instructor who stayed with me on the surface and let me know it was perfectly okay to cancel the dive if I wasn’t feeling ready. I told her I was determined to get it done and we decended together.

Having a DM that can assist you in the training is invaluable. During instruction they can help you remember the skills or take students who may be struggling a little to the side for some one-on-one instruction.

Just the fact that you’re willing to ask this question demonstrates that you have the right attitude towards being an instructor and that deserves kudos!
SaipanDeep - 9/20/2015 12:51 PM
Try to find out something about each student, and actually bond a little on a personal level. Use that info when you teach to make the lesson relevant. "Don’t stand the tank on end, Bob. If your 3 year old is with you that day, it could fall on him and crush his little toes."
furion1983 - 9/30/2015 3:51 PM
Ok just so i put up an update for anyone wondering. I am now starting dive master. Whoowhoo a lot of info to processalot of books to read but im getting there. Thanks for any support and best wishes with this ill update my profile when i get through the IE. Till then keep diving.