Photos by Tony Gilbert.


You have become a PADI Open Water Diver, what is your next step? If you decide to get a few dives under your weight belt or to take your Advanced Open Water Diver Course, we are here to help. Here are our top five reasons to become a PADI Advanced Open Water Diver.

Advanced Open Water Diver Reason one: Improve your Navigation skills

One of the core dives in the Advanced Open Water Diver Course is Navigation. During this dive you repeat a few skills from your Open Water Course and take them a step further. Whilst on your Open Water Course you will have learnt how to set a bearing and use a compass on the surface. You then descend and practice reciprocal bearings (there and back). On the Advanced Open Water Diver Course you practise these skills from your Open Water and then add on a square navigation pattern. This tests how accurate your bearings are, you need to make four turns, count your kick cycles and all of this takes concentration to get right. You will also learn how to measure distance underwater using fin kicks and elapsed time. On your next dive you can make sure you know exactly where you are.

Advanced open Water Diver: Navigation

Advanced Open Water Diver Reason two: Explore deeper water

As an Open Water Diver you are limited to 18m, with the Advanced Open Water Course you can dive to 30m. This opens up a world of diving and allows you to explore more dive sites. On this deep dive you will learn the safety procedures associated with diving deeper, the effect it will have on your mind and body and how colour changes at depth. This one is a favourite of ours.

Advanced Open Water Diver: Deeper

Advanced Open Water Diver Reason three: Improve your buoyancy

This one happens in two ways. You can complete a Peak Performance buoyancy dive, where you focus entirely on your buoyancy and trim. This dive takes you through hovering and fine tuning your position in the water. The second option is you will be completing five dives with an instructor who will give you help and advice, on all five dives on how to improve your buoyancy and trim. This is in our nature, as Instructors. We want you to become the best diver you can be. At NHDC, we always recommend the Peak Performance Buoyancy dive.

Advanced Open Water Diver: Wrecks

Advanced Open Water Diver Reason four: Explore specialties

Part of the fun of the Advanced Open Water Course is that you get to try out different types of diving. We all get into diving for different reasons, this is the course that lets you explore your diving options. Whether you want to explore wrecks, identify fish, take stunning underwater photos or get your gadget fix on a DPV, you can try out all types of diving. These adventure dives count as the first dive of your specialty course.

Advanced Open Water Diver: DPV

Advanced Open Water Diver Reason five: Increase your confidence

When you are learning to become a diver, the amount of information can be overwhelming and a little off putting. By continuing your diving you are becoming a safer diver. When you increase your knowledge, you will feel more prepared by the end of the course. By taking steps and learning more your confidence will grow. The more you dive, the more your confidence will grow.