The when, the how, and the why of the PADI Master Scuba Diver rating

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Master Scuba Divers, and those working towards this rating, are really important customers for your business. Those working towards their Master Scuba Diver credential are more likely to be interested in local diving, in diving holidays and also equipment ownership. Building a Master Scuba Diver program for your divers that can be completed in small chunks over any period of time, makes it an ideal long term goal for them.

From the divers’ perspective, it’s a worthy aspiration, and a goal they can set for themselves right at the beginning of their diving education. For those who don’t want to travel down the professional route, it’s an alternative challenge, however, for many it’s an additional credential to aim for alongside their path to a PADI Professional rating. Most importantly, divers are motivated to continue their education, exploration and understanding of the underwater world, which is a winning formula for everyone.

When Should I introduce Master Scuba Diver?

Introduce this level as the goal for every diver early in their training, and continue to encourage them whenever they dive with you or join another course. If divers don’t yet meet the experience requirements don’t look at this as a barrier, but as an opportunity to offer them a PADI specialty course to gain experience under your expert guidance and don’t forget PADI TecRec courses count too!

An Open Water Diver who enrols onto a Peak Performance Buoyancy course, for example, is already working toward their Master Scuba Diver certification by securing their first specialty.  An Advanced Open Water student, for example, is simultaneously working on five specialties, related to the Adventure dives.

A very powerful way of introducing PADI Specialty Diver certifications to your students is through the Open Water Diver specialty links. Many Specialties can be partially taught alongside the Open Water Diver course, with your students simply completing the balance of a specific Specialty diver course (such as Boat Diver, Dry Suit Diver, Altitude Diver or Enriched Air Diver) during a fifth training dive after their last open water dive. Once your students have received their first Specialty certification so early on in their training, it becomes a natural progression to attain more, as well as helping them to move toward the Advanced Open Water Diver certification.

In addition to linking the Specialty courses to your Open Water Diver courses, you can also link your Open Water divers to the Rescue Diver course by introducing Rescue Diver skills to Open Water Divers. PADI Open Water Divers may participate in knowledge development and rescue exercises in confined water. This allows you to maximize your attendance on Rescue Diver courses by opening these sessions out to OW and AOW divers and it certainly gets them interested in what they might experience as a Rescue Diver student. Do keep in mind that Open Water Divers will need to attain Adventure Diver status, including Underwater Navigation, before taking part in open water elements of the Rescue Diver course.

Tips for Marketing the Master Scuba Diver program?

PADI specialties themselves cover a huge variety of diving, from marine identification, to photography, to wreck diving to interest your divers, so offer the specialties you are passionate about and that showcase your local diving (or where your dive trips are planned). This allows you to tailor your Master Scuba Diver program to particular interests or environments. For example, you could offer a cold water Master Scuba Diver program, and include Dry Suit Diver, Enriched Air Diver, Wreck Diver, Deep Diver and Equipment Specialty courses. Other options might be an environmentally oriented program, that includes Underwater Naturalist, AWARE Shark Conservation, Peak Performance Buoyancy, Digital Underwater Photographer and Project AWARE, or a more technical program might include Recreational Sidemount, Gas Blender, SMB Diver, Tec 40, and Tec 45. The key is to have several options that are of interest to a broad range of students and to ensure your marketing highlights the theme of the Topic.

Recognition is hugely important

The PADI Master Scuba Diver certification is the highest non-professional level certification in the PADI system. Showing your existing Master Scuba Divers the respect they have earned by achieving the ‘black belt’ of recreational diving will encourage other divers to aim for this level.  Be sure to recognise those achieving this level on a recognition board in the centre and online, in your newsletters and on your social media pages.

And the Standards?

PADI Master Scuba Divers are Advanced Open Water and Rescue Divers with five PADI specialties and at least fifty logged dives, and the credential is available for Junior Divers as well. Divers joining PADI from other organisations can count their core level certifications, but specialties and technical diver training must be PADI certifications. Once your student meets these requirements, you certify them using a special Master Scuba Diver application. This application can be downloaded from the PADI Pro Site, and remember you only need to be a PADI Open Water Scuba Instructor or higher to sign off Master Scuba Diver applications.

Time limited Special Offers

To help you promote Master Scuba Diver we have two great offers:

FOR DIVERS: Free ecard with Master Scuba Diver Applications until the end of 2015 Show your divers your own ecards, so that they know what these look like.

FOR PADI MEMBERS: Five specialty diver manuals for the price of four until the end of September 2015!

So, what are you waiting for? Your divers are already working towards becoming PADI Master Scuba Divers, all you need to do is let them know!

The post The when, the how, and the why of the PADI Master Scuba Diver rating appeared first on PADIProsEurope.

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