What should I focus on now that I’m certified as a diver?

Congratulations on being a diver and joining the club as an adventurer!

After getting certified as an Open Water diver, the choice of courses, trips, and equipment seems endless.

What’s the next adventure you should embark on? And what should you spend on to maximize your enjoyment?

More diving?

Getting more diving done is always a good choice.

Your enthusiasm for diving is still running high, and there are so many places to go and things to see.

There are a lot of different types of diving out there, like strong drift dives, altitude diving, muck diving, liveaboard diving, underwater photography, etc.

Divers preparing for a boat dive

Divers preparing for a boat dive

Gaining experience in all of these different diving environments is necessary to make a well-rounded diver.

However, with heavy travel expenses, and expensive resorts and boats, perhaps being more equipped would help with your overall experience?

More equipment?

What about buying new dive equipment for your next adventure? Would that be a wise way to spend your resources?

I think personal dive equipment is important when the fit is a primary concern like wetsuits, booties, and masks.

These can be purchased early on, as long as you find something that is suitable for where you plan to dive.

Colorful Halcyon wings for sale at Livingseas Jakarta

These items are not very expensive, and with a good fit, they will ensure you remain comfortable on your trip.

However, with bigger items where the function is more important, like BCDs, regs, and fins, buyers should really understand how they dive before taking the plunge and spending.

Different brands and models are designed for specific purposes and dive techniques.

If you’re not informed, it’s easy to make a bad purchase on equipment that will either not grow and scale with your diving, or will not last long with regular use.

The second-hand market for dive gear is huge, and most of the time, people are selling old gear to upgrade to better gear that will better serve how they dive.

In the interest of not creating any more waste than we need to, I believe that being better informed about dive gear will allow divers to make a purchase once with good gear that will last you your entire diving life.

More courses?

What about spending on taking more courses and increasing your dive knowledge?

Certain courses will teach you to be more comfortable in the water, and increase your dive skills.

I believe strongly that improving this has a positive effect on all your future dives.

Once you are truly comfortable and can manage your position in the water well, then all dives you do will be more enjoyable dives.

New Divers on the surface

Less fear, less confusion about what to do, and ultimately, more enjoyment!

I firmly believe that getting to this point in your diving is the first thing you should invest in, as this has the biggest benefits to your diving.

 

Develop a passion for learning. If you do, you will never cease to grow.
– Anthony J. D’Angelo

 

I do think that gaining more knowledge through courses and experiences make one a better diver.

It also provides a path to understanding yourself and dive gear better too, leading to better and more informed choices about the kinds of gear that you want.

Make an investment in yourself today!

Leon Boey is a GUE, HSA and PADI instructor based in Singapore and Bali. He runs the dive education centre Livingseas in Singapore, Bali and Jakarta. Diving since 2005, he first fell in love with wrecks. He enjoys all sorts of diving, and loves being surrounded by fish.

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