Are you looking forward to becoming a professional scuba diver? Or are you intending to expand your scuba diving skills? If your answer to the two questions is yes, then there are important things you need to know before embarking on this journey to becoming a world-class skilled scuba diver.
But before you can even start showcasing your diving skills, you need to choose a dive organization that will help you to achieve your dream. Finding the right dive organization can be a challenging task especially for newcomers. This is because there are more than 50 scuba diving agencies all over and knowing the best one for you is not as simple as you may have thought.
Luckily, there is one general rule that can guide you accordingly when selecting your ideal scuba diving agency. This rule states that you should always go for the big ones if you truly want to have a certification that will enable you to scuba dive anywhere across the world. That is quite encouraging for someone who is eager to advance scuba diving skills and if possible, turn it into a meaningful career.
So, the question that should be lingering in your mind right now is how to know which agency is the best. In this article, you are going to have your question answered in full by learning more about two of the most preferred diving organizations, PADI vs NAUI. In the end, you will be able to tell the emerging differences between PADI and NAUI scuba diving certification.
PADI vs NAUI, which is better?
One thing you need to know is that for you to be considered a certified diver, you will need to complete the scuba diving course first. Most significantly, your training and certification need to be carried out by at least one of the recognized diving agencies/organizations that is authorized to issue certificates to the successfully trained divers.
Once an individual has obtained the scuba diving certificate, he or she will be able to dive anywhere. The certificate will automatically act as a diving license or rather proof of someone having successfully completed scuba diving training.
Therefore, the moment you become a fully certified diver, you may use your certificate to hire or rent scuba diving equipment from any shop. That is when PADI vs NAUI, two of the topmost diving agencies world overcome in.
PADI-Professional Association of Diving Instructors
Professional Association of Diving Instructors or PADI is a US-based organization and it is indeed the biggest and most famous scuba dive certification organization worldwide. The agency has been providing various types of performance-based diving training since 1966. Over the years, this agency has spread all over and at the moment, it has centers throughout the world. Apparently, more than half of skilled and highly experienced divers in the whole world have received their training and certification from PADI. Here are some interesting facts about PADI:
• The project award was set up by PADI in the year 1989. This was established as a global movement for all scuba divers to offer protection to our ocean planet.
• For the past two decades, PADI has been averaging over 900, 000 diving certifications each year.
• PADI provides recreational training as well as some variations of technical scuba dive training
NAUI-National Association of Underwater Instructors
NAUI is actually the oldest non-profit scuba certification organization. It was started way back in 1960 in the US where it is currently based. NAUI has been at the forefront of promoting safe diving by offering the recommended diving courses.
The organization provides diving training that is similar to that which is offered by PADI. Currently, it is the second to PADI when it comes to issuing of scuba diving certificates. The following are some of the most interesting facts about NAUI that you should know:
• Al Tillman is one of the organizations founding fathers and he became the first instructor from this agency.
• Captain Jacques-Yves Cousteau was one of the first members to sit on the NAUI board of directors.
• The agency offers both technical and recreational dive training.
PADI vs NAUI, what are the differences?
There are underlying differences as well as similarities between PADI and NAUI based on many factors. The bottom line is that both agencies offer outstanding scuba diving courses and certification that can make you stand out in the crowd. This means whichever agency you choose, you can rest assured that you will become a good diver.
PADI certification gives you an upper hand in exploring the underwater marine life if you are indeed an experienced and certified scuba diving enthusiast. This is only possible after enrolling and successfully completing the scuba diving course.
One example of such courses includes the PADI open-water certification. This type of training is regarded as the most common and one of the basic PADI certifications. Why is it considered to be the basic training under PADI certification? This is because the course is the first ever scuba diving certifications training that the newcomers are meant to enroll in order to be certified fully as scuba divers. From this basic course, the divers can easily qualify for the advanced diving courses just in case.
To qualify for PADI certification, you have to be 15 years old and over for you to start off with the PADI open water certification course. Apart from that, there is junior open- water training for kids aged between 10 and 12 years old. Once certified at the junior level, the kids can advance to standard level upon attaining the age of 15 years.
In addition to the age as a prerequisite for one to enroll for PADI Certification, your health status will also be considered. In other words, you need to be in good health for you to qualify for this training.
Phases of PADI Open-Water course
PADI open-water training requires you to gain diving skills and knowledge in three major phases. These phases include:
Phase 1: Knowledge development
This phase involves learning the basics of scuba diving theoretically. During the training, you will acquire all important information pertaining to diving equipment sellers, relevant techniques and skills needed while underwater. You can either attend the training physically or take the course online.
Phase2: Practical scuba diving-confined water dives
This second requires you to learn basic scuba diving techniques through practicing diving in confined waters or swimming pools. The instructor will guide you on what you are supposed to do in the course of your training. The whole course takes five sessions, ranging from simple skills to advanced diving techniques. By the time you are through with phase 2, you are expected to have all necessary skills that are crucial for an open water diver.
Phase 3: Open water diving
This is the last phase and it will take you to the real diving in actual water such as in sea or ocean setting. Open water diving will take you across five sessions or less than that depending on your performance. This training requires you to apply and display all the techniques you learned in phase 2. Also, the instructor will assist you in building confidence through your training sessions. Once you are done with the training, you will take the final examination to test you if you’ve acquired all the knowledge and skills necessary for becoming a scuba diver. If you pass your examination, you will be awarded the PADI certification as an indication that you have qualified to become a scuba diver.
Being the world’s largest non-profit making dive training agency, NAUI can boast of decades of continuous and successful training of divers. The courses under NAUI are somehow detailed and that is the main reason for their success. Here, different diving certifications are offered according to the levels of skills and knowledge acquired at every level. Check out for the summary of NAUI Certification courses below:
Scuba diving training
This is the entry level scuba diving course where you will acquire all basic fundamental diving skills in open water. Upon completion of this level, you will get certification in open water to allow you to dive anywhere in the world.
Advanced scuba diving
Advanced scuba diving allows you to acquire skills and knowledge in various categories of diving. These categories include deep diving, night diving, and navigation diving.
Master scuba diving
This is the level for divers who are looking forward to specializing in various types of diving techniques. At this level, you stand a chance to learn eight different diving skills.
Specialty diving courses
These courses come in handy to let you acquire certification that allows you to engage in a special type of diving without the need for supervision. These courses focus on skills like night diving, wreck dives and search and recovery among others.
Professional diving courses
Professional diving courses enable you to achieve teaching techniques that are likely to help you become an assistant instructor, instructor trainers, dive masters or course instructors and so on.
Even though there are over 50 agencies that deal with scuba diving, PADI and NAUI come out clearly as the most preferred and largest globally. From their differences, you can at least decide which one suits your scuba diving needs. But whichever your choice you make, you will come out a well-trained and certified scuba diver with all necessary skills.