OCR Level 3 Diploma in Management & PADI IDC Programme – There has never been a better time to live the dream!

IDC CTA

Divestyle UK are pleased to announce that we are one of only a handful of dive centres to have been involved in the launch of this new linked program. We are now able to offer an OCR Level 3 Diploma in Management alongside the PADI Instructor Development Course (IDC)!

The OCR Level 3 Diploma is eligible for a learner loan (like a student loan) from the government which makes the course incredibly accessible. So what’s involved and can I sign up?

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THE COURSE: The course is called an OCR (Oxford Cambridge and RSA Examinations) Level 3 Diploma in Management. OCR is an examination board that sets examinations and awards qualifications (including GCSEs, A-levels, NVQ’s etc). The course is aimed at those who will or would like to take a management role in the workplace and deals with all aspects of management from coaching and mentoring to training and development and conflict management. The course results in a recognised, useful qualification which maybe in itself a proof of competence for a job role or can add value to an existing set of qualifications.

HOW THE OCR LEVEL 3 & PADI IDC ARE LINKED: PADI Instructor Development Course includes a number of learning requirements that are needed to show proof of competency for the Level 3 Diploma.

The PADI IDC teaches to develop a teaching presentation, whether this be for use during knowledge development in a classroom situation or as a briefing or training session in the water. During these teaching presentations candidates show their ability to effectively use their certified assistants (Divemasters or Assistant Instructors) as well as showing an ability to evaluate and feedback performance to students. This is just one of the areas where the OCR Level 3 Diploma and the PADI IDC overlap.PADI-5-star-instructor-development-center-wide

Divestyle UK run the PADI IDC in the same way it would for most other IDC Candidates. There are a two additional requirements that OCR Level 3

Candidates must complete, these include:

  • One online e-learning portfolio
  • The Diving Business Management course.

Candidates completing the Level 3 Diploma are required to complete an online e- learning portfolio before, during and after the IDC. Candidates will show how what they have learnt during the IDC can be translated into more general business management practices. This is the bulk of the OCR course which is independently assessed.

There is also an extra module that needs to be completed for the IDC, the ‘Diving Business Management Course’. This is a diving specific module which goes into far more detail of the business side of the dive industry. For example you’ll learn more about gross and net profit, margins and how to price products and courses.

Learn_More_ButtonWHO SHOULD SIGN UP TO THE COURSE: This is an excellent opportunity for anyone looking to get into the diving industry as well as earn a useful business qualification which will assist them in applying for other non-industry specific jobs. Given the eligibility of the course for government learner loans, it’s a great opportunity for people who are put off by the initial up front cost of becoming an instructor. It’s also excellent for someone looking to change their career or anyone wanting to do a more in depth, business orientated instructor course.

HOW MUCH DOES IT COST: As an OCR Level 3 Diploma the course is eligible for an Advanced Learner Loan from the government. These loans are potentially open to anyone resident in the UK over the age of 19. The loan currently stands at £2500, over the OCR Leve 3 Course. They are relatively simple to apply for and work in a very similar way to student loans in that you won’t need to start re-payments until you are earning over 21k and the payments then start very small, coming out of your PAYE, and tracking up with your income. The interest paid on the loan is at inflation plus a maximum of 3% dependent on your income.

£999 PADI Instructor Development Course

Includes 2 extra days of the Diving Business Management Course

INCLUDED PADI IDC Crewpack & Course Materials

INCLUDED PADI Instructor Examination Fee

INCLUDED PADI Instructor Application Fee

HOW DO I SIGN UP? Contact Divestyle UK on info@divestyle.co.uk or call 01189761729 and ask for details about the PADI IDC/OCR Level 3 program.

We are currently speaking to a number of people who this may be of interest to and the first wave of applicants need to have signed up by the start of September with the course orientation due in September. Time and spaces are limited so book now to avoid disappointment.

The IDC will then take place in October and the Business Management Course in

November. PADI will be conducting a special IE on the 3/4 December 2016

 

Candidate

  • Over 19 – no maximum limit
  • UK citizen or Resident for last 3 years
  • Need: Full Name
  • Date of Birth 
  • Address with Post Code
  • NI Number
  • Copy of Passport/ID
  • Preferably Divemaster or Equivalent (or will be before end of August 2016)

Schedule

September

1st September – must register their details with PADI

Before end of Sept – Orientation to OCR system and PADI Process

You can then decide if to take up the option for OCR Diploma

October

During October – Using e-portal for online study

Online Study with include IDC Online and Dive theory from PADI

IDC to start – this could 3 days for an AI course, followed by OWSI section.

Payment for IDC portion is NOT part of the scheme and still needs to be paid

November

Diploma in Business Management sessions

Master Scuba Diver Trainer Preparation course

December

On 3/4 December PADI have arranged a special IE at their office in Bristol

Consideration

1. If candidates put name forward before 1st Sept and are accepted for OCR Business Management funding you do NOT have to accept it and are not obliged to carry on.

2. Additionally they will receive accreditation for Business Management

(Level 3)

3. If you never earn over 21k of taxable income (in the UK) you will not be eligible – so an instructor working outside UK or travelling is ideal – they will NOT need to repay anything until you are back in the UK earning over 21K.

 

Valentine Is here!

VALENTINE IS HERE!

Looking for something different for Valentines day?

Show the love of your life the depth of your love with a Valentines Discover Scuba.

Show the love of your life the depth of your love with a Valentines Discover Scuba.

Why not bring your partner along to one of our Discover Scuba evenings and add a little depth to your love 🙂

Celebrate Valentines with a 2-4-1 offer on the PADI Discover Scuba diving.

To book, call the dive centre and quote ‘love ya baby’ to claim the offer 🙂

Offer valid for the 10th, 17th and the 24th of February.

Price Roll Back on Air Fills

Air Fill Price Roll Back

All Air fills, from 3 – 15 Litre, 232 Bar are now £3.50!

Want a twins filled? Then it is just £7!

scuba-diving-air-fillsWant to save even more money? You can!

Simply buy:

10 air fill card and you get 2 free
20 air fill card and you get 4 free
30 air fill card and you get 6 free

You get the idea!

 

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year

Happy New Year

To everyone that has used or will use DiveStyle, we wish you a happy New Year and hope that 2016 brings you joy.

Life is not a rehearsal, you only get one shot so get out there and enjoy life the best you can and cherish the time you have.

Be safe, plan the dive and dive the plan!

All the best for 2016, the DiveStyle crew

6 Reasons To Use A Dive Computer

6 VERY Good Reasons To Use A Dive Computer

The only computer you will ever need

The only computer you will ever need



In the last decade, diving equipment has developed at an astonishing rate. These advances have made diving easier, more efficient and safer. One of the pieces that has truly enhanced our ability to stay underwater more efficiently is the dive computer. These incredible devices offer divers a whole new dimension in freedom by allowing them to use multi-level techniques.

The primary difference between a dive table and a dive computer is relatively simple. The tables are static, using only maximum depth and dive time for the calculation of decompression status. In contrast, computers are dynamic, making active adjustments during a dive. They continually track and calculate theoretical nitrogen uptake and its elimination based upon the actual dive profile. This is a big advantage because the computer takes into account the decrease in pressure as a diver ascends to shallower depths. The use of computers is rapidly replacing the use of the tables. Listed below are six reasons why all divers should be using a computer as opposed to a table.

1. Constant Tracking of Decompression Status

The purpose of computers is to help divers avoid decompression sickness. They are based upon the same or similar theories dive tables are based upon. Both the tables and computers are systems for tracking the theoretical up-take (in-gasing) and elimination (out-gasing) of nitrogen within a diver’s body. Computers, however, track constantly, throughout the changing depths of the dive.

2. More Time Underwater with Multi-level Diving Techniques

Computers allow divers to have more time underwater on multi-level dives. As an example, a dive with a computer on the wreck of the Duane in Key Largo, Florida, had a maximum depth of 122 feet and a bottom time of 31 minutes. A diver using the tables and the same profile would have been limited to a maximum underwater time of 10 minutes because the entire dive would have been computed as being at 122 feet. The dive computer allowed a much longer dive when a multi-level approach was used because it took into account that the majority of the dive was spent much shallower.

3. Accurate Depth/Time Recordings

One of the greatest challenges facing a diver is the accurate determination of maximum depth and bottom time. The actual depth and time of a dive are often recorded inaccurately. These inaccuracies make any dive table calculations faulty. Dive computers eliminate this concern because they maintain an accurate record of both maximum depth and dive time.

4. Decompression Status Made Simple—No More Dive Table Errors

Many divers have difficulty remembering how to use dive tables. Dive computers perform all of the calculations automatically with respect to decompression status. During a dive, the computer constantly tracks depth, dive time and nodecompression time remaining. Most computers will even calculate decompression time and ceiling depth should a diver accidentally end up in a decompression situation. At the surface, the computer keeps track of the surface interval and automatically calculates a diver’s adjusted nodecompression limits. These calculations are all done automatically and are continuously based upon a diver’s actual profile.

5. Ascent Rate Indicators

All divers are taught to ascend slowly and never exceed the maximum ascent rate prescribed by their respective dive tables. These ascent rates vary, but the range tends to be between 30 and 60 feet per minute. Exceeding the proper ascent rate may increase the likelihood of decompression sickness. Unfortunately, no table in the world can help determine the actual rate of ascent during a dive. All dive computers feature ascent rate monitors or warning devices that allow a diver to monitor his or her ascent and avoid ascending too rapidly. This is an incredible safety feature that can greatly enhance dive safety.

6. Air Integrated Computers Offer a Further Advantage

Air integrated computers offer divers an added dimension. They not only provide accurate information with respect to depth, time and decompression status, but accurate cylinder pressure and air time remaining information, as well. The air time remaining is based upon a diver’s air consumption rate, cylinder size or capacity and depth. It is difficult for most novice divers and even some veteran divers to accurately estimate how long their air supply will last at different depths and under various diving conditions. The following is an analogy that exemplifies this concept. Most of us are very familiar with how many miles we can drive in our car with a full tank of gasoline. For instance, I drive a sport utility vehicle and, through experience, have found I can drive at least 360 miles on a full tank of gas. When I have one-quarter tank of gas, I know I can travel another 90 miles. In contrast to our cars, most of us are unfamiliar with the fuel capabilities of a rental car. Owing to this lack of familiarity, it is difficult to know how far or long you can drive on a full tank or one-quarter tank of gas. When using a rental car, there is always an uncertainty or lack of confidence about the distance and duration one can drive. This occurs even though the fuel gauges in our cars are similar to those of rental cars.

The submersible pressure gauge (SPG) presents divers with a similar dilemma. An SPG does not offer information as to how long a diver’s air supply will last at various depths, when using different types or sizes of cylinders or under different diving conditions, such as strong currents or deeper diving. Variations in these factors can have tremendous effects on the length of time an cylinder will last.

The modern generation of air integrated dive computers provides accurate information as to exactly how much time a diver has left underwater based upon depth, air supply remaining and diving conditions. This information can serve as a tremendous aid in preventing out of air emergencies and thus enhances diver safety.
Remember that proper training is paramount to getting the most out of your computer and to diving safely. For complete information and instruction in how to improve your diving through the use of a computer, see your professional dive retailer.
On a final note, it is common, even for experienced divers, to forget how to use the tables when they haven’t been diving for awhile. Using a computer helps eliminate this problem and makes getting back into the sport easy. It is important to remember, however, that a dive computer is an awesome tool that must be used conservatively, wisely and properly.

5 Diving Tips for Beginning Scuba Divers

Scuba diving? That sounds scary!

Scuba diving can feel intimidating to a new student or would-be diver, but with the right training, delivered by the right training organisation (such as DiveStyle) with a few  tips from one of our fantastically qualified instructors, all done on top grade scuba gear can banish that fear.

The following five tips are all real advice given to real students.

1 .) Spares, spares and even more spares!

Diving is no off-the-cuff expedition – not only are you often traveling outside of your town to go diving, it requires a great deal of gear and planning. Unfortunately, things go wrong, and the more complicated, the easier it is for one little mishap to ruin an entire trip. Fin straps break, mask straps break, and if you don’t have another on hand you’re stuck with a ruined trip that could’ve been solved by a £5 strip of plastic. Bring mask defog, because you can’t always count on someone else on the boat having a bottle.  Spare o-rings are also never a bad idea: tank valve o-rings are easy to forget about and blow out frequently.

2.) Surface With Care

It’s easy for a beginner to forget, but surfacing carefully is just as, if not more important, than diving. When coming back to the surface, you want to come up 30 feet per minute, minimum. Remember this pro tip when in doubt about your speed – never travel faster than the slowest bubbles that you’re exhaling. Also, make sure to do a safety stop at 15 feet, no exceptions.

3.) Never Hold Your Breath

Never hold your breath underwater. It’s worth repeating because it feels like it goes against your natural instincts. When you’re underwater, you’re first thought is to hold your breath. And until humans grow gills, that’s always going to be your first instinct. However, it’s vital to remember that as you rise, air expands in your lungs. What this means is that with sufficient speed, it’s possible to cause your lungs to burst. So, again: never hold your breath underwater.

4.) Stay Hydrated, Stay In Shape

Swimming and scuba diving are both incredible workouts, even when it doesn’t feel like it. Just because you’re surrounded by water, doesn’t mean you don’t need to drink any. Make sure to hydrate often, because you are exerting yourself more than you think. As far as staying in shape goes, that’s important for any sport. Don’t go beyond your limits, because that ways lies injury.

5.) No Man Is An Island

First off, always dive with a buddy. Always. Having someone nearby to pull your bacon out of the proverbial fire is just good common sense. Second, remember to let someone (besides your dive buddy) know where you’re diving, when you’re diving, and other details about the dive site. Safety first, always always always. Third, remember to look up the local contact information for all of the emergency services in the area.

The responsibility to stay safe is an important one, and should be taken seriously. However, it’s vital to remember that diving is an exciting adventure, one that should be enjoyed over and over again. With the right attitude and preparation, every dive can be a memorable exploration of another world.

Information provided courtesy of divewire (www.divewire.com)

The Easiest Dive Gifte Ever

Buying for a diver in the family is one of the most difficult things to do. It can leave you feeling really stressed!

Scuba Diving Gift Certificates

take all of the stress out of buying for the scuba diver in your family

We have a fully stocked shop and a great team, ready to give you all the advice you need. But sometimes even with superb advice you worry that you may be getting the wrong gift.

Well stress no more! Simply buy one of the DiveStyle gift vouchers and they can come along to the dive centre, browse and buy what they want. It is also a great opportunity for them to try on any equipment they need and get the right size first time.

So buy a gift certificate today and let your diver come to the store and enjoy great banter, great service and a lovely cup of tea!

For more details just click here GIFT CERTIFICATES

Ocean Conservation – Can You Make a Difference?

Ocean conservation is close to every divers heart but making a difference sometimes seems to be incredibly daunting.

Here are 10 possible areas that you, as an individual can consider to try and make a difference.

1. Mind Your Carbon Footprint and Reduce Energy Consumption

Reduce the effects of climate change on the ocean by leaving the car at home when you can and being conscious of your energy use at home and work. A few things you can do to get started today: Switch to compact fluorescent light bulbs, take the stairs, and bundle up or use a fan to avoid oversetting your thermostat.

2. Make Safe, Sustainable Seafood Choices

Global fish populations are rapidly being depleted due to demand, loss of habitat, and unsustainable fishing practices. When shopping or dining out, help reduce the demand for overexploited species by choosing seafood that is both healthful and sustainable.

3. Use Fewer Plastic Products

Plastics that end up as ocean debris contribute to habitat destruction and entangle and kill tens of thousands of marine animals each year. To limit your impact, carry a reusable water bottle, store food in nondisposable containers, bring your own cloth tote or other reusable bag when shopping, and recycle whenever possible.

4. Help Take Care of the Beach

Whether you enjoy diving, surfing, or relaxing on the beach, always clean up after yourself. Explore and appreciate the ocean without interfering with wildlife or removing rocks and coral. Go even further by encouraging others to respect the marine environment or by participating in local beach cleanups.

5. Don’t Purchase Items That Exploit Marine Life

Certain products contribute to the harming of fragile coral reefs and marine populations. Avoid purchasing items such as coral jewelry, tortoiseshell hair accessories (made from hawksbill turtles), and shark products.

6. Be an Ocean-Friendly Pet Owner

Read pet food labels and consider seafood sustainability when choosing a diet for your pet. Never flush cat litter, which can contain pathogens harmful to marine life. Avoid stocking your aquarium with wild-caught saltwater fish, and never release any aquarium fish into the ocean or other bodies of water, a practice that can introduce non-native species harmful to the existing ecosystem.

7. Support Organizations Working to Protect the Ocean

Many institutes and organizations are fighting to protect ocean habitats and marine wildlife. Find a national organization and consider giving financial support or volunteering for hands-on work or advocacy. If you live near the coast, join up with a local branch or group and get involved in projects close to home.

8. Influence Change in Your Community

Research the ocean policies of public officials before you vote or contact your local representatives to let them know you support marine conservation projects. Consider patronizing restaurants and grocery stores that offer only sustainable seafood, and speak up about your concerns if you spot a threatened species on the menu or at the seafood counter.

9. Travel the Ocean Responsibly

Practice responsible boating, kayaking, and other recreational activities on the water. Never throw anything overboard, and be aware of marine life in the waters around you. If you’re set on taking a cruise for your next vacation, do some research to find the most eco-friendly option.

10. Educate Yourself About Oceans and Marine Life

All life on Earth is connected to the ocean and its inhabitants. The more you learn about the issues facing this vital system, the more you’ll want to help ensure its health—then share that knowledge to educate and inspire others.

 

Source – http://ocean.nationalgeographic.com/ocean/take-action/10-things-you-can-do-to-save-the-ocean/

OCEAN FACTS – How many do you know?

Our Oceans are vast and utterly amazing but how well do you know you ocean facts?

OCEAN GEOGRAPHY

There are 328,000,000 cubic miles of seawater on earth, covering approximately 71 percent of earth’s surface.

By volume, the ocean makes up 99 percent of the planet’s living space- the largest space in our universe known to be inhabited by living organisms.

  • About 97 percent of all water on earth is in our oceans, 2 percent is frozen in our ice caps and glaciers, less than 0.3 percent is carried in the atmosphere in the form of clouds, rain, and snow. All of our inland seas, lakes and channels combined add up to only 0.02 percent of earth’s water.
  • The Antarctic Ice Sheet is almost twice the size of the United States.
  • Earth’s ocean is made up of more than 20 seas and four oceans: Atlantic, Indian, Arctic, and Pacific, the oldest and the largest.
  • The ocean accounts for 0.022 percent of the total weight of earth, weighing an estimated 1,450,000,000,000,000,000 short tons (1 short ton = 2,000lbs).
  • The average worldwide ocean depth is about 12,460 feet (3,798 meters), with the deepest point of 36,198 feet (11,033 meters) which is located in the Mariana Trench in the Pacific Ocean; the tallest mountain, Mount Everest, measures 29,022 feet (8,846 meters). If Mount Everest were to be placed into the Mariana Trench it would be covered with sea water more than a mile (1.5 km ) deep.
  • Although Mount Everest is often called the tallest mountain on Earth, Mauna Kea, an inactive volcano on the island of Hawaii, is actually taller. Only 13,796 feet of Mauna Kea stands above sea level, yet it is 33,465 feet tall if measured from the ocean floor to its summit
  • A slow cascade of water beneath the Denmark Strait sinks 2.2 miles; more than 3.5 times farther than Venezuela’s Angel Falls, the tallest waterfall on land.
  • Earth’s largest continuous mountain chain is the Mid-Ocean Ridge, stretching for 40,000 miles, rising above the surface of the water in a few places, such as Iceland. It is four times longer than the Andes, Rocky Mountains, and Himalayas combined.
  • Ninety percent of all volcanic activity occurs in the oceans. In 1993, scientists located the largest known concentration of active volcanoes on the sea floor in the South Pacific. This area, the size of New York State, hosts 1,133 volcanic cones and seamounts. Two or three could erupt at any moment.
  • The highest tides in the world are at the Bay of Fundy, which separates New Brunswick from Nova Scotia. At some times of the year the difference between high and low tide is 53 feet 6 inches, the equivalent of a five-story building.
  • Canada has the longest coastline of any country, at 56,453 miles or around 15 percent of the world’s 372,384 miles of coastlines.
  • In 1958, the United States Coast Guard icebreaker East Wind measured the world’s tallest known iceberg off western Greenland. At 550 feet it was only 5 feet 6 inches shorter than the Washington Monument in Washington, D.C.
  • The volume of the Earth’s moon is the same as the volume of the Pacific Ocean.

THE WEATHER MAKER

  • The ocean determines climate and plays a critical role in Earth’s habitability. Most of the solar energy that reaches the Earth is stored in the ocean and helps power oceanic and atmospheric circulation. In this manner, the ocean plays an important role in influencing the weather and climatic patterns of the Earth.
  • Two hundred million years of recorded geologic and biologic history of the Earth are found in the ocean’s floor. By studying ocean sediments, scientists can learn about ancient climate, how it changed, and how better to predict our own climate.
  • The top 10 feet of the ocean hold the same amount of thermal energy as exists in the entire atmosphere.
  • El NiZo, a periodic shift of warm waters from the western to eastern Pacific Ocean, has dramatic effects on climate worldwide. In 1997-1998, the most severe El NiZo of the century created droughts, crop failures, fires, torrential rains, floods, landslides–total damages were estimated at more than $90 billion (United Nations)
  • Undersea earthquakes and other disturbances cause tsunamis, or great waves. The largest recorded tsunami measured 210 feet above sea level when it reached Siberia’s Kamchatka Peninsula in 1737.

OUR USE OF THE OCEAN

  • Substances from marine plants and animals are used in scores of products, including medicine, ice cream, toothpaste, fertilizers, gasoline, cosmetics, and livestock feed.
  • Examine the foods in your own kitchen and you may find the terms “alginate” and “carrageenan” on the labels. Carrageenans are compounds extracted from red algae that are used to stabilize and jell foods and pharmaceuticals. Brown algae contain alginates that make foods thicker and creamier and add to shelf life. They are used to prevent ice crystals from forming in ice cream. Alginates and carrageenans are often used in puddings, milkshakes, and ice cream. The commonly used color additive beta-carotene often comes from green algae as well as many vegetables, including carrots. Many people don’t realize that kelp is harvested like wheat; a substance called algin is extracted and is used in lipstick, toothpaste and ice cream. You might be wearing kelp right now, since it is used in the dyes that color our clothes.
  • Oils from the orange roughy, Hoplostethus atlanticus, a deep-sea fish from New Zealand, are used in making shampoo.
  • The remains of diatoms, algae with hard shells, are used in making pet litter, cosmetics, pool filters and tooth polish.
  • The ocean holds immense quantities of protein. The total annual commercial harvest from the seas exceeds 85 million metric tons. Fish is the biggest source of wild or domestic protein in the world.
  • Since the architecture and chemistry of coral are very close to human bone, coral has been used to replace bone grafts in helping human bones to heal quickly and cleanly.
  • Horseshoe crabs have existed in essentially the same form for the past 135 million years. Their blood provides a valuable test for the toxins that cause septic shock, which previously led to half of all hospital-acquired infections and one-fifth of all hospital deaths.
  • Over 90 percent of trade among countries is carried by ships.
  • The ocean is a source of mineral deposits, including oil and gas.
  • About half the communications between nations are via underwater cables.
  • Many nations’ battles have been fought on or under the water.
  • Knowing oceanography can enhance the conditions for trade, communications, and defence.

OUR MISUSE OF THE OCEAN

  • In 1993, United States beaches were closed or swimmers advised not to get in the water over 2,400 times because of sewage contamination. The problem is even worse than the numbers indicate: there are no federal requirements for notifying the public when water-quality standards are violated, and some coastal states don’t monitor water at beaches.
  • The largest amount of oil entering the ocean through human activity is the 363 million gallons that come from industrial waste and automobiles. When people pour their used motor oil into the ground or into a septic system, it eventually seeps into the groundwater. Coupled with industrial waste discharged into rivers, oil becomes part of the run-off from waterways that empty into the ocean. All of this oil impacts ocean ecosystems.
  • The Coast Guard estimates that for United States waters, sewage treatment plants discharge twice as much oil each year as tanker spills.
  • Animals may perish when the oil slicks their fur or downy feathers, decreasing the surface area so they are no longer insulated from the cold water. Or the animals may ingest the oil, then become sick or unable to reproduce properly.
  • Each year industrial, household cleaning, gardening, and automotive products are added as water pollutants. About 65,000 chemicals are used commercially in the United States today, with about 1,000 new ones added each year. Only about 300 have been extensively tested for toxicity.
  • It is estimated that medical waste that washed up onto Long Island and New Jersey beaches in the summer of 1988 cost as much as $3 billion in lost revenue from tourism and recreation.
  • The most frequently found item in beach cleanups are pieces of plastic. The next four items are plastic foam, plastic utensils, pieces of glass and cigarette butts.
  • Lost or discarded fishing nets keep on fishing. Called “ghost nets,” this gear entangles fish, marine mammals, and sea birds, preventing them from feeding or causing them to drown. As many as 20,000 northern fur seals may die each year from becoming entangled in netting.
  • The Mississippi River drains more than 40 percent of the continental United States, carrying excess nutrients into the Gulf of Mexico. Decay of the resulting algae blooms consumes oxygen, kills shellfish and displaces fish in a 4,000 square mile bottom area off the coast of Louisiana and Texas, called the “dead zone.”
  • The zebra mussel is the most famous unwanted ship stowaway, but the animals and plants being transported to new areas through ship ballast water is a problem around the world. Poisonous algae, cholera, and countless plants and animals have invaded harbor waters and disrupted ecological balance.
  • There are 109 countries with coral reefs. Reefs in 90 of them are being damaged by cruise ship anchors and sewage, by tourists breaking off chunks of coral, and by commercial harvesting for sale to tourists.
  • One study of a cruise ship anchor dropped in a coral reef for one day found an area about half the size of a football field completely destroyed, and half again as much covered by rubble that died later. It was estimated that coral recovery would take fifty years.
  • Egypt’s High Aswan Dam, built in the 1960s to provide electricity and irrigation water, diverts up to 95 percent of the Nile River’s normal flow. It has since trapped more than one million tons of nutrient rich silt and caused a sharp decline in Mediterranean sardine and shrimp fisheries.
  • The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization estimates that of the seventeen major fisheries areas in the world, four are depleted and the other thirteen are either fished to capacity or overfished.
  • Commercial marine fisheries in the United States discard up to 20 billion pounds of non-target fish each year– twice the catch of desired commercial and recreational fishing combined. Worldwide this adds up to a staggering 60 billion pounds each year!!
  • With only 4.3 percent of the world population, Americans use about one-third of the world’s processed mineral resources and about one-fourth of the world’s non-renewable energy sources, like oil and coal.

FACTS ABOUT OCEAN LIFE

  • Life began in the seas 3.1 billion to 3.4 billion years ago. Land dwellers appeared 400 million years ago; a relatively recent point in the geologic time line.
  • The blue whale, Balaenoptera musculus, is the largest known animal ever to have lived on sea or land. They can reach over 110 feet and weigh almost 200 tons (more than the combined weight of 50 adult elephants). The blue whale’s blood vessels are so broad that a full-grown trout could swim through them, and the heart is the size of a small car.
  • The oarfish, Regalecus glesne, is the longest bony fish in the world. With its snakelike body, sporting a magnificent red fin along its 50-foot length horselike face and blue gills, it accounts for many sea-serpent sightings
  • Green turtles can migrate more than 1,400 miles to lay their eggs.
  • Bluefin tuna, Thunnus thynnus, are among the largest and fastest marine fish. An adult may weigh 1,500 pounds and swim up to 55 miles per hour.
  • Penguins “fly” underwater at up to 55 miles per hour.
  • A group of herring is called a seige. A group of jelly fish is called a smack.
  • Many fish can change sex during the course of their lives. Others, especially rare deep-sea fish, have both male and female sex organs.
  • Giant kelp, the fastest growing plant in the ocean, can grow up to 2 feet per day. Under optimal conditions, giant kelp can grow to a length of more than 100 feet in little more than a year and can grow to a maximum of 200 feet.
  • Hydrothermal vents, fractures in the sea floor that spew sulphur compounds, support the only complex ecosystem known to run on chemicals, rather than energy from the sun.

OCEAN PHYSICS AND CHEMISTRY

  • At the deepest point in the ocean the pressure is more than 8 tons per square inch, or the equivalent of one person trying to hold-up 50 jumbo jets against the force of gravity.
  • The major ions in seawater are Na+, Mg2+, Ca2+, K+, Sr2+, Cl-, SO42- (sulfate), HCO3- (bicarbonate), Br-, B(OH)3 (boric acid), and F-. Together, they account for almost all of the salt in seawater.
  • At 39 degrees Fahrenheit (3.89 degrees Celsius), the temperature of almost all of the deep ocean is only a few degrees above freezing.
  • If extracted, it is estimated that all the gold suspended in the world’s seawater would give each person on Earth 9 pounds.
  • If the ocean’s total salt content were dried, it would cover the continents to a depth of 500 feet.
  • When nitrogen and phosphorus from sources such as fertilizer, sewage and detergents enter coastal waters, oxygen depletion occurs. One gram of nitrogen can cause enough organic growth to require 15 grams of oxygen to decompose the resulting vegetation. A single gram of phosphorus will deplete about one hundred grams of oxygen.

Facts courtesy of sea-the-sea.org

PADI Rescue Diver – Worth Doing?

PADI Rescue Diver = Confident. Responsible. Prepared.  A bit tired as well!

Book your EFRRescue Diver Course in May and receive a £30 voucher to spend in store when you have completed your course.

Divers who have completed their PADI Rescue diver always talk about the course being the most rewarding and often most demanding PADI course they complete.  Many instructors also tell us how much they enjoy teaching it.

PADI Rescue Diver Course

As I woke up surprisingly early on my first days holiday, I had distant school memories where the word rewarding was often linked to hard boring work.   With this in mind I worked across the hotel to the dive centre to start  4 days EFR and Rescue Diver training.   Hard work maybe but boring never!

After the paperwork was completed I was handed two brand new manuals, for EFR and Rescue diver respectively.  The theory and practical skills combine perfectly on this course which made the knowledge reviews great markers for progression during the course.  You really learn some amazing skills really simply.

What do you learn

-Causes of diver emergencies
-Accident management -Identifying a diver in need
-Common equipment problems -Diver rescue procedures
-First Aid and injury treatment -Missing diver procedures
-In/Out water rescue skills

First off you learn about the psychology of Rescue and the important question that is re-enforced over the course. Protect yourself first! Don’t become the 2nd victim.  The importance of of preparation should be familiar with all divers of any level, but in the Rescue course we take this further.  Do you have the right equipment for emergencies?  before I took the rescue course this was something I never really gave to much thought to.  Now I know exactly what is required.

CPR and First Aid

PADI Rescue Diver EFR

The EFR Primary and Secondary Care elements of the course were really interesting and provided me with skills that I know are not just for diving but can be used in everyday life.    Some of the primary and secondary skills you learn; Scene assessment, CPR not a skill to be taken lightly as those who have completed CPR training will know, Bleeding management and Spinal injury management.

This knowledge brings with it a confidence that I am now prepared to respond to an emergency correctly when needed .

Water Skills

The practical side of the course revolves around a number of rescue scenarios revolving around skills used to help either a responsive or non responsive diver at the surface or underwater.   Prepare to get tired!  Yes this is a pretty intensive part of the course but at the end of each day the tiredness is only second to the contented feeling you have.   Top Tip = Try and choose the smallest lightest person on the course as your buddy.  Thanks to my willing victim Nat!

One of the hardest parts of the in water rescue skills can be remembering the correct order of the actions you need to complete.  In fact you may even find you won’t notice how physical it is towing an unresponsive diver as you’ll be concentrating on providing rescue breath, supporting airways and removing equipment if the situation requires.  Each scenario though varied essentially boils down to the same core skills that by now your have learnt and are starting to master.

It’s an incredible course that gives you vast amounts of confidence while having fun and in quite a few circumstances leaves you looking like a rabbit caught in headlights!

Joking aside, the PADI Rescue diver course is a great course and takes you personally further as a diver as you now have the confidence and preparedness that can really transform your outlook.   I can wholeheartedly recommend it.

Ready for the challenge?  Contact DiveStyle now and get started on the course you’ll love.

Cannot be used in conjunction with any other offer
Offer ends 31st May 2014
With thanks to the PADI Blog