Diving is a Humbling Sport!
Throughout my diving career I have learned again and again that “diving is a humbling sport”. Teaching SCUBA Instructors provides many more opportunities to prove this mantra. While teaching the recent Instructor Development Course, the dive gods smacked me again.
Part of my job as a PADI Course Director is to ensure that new Instructors understand how to give a real-time role-model demonstration while teaching the Rescue Diver Course. Although I usually have Staff Instructors and other Course Directors to assist me, I have always chosen to personally demo the unconscious diver at the surface skill.
I have prided myself on the smooth delivery with which I execute this particular skill. However, in this fateful IDC I chose to use a brand new BCD that I had just purchased. During the equipment removal portion of this demonstration, with eight IDC Candidates, an IDC Staff Instructor Candidate, and another Course Director looking on, I got my arm stuck in the BCD and could not get out!
I had to terminate the demo, get assistance from my gear handler to get the darn thing off, and then took a few moments to practice with my gear before restarting the demo. Not exactly the real-time role-model technique I had in mind.
However, looking back on the incident I realize that the Instructor Candidates had an opportunity to learn that even when things don’t go as planned, the Instructor can just stop, breathe, think, and act as we teach all of our Rescue Divers to do.
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