Navigating with some Underwater “discussions!”

In Go Pro Costa Rica, PADI IDC Course by Scubabunny

Wednesday afternoon, +Go Pro Costa Rica .Okay, so after our scrambled egg episode, we moved onto the navigation. Navigation underwater has the additional add on that not only do you need to know your directions, return place etc, you may be effected by current, water movement and other delightful underwater factors. measuring kick cycles, arm spans, elapsed time are just some of the ways that you work with this. After working with this on our first dive, we also looked at basic compass work. Now as instructors already, this was relatively straight forward, and as they have already have their own way of working with the students, each person has a set way of organizing the navigation skills. This generally results in some very animated conversations underwater, as even though strategy and organization has been discussed, there is still some communication needed underwater. I like to sit back and watch as it turns into a coffee hour discussion sometimes, with hand signals getting more animated. Do you realize how easy it is to tell if someone is shouting underwater?!
For the second dive we worked with the infamous Navigational plotter one of the long lost PADI  materials that I love dearly but is now discontinued due to the lack of similar enthusiasm (Boo!) With this fantastic little toy you can set out a course , in this case, of 5 points and then navigate through your points. In this challenge, in teams of 2, a course of at least 5 points was plotted, followed by an exchange of nav finders. From there, the team had to navigate, using the points of the other team. FUN! For starters, don’t put the nav finder in your pocket as the numbers can rub off, secondly measure kick cycles accurately as they can completely throw off a dive navigational course. With nice visibility for the pacific here, reaching around 50ft it was a successfully completed, and whilst I did have a moment, when I believed the was going to be a couple of lost divers, it all worked out, arriving back at, or close to the start point. Obviously with this exercise, we can always blame the other team as they were the ones that created the 5 point course!
Next stop, Search and Recovery…… ready to impress with the amazing compass work!