Written by Melanie Hwa, 26 August 2022.
One of the most common questions we get from our students and customers alike are – What is it like to be a Dive Professional? Why did you decide to take this interesting journey? So we spoke to our team of Dive Pros to share some insights with you!
Melanie: Hey guys! One of the most common questions we get are regarding the Dive Pro courses and journey. So shall we try sharing what it is like to be over this side of the diving industry? Let’s start off with a very simple question – How long have you been diving?
Matthew Lee: Hmm, bout 6 years! Since August 2016.
Reena: I have been diving for two and a half years.
Urve: For me, it was 5 years.
Cameron: I started during the Pandemic back in Australia!
Melanie: What motivated you to take your first step to become a dive pro?
Cameron: I initially took up diving as a hobby without realising how much I would love it. The group I trained with had a number of really passionate Dive Masters and Instructors with incredible stories about diving all over the world, which got me thinking about diving as a lifestyle.
Urve: Hahah. My answer is quite easy – 4 simple reasons, really.
1. To become a more experience, technical, and BETTER diver i.e., continuous skills development. (I don’t mean technical as in sidemount – I mean knowledge development).
2. Learn how to lead dive trips and act as a guide underwater, or help other dive leaders dive pro if and when required.
3. To help others in the event of an emergency – the DM training build upon your rescue dive skills and improves your diving skill – related to point 2a.
4. Learn more about the scuba diving world from more than just a fun diver point of view. i.e., learn what happens behind the scenes at DC, dive shops, organising trips
Reena: Broaden my experience and knowledge of dive equipment and theory. I think that “Any fool can know something – the point is to understand.” Becoming a dive pro challenges me to understand the Why’s and What’s; I am motivated to be more proactive.
Melanie: I love all your intentions! It is very important to have a clear intention before getting started and I truly believe with a proper objective, it would make you better motivated to becoming a good dive pro! Now, how has your journey been so far?
Matt: Memorable. Although it was hardship but fulfilling at the end.
Reena: It’s been exciting and challenging! From mastering dive skills and knowledge to meeting people from different backgrounds!
Urve: Difficult at times, easy at other times. Pandemic delayed and slowed down my internship, but finally managed to get there. Difficult to get time off work to fully utilise my master skills, but looking forward to it when I do.
Melanie: What is the most insightful thing you’ve learnt as a dive pro?
Cameron: I’ve only just started my Dive Master, but from my experiences so far I’ve learnt that a person’s first introduction to diving can set the stage for their future dive career. It is important to me to try and ensure that as many people as possible have a positive experience when they are beginners.
Reena: Importance of confidence and leadership development. Working closely with instructors and students gave me insight that there is no perfect way of becoming a role model. Through experience and guidance, I will be able to identify what’s the best way to tackle a particular situation.
Urve: Learning how to thread water and becoming one with water! Hahah! Practicing the 20+ dive skills, learning how to demonstrate, and then finally demonstrating to new divers. But the most insightful element has been how to read dive sites and conditions, and how to modify the dive objectives before and during the dive. I wanted to learn how to become a better diver and leader, so this element of my DM training was really rewarding and I gained a lot of insight
Matt: In diving, safety comes first, everything else is a plus.
Melanie: What role has Flow DC played in your journey so far?
Matt: Flow DC has taught me that guidelines are important but managing real life situations comes with experience. To think on your feet at all times because the diver’s safety is in your hands.
Urve: Flow DC is where I received my training – it was a good choice due to the experience of the instructor, as well as I had a fellow DMT who I could train with. I was able to learn from my fellow DMT as I did my training part-time, and this is where Flow DC was an excellent choice. I can tailor the speed of my training and DMT training schedule based on my availability. The course was very structured and well-paced – this gave me time to actually develop my dive skills rather than blitzing it.
Reena: Why I chose to do my DM course with Flow is simply because of 3 reasons:
1. Flexibility – able to fit theory and practical around my schedule
2. Exposure – Opportunity to learn about the management & operation of the dive center. Allows me to adapt to different circumstances and adopt innovative strategies in managing a business.
3. Versatility – Training alongside several instructors allows me to learn different techniques and experience different teaching styles.
Cameron: I have only just started with Flow DC, but the team has already worked to make me feel welcome. The wealth of experience in the team members helps to make me feel supported as I start my journey as a Dive pro.
Melanie: Why should someone think of doing their dive pro? And why should they choose Flow DC?
Matt: We prepare you for the real thing and not just checklists. Besides diving we also expose you to retailing, social events and bookings.
Cameron: The Dive Pro offers a great lifestyle, which allows you to work in a range of incredible countries while doing what you love. Flow DC has been incredibly accommodating of my full time work schedule, which provides flexibility to work through the course at a pace that suits you.
Reena: Improve your dive skills and build self-confidence by gaining a broader understanding of dive theory, practical applications, and the equipment used in scuba diving. You will become more comfortable in dealing with your own areas of insecurity, better at working with people, and better at dealing with new situations and challenges. Last but not the least, learn from professional mentors – in learning you will teach, and in teaching you will learn.
Urve: Different people will have different reasons for doing their DMT and further professional courses. Some do it for the lifestyle, travel, to become an expert, getting paid for what you love etc. If you want to become a better diver and be able to lead dives, take after yourself and others underwater, and simply improve your development as a scuba diver, then I advise the person to do the DM course.
I would choose Flow Dive Center because they are flexible in their schedule, city based so it’s perfect for those DMTs who don’t have much time off from their day jobs, it has its own pool, young and hip crowd (with lots of pretty PEOPLE, hahaha). And they have Ale!
Most importantly, rather than churning out DMs like a machine, Flow DC takes time to develop your skills (in and out of the water, in front and behind the shop) as a DM.
Lastly, the DC is run by a relatively young (but highly experienced) bunch of dive pros – there are plenty of opportunities for socials, nights out, and other activities i.e. climbing/bouldering etc., you never know you may pick up another hobby!
Melanie: Last but not the least, what are your plans moving forward?
Matt: As a new instructor, my immediate plans are to gain more experience in teaching for now.
Cameron: I would like to work towards becoming an instructor, with a view to living and working in a range of different countries.
Reena: I am considering doing the Instructor course? Hahah. But definitely plan fun dive trips and eventually building the diving community.
Melanie: Thank you sooo much for your time speaking with me and to our readers! What you’ve shared is certainly very insightful!
So if you are keen on levelling up and joining the team as a Dive Professional, check out our Divemaster course. Make diving your lifestyle/ career! You can also speak with us for more information!