Follow some of Ikelite's newest certified divers as they complete their SSI Open Water Scuba Diver Certification with our resident instructor Bob Stubbs ("Stubby"). We travel just north of our home in Indianapolis to Phillips Quarry in Muncie for two days of open water diving.
See what it's like to perform the final skills test underwater and hear from the students to get their first impressions of diving outside of the pool.
Meet the Divers
Dive Instructor Bob "Stubby" Stubbs, Carlton Paicely, Devon Conrad, Alex Wells, and Denise "Peach" complete their check out dives for their Open Water Certification.
Going from the Pool to Open Water
Alex Wells shares his thoughts on the transition from pool to open water diving saying, "Textbook to pool is interesting, but the pool to the actual open water is very, very different. Especially whenever you get in there. You can't see anything. I was super nervous when I got here, especially because I thought it was gonna be a lot colder than it was. But then once I got in, it was awesome, you know, the water felt good, it was good to scuba dive."
Adjusting to lower visibility when making the transition from the pool to the quarry was a running theme for these new divers. Pictured: Alex Wells.
Scuba Diving in a Quarry
Temperature shifts and lower visibility were the biggest adjustments Denise "Peach" had to account for when diving at the Quarry for her check out dives saying, "My first impression of diving in the quarry is: I'm still catching my breath! It gets cold real fast, but it's really cool. We saw some schools of fish, when you can see stuff, there's cool stuff to see. Definitely low visibility. So I had to like hold on to Stubby to make sure I could get around and navigate."
Managing Your Nerves
"Before I got in the water, my feelings were just nervous, anxious. But honestly, as soon as you get in the water, all that kind of melts away. And once you just kind of get your bearings about you, it's like riding a bike and it's kind of relaxing, to be honest with you," Carlton Paicely.
Carlton Paicely, pictured here, is the Service Department manager for Ikelite. He emphasizes the relaxing nature of diving.
Devon Conrad expresses the importance of doing things the right way, especially in deeper, open water, "I was nervous just because it is a lot bigger body of water and a lot deeper. My main thing was going from a ten foot pool to like, all the way to like 30 to 50 feet deep, was a lot. I feel like a lot more pressure just to do things right. Make sure you got everything right. But it was a lot of fun trying to swim around everywhere and trying to see everything."
Devon Conrad practices the Air Sharing skill with his dive instructor. The divers were tested on all of the skills they learned in the classroom and pool sessions during the open water check out dives.
What to Do With Your Dive Certification
Denise "Peach" is excited about the endless possibilities a scuba certification can bring, "with my dive certification, I hope to just get a taste of all the different places to dive. There's really not any place I don't want to go, so I'm just excited to explore it all."