In our previous blog we discussed why UK diving is an excellent activity for anyone with a passion for scuba diving, and now you’re raring to go there is just one question left to answer – how can you get started?
Luckily for you, there are plenty of ways to go about getting into UK diving, so read on to find out how to discover what UK diving has to offer you.
Discover Local Diving
Starting off with a Discover Local Diving session is an excellent option for checking out a new environment. Lots of people are familiar with taking part in an orientation dive when they arrive on holiday at a new destination, but there is no reason why you can’t have a similar experience closer to home. By booking a dive like this you will be shown around a local dive site, either from shore or by boat, and will have an experienced local dive professional to guide you and help answer your questions on the local diving on offer. They can also point out the best features of the dive site, help spot critters with you and also point out hazards specific to the dive site so you avoid getting into trouble.
Join a Club
If a single Discover Local Diving session is great for getting an orientation to a new dive site, joining a dive club can give you access to a huge variety of divers with a vast knowledge of their local area. Hidden Depths Dive Club have travelled all around the UK to dive some of the best locations on offer – from Scapa Flow in the North, the Farne Islands in the East, the Isles of Scilly in the South and the Pembrokeshire coast in the West – we’ve been there (and will be heading back again for sure!) We also dive closer to home on a regular basis, from simple shore dives on the Devon and Dorset
Dive clubs offer you the chance to dive a great selection of sites all around the UK, but they offer so much more than just that. On a typical dive weekend away we may complete 4 dives of up to an hour underwater on each dive. The rest of the time we’re simply having fun – chatting between dives, socialising in the evening, heading out for dinner together and even travel sharing to minimise cost (and environmental impact!) Best of all will be the friends you meet through diving, who become more than just your dive buddies!
Further your education
Another excellent way to introduce yourself to UK diving is to further your education with another dive course. A lot of UK boat dives will head to sites deeper than 18m, so an Advanced Open Water course is a good choice. Not only will you take part in a Deep Adventure Dive, but you can tailor the course to the UK environment specifically by choosing to take the Wreck Adventure Dive, the Boat Adventure Dive or the Dry Suit Adventure Dive as part of your course. With five more dives logged with a dive instructor, you will grow in confidence underwater, and for anyone new to UK diving these dives will form a solid base from which to progress with your own dive ambitions. The variety of dives that the Advanced Open Water course offers you, mean you get to experience different sites and environments which can help prepare you for further UK fun dives after your course.
The Dry Suit Diver course is also one to put high on your list when looking at training specifically for UK diving, especially for those looking to dive all year round. We’ve touched on exposure protection in a previous dive blog (see our blog on Dive Suits), and dry suits with the correct thermals allow diving to take place all through the year. The Dry Suit Diver course can even be linked with the Advanced Open Water course to create a perfect UK package, preparing you to enjoy a variety of awesome dives.
We think Hidden Depths Dive Club offers something for everyone and look forward to welcoming new members, as well as ensuring our existing members continue to enjoy the benefits of club membership. Members coming on club trips can enjoy complimentary kit hire as part of your membership. This is a great way to increase your diving whilst you acquire your own equipment over time. Members also get first access to club trips too, as well as our social events.
Contact me for more information or speak to any of the HDSS team anytime you wish, we’re always happy to answer your dive related questions!
Written by Greg Parker, Founder and Professional Scuba Diving Instructor
Founder and Professional Scuba Diving Instructor
I’m Greg, the founder and professional Scuba Diving Instructor at Hidden Depths Scuba School. The school was established in 2012, and along with my fantastic team of staff, we offer high-quality training courses to everyone from total beginner through to your first steps as a dive professional. As well as a busy training centre we also run an active dive club, allowing students and fellow divers to continue diving and explore the amazing dive sites we have in the UK and abroad! I look forward to hearing from you, and sharing a dive together soon!”