Westhoughton Sub Aqua Club

    Joining Westhoughton Sub Aqua Club

Westhoughton Sub Aqua club can offer training from Ocean Diver to Advanced Diver, they can help you discover a new world underwater,

We have a number of nationally qualified BSAC instructors to aid you with your diver qualification.

Learn to scuba dive with us and you are guaranteed some of the best training around which will lead to an internationally recognised qualification.

To learn to dive you must be at least fourteen years old.

Learning new skills and gaining qualification is that you will get from westhoughton club. The club runs a balanced programme of new driver training course, skill development course and skill refresher course.

The course we run:

Ocean Diver, Sports Diver, Dive Leader, Advanced Diver

There is also a number of Skill Development course and workshop that can be run.

Training sessions are carried out when required when the train need them, weekends and weekday at Eccelstone Delph or Capernwray Dive Centres.


BSAC Training

There are five BSAC diver grades, from Ocean Diver through to First Class Diver.

Ocean Diver

If you’ve always wanted to learn how to dive, this course is for you. This course is for beginners and provides the essential knowledge and skills needed to prepare for open water diving.

The BSAC Ocean Diver course prepares for this in the safety of a swimming pool or sheltered water and an introduction to open water in a controlled, safe manner. Experience and confidence will be gained under the guidance of a qualified instructor. Maximum depth - 20m.

What you’ll learn

The BSAC Ocean Diver course has three main stages:

1. Lessons and theory assessment on the basic principles of scuba diving

2. Five confined water dives to learn the basics in the water (usually in a swimming pool)

3. Five open water dives to further develop your scuba diving skills

Qualification and what that means

A BSAC Ocean Diver is defined as a diver who is competent to conduct dives:

• to a maximum depth of 20m.

• with another BSAC Ocean Diver or with a BSAC Sports Diver, within the restrictions of the conditions already encountered during training.

• with a Dive Leader or higher grade, to expand experience beyond the conditions encountered during training, under the supervision of a Dive Manager.

• not requiring mandatory decompression stops.

• under the on-site supervision of a Dive Manager with respect to site selection, conditions and dive plan.

Recommended gear

All diving equipment for pool is provided you will needed to buy or hire a drysuit for you open water lessons, Ocean Diver trainees may wish to buy their own mask and snorkel. You may also wish to use a pool suit for added comfort during the pool lessons.

Your next steps

After this course you could further your training by doing the BSAC Sport Diver course, or some of the following Skill Development Courses (SDCs) to develop specific skills:

Dive UK, Drysuit Training, Buoyancy and Trim Workshop, Compressor Operation, Equipment Care, Marine life Appreciation, Nitrox Gas Blender / Mixed Gas Blender, Wreck Appreciation, Automated External Defibrillator, First Aid for Divers, Lifesaver Award, Advanced Lifesaver Award, Oxygen Administration, RNLI Diver Sea Survival Workshop, Boat Handling, Chartwork and Position Fixing, Diver Coxswain Assessment, Outboard Engine and Boat Maintenance.


Sport Diver

Sports Diver training builds on the scuba skills you learnt in the Ocean Diver course and helps develop your confidence, skills and experience in the water to allow you to enjoy a wider range of diving sites and conditions. The course builds a sound foundation of open water diving skills and experience with structured, practical lessons. This is a good way of getting more dives under your belt while learning under the supervision of a qualified instructor.

What you’ll learn

You’ll hone your scuba skills and experience in various areas including rescue skills, Surface Marker Buoys (SMBs) and Delayed Surface Marker Buoys (DSMBs), navigation, techniques with equipment, and more about breathing gas. In addition, Sports Divers are taught how to support a Dive Manager by acting as their deputy as the first step in developing this important role in support of safe diving. The Sports Diver course has both practical and classroom lessons run in an integrated sequence. The course includes a sheltered water lesson and five open water lessons.

Qualification and what that means

A BSAC Sports is defined as a diver who is competent to:

• conduct dives to 20m (if you choose to do the post qualification progress dives, the depth is increased in 5m increments to 35m, to complete the depth progression you need be over 14 years old. Those under 14 years can qualify to Sports Diver but can dive to a maximum depth of 20m.)

• conduct dives with a BSAC Ocean Diver within the restrictions of the conditions already encountered by the Ocean Diver

• conduct dives with another BSAC Sports Diver, within the restrictions of the conditions already encountered during training.

• Conduct dives with a Dive Leader or higher grade, to expand experience beyond the conditions encountered during training, under the supervision of a Dive Manager.

• use breathing gas mixes up to Nitrox 36

• plan and conduct dives requiring mandatory decompression stops

• rescue a casualty and provide basic life support

• support the role of Dive Manager by acting as a competent deputy

Recommended gear

At this time we would expect you to start buying your own SCUBA equipment. You should buy by know your own dry suit but equipment can be hire from the club, details about this can be obtained from the equipment officer.

Your next steps

After this course you could further your training by doing the Dive Leader course. Alternatively you could begin developing the skills to become an Instructor by doing the Instructor Foundation Course (IFC) or some of the following Skill Development Courses (SDCs) to develop specific skills:

Dive UK, Drysuit Training, Buoyancy and Trim Workshop, Compressor Operation, Equipment Care, Marine life Appreciation, Nitrox Gas Blender / Mixed Gas Blender, Wreck Appreciation, Automated External Defibrillator, First Aid for Divers, Lifesaver Award, Advanced Lifesaver Award, Oxygen Administration, RNLI Diver Sea Survival Workshop, Boat Handling, Chartwork and Position Fixing, Diver Coxswain Assessment, Outboard Engine and Boat Maintenance, Accelerated Decompression Procedures (ADP), Dive Planning and Management, Search and Recovery, Wreck Diving, Twin-set Diving, Practical Rescue Management, Underwater Photography, Ice Diving, Open Circuit Sport Mixed Gas Diver, Open Circuit Explorer Mixed Gas Diver, Open Circuit Advanced Mixed Gas Diver, Closed Circuit Rebreather (CCR) CCR Inspiration Evolution/Vision Diver, CCR Poseidon Se7en Diver, CCR Sport Mixed Gas Diver, CCR Explorer Mixed Gas Diver, CCR Advanced Mixed Gas Diver.


Dive Leader

As a Dive Leader you are becoming an expert in your field of dive leadership. You will also be competent in planning dives for groups of divers and managing diving on the day including, if necessary, managing rescue situations. This comprehensive course is a mix of classroom-based and practical lessons that will give divers confidence to plan, lead and manage dives, and deal with emergencies. Leading a dive will develop enjoyment, confidence and experience as a diver. After qualifying, and if you wish, depth can be built progressively to a maximum of 50m. Dive Leaders are eligible to progress to Open Water Instructor.

What you’ll learn

You will learn dive leadership skills through 12 classroom lessons, seven open water dives, two dry practical lessons and 20 dives (which may include the open water lessons) in a range of conditions. The Dive Leader course covers the role of the Dive Leader, Dive Planning and Management, Delayed Surface Marker Buoy (DSMB) use (midwater deployment), dive leading demonstrations, basic life support with Oxygen administration and practical management of diving incidents, casualty assessment, dive planning, shot recovery by simple lift and review of rescue skills.

Qualification and what that means

A BSAC Dive Leader is defined as a diver who:

• can plan and lead a range of dives including those requiring detailed dive, gas and decompression requirements planning.

• has rescue management skills.

• is competent to manage and supervise branch dives to locations well known to the branch.

• can conduct dives with divers of any grade, to expand their experience beyond that previously encountered by those divers, under the supervision of a Dive Manager.

• can conduct experience building dives with trainee Ocean Divers, within the restrictions of the conditions already encountered by the trainee Ocean Diver, and under the supervision of a Dive Manager.

Recommended gear

At this stage in your diving development you will most already own much of your own diving equipment.

Your next steps

After this course you can further your training by doing the Advanced Diver course. Alternatively you could develop the skills to become an Open Water Instructor.


Advanced Diver

As a Advanced Diver you are a highly qualified branch diver. This course is for divers who are interested in extending still further their skills in planning and supervising diving groups, rescue management skills, whilst building seamanship and developing further leadership qualities.

The Advanced Diver course develops knowledge and skills. Divers gain experience in planning dives at different sites and circumstances. Additional skills will be gained in using small boats, chartwork and navigation and many other related skills. Advanced Divers who are Open Water Instructors are eligible to progress to Advanced Instructor.

What you’ll learn

You will learn dive planning and management skills through four classroom lessons, two open water lessons, two dry practical lessons and 20 dives (which may include the open water lessons) in a range of conditions, since qualifying as a Dive Leader.

• The BSAC Advanced Diver course covers:

• The role of the BSAC Advanced Diver

• Advanced diving

• Organising diving from different platforms

• Review of diving conditions and on-site first aid

• Expedition planning

• Diving and rescue skills review

• Rescue skills and management review

• Dive planning and management

Experience dives

The Advanced Diver syllabus includes open water lessons and experience dives which should total a minimum of 20 dives and 600 minutes underwater time since qualifying as a Dive Leader. To ensure that students receive experience in a range of conditions, the open water dives must include the conditions in the following list. To ensure consolidation of the skill requirements, each of the conditions should be experienced on at least three dives:

• planned decompression dive - dive involving at least two planned decompression stops

• dive in tidal waters - dive involving a direct descent following a shot line, to dive on a specific site in a slack water window.

• drift dive - dive to a minimum depth of 15m in water moving at a speed which precludes a return to the point of entry

Only one of the above conditions may be logged per dive. In addition to the above, a further six dives should include at least three of the following conditions:

• navigation dive - dive requiring navigation around a site.

• search dive - a dive involving the utilisation of underwater search techniques.

• no clear surface dive - a dive involving no clear surface, either cavern, wreck penetration or ice diving.

• mixed gas dive - a dive involving the use of mixed gas, either closed circuit rebreather or open circuit.

• advanced decompression dive - a dive involving advanced decompression techniques and emergency gas deployment using decompression trapeze or lazy shot.

• surface location dive - a dive involving the surface location of an unknown site using surface searching techniques, followed by suitable precautions when diving an unknown site.

Of the 20 dives:

• at least ten should be carried out from boats.

• on at least ten the student should act as dive leader

• at least six should show depth experience greater than 30m

• on at least five occasions the student should act as Dive Manager

• at least two should be full day diving activities, to sites which are unknown to the student Dive Manager

• at least one should be for a duration of at least two days, involving overall planning of the event

• the remaining two may be to either known or unknown sites

Qualification and what that means

An Advanced Diver is defined as a diver who is comprehensively trained, experienced and responsible and who can manage and supervise:

• a wide range of adventurous and challenging diving activities

• branch diving expeditions to explore unfamiliar locations

• branch diving activities including dives utilising developing technology and techniques

Your next steps

After this course you can further your training by working towards the First Class Diver award. This is BSAC's highest diving grade which requires a higher than average level of theoretical knowledge, organisational and personal diving skills. BSAC First Class Divers are assessed through nationally conducted exams.

Advanced Divers can also further their diving development in a BSAC branch by planning and leading BSAC expeditions. There are also Skill Development Courses (SDCs) which may be of interest such as the Technical Courses and logistical courses such as Compressor Operation and Mixed Gas Blender.

BSAC Advanced Divers who are Open Water Instructors can also progress to Advanced Instructor.


First Class Diver

BSAC's highest diving grade requires a higher than average level of theoretical knowledge, organisational and personal diving skills. First Class Diver is a very challenging award to achieve.

BSAC First Class Divers are assessed through nationally conducted examinations.

Prerequisites

You must have completed 100 dives in a range of conditions since qualifying as an Advanced Diver, at least 20 of which must show experience of diving to depths greater than 30m. You must also have:

• attended a BSAC Chartwork and Position Fixing course (or equivalent).

• attained the BSAC Diver Rescue specialist qualification (requires FAD, O2, PRM and Adv. Lifesaver).

• gained the BSAC Diver Coxswain qualification (or equivalent).

Qualification and what that means

The First Class Diver Exam is conducted at a national level and consists of three separate modules that can be taken in any order. More information on the First Class Diver syllabus and how to achieve it.

• Theory Knowledge Examination

• Expedition Plan

• Practical Diving Assessment (2 Days)

A BSAC First Class Diver is defined as a diver who has:

• a high level of practical diving skills and knowledge beyond that of BSAC Advanced Diver • the ability to organise groups of divers and lead major diving expeditions to achieve specific aims or objectives

• the ability and knowledge to contribute to BSAC developments at a branch, regional and national level

How to do this course

A key first step is to register an interest online. This enables the First Class Diver Chief Examiner to offer you both generic guidance and by the information you provide some more specific advice on how to prepare for the exam. By knowing who is working towards First Class Diver also helps us keep you up to date with any relevant information.