Technical Sidemount Diver making a gas switch
Sidemount Diver cruising a wreck
Sidemount Diver handling cylinders
Technical divers sharing deco gas
Sidemount Diver inside a wreck

TRAIN FOR YOUR GOALS

FIND YOUR CONFIGURATION, DEPTH & ENVIRONMENT

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Technical Sidemount Diver making a boat exit

SIDEMOUNT DIVING

Comfort, Freedom, Flexibility​

Train to become a proficient sidemount diver and experience the flexibility, comfort and safety of sidemount diving.

Diving "in sidemount" is not simply a case of where you place the cylinders, it is a diving philosophy and equipment configuration developed by cave divers that has benefits for all divers.

I teach SDI, TDI & PADI courses as well as the Sidemount Essentials course from Steve Martin at sidemounting.com.

TECHNICAL SIDEMOUNT

Multi Stage Technical Sidemount Diving

Learn how to conduct technical, multiple gas dives in sidemount configuration.

Handling multiple sidemount cylinders requires more skill, equipment configuration and practice.


As an already experienced technical or sidemount diver, you will extend your skills and diving options.

Cave Divers handling a missing tie off

TECHNICAL DIVING

Technical, Decompression & Trimix Diving

Train as a technical diver and take diving for fun more seriously!

Technical diving is a way to approach your dives with more attention to safety, equipment, planning, team work and execution.

Learning good techniques to become an effective technical diver will set you apart from divers who did not make the same investment in their training.

CAVE & CAVERN

Underworld & out of this world!

Train to become a safe & proficient overhead diver and experience the natural beauty of the underground world.

When diving in an overhead environment, direct access to the surface is simply not available and so the diver must be skilled to handle a wide variety of problems that can affect the diver and their team's safety.

An overhead environment is unforgiving and learning how to safely navigate is crucial to your enjoyment of these amazing dives.

FIND YOUR CONFIGURATION, DEPTH & ENVIRONMENT

PADI Tec 50 divers giving a big OK after completing the course
Cave Diver studying a cave plan
Technical Diver making a fining workshop on land in Gozo
Happy Technical Divers at the Um El Faroud in Malta

MY TRAINING STYLE

VIDEO FEEDBACK

Have you ever seen yourself in the water?  Do you know how your legs & feet are actually moving when you are finning?  Ever taken the time to analyse how your harness is fitting you or how your equipment is configured and positioned on your body?

 

All our in water training sessions are filmed and those are just some of the reasons why.  We will use video taken of our training to capture every detail of your performance and help us understand what is happening in the water.  We will spend time reviewing the dive, the skills and the overall diver performance and then work together to make any changes needed to  techniques or equipment setup.

 

Video based debriefing is a huge benefit to the learning process for the diver, but also to me as the instructor.  I can pause and rewind any part of a skill to really drill into a specific detail or problem – when I know something is best explained or corrected with video, then the water session can still move on and stay effective.

 

I use a GoPro camera with a custom hand mount that allows the full use of both hands.  If needed, I do not need to clip/unclip anything to be able to assist – the camera is “hands free”

 

Depending on the type of dive, I might shoot up to 10GB of Full HD video per day – all of which is yours to keep after the training – just bring a large enough USB drive!

FOCUSED & FLEXIBLE

During our training, my focus and attention is on you.  I am not there to show you how good I might be at something – I am there to get you to perform to your maximum.  On a training day I am not looking to get back home early, make calls or answer emails – I am only working with you.


Training is typically conducted with no more than two students and this allows the days to have flexibility around how we sequence different skills or dives across our time together.  If one diver is not feeling it that day, we can work to make up any lost time with extra days as there is always an allowance of a few days between my training courses.

Making a dive plan for gas consumption
Sidemount divers from below

TAILORED LEARNING

As you train to achieve your diving goals, you will naturally find some things are easier than others.


My approach is to address all areas of your diving and fix anything that is not working well enough.

I will take some time to understand your personality, what are your motivations and what you might shy away from.

We will work with awareness and precision on the areas that you need – not necessarily what is in “Today’s Chapter” of a course manual.

LAND WORKSHOPS

Training dives are about practicing and executing things we first talk about on land.  Showing a diver a skill for the first time in the water does not always convey all of the finer points, potential problems or solutions that might be needed.  Deploying a lift bag / SMB or making a gas switch has many components and practicing these on land is essential to become comfortable with the procedure, hand placements and co-ordination.

Land workshops are also invaluable for equipment setup and configuration.  Getting correctly sized and fitted for a harness is a good example of this and time spent on land perfecting this will bring comfort and control to hundreds of future dives.  Land based work is essential for gaining a full understanding of your sidemount configuration – to talk through what the effect would be of altering a band height, boltsnap angle, bungee or hose length.

Cave courses require extensive land workshops for learning line laying techniques as well as emergency procedures such as lost line recovery, missing diver search, zero visibility team exits, broken line repair – mastering these skills is not possible without adequate practice on land.

Cave diver performing a land workshop
Technical diving equipment in use

EQUIPMENT USAGE

Most divers will own all the major items of required equipment, such as exposure suit, harness, regulators, fins & mask.  However, owning a primary reel for a Cavern Course or enough stage regulators might not be something you have decided to invest in yet.

 

These types of peripheral equipment can be supplied for usage and even testing prior to making your own financial investment.  I use several models of full technical dive computers which are also available for testing.

 

Other primary items such as exposure suit & regulators can be supplied through the dive centres I am partnered with.

Are you are ready to start your training?

©2020 Diver by Design

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