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dressing for tech diving? (was in What the Heck is DIR?)
04-19-2004, 12:01 PM,
#1
dressing for tech diving? (was in What the Heck is DIR?)
Quote:Freedive WI
Re:What the Heck is DIR?

We can get into other discussioons about DIR in another thread, like why I think a tec instructor should actually be able to dress themselves for a tec dive if they are going to charge somebody to take a class from them, but fitness and DIR is a good place to start for now.

Just curious...What do you mean dress themselves? Could someone not lift the gear? Or could they not stuff themselves
into a suit? Or did they not know what the equipment was?

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04-19-2004, 12:32 PM,
#2
Re:dressing for tech diving? (was in What the Heck is DIR?)
I've seen instructors before that required more help getting into their gear than their open water students. An instructor should be self-sufficient.
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04-19-2004, 01:56 PM,
#3
Re:dressing for tech diving? (was in What the Heck is DIR?)
Your both correct!

There's one local "tech instructor" that comes out on the charter boat I work on and needs more help getting into his gear than his students do. Some of the captains used to draw straws to see who had to take him out since they knew it was going to be a long day when he and his students got on the boat.

Another example came from some tech diving courses I took a few years back. After decades of diving, many of which were spent on deep air, I decided to switch to trimix to be safer. I had to jump through a bunch of hoops with another local tech instructor before I could take the trimix course that I wanted.
Many a dive was started by me dressing the instructor, and their divemaster, into their suits. I would then carry all of their stage bottles down to the water, along with their masks and fins. In the meantime I would put my own gear on, go down to the water and strap on my stages, plus still have time to fiddle with my camera setup that I dragged on all of my dives, while they were still up by the truck! One time the instructor even started screaming at me because I was rushing them! I did everything I could to get them ready and was supposed to be the one taking the course!

Needless to say after a couple of incidents, like the divemaster running out of gas on a simple 170' dive, I found a new tech instructor to finish up my mix training with.

I firmly believe that you should be able to put all of your own gear on for whatever level of instruction you are teaching. If you can't dress yourself, what good are you to your students??

Jon
"Ignorance begets confidence more often than does knowledge." -Charles Darwin
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04-20-2004, 05:29 PM,
#4
Re:dressing for tech diving? (was in What the Heck is DIR?)
Jon,
you had to carry their equipment....??? I think I would have dropped a stage or two and broken some valves for them. Maybe even offered to assist them with zipping a dry suit...maybe not quite all the way..And this would have all happened before the clown yelled at me for rushing them. ;D
It goes to show..no matter what level you are working to, you always need to find qualilty instruction.

deano
Oops Did I really say that?????
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04-20-2004, 07:27 PM,
#5
Re:dressing for tech diving? (was in What the Heck is DIR?)


You should have seen the boat captain they used who smoked like a chimmney on the way out to the wreck site and then would jump in and dive while we were diving. He came up to me on the EMBA(170') one day and was out of air, but he had close to 50 minutes of deco to do! I gave him one of my stage bottles, since I had plenty of gas left, and he was able to finish it all. The worst part about it was that after the dive he told me: " I didn't run out of air, because you had gas for me!"
:Smile

It used to be very hard to find proper trimix instruction around here. When I first looked into classes my choices where pretty much either Billy Deans, in Florida, or Wings Stock, in California. Neither one of these fit inot my budget at the time.

After checking out a few instructors around here,who hadn't had any student's die during their courses, I finally ran into Greg Such. I had know him for a while, since he always brought groups out on the charter boat I worked on, but now he had his trimix instructor rating. More importantly to me, after all of the issues I had with the stroke instructors, he was totally DIR. It was a good fit and I would reccomend him to anyone. I also got to meet and dive with other GUE certified divers, and former WKPP divers, through him and have been VERY impressed with the level of safety that every last one of those divers showed.

Before my experiences with the other instructor I wasn't really that much into the whole DIR thing. I like how they had their gear set up, but that was it. After watching 3 divers run out of gas in 2 weeks of deep diving with the strokes, I knew there had to be a better way- I have never run out of air in 24 years of diving. Every DIR principle I put into action just seemed to work like a charm.

Oh yeah, those classes had no lecture. I would read the book and take the test. Then, I would write out the mistakes in the books and show what the answers should have been- they gave different answers under the meteric/imperial section which is how I double checked eveything and knew I was right the first time. Then, we'd go out and doing a bunch of silly skills, while I dragged along a camera to shoot pictures of it all.

It was very frustrating to take a course from an instructor whose skill weren't up to par, but they spent the money on the card and I wanted that card so I had to jump through some hoops to get it. All of these c-cards get pretty goofy after a while and was a small reason why I have since jumped into freediving. I know of freedivers who have only taken a single scuba lesson, yet can swim down to 290' and back on a single breath of air. They are fish in the water, but have no cards to show for it. I would put their diving skills up against any scuba instructor trainer i have ever met.

Jon
"Ignorance begets confidence more often than does knowledge." -Charles Darwin
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04-20-2004, 09:24 PM,
#6
Re:dressing for tech diving? (was in What the Heck is DIR?)
I have heard that there are severeal instructors in the area that make you jump through some unnecessary hoops to get the cert. What can you do, but do what they ask. You got through it. Its just a bummer that you need to go through some of that crap to get what you want.

Being that this is a DIR section, i have a couple of comments and maybe some questions. I am not DIR, even though alot of the practices of DIR make alot of sense. I do configure my gear MOSTLY DIR as a great deal of the equipment configuration makes sense to me. I have not taken any DIR classes, and have only read JJ's DIR book. I think that the general principles of DIR make good sense. ie. better health, better planning makes for a better diver..safety above all else..etc. These prinsiples are great. I am the first to admit that i could get into better shape, but dont need DIR to tell me that. I am concerned that DIR has forgotten what recreational diving is all about. I know that its policy is something along the lines of one basic equipment configuration for all types of diving with specific modifications for more demanding environments, and that a back plate and wing setup is to be used on all types of dive environments. Thus keeping your equipment in a familiar location. But, this still does not make a great deal of sense to me. I think it works great for our local diving, and i dive it happily, but when i go to mexico or the bahamas, and am diving in 40 ft with my wife, i cant see the necessity for such a rig with a 5 ft hose when an AIR2 and a bc will be very adequate. I also find this to be a great time to use a dive computer. Yet here at home i see no problems with using a bottom timer and tables. If for some reason my computer fails, ( air integrated) i am confident enough in my knowledge of my consumption and my dive watch/computer to get me back to the surface safely. At that time, if my computer is still down, I can use my RDP to let me know where i am at with Nitrogen. A concern that i have. I find that people that dive DIR tend to be very sure of their diving skills..so sure in fact that often they seem to be very boisterous with their strong beliefs in the system. While I am confident that there are many very good divers that believe in the DIR philosophy, i still have concerns. Are they ALL really that good, or are they just trained in a way that gives them a great deal of confidence, maybe not deserved. Also, it sometimes seems that DIR divers have little or no regard for other divers or their beliefs. I hope that this is not true as it would be a shame. I think that this is one reason why DIR diving is so controversial..not because of its techniques or configurations, or even its philosophies, but rather the way that some of the divers carry themselves. Please keep in mind..i am not accusing anyone, nor am i wishing to start a big argument with DIR followers. Like i said..alot of it makes sense to me..but some just doesnt. I have heard some people on this site mention that people that dont follow DIR are "clueless"..I dont think this is a fair assessment. I dont follow DIR 100% and I am confident that I am not clueless. There is one word that i just cant stand...I dont look down upon anyone that says it, but i really wish it would go away.."Stroke" Everyone needs to start somewhere, and each of us has his or her own agenda when it comes to diving. I know of several people that are just terrible in the water. I have no doubt that everyone on the planet would see them as a "stroke" But there agenda is to enjoy themselves. They dont go deep, they dive only with someone that knows their ability or lack of ability, and dont get involved with a diving situation they think they cant handle. Yet, they are out of shape, have poor boyancy skills and poor consumption rates. But what they are great at is putting a smile on their face. They enjoy nothing more that going someplace that not everyone else in the world goes to. They enjoy, over and over again the very simple things that first got all of us so excited. They just chose not to follow the path that some of us followed. Why should they be labeled a "stroke" . Once again gang, i am not trying to pick a fight...there are several people on this site who's skills and knowledge of diving are FAR superior to my own. I look to you people to enlighten me on some of my concerns. Maybe i have some things wrong...if so, i would appreciate any input. A thought that I have is, because of the bad press and controversy that surrounds DIR is probably not really based on its philosophies, maybe its divers should consider an action plan that would hlep promote DIR in a positive manner as opposed to the negative "stick out my chest" manner that is occasionally seen. Any intelligent input is welcome.

Jon, i realize that you just used the dreaded "S" word on the site. I promise you, I am not picking on you...that would not be wise on my part. But if I had to pick on someone on that topic maybe it should be you as i am confident that you will give an intelligent response and explanation.

happy diving
Deano

Oops Did I really say that?????
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04-21-2004, 07:10 AM,
#7
Re:dressing for tech diving? (was in What the Heck is DIR?)
The way I kind of view DIR is that I liken it to a religion. Those who have adopted the DIR philosophy have basically made "a leap of faith".

As like religion, those who have made the leap of faith cannot be questioned on why they do so, it is the choice they have made and it works for them. They are preponents of that religion and philosophy and want to share it with others because they believe it to be right. It makes them feel good about themselves and their actions, they believe it to be right because of that feeling, and they want to share that with others. They have found that there is a void in their lives, or in the case of DIR - a void in the way scuba is being conducted or taught, etc. Those who promote their beliefs are also looking to self-justification for the choice they have made. We all don't know if the choice we've made in life to adopt a way of doing something is right or not necessarily without others agreeing, or following suit in the same leap or adoption. The more who adopt, the more it reconfirms that belief to those who follow it.

Just as religion, DIR is looking for answers, fulfillment of what they view is missing, and more meaning in their every day diving. DIR was developed for a team of divers that wanted to go do deep exploration of caves. They viewed that the team needed to work as a whole to increase safety, comforming to a simplistic single approach. It was designed for that purpose, and it grew from there, and like anything, it was marketed as being adoptable into the rest of scuba. As long as it doesn't hurt others, I don't see any real problem with it. But human nature has a way of balancing back and forth of what may be viewed as right or worng.

Just as you may or may not question or understand someone's religious beliefs, the same can be said with DIR. Some times those who sound the biggest voice of the cause don't necessarily reflect the majority's thoughts or opinions of that cause. Even in the DIR camp, some think that someone like George Irving, has gotten away from the central theme of the philosophy and hurt it's image. As in any religion, there are the pacifists and the radicals, they same with DIR. I believe George coined the stroke reference, and it stuck as a quick label easily passed from tongue to tongue. This negative should be tempered, it only creates defensiveness in those who think it is referenced to them -and it does not market well for the further growth of DIR.

I believe that as in any religion, one does not have to adopt all the ways of DIR, instead taking such aspects of DIR that work for you - that's a choice we all have. No, that is not being 100%DIR, and those proponents of DIR surely don't like those half-way types, those who would scapel out their needs from the whole, and this is not true DIR. Those who are true DIR know it is a whole way of doing things, and also like religion, there will not always be those who stay true to the whole belief and follow through with is daily. But once again, that is simply human nature.

You have to make the choice for yourself if you wish to take the leap of faith, if it works for you. But as in religions, those who do or do not, undoubtedly need to be careful, as their faith doesn't work for all others, nor does it mean that it is the only way, or that it doesn't have it's closet ghosts nor ignore that many other ways of design and beliefs came before and will follow after. Those who or who do not follow should not be ridiculed, subjegated, or driven for action against, nor pushed to adopt it's way.

Science can't counter religion, and non-DIR can't counter DIR, it's how someone feels, those who believe will always find a way to make it work for them - it's a leap of faith.

What works, works.
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04-21-2004, 08:02 AM,
#8
Re:dressing for tech diving? (was in What the Heck is DIR?)
(04-21-2004, 07:10 AM)Dirk Diggler link Wrote:The way I kind of view DIR is that I liken it to a religion. Those who have adopted the DIR philosophy have basically made \"a leap of faith\".

Well stated.

I have never taken a DIR course, and most likely never will (I'm thinking DIR and CCR's don't mix well). I can certainly appreciate some of the things I've heard from individuals on the board, and some of the things I've read on my onw. Some of the courses sound great, no hand shake and $50 for a card, you really need to prove you have both learned the material, and can apply it in the water.

Fitness, training, planning, and gear configuration are all important aspects of diver safety. I don't think many would argue with that.

In my opinion, it is our nature as humans to question and use our intellect to analyze the world around us. If we didn't do this we would still believe that the earth was a flat plane at the center of the universe with the stars supported by a celestial dome that rotated around us.

To the extent that DIR causes us to think about safe diving I think it's great. To the extent that it stops us from thinking, because someone else has already done the thinking for us, it scares the crap out of me. Just like religion, it's neither intrinsicly (sp?) good or bad, it's how you use it.
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04-21-2004, 08:07 AM,
#9
Re:dressing for tech diving? (was in What the Heck is DIR?)
Wow - there's tons of stuff here to which to respond but I'll keep it short and sweet.

Deano, your comment about using the air2 in the Caribean: sure it'll work, but why drive a Yugo when you've got a 911 in your garage?! The beauty of DIR is that you can use the system regardless of the type of diving your doing, plus that you're always working on or finetuning all of your skills, hence the commitment to the gear (plus it's quite a bit cheaper to always use the same thing). Also, since you're always diving within a team of DIR divers, who all go through a rigorous pre-dive checklist before jumping in the water, the unified approach to gear makes certain that everyon is on the same page at all times (and when shit hits the fan, you know who'll be SOL and who won't).

Dirk,

if you believe that DIR is a religion then go ahead - I'm not going to try to convince you otherwise, but my personal journey toward DIR has come through study and analysis. There was no leap of faith involved, just a lightbulb that went on when I realized I had been a stroke for all these years, jeopardizing my life and that of others by my decisions and actions, luckily never without any real consequences. I have always strived to be a perfectionist about what I do and I don't have a problem checking my ego at the door, which has led me to take the cotton out of my ears and put it where it should have been all of these years in the first place and LEARN. I understand that in the ego-driven, extreme sport mentality of (tech) diving, this might be considered as whimpy, gay or whatever you want to call it, but at least I know now I'm conducting my dives safely, without stress and my fun factor has skyrocketed. If that's religion, boy, I'll be at church every single day.
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04-21-2004, 08:29 AM,
#10
Re:dressing for tech diving? (was in What the Heck is DIR?)

Quote:


To the extent that DIR causes us to think about safe diving I think it's great. To the extent that it stops us from thinking, because someone else has already done the thinking for us, it scares the crap out of me. Just like religion, it's neither intrinsicly (sp?) good or bad, it's how you use it.
Quote:


Where do you get the notion that when you're DIR you stop thinking? The entire approach of the GUE teaching methodology is that it uses to great extent the Socratic approach, which is at the very opposite end of you guys's fascist (and I don't mean Nazi, which has very little to do with fascist philosophy, but that's a whole other topic ;D) interpretation of DIR. The ultimate attention to detail is not something that gets beaten into you, it's something you gravitate toward, and something that takes a long time to gestate. What I don't understand is why you would dismiss the knowledge gathered through years of exploratory diving, and you'd prefer to reinvent the wheel all by yourself. Did you ever do the math yourself to verify whether the earth is round, or did you accept that because better and brighter people already did it a long time before you?! Does the acceptance of that fact make you a religious zealot - I don't think so.
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