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Learning to dive - PADI Open Water Diver Course

The PADI Open Water Diver Course is where you start your underwater adventure.  On this page we'll provide you with all the information you need to take this class with The Amazing Ocean!

To enroll in a PADI Open Water Diver course (or Junior Open Water Diver course), you must be 10 years old or older. You need adequate swimming skills and need to be in good physical health. No prior experience with scuba diving is required.

Course Format

The PADI Open Water Diver Course consists of three components: knowledge development, confined water dives, and open water dives.  

Knowledge development is where you'll learn the principles of SCUBA diving.  Knowledge development is comprised of modules, quiz's and a final exam.  Students may complete this portion of the course online with PADI eLearning, through independent study or by participating in traditional classroom sessions.

Confined water dives are where you will learn and master the skills and techniques needed to safely enjoy the underwater world.  There are four confined water dives that are typically conducted in a pool over two weekend days or spread over four evening sessions during the week.  You'll be introduced to basic scuba skills in the shallow end of the pool and build upon those in the deep end.  And, of course there is some underwater "fun time" to build your confidence and experience!

Open water dives are the exciting conclusion to the PADI Open Water Diver Course.  Conducted over a weekend, these four dives allow you the opportunity to explore the underwater world under the supervision of a PADI Instructor.  During the dives you will demonstrate your mastery of the confined water skills in a real (underwater) world environment.  After successfully completing your open water dives, you'll be a certified PADI Open Water Diver!

What do we recommend for you?  Most students find the PADI eLearning a great way to tackle the knowledge development portion of the course and we recommend it for our students.  Of course, we're here to answer any questions you may have as you work through the knowledge modules so you won't be on your own!  We also prefer teaching confined water skills in an evening format spread across four sessions.  Many offer courses that conduct a knowledge review and confined water sessions in one weekend.  It makes for long days and a lot of information to process.  The Amazing Ocean is happy to conduct your class in this format, but we recommend that students consider developing and reinforcing their skills over four days.  However, we're more than happy to discuss your specific needs and tailor a course format that is best for you! Finally, you'll finish your course with the open water dives.  Typically we'll go to a local quarry/scuba park like Hyde's Quarry in Westminster, and enjoy a leisurely and relaxed weekend of diving! 

What Equipment will I need?

You will obviously need a bathing suit and towel.  In addition, you will need what is called your "personal equipment."  Personal equipment is: mask, fins, snorkel, booties, and weight belt.  It's important that this gear fit you well, so we're delighted to provide recommendations and assist you with your equipment purchase.

The Amazing Ocean will provide your SCUBA equipment which includes your regulator, buoyancy control device, tanks, wet suit and weights.

What does it cost?

The price for our private lessons is $800 and this includes the PADI eLearning, confined water dives and open water dives.  We offer a discount for Calvert County students, so please inquire if you have children interested in learning to dive!

If you'd like to just start with the PADI eLearning, the cost is $179.  The cost to participate in the balance of the course is $650.

Note: The cost of admission for open water dives varies depending on where you decide you would like to complete your course.  Therefore, we do not include quarry admission fees.

How do I get started?

  1. Purchase your course and lock in the dates for your confined water training

  2. Begin your eLearning knowledge development

  3. Download and complete the required course forms:

  4. Orientation.  A few days before we begin your confined water training, we'll find a convenient time to meet for orientation.  We'll get you sized up for your SCUBA equipment and make sure all the necessary paperwork is complete.

Sign me up - 2022 Prices!

PADI Open Water Diver Private Instruction (Skills Development) - $250

PADI Open Water Diver eLearning (online learning only) - $200

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