Approximately a year ago, Technical Diving International added an additional step to the line up of courses available to Closed-Circuit Rebreather (CCR) divers and blended the traditional Advanced Nitrox course into the first level of CCR training.
This resulted in four progressive steps in TDI CCR program:
- Air-Diluent to 30 metres/100 feet with no decompression
- Air-Diluent to 45 meters/150 feet with full decompression
- Mixed Gas-Diluent (trimix) to 60 metres/200 feet
- Advanced Mixed Gas-Diluent to 100 metres/330 feet
Breaking out the "entry-level" progression for CCR divers meant that there was time to include all the information contained in the old stand-alone advanced nitrox course. We feel his translates into a smoother transition for students and it seems popular with them because they neither have to "suffer through" the stand-alone course, nor do they have to pay for it!
The progression to level two (air-dil full deco) is gained with 30 hours of experience on the unit and six months diving it. This seems to be a popular change and was decided upon originally after meetings between TDI training staff and our senior ITs and CCR instructors.
But in the change, consideration was made for experienced OC decompression divers. They can if they wish move directly into level two course if they can show training and experience executing open-circuit staged decompression dives.
Some divers, moving into CCR diving for the first time, opt to take level one training regardless of their previous experience, and we accept that decision completely.