Kel Bradley: SDI Instructor Trainer Ambassador

Hi, I’m Kel Bradley. I’m honored to be a part of the SDI Instructor Ambassador Program. I’ve been diving since 1975 and I’ve been teaching for 25 years.

What was the first dive you did and how did it influence you to start a career in the diving industry?

My first dive was in 1975, in the Persian Gulf around an oil rig, I loved every second of it. I had a break for 10 years and then got into it, became an instructor and the story goes on. Owning a dive shop lets me dive, teach and travel so it is great. I have been teaching for over 25 years and still love it.

What do you believe is the most important trait of a professional educator and why?

You must show your student that to succeed you need to show all, don’t hide behind the “I am your instructor” cloak, show them that you are there to help them move forward. Gain their respect by not telling them, showing them. Get them to engage in the training you are giving them. Then you have their trust and it is all good from that point.

What is your favorite SDI class to teach and why?

I still love teaching SDI Open Water courses, there is a reward from teaching kids as well, as they are our future in diving. Then the SDI Solo course is another one that is awesome to teach, it brings out the best in divers and shows them that they still need to make a plan and dive the plan.

What is a bucket list dive you still have?

I want to dive the Great Lakes, but there are so many places to dive and I have been so lucky in diving places from Asia all the way to the Bahamas to dive with Tiger sharks.

What is one bit of advice you would give to a perspective Instructor candidate about to embark on becoming an SDI Instructor?

Be honest with yourself and your students, don’t stop learning and keep your mind open. Because there is always another way to do things, and another way to explain something. And above all treat people, your students, and your workmates, with respect.