The first thing is that your dive skills will improve. Regardless of where you are on the spectrum from rank beginner to experienced semi-pro, your TDI instructor will show you techniques to improve situational awareness and your ability to problem solve creatively and efficiently. A couple of things graduates from our Intro to Tech™ course tell us is that it makes them more attentive and more useful as a dive buddy. We think it will also make diving more enjoyable, because if divers continue to practice the techniques learned during the course, they become more relaxed and more aware of what’s happening around them as they gear up and in the water.
Intro to Tech™ is a relatively new addition to the TDI curriculum – we launched it less than two years ago in late 2007. But this course had its beginnings in the very earliest days of our agency when instructors found that spending one or two days running "technical diving beginner’s workshops" helped demystify things for sport divers.
The purpose of the course today is to continue that same process. Through this course your TDI instructor will introduceyou to the equipment, drills and skills used in technical diving to plan and execute more advanced dives correctly and within set limits.
You will learn what technical diving is all about and be provided an appropriate overview of technical diving issues. The information is pracical up-to-date and teaching materials are innovative and especially produced to make sense to someone with a sport diving background.
The course focuses primarily on defining the various activities, explaining the equipment, outlining the options, and previewing the information that will be further addressed during formal training in each specialty area. Along the way it will dispel some myths and demystify relevant topics. It is not intended, by itself, to make the participant a full-fledged technical diver; instead it will help lay a foundation for subsequent technical training, while also enabling the student to make informed decisions about his or her own training path.
There will be a minimum of three open water dives required to complete this course (maximum depth of 26 metres or 75 feet). Additional requirements include the following:
1. Selection and preparation of equipment
2. Conduct team oriented skills (buddy checks) for lift bag deployment
3. Gas matching among buddy teams
4. Demonstrate familiarity with basic hand signals
5. Demonstrate adequate pre-dive planning with limits based on the team and personal gas consumption
1. Use START before every dive
* START is an acronym for S-drill (Out of Air drill and Bubble Check), Team (buddy equipment checks), Air (gas matching), Route (entry/exit and planned path underwater, Tables (depth, duration, waypoints and schedule)
2. Stress analysis and mitigation
1. Weight check
2. Demonstrate adequate buoyancy control (ability to hover at fixed position in water column without moving hands or feet)
3. Demonstrate adequate trim (ability to maintain horizontal position during the descent, bottom and ascent portion of the dive)
4. Demonstrate no-silting propulsion techniques (frog kick, modified frog kick, modified flutter kick, backwards kick)
5. Demonstrate the ability to perform the following exercises while maintaining trim and buoyancy in the water column:
a. Regulator exchange
b. Regulator recovery
c. Mask partial flood and clear with minimal air loss
d. Mask removal and clear with minimal air loss
6. Demonstrate the ability to perform a safety drill (S-drill) while maintaining trim and buoyancy in the water column
7. Demonstrate the ability to perform a valve drill while maintaining trim and buoyancy in the water column (if double cylinders are being used)
8. Demonstrate the ability to deploy a surface marker buoy or lift bag while maintaining trim and buoyancy in the water column
9. Show good situational awareness.