Technology improves all of the time, whether this change is made for ease, convenience or safety; as instructors we should be using these improvements to our advantage. As an instructor, one of the most useful enhances in technology that I have found is being able to talk. Yes, full face mask communications.
Underwater communications have proved very useful for teaching. Gone are the days of waving and making hand gestures to try and communicate what the problem with the skill was, having to spend time going up and down to talk. I can now do this from the comfort of the 6 meter platform. Altogether increasing time spent in the water, more time to repeat skills, and all in all better for the student and less stressful for you. If you are not a fan of your student being able to talk back – then that’s ok! There are receivers on the market that you can hold out to your students to listen to you talk. No additional distraction, no change in teaching, just ease of communication.
From experience of using underwater communications, it is not only during skill demonstrations that this has become a benefit. In general we are very social creatures… we like to talk. I am sure at some point we have all come across the person nervous to be under the water. On land, we would simply talk calmly and reassure the individual. Under water this isn’t an option… well, unless you are now using a full face mask.
A great feature with lots of teaching benefits, especially in the UK; after all, the easier we can communicate the less chance your student will become unnecessarily cold sat trying to work out what you are wanting from them! In my opinion this is just one of the advances that are massively being missed out on by so many instructors.
Tip number 5: Technology is moving forward – embrace it.
Check back for Tip #6 soon. Find out more at www.duttonsdivers.com.