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The Big Thumb

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“Thumbs – up” in any situation other than diving is the universal signal for having an awesome time, and it is a pretty hard habit to break when you are having fun. As a recreational scuba instructor in Cyprus it is part of my job to teach hand signals to use while underwater, and nothing irks me more than this sign’s continuous misuse. I know diving is fun. I know diving is the most liberating feeling in the world. I know that photo opportunities to share on Facebook are hard to turn down. Seriously guys? Listen to your compass and your course instructor more than your feelings!

The big thumb means one thing and one thing only…..GO UP! It is time to end the dive, slowly safely and according to plan. If a diver “thumbs” the dive, all other divers in the group repeat the thumbs up sign and the entire team surfaces. There is no room for discussion and no one questions the signal. The dive is over.

Alright! Ok! I get it! Stop going on about it! I will, very soon – I promise.

Why am I going on and on about the big thumb? Well, many times on a dive with experienced divers I have watched a diver give the thumbs up only to have his buddy question the signal. This generally leads to a lot of confusing, rapid gestures from the whole team – a whole conversation of hands and fingers as to whether or not to really end the dive. This only makes matters worse. If the diver is starting to run low on air this confusion only wastes time. Problems should always be communicated, but the decision to end the dive should never be questioned. All instructors stress the importance of the thumb on an open water course, but sadly – when we release students into the wild they often let their bad habits kick in again. This post is a reminder, diving is serious fun – so treat hand signals with the respect they deserve.

Alexandra Dimitriou is a dive center owner in Agia Napa, Cyprus. She became a diver in 1992 and received her bachelor’s degree in Oceanography at Plymouth University in 2003. Her love of the ocean has always been her driving force, and this has led to the natural progression of becoming a diving instructor in 2005. She is currently a PADI staff instructor and owner at Scuba Monkey Ltd.

Dive Training Blogs

Dream Dive Locker Build Out Part II: Blank Slate (Watch Video)

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I owe you all an update on the dream dive locker build out! We’ve been working hard behind the scenes to build my dream dive locker/scuba classroom/office. In this installment, I’m going to answer your questions and comments from the first video in this series.

Scuba diving is my passion and to have a dedicated space for all my dive gear, as well as a hang out spot for my students, is a dream come true.

Let me know your color choice! 1, 2, 3, 4 or 5!

Thanks for watching!

D.S.D.O!

James


Subscribe here: http://bit.ly/DiversReady

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Miscellaneous Blogs

The BiG Scuba Podcast… with Stephan Whelan

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Next in a new series of podcasts shared by our friends Gemma and Ian aka The BiG Scuba Podcast…

Ian and Gemma chat to Stephan Whelan.  Stephan is the Founder and Publisher of DeeperBlue.com. His passion for the underwater world started at 8 years-old with a try-dive in a hotel pool on holiday that soon formulated into a lifelong love affair with the oceans and led him to become one of the leading figures in the diving media industry.

Stephan got bitten by the diving bug early in life. His first scuba experience was a try-dive when he was eight years old on a family holiday in Europe, and from that moment, he was addicted. He learned to dive properly with BSAC (British Sub Aqua Club) as soon as he could at school and then did his BSAC Assistant Instructor when he turned 16. By the time he was heading to university in 1996, he was hooked on teaching and diving as much as he could.

By the time he started studying at university, he decided to have a go at flexing his web-design skills by publishing some of the stories he had built up about various ‘challenging’ students and dives he had encountered, and so deeperblue.net (as it was known then) was created. He published numerous personal stories until 1998 when other writers began enquiring about contributing to the site with their tales, and it was at this moment he decided to make it more like a magazine format and began asking for volunteer helpers. He got a couple of editors on board, and plenty of writers began contributing.

DeeperBlue.com (or DB as it’s become to be known) is now one of the most-popular diving websites in the world and has grown to publish over 9,000 articles covering all sorts of topics like Freediving, Scuba Diving, Ocean Advocacy, and Diving Travel all the while keeping over half-a-million passionate divers from the diving community connected every month through the forums, large social media following, mobile app, and recently launched podcast.

WEB: deeperblue.com

FB: facebook.com/deeperbluedotcom

IG: instagram.com/deeperbluegram

Twitter: twitter.com/deeperblue

YouTube: youtube.com/deeperbluevideo

App: deeperblue.com/app/

Podcast: deeperblue.com/podcast/


Find more podcast episodes and information at www.thebigscuba.com and on most social platforms @thebigscuba 

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