Introduce Technical Diving in a Fun Way!

Pete Nawrocky , OMS Sales Manager

January 30, 2016

When it comes to introduce technical diving just the mention of the term “Technical Diving” will receive a variety of reactions. For some divers it will peak their interest and for others, well, they will just flat out run the other way.Introduce Technical Diving OMS

That is exactly what Indian Valley Scuba, Harleysville, PA (an active OMS Dealer) and Pete Nawrocky of OMS did – we got together and organized a program which was designed to entice, inform and entertain at the same time offering an introduction to technical diving.

Indian Valley Scuba calls the program “Redefining Limits” which has been successfully running for 7 years. This year we introduced an event entitled “Intro to Technical Diving Experience.” The goal is to work with divers from entry level on up. Most of the skills were to be performed in the diver’s personal gear and then introduce them to some new and different ways of diving.

Hands on learning at the dive site.

Photograph by Pete Nawrocky, OMS Dive

The program started with an evening lecture to allow the divers an opportunity to acquaint themselves with the next day’s program. The fun started immediately as participants were challenged with various scenarios and their personal solution. One such scenario was what knot would you use to repair a cut line while running a reel? We had every conceivable suggestion except the Gordian knot. (If don’t know what knot that is, just tie a lot of them – which is not the solution.) We finally settled on a knot everyone could tie with gloves on.

Introduce Technical Diving with OMSThe next challenge was inflating SMB’s (surface marker buoys). There were a bunch of suggestions of which all were good. But we did have one nobody had thought about. (If you are curious, see the article on SMB’s on the OMS blog.) How about measuring distance underwater? Divers knew how to use a compass but had no way of measuring the distance covered. So now we had set the challenges.

“All in all folks came back with new skills, a few changes in their own gear configurations and with a little better understanding of the rudimentary skills needed to start in Technical Diving.”


Everyone entered the water under the supervision of an instructor (we had a ratio of 1 instructor to 4 divers)
Introduce Technical Diving OMSThe exercises were as follows:

Evaluate weighting and trim
Fin kicks including:
Modified Frog
Modified Flutter
Helicopter spin
Proper trim
Repair a cut line
Swim a measured distance (100 Feet) by counting kick cycles. You do this 4 times and take the average.
Inflate an SMB and ascend to 15 feet and hold the stop for 5 minutes in buddy teams.


The final exercise was an introduction to side mount diving. Various manufacturers’ gear was used, kindly donated for use by Indian Valley Scuba. Various basic skills were accomplished:

Valve Drills
Gas management
Hose routing
Proper trim and buoyancy control
However we did run into one, small snag which was outfitting 12, 13 and 14 year olds. This presented us a new challenge. So we did something a little different for them which were double 45 cu/ft. tanks (7L) complete with an isolation manifold, 7 foot hose and a regulator on a necklace. Those kids dived them like they owned them!

All in all folks came back with new skills, a few changes in their own gear configurations and with a little better understanding of the rudimentary skills needed to start in Technical Diving.

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