Technical Diving: 4 Essential Skills to Master

Technical diving is an exciting sport, but also inherently dangerous. It requires your foundational scuba diving skills when diving in environments that restrict your access to the surface—so when an emergency arises, you can focus on solving the problem and aborting the dive. You should practice these essential skills even when you are just new in technical diving, or have been diving as a professional for a long time.


Trim/Buoyancy/Finning

Holding your position in the water column and prevent silting-out an environment cannot be overstated—it is extremely significant. Try to spend time focusing on different finning techniques and trim/buoyancy control every dive. Grab an underwater camera and let your dive buddies film you—this can give you a better look on what you actually look like in the water.

 


Valve Drills

You should practice turning off and re-opening each valve on every single dive. Make sure to do this with a buddy or a teammate so they can confirm if each valve gets reopened. You may find it harder to reach your valves than you remember depending on your exposure protection and recent diving activity. Flexibility and muscle memory should be practiced on a regular basis.


Lift Bag/SMB Deployment and Reel Skills

Skills that deteriorate quickly when not practiced regularly? Deploying a lift bag/SMB and running a reel.  A sloppy work in these skills can be hazardous. If you don’t use it, you’ll lose it—so better practice these skills as often as you can.


Post Dive Briefing

To debrief every single technical dive is very important. Discuss the ups and downs of the dive and what areas you can improve as a team for the next dive. It is important everyone in the team provides some constructive criticism because you cannot see yourself in the water.


 

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