When do I have to do a Scuba Diving Refresher Course?
The answer is really down to the discretion of the Dive centre you are planning on visiting. Some dive centres say 6 months others say 12. In some parts of the world they don’t care! PADI’s official answer is after several months.
The true answer is if you need it. For example if you went diving would you remember how to control your buoyancy, clear a mask, know the out-of-air procedures and can you even remember how to set up your equipment? It also depends on how confident you feel, you could be fine with the above skills but sometimes just jumping in the water to practice these skills in a shallow water environment can do wonders for you mentally and avoid a panic situation.
Under the PADI system you can do a scuba refresher, sometimes called a ReActivate or Scuba Review, in a pool or in open water but I would say the majority of dive centres do these in confined water less than 5m.
At Oyster Diving we run the PADI ReActivate course. This takes you through equipment set up and the most important skills to build your safety and confidence. There are also some other skills that are down to you and your instructor, for example if there is something you wish to practice i.e. may be something you learned in the Rescue Diver course then you have time to practice these. There is also some online learning to go through the key points of diving that you learn’t during your open water course.
Once you complete the ReActivate course then your instructor will sign your log book and you’ll receive a new certification card that you can show to other dive centres to show that you are in diving status.
The final tip is don’t leave it to chance. Most accidents happen because of diver error, it’s a safe sport as long as you know what you’re doing!