Wearing more than one tank has become increasingly popular for technical diving. With the Tec Sidemount Diver course you can apply what you learn to other TecRec courses.
If you’ve looked into technical diving, you realize that tec divers always wear more than one tank. Sidemount is an increasingly popular way to configure multiple cylinders for technical diving. You can enter the world of tec diving with the Tec Sidemount Diver course and apply what you learn to other TecRec courses. Your instructor may offer to integrate this course with the Tec 40, Tec 45 or Tec 50 courses.
If you’re a PADI Advanced Open Water Diver, at least 18 years old and have a minimum of 30 logged dives, you qualify to enroll in a Tec Sidemount Diver course. It’s recommended that you also have a PADI Enriched Air Diver certification.
Note that qualifying certifications from other diver training organizations may apply – ask your Tec Sidemount Instructor.
What You’ll Learn
You’ll learn about the advantages of diving with a sidemount configuration and how to set up a tec sidemount harness. You’ll get hands-on training during one confined water session and four open water dives where you’ll start with two tanks and add at least two more, maybe even getting to six sidemounted cylinders.
Read PADI’s Blog
With sidemount diving gaining in popularity and gaining more mainstream exposure, I decided it was time to check it out myself.
Having the opportunity to attend a PADI Tec Explorer event at Team Blue Immersion, Dahab, Egypt. I jumped at the chance to take the recreational PADI Sidemount Diver course (PADI offers two courses – Recreational and Tec). For those of you looking to step into Tec or just to try something different, I can’t recommend an event like Tec Explorer enough.
First maybe I should address the question – I don’t cave dive, so why sidemount?
Sidemount has a number of benefits for the recreational diver far beyond merely cave diving:
- Comfort – Especially for those divers with back issues.
- Control – Streamlining helps improve buoyancy control
- Efficient – Takes less energy
- Peace of mind – More redundancy and more air supply, less stress longer dives
- Fun – Enjoy your diving!
More then one tank
Coming from a recreational background, the first session of the course brought the biggest learning opportunity – equipment configuration. Obviously going from one tank to two brings with it equipment considerations beyond where the tank is mounted. Split into small groups, we were given all the items needed and given the task of setting up a sidemount configuration from scratch. After some initial floundering and with guidance we soon all had a perfect set up.
By the end of the session, I had gone from never having so much as changed a hose to understanding which ports best fit the different items and which were the best ports to use for the best and most streamlined configuration. In fact, I believe I learnt more about scuba equipment in that single session then I had during all my previous diving. I’m a firm believer in more knowledge makes for a safer, confident and more relaxed diver.