26 March 2024


There are dozens of reasons to become a Diving Instructor : we’re paid to dive, we get to meet amazing people, etc. But that is not the subject of this article :

This article treats the myths, false ideas and misunderstandings that stop people going further with their passion for diving.  Carry on reading to know the truth about becoming a diving instructor and the PADI Instructor Development Course (IDC).

Myth 1 : You must have an encyclopeadic knowledge about scuba diving.

You don’t know the difference between a nembrotha cristata and a nembrotha kubaryana?  Not a problem.  Some PADI Instructors are animal identification experts, others know fascinating details about the shipwrecks of their region.  These are useful things to know, but they’re not necessary to teach someone to dive.

The Divemaster course will teach you the fundamentals of physics; physiology, equipment and the diving environment.

During the IDC you’ll learn to work with students, to manage problems, and to explain concepts like buoyancy in a manner that is easy to understand.

The PADI system has helped thousands of divers become PADI professionals.  All that you need is a love of the underwater world and a desire to share this passion with others.

Myth 2 : You need a huge amount of time to become a PADI Instructor.

If you’re already a PADI Divemaster (of if you have an equivalent certification from another training agency) you can become a PADI Instructor in around 11 days (on average). You can also complete the course progressively over a number of weekends.
First of all you’ll need between 10 and 12 hours to complete the online training (IDC eLearning).

Then you need to spend a minimum of six days with your PADI Course Director(s) practising teaching presentations, completing the workshops and perfecting your dive skills and demonstrations.

The last step, being the Instructor Examination (IE) runs over two consecutive days.

You need to have a minimum of 100 logged dives to start the IDC and proof of EFR training within the last 24 months. If you don’t satisfy these criteria your training will probably take longer.

Myth 3 : Becoming a Diving Instructor is very expensive.

We’ve looked at the maths and the average cost of becoming a Diving Instructor is roughly the same as becoming a watersports or yoga instructor.  The average cost of a PADI Instructor course is less expensive than the average cost of a ski or snowboard instructor course.

Myth 4 : The PADI IDC is only of value if you want to teach diving to earn a living.

One of these things we hear the most often from PADI Instructors is that the IDC helped the succeed in the “real world”. During the IDC, you’ll learn how to:

• Break down complicated information into simple concepts
• Help people assimilate new information by comparing it to things they already know
• Give positive and encouraging feedback
• Deal with people with different learning styles
• Create a positive learning environment
• Learn more about the advantages of becoming a PADI Instructor in the real world. You can also find out more about the many career options for PADI Pros including marine biologist, underwater crime scene investigator, stuntman or marine archaeologist.

If you don’t feel ready, no problem. Most people don’t feel ready, which is why the training is called an “Instructor Development Course”. Your PADI Course Director will lead you through the ins and outs of teaching diving, just like how your Open Water instructor showed you how to take your first breaths underwater.
At the start of your Open Water Course you started with zero knowledge.

When you start the IDC you already know how to dive. The course will teach you how to transmit this knowledge to others.

Contact a PADI 5*IDC or CDC centre if you have any questions about becoming a PADI PRO. They’ll be happy to share their knowledge.

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