Buddy Diving - Is three a crowd ? Did I start all this ??

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Posted by Dean Christensen on July 10, 2000 at 16:13:13:

First, I’d like to thank everyone for taking the time to respond to my question. “ Buddy Diving – Is three a crowd “ After taking time to read through all the replies, I wanted to share with all of you a few of the things I learned here.

Maybe I should have been more specific. I was asking about the safety issues for a beginning recreational diver. I stated that I was planning on getting certified this summer. Most of the people the replied understood this.

MHK, Seahunt & Kelphead all provided great information for a beginner like myself. MHK described simply and intelligently how diving in three’s was possible and sometimes common. Seahunt pointed out some of the problems associated this diving in groups of three based on his experience. Again the response was clearly stated, simple and to the point. Kelphead also provided me with clear advice based on his personal experience. Wayne also posted a great reply. All four understood I was a beginner and answered my question accordingly.

John Walker’s response was another story. While I can appreciate his point of view …
He began with – “ It has been long known in Advance diving a three person dive team is OPTIMAL “. I was not asking about advance diving procedures. I thought my question made that clear. I understand how a three or four man team could be beneficial or even possibly optimal in some advanced diving situations. It just was not the type of situation I was asking about. The other thing that bothered me was the tone of the response. Mr. Walker responded to the comments made by Kelphead in a way that seemed a bit arrogant to me. The replies that followed proved I was not alone in this feeling.

In all the postings that followed a few things became clear to me. Mr. Walker choose not to build on the opinions expressed by MHK. Seahunt & Kelphead. Instead he chose to respond as if he alone was correct and the other opinions expressed were incorrect. My father had a saying … “You don’t have to make somebody wrong for you to be right”.

In my opinion Mr. Walker’s responses have been rude and arrogant. He has told people to “shut-up and listen” and even resorted to vulgar name-calling. Are these good qualities for a professional dive instructor ? I wonder how he treats his students when they have a question or god forbid, a difference of opinion ? I understand now more than ever the importance of finding a “good / qualified instructor.

After doing all my research and doing my own thinking on the subject here is what I see as the answer to my original question.

While diving in three’s is possible for the beginning diver, having one experienced buddy will be the most safe and practical system for a new diver just starting out.

Again, thanks to everyone for your opinions.

Dean Christensen
Roosmoor, CA

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