Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Review: Open Water Diver Manual by PADI

On my birthday trip, we got certified to scuba dive. One of the things you have to do to get fully certified is to read this manual. And yes, there are quizzes and even a final test on it so even though we knew that the chapter end questions were the most important, I read every last word of the thing. It's that "good girl" personality coming to the fore again.

In terms of an educational manual, this was rather interesting. Obviously there was much important information, stuff that would hopefully keep us safe and alive underwater but that's not all there was. There was also an extended sales pitch about the equipment parts to buy. I think it was unintentionally hilarious when the text kept mentioning that you could be a stylish diver, offering the fact that scuba wet suits, masks, and fins all come in a variety of colors. In other words, you don't have to be boring and wear all black. The sales pitch (vague and generalized as they weren't advocating a certain brand though) ran through most sections of the book. Of course, there was a lot of repetition in all areas so I guess that was to be expected. I know that repetition is a time honored teaching technique but boy howdy did it get boring. Then again, I suspect that if there's ever a difficulty underwater, I'll be glad to have a constant refrain running through my head so it serves a purpose. I am grateful that the book opened up the possibility of spending so much time in the underwater world for me but I wish it hadn't eaten up quite so much of my reading time to do it.

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