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PADI Rescue Diver

If you consider taking the PAID Rescue course, you are addicted.

That's good, you will not regret it...

In my opinion, this course is the most interesting one. In some ways it is even richer than the PADI Divemaster. It will drastically increase your confidence and your diving skills, thanks to two essential axes namely (1) physiological knowledge; (2) techniques for self-assistance and assistance to others. Understanding better the reactions of your body underwater, you will be able to anticipate and fix potential problems. You will become much more alert during your dives, taking care of yourself and your group.

For those who like technical aspects, you should not be disappointed. This is not about nuclear physics, but the intellectual effort required is still greater than what you have experienced so far. Don't worry, despite being serious, you will have fun performing roleplays in emergency scenarios. 


1.Learn techniques to avoid and manage possible problems in and out of the water. 
2.Learn to identify problems and apply security protocols.

3. Emergency First Responder (EFR) course. 

What you will discover

A. Helping yourself.
B. Recognize and manage stress in other divers
C. Emergency management and equipment.
D. Assist a panicked diver
E. Assist an unconscious diver.

F. EFR (not a PADI course) unless you have done it within the last 24 months.

The course

Your course will be divided into different chapters covering the following subjects:

  • The psychology of the diver.

  • Emergency equipment.

  • Accident management.

  • Equipment problems and how to fix them.

  • Get a diver in difficulty out of the water.

  • Psychological concerns such as thermal problems.

  • Looking for a missing diver.

Day 1 & 2: the first two days will be dedicated to theory and exercises in the pool and/ or on the beach. You spend time in the classroom or, like I did, outside with a good coffee and a seaview! 


Chapters related to psychology are essentially made of theory, there isn't much you can train. Ultimately, it is based on your emotional intelligence to recognize stress in another diver and how react appropriately. For the rest, you will go through a lot of scenarios.

  • How to talk to, approach and assist a panicked diver; a distressed diver; an unresponsive diver underwater or at the surface.

  • Train techniques to search for a missing diver -who might be unconscious somewhere- and bring him back. 

  • How to provide assistance remotely, i.e. without entering the water. 

  • Get familiar with the usual equipment failures you may face. 

  • Learn to use an oxygen delivery system, an automatic defibrillator (but not on a real person of course, that would be a bad idea).

  • Responding to an emergency and providing assistance out of the water or in the water, coordinate support, liaise with Emergency Medical Services. 

You will complete knowledge reviews, rescue skills training as well as searching a missing diver using a compass or pattern techniques.


You will be busy!

Day 3 & 4:  you will be on the boat for action!

Repeat the rescue exercises, search patterns and final rescue scenarios in open water.

The very last scenario could be a...combination of serveral problems to address at the same time. Time to activate your stamina! 

I bet you will like it although it will be challenging, be ready!

On the side, you will complete your Emergency First Response certification, known as EFR. It not a PADI course but it is a requirement. It will include primary care (CPR) and secondary care (or first aid). 

Primary Care (CPR) skills:


  • Scene Assessment, Barrier Use, Primary Assessment, Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR), Serious Bleeding Management, Shock Management, Spinal Injury Management, Conscious and Unconscious Choking Management.

  • Recommended Skills
    – Automated External Defibrillator (AED) Use
    – Emergency Oxygen Use.

Secondary Skills:

  • Injury Assessment

  • Illness Assessment

  • Bandaging

  • Splinting for Dislocations and Fractures

For information, this course is generally charged separately. 

What should you bring?

Basics: As usual, always bring your smile and your good humor! You should also bring your swimsuit, a towel, sunblock depending on the weather. For gents, I generally recommend swimming trunks because it will be easier to put on a wet suit, as opposed to a board shorts. For ladies, I generally recommend a one-piece swimming suit for ease of removal from the wet suit.


Equipment: Add the the equipment that you may have already purchased after your Open Water. Otherwise, everything will be provided to you, no worries.

What else: a lot of energy. You don't have to be an athlete but a reasonable fitness level will help. Some exercises can be a bit demanding, e.g. pulling back an unconscious diver to the boat and give him assistance at the same time. 

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