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  1. #26
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    Theres no time limit on the swim, if its a general fitness issue then you might question the safety of splashing around 18metres down with a current.

    If you want to look at pretty fish in relatively shallow water i wouldnt get too stressed about it.

    Be wary of boat dives on offshore reefs. Theres more than a couple of divers who got left behind. The current at depth can be very different to the surface.

    I heard of two german tec divers who were left behind 7 miles off Phuket a couple of years back. Their smb failed and with a two hour deco off the line they were several miles away from the boat when they surfaced. Took them the whole night to swim ashore!

  2. #27
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    Padi = pay and dive immediately

  3. #28
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    There is a dive site off Koh Tao (can't remember the name) that is a really good drift dive. Get it a bit wrong and it's quite easy to end up a hundred metres or more away from where you need to be. Even with a BCD and fins, it's quite a tough swim. Throw in a bit of panic, return to the surface a few hundred metres from the boat, and hey presto, some other fuckers day is ruined because they have to fetch you back - or worse still...........

  4. #29
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    Try sidestroke. If you have flotation you should be able to sidestroke all day....

  5. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by withnallstoke View Post
    There is a dive site off Koh Tao (can't remember the name) that is a really good drift dive. Get it a bit wrong and it's quite easy to end up a hundred metres or more away from where you need to be. Even with a BCD and fins, it's quite a tough swim. Throw in a bit of panic, return to the surface a few hundred metres from the boat, and hey presto, some other fuckers day is ruined because they have to fetch you back - or worse still...........
    Sail Rock, I believe- depending on the time of year, currents can be strong anywhere near Koh Tao. In any case, if someone passes the same PADI certification test you did, you wouldn't dive with them? You've never been paired with a stranger because you turned up on a dive alone or with an odd number of people? Do you require that they demonstrate a certain set of skills before you enter the water with them?

    Of course you don't, because you know they've already been tested- if the OP passes his test, you'll know he's capable of swimming those hundred or more meters himself because he'll have already proven he can do so- that's the point of a standardized test- you already know what he's been taught and what he can do- that doesn't mean he's a great diver, but it means he should be able to look out for himself and help you if necessary.
    There he goes. One of God's own prototypes. A high-powered mutant of some kind never even considered for mass production. Too weird to live, and too rare to die.
    HST

  6. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by FailSafe
    In any case, if someone passes the same PADI certification test you did, you wouldn't dive with them? You've never been paired with a stranger because you turned up on a dive alone or with an odd number of people? Do you require that they demonstrate a certain set of skills before you enter the water with them?
    My answer to each of those questions is no.
    Unlike the experience of a previous poster, competency in the water was the first test, and done prior to the first dive of the day by any newcomer to the sport - a side result of which everybody got to watch.
    Diving with a "buddy" who i have not seen dive (not swim) is a no no.
    Against all advice, i would rather, and have done, dive alone.

  7. #32
    Excitable Boy
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    ^

    Well, you can't dive alone with most dive outfits and are required to have a buddy (unless you are an instructor or instructor-in-training, I believe).

    You won't dive with another certified diver? I guess your requirements are more stringent than PADI's.

    In any case, you missed my point- anyone who has a PADI certification has already demonstrated their competency at some point, or they wouldn't have their card- they don't need to demonstrate their skills to you because they've already demonstrated them to the satisfaction of an instructor (hopefully not the instructor mentioned above)- if the OP passes his 200m swim test, he doesn't need to have you re-test him.

  8. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by FailSafe
    In any case, you missed my point- anyone who has a PADI certification has already demonstrated their competency at some point, or they wouldn't have their card
    And anybody that has done any PADI course knows that this is not always the case.

  9. #34
    Excitable Boy
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    ^

    True, but if fellow recreational divers on your boat tell you to get in the water and demonstrate various techniques including a swim, would you do it? I wouldn't. I have OW, AOW, and Rescue Diver certifications, but even if I just had OW I would still feel as if I'd already done my due diligence.

    Real newbies (less than five or so dives) should be paired with a dive master at least- that I would agree with.

    In any case, this thread makes me miss diving- I gave it up five years ago due to inner-ear problems.

  10. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by FailSafe
    In any case, this thread makes me miss diving
    Likewise.
    I intend to dive in Feb next year for the first time in 8 years - no excuse as Tao is only a short ferry ride away.

  11. #36
    Excitable Boy
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    Are you on Samui or Phangan?

  12. #37
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    Mainland - Chumphon.

  13. #38
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    Ah- still, not very far.

  14. #39
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    200 metres is such a short distance when taken in the context of an ocean.As previously mentioned if you are drift diving you can and often will end up a lot further away from the boat than 200 metres.Another skill that must be considered when discussing surface swims is Buddy Towing.If your buddy is tired or distressed you had better be fit enough and capable enough for both your sakes.But please don't be put off by these comments,a little training is all you need to enable you learn something new that you will enjoy forever.

  15. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by RickThai View Post
    I'm set up to take an Open Water Diving Certificate course with Big Blue Diving on Koh Tao.

    Although, I've always been comfortable in the water, I'm a little bit leery of the 200m swim test.

    I can swim 50m fairly easy and 100m with effort, but to get up to 200m I have to alternate the freestyle with backstroke laps. Does anyone have any experience with this at Koh Tao.


    RickThai
    I took OW diving certificate on Koh Tao, as a matter of fact with Big Blue Diving.

    My instructor pointed out a boat for me: You swim out there and back, then you are done with the 200 m. test.

    If you can swim 50 metres, let alone 100 metres, I see no reason why you couldnt swim 200 metres. Just do it at your own pace.
    Your buoyancy will do most of the work for you.


  16. #41
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    Thanks for all the info. For the record, I am quite comfortable in water and can tread water for 15 minutes or so without hardly any effort. I have even treaded water for 3 minutes while holding my hands above the water.

    The swimming I was doing was with goggles and swim trunks, no flotation aids of any type.

    As I stated, if I alternated the freestyle with the backstroke, I don't really have any problems ie: no need to stop and rest, etc.

    To me (I am almost 60 years old), 200 meters is a pretty fair distance (around 225 yards or so) for the average person to swim. My current diving instructor is a 19 year-old girl who does competitive swimming.

    She told me that before she started swimming she was a distance runner and typically ran 5-8 miles a day without any problem. When she initially got into swimming, she said she was bushed after only 50 meters even with all her long-distance training.

    With a BCD, snorkel and fins, swimming 300 or 400 yards should not be a big deal, and swimming 200 meters with a BCD should not be a big deal.

    As far as strong currents, even Navy Seals have drowned in rough seas with strong currents.

    IMO only a very incompentent PADI Instructor would put beginning Scuba divers into those kind of conditions.

    Still thanks for your inputs.

    RickThai

  17. #42
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  18. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by withnallstoke View Post
    That was cute.

    I just got back from swimming laps (I probably swam a total of a mile or more) and I did 100 yards freestyle without too much trouble. I then swam 25 yards on my back, and then another 75 yards freestyle.

    I then alternated between 50 yards and a backstroke for another 400 or 500 yards.

    I'm starting to get my breathing synchronized with my strokes (kind of like sex I guess) and it is getting easier to get from one end to the other (not necessarily like sex).

    I am slowly getting there.

    Regards,

    RickThai

  19. #44
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    Few years back I was in Croatia on a holiday.

    I spotted a very attractive looking island quite a distance from the beach.
    I wanted to check it out, so I swam for it. I am not a nutcase, so in case I got a cramp or something, I brought with me an inflatable air mattress tied to me with a rope. It slowed me down, but better safe than sorry.

    It took me an hour or so to get to the island.

    I am not a strong swimmer, nor am I an athlete.
    I am just telling you this to show you that you can easily do the 200 metres if you set your mind to it.

    Good luck, mate.

  20. #45
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    200 meters really is nothing in the grand scheme of things, if you're not comfortable swimming that distance you shouldn't be thinking about open water.

  21. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by pescator View Post
    Few years back I was in Croatia on a holiday.

    I spotted a very attractive looking island quite a distance from the beach.
    I wanted to check it out, so I swam for it. I am not a nutcase, so in case I got a cramp or something, I brought with me an inflatable air mattress tied to me with a rope. It slowed me down, but better safe than sorry.

    It took me an hour or so to get to the island.

    I am not a strong swimmer, nor am I an athlete.
    I am just telling you this to show you that you can easily do the 200 metres if you set your mind to it.

    Good luck, mate.
    Thanks for the encouragment. I've always thought of myself as a good swimmer, but most of my swimming has been in smaller pools and in typical lake/ocean swimming areas.

    Since I started doing laps three weeks ago, I am progressing along nicely (I think).

    Being at sea level and swimming in salt water will certainly give me an edge.

    Regards,

    RickThai

  22. #47
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    If you can't swim 200m you shouldn't dive....I had to swim much further (with gear) on many occasions while diving. Wouldn't want to have a buddy who can't do this.

  23. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by RickThai
    I am slowly getting there.
    You will get there Rick no worries.
    And hats off to you taking up a good, healthy and interesting hobby at your age.
    I learned to dive in 1979 and the open water course was 6 weeks full time training.
    When P.A.D.I came along many years after we used to scoff and call them all sorts of names, lousy training that was pool based ,other than a boat dive which was performed in the calmest of waters inside the bay peninsula.
    It was a fkin joke to watch those guys get certified.
    Everybody is PADI now and nobody dies trying unless the boat leaves you to the sharks.
    Enjoy it mate , like some others here id love to get back into it.

  24. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by oky View Post
    If you can't swim 200m you shouldn't dive....I had to swim much further (with gear) on many occasions while diving. Wouldn't want to have a buddy who can't do this.
    With "gear" I assume you mean an inflated BCD? Swimming with flotation is no big deal. It's just free swimming 200m or so with nothing but my swim trunks that is my concern.

    I am able to swim further everyday without having to resort to backstrokes, floating on my back, etc.

    I noticed one of the "your gonna drown and/or drown somebody else" posters, went on about he would never dive ....

    My question to him is "When is the last time you swam 200m with only a swim suit on?

    If its been 8 years or more since you last dove, you might not be able to swim 200m without a struggle (or flotation) either.

    People who swim laps regularly may scoff at people who only splash about in the pool once or twice a year.

    I do 100 pushups everynight (US Army style). I do two sets of 50 each. To me it is no big deal, because I do them every night.

    It might be interesting to some of you long distance swim types, see how many pushups you can do today.

    I am looking forward to your responses.

    RickThai

  25. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by shaggersback View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by RickThai
    I am slowly getting there.
    You will get there Rick no worries.
    And hats off to you taking up a good, healthy and interesting hobby at your age.
    I learned to dive in 1979 and the open water course was 6 weeks full time training.
    When P.A.D.I came along many years after we used to scoff and call them all sorts of names, lousy training that was pool based ,other than a boat dive which was performed in the calmest of waters inside the bay peninsula.
    It was a fkin joke to watch those guys get certified.
    Everybody is PADI now and nobody dies trying unless the boat leaves you to the sharks.
    Enjoy it mate , like some others here id love to get back into it.
    Thanks Shaggersback.

    About 5 years ago I almost died from end-stage liver diesease, so I strongly believe in enjoying your life to the fullest extent. If I had any doubts about my ability to keep from drowning in a normal dive situation, I would not be taking the course.

    RickThai

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