Technical Diving at Alba Diving Tulamben
To the average diver, technical diving can seem inaccessible and even a little elitist. Whilst 20 years ago that was absolutely the case, things are a little different today. Tech diving is no longer the preserve of middle-aged men wielding insanely heavy equipment. It’s accessible to any diver wanting to learn more advanced diving procedures and techniques.
One reason why perceptions have changed so much is because of sidemount; diving with two tanks at your side instead of on your back is a far less intimidating route into technical diving.
Our tech courses
Standard technical courses don’t allow enough time to properly absorb and practice what you learn. Courses can feel rushed and this doesn’t create a good environment for learning. Our technical diving courses include as standard more days and more dives than you would otherwise get. More dives creates a better atmosphere for learning, allows more effective progression, and helps you retain what you learn. Consequently when you go home you remember it all better- otherwise what was the point in doing it?
Competence, not certification
Certification is not guaranteed with tech; to successfully pass a course takes time. Do you think you would be a more capable decompression diver after a 4 dive course or an 8 dive course? The real question is, are you prepared to maybe pay ever so slightly more to put in a little more time, or do you want to go down the bare minimum route? If the answer is the latter, then we’re probably not the best place to train you.
It’s not an exaggeration to say that our tech diving facility is the best equipped in Bali. We have plenty of twinsets and sidemount tanks (with modular valves). For our decompression cylinders, we use S40 and S80 sizes. Every dive cylinder at Alba is oxygen cleaned, and all tanks are visually inspected annually, and hydrostatically tested every 5 years. We have everything you will need to undertake a tech course, regulators, back-plates, sidemount harnesses etc. For initial tech training, we have two pools that are perfect for configuring equipment and learning skills.
Our house reef is also very well suited to training. There are shallow areas, and as much depth on tap as we need as the topography slopes down away from the shore. There are plenty of dive sites to explore during training, such as the Liberty wreck, drop-off, and coral garden. They are in Tulamben, which is only a 2 minute drive away from our resort. We also have the Boga wreck in Kubu; a short drive north. If we wish to venture a little further, we can also visit the dive sites in Amed, or even Padang Bai. Whilst other parts of Indonesia are known for having strong currents, the northeast coast of Bali is relatively sheltered, making it the perfect location for tech diver training.
Alba diving is a Raid gold resort. As such we believe that the Raid materials and curriculum are the most comprehensive. However, we also teach technical courses through TDI, IANTD and SSI XR, and are happy to teach courses from all of these agencies. Ultimately, if you do a decompression course, then we will teach you decompression diving regardless of the agency- the physics and physiology of diving does not change between agencies. The requirements for each dive may differ slightly, but the course will be largely the same whether it’s TDI decompression procedures, Raid deco 50, or IANTD technical diver. The most discernible difference to you is in the student materials. The techniques you will learn are based on a few key things no matter which agency- Safety, simplicity, streamlining, and optimal equipment. Regarding safety, for all of our technical diving courses, you will need to show proof of diving insurance that covers you for hyperbaric treatment and dive emergency medical care. We can provide it for the duration of the course if required.
Human factors in Diving
With any of the tech diving courses that we teach, we highly recommend that you also undertake a human factors in diving online micro-class. The course is written and presented by tech diver and human factors specialist, Gareth Lock. Safety system improvements learned from the aviation and medical industries are used as examples of how to improve and change the safety culture of diving. The course examines (from Gareth’s website):
“Why we make the mistakes we do and what we can do to reduce the likelihood of an accident or adverse event happening. It does not focus on the technical aspects of diving but rather decision making, situational awareness, communications and cooperation skills, and crucially, their interdependence. Case studies are discussed, highlighting the contributory factors to incidents which are rarely technical in nature”.
The 3 hour micro-class is invaluable as a discussion tool during your tech course at Alba. Just like if you will be decompression diving you will need to purchase dive planning software, understanding safety systems is a tool you will need as a technical diver.
For more information on the tech diving courses we offer in Bali, click on the links below, or use the drop-down menu at the top of the page.