We have a wide variety of dive locations for technical diving expeditions.
As you enter into technical diving for the first time there is a fundamental question you should be asking yourself. Should you be taking Advanced Nitrox ? Or some form of Trimix course?
As a beginning tech student, under IANTD, two options are in front of you. One being the more traditional Advanced Nitrox course, the other, more versatile, being Advanced Recreational Trimix.
Both advanced courses have a lot of common ground. They explain and utilize full technical diving equipment configurations, something that at first can present a very interesting challenge to one’s diving abilities, but when the gear is set up well, it quickly becomes comfortable. Both courses cover all the aspects of oxygen safety, gas management and so on that will carry with you to the higher levels of tech diving. Decompression theory is well grounded so you get a good overall understanding of what is happening to you in the water and how to effectively use nitrox decompression gases. Proper use of software for actual dive planning gets plenty of attention.
Both courses also cover dive planning carefully in terms of not just the deco stop times and numbers, but in learning to foresee and manage any probable emergencies for the environment being dived and how to deal with them rather than have them escalate into actual incidents. This is an interesting and thought provoking exercise, how to fully “what if…?” a dive before you make it so, you can handle things without stress.
|Diving with Advanced Nitrox in the Philippines.|
Where the programs diverge though, is obviously in gas their choice. Advanced Nitrox is just what it says – low nitrox mixes or air on the bottom, and a higher mix for decompression. At or near the depth limits of the course you’re therefore going to find yourself dealing with the gas problems and risks this can bring on. Most divers will think only of nitrogen narcosis when asked, and many will hold the belief that it doesn’t affect them enough at 40m plus or minus a little, to need to worry about using trimix. What they often don’t realize is that at this depth and on down ( 48m being the limit of Advanced Recreational Trimix courses ), air and nitrox are becoming very dense gases to breathe, and with that comes the real bad guy of deep diving, Carbon Dioxide. As this inevitably builds up in your body at depth it becomes extremely narcotic, increases risks of oxygen toxicity, and interferes with decompression. As a tech diver you have to be thinking performance and safety, and anything you can do to get rid of carbon dioxide is a bonus. Two things help here, one is learning to breathe properly, which sounds easy but not all divers do. And the other is breathe a lighter gas, which is where your trimix comes in.
Hence the Advanced Recreational Trimix course becomes the sounder option, giving you access to the better gases, right from your initial certification. For the sake of a maybe an hour’s extra class time, it just becomes common sense to learn about and provide yourself with all the tools of the trade. We hope that this has at least made you aware that you have a choice between traditional Advanced Nitrox, and the Advanced Recreational Trimix course, contact us here in the Philippines if you need to know more.
See our page on learning to dive with Nitrox. Regular Nitrox
More about Trimix here Trimix in the Philippines