Learning to dive


If you would like to learn to scuba dive, the Coventry Sub Aqua Club can help. Our club is supported by several instructors – all volunteers – who are qualified to teach the diving courses of the British Sub Aqua Club.

The first course for learners is the BSAC Ocean Diver course. This course involves a series of theory and practical lessons, followed by a theory examination and a series of dives in open water. At the end of this course, you will have an internationally-recognised diving qualification that will let you dive to a maximum depth of 20m under the supervision of a Dive Manager.

Read more about the course on the BSAC website.


What are the costs?

You will need to pay to start the Ocean Diver course, plus a surcharge set by our club to cover costs for equipment hire. You will also need to become a member of both our club and of the British Sub Aqua Club.

Putting course fees and membership fees together, you would expect a rough fee of £225, depending on which level of membership is right for you (e.g. standard, student, junior etc.). However, as with any course or sport, there are other costs to consider. You will need to think about paying for things that go toward learning: equipment hire or purchase, food and drink, entry to some inland diving sites and so on.

Read more about costs here. Read more about membership and subscription fees here.


How long does it take to qualify?

Assuming that you alternate between theory and pool training on our Thursday night sessions, that you can attend every session, that you proceed to open water training straight after completing classroom and sheltered lessons, and that you pass every lesson first time, it should take around twelve weeks to qualify.

Of course, not everyone will complete the qualification at this pace because, as they say, “life happens.” For both trainees and instructors, life events, even something as simple as the common cold, can take one’s attention away from diving. But, where it can, the Coventry Sub Aqua Club will do its best to help you qualify in good time. There may be opportunities to collaborate with other BSAC branches or to attend a BSAC training day at a local inland site.


When can I start?

To enquire about starting a course, you will need to speak with the club’s Diving Officer. The best way to do this would be to write to us and agree to speak with the DO at one of our weekly meetings. The DO (or Training Officer, if the DO has appointed someone to this role) will review our training programme and advise you on your options.

If we can take you on soon, the DO / TO will invite you to begin theory and pool training. If we are unable to train you at that time, the DO / TO will keep your details and contact you when an opportunity is available or advise you on where else you can learn to scuba dive.

When it comes to signing up, we cannot promise an immediate start. As a club, our training is shaped by the needs of members and the availability of the instructors who volunteer their time to teach. Sometimes our club will prioritise the needs of current members before taking on new starters; and sometimes we may have to turn away new starters if we are already training at full capacity.


What should I do before starting a course?

Training cannot begin until a diver has declared their medical fitness to dive, something that is a requirement of all UK scuba divers. If you have an outstanding health condition, you may need to seek the approval of a medical referee before diving. For guidance on this, please refer to the UK Diving Medical Committee.

You may wish to give diving a go without committing to a course to see if you like it: a try-dive is an excellent opportunity to do this.

Even before a try-dive, you may consider attending a weekly club meeting to meet club members and get a sense of our community.