What You Learn

  • To develop the skills of planning and carrying out dives without a partner when preferred or necessary.
  • To sharpen skills of diving self-reliance, making the diver a stronger partner in a dive pair or team.
  • The value and application of the buddy system.
  • The philosophy of, and motivation for, diving without a partner.
  • Potential risks of diving alone, and how to manage those risks.
  • The value of equipment redundancy and what backup equipment is needed.
  • Dive planning and gas management.
Starting from

Availability: Contact us for booking information

Although most scuba dives are made with a buddy, an experienced diver may want or need to make dives without a partner. During the Self-Reliant Diver course, you learn about the potential risks of diving alone and the value of equipment redundancy and necessary backup gear. During three scuba dives, you develop skills for self-reliance and independence, while becoming a stronger partner in a dive pair or team.
This course is highly recommended to any dive professional. It is also superb for Self Reliantrecreational divers that have a need/wish for diving alone. A passionate photographer, or a traveling diver for example. For photographers, there is nothing more annoying than having to hurry. And what about getting a buddy that doesn’t match your diving style?

Even if you never plan to dive without a buddy, this course is useful. It will teach you, exactly what the name suggests, how to become more self-reliant.

Equipment Required
Before making any purchases, check with an ADI staff member or your instructor to ensure proper equipment.

  • Surface marker buoy, such as a delayed surface marker buoy (DSMB) or lift bag with at least 30 meters/100 feet of line.
  • Redundant gas source – pony cylinder, twin cylinders with isolation valve or sidemount configuration. The redundant gas supply must be configured so that the diver can access it with one hand. The redundant air source must include an SPG. (recommend a 30 or 40 cu ft cylinder…absolute minimum would be a 19 cu ft cylinder.   A Spare Air or similar size redundant air source will not be sufficient for course skill requirements) (the student will also require the necessary rigging to carry the redundant air source)
  • Redundant depth gauge and bottom timer, or dive computer.
  • Redundant surface signaling devices (both visual and audible)
  • Knife/cutting tool (except where locally prohibited)
  • Slate and pencil
  • Back-up mask (recommended)

Additional equipment is recommended for the self-reliant diverSelf Reliant

  • Ascent/descent lines with float and flag
  • Navigation tools including a compass
  • Back-up cutting tool (knife, scissors, dive tool, etc.)
  • Additional audible or visual signaling devices:
  • Dye markers
  • Signal mirrors
  • Flares
  • Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacons (EPIRBs)

to qualify for the Self-Reliant Diver course, an individual must:

  • Be certified as a PADI Advanced Open Water Diver or have a qualifying certification from another training organization.
  • Have a minimum of 100 logged dives. (bring a logbook or electronic log showing dives)
  •  Be 18 years of age or older.
  • Successfully complete a dive skills assessment by a PADI Self-Reliant Diver Specialty Instructor.
  • Download the required PADI Medical Form*

For more information about this or other PADI courses have a chat with one of the American Divers International Team members.


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