A-1 Extended Range Sidemount Diver Program
Why take this course?
Extended Range Sidemount diving offers many advantages over the use of traditional back mounted cylinders. In the past, options for increasing gas supply available for a dive involved manifolding two cylinders together, which doubled the weight a diver had to carry on their back.
With extended range sidemount diving, the cylinders move from your back to your side. Transportation of cylinders topside is then much easier. Cylinders may be donned after entering the water, eliminating problems with wearing heavy cylinders out of the water. Redundant gas supply increases bottom time, and adds an extra level of safety to the dive. Sidemount diving provides added stability with the cylinders on the side of the body and double the gas supply. It is an alternative way to streamline in the water, easier to “trim out”, and the diver has the ability to monitor all their equipment because it’s right in front of you.
Use of a single sidemounted cylinder is also an option, which offers all of the advantages of easier transportation of cylinders, the ability to enter the water without having to carry a heavy cylinder, and equipment monitoring. Or, a diver could use two smaller cylinders for the advantages of increased bottom time, redundant gas supplies, and added trim and stability.
With a properly rigged sidemount system, your center of gravity is changed, and your cylinders almost feel like they are not even there!
If you’ve looked into technical diving, you realize that tec divers always wear more than one tank. Sidemount is an increasingly popular way to configure multiple cylinders for technical diving. You can enter the world of tec diving with the XR Sidemount Diver course and apply what you learn to other XR courses.
What You Will Learn:
- History and benefits of sidemount diving
- Sidemount equipment configurations and options
- Dive planning and gas management skills
- Options for entering and exiting the water with and without cylinders
- Problem management in a sidemount configuration
- XR sidemount equipment configurations and options
- Must be SSI Open Water Certified, or equivalent
- Be at least 16 years of age
- Standard Snorkeling Equipment (Mask, fins, exposure suit)
- Sidemount BCD and four (4) primary regulators with single 2nd stage and SPG (may be rented at A-1 Scuba for $150) – One (1) primary regulator must have at least a five to seven foot / one & a half to two-meter hose for air sharing, and one (1) low pressure inflator hose. Two regulators with single 2nd stage and SPG should be oxygen serviced if used as deco regulators.
- Backup mask
- Backup depth & timing device
- Two cutting devices
- One signaling device for deploying from depth (SMB / lift bag)
- Reel or spool
- Once surface signaling device (whistle or similar)
What will I be doing?
- XR Sidemount Diver involves 1 classroom session, 1 confined water session and 4 open water dives.
Course Fee – $505
The 4-dive Sidemount Diver certification is $505 which includes the course registration fee.
If you are already a recreational Sidemount Diver and you wish to upgrade to XR Sidemount Diver, the course fee to upgrade is $200. This can be done either as a stand-alone course or can be integrated with any XR course by paying the upgrade fee in addition to the regular course fee. The upgrade fee is a separate $30.00 course registration fee.