HSA/A-1 Scuba Dive Buddy Course

HSA Training

Handicapped Scuba Association Dive Buddy Course in Denver

Thank you for your interest in our Handicapped Scuba Association Dive Buddy course! This three-day program is filled with fun, challenges, Dive Buddyand loaded with information. This course is a special certification for certified divers who wish to know and understand more about physical disabilities, how it relates to scuba diving and how to be a dive buddy for someone with special needs.

What You’ll Learn

During this course, you will gain knowledge and experience in how to safely and effectively assist and scuba dive with divers with disabilities. The training you receive will be like nothing else you have done before.

Click to view what you will learn

Day 1

We’ll begin with introductions and collect the various document (see below).  Then we’ll start digging into the many aspects of the HSA program including discussions on various disabilities, Performance Standards, classifications and the unique certification procedures of the HSA. After that, we’ll head to the pool to begin roleplaying and skills training.  You’re guaranteed to discover the meaning of trust, confidence, expectation, reliance, and dependence.

Day 2

We’ll wrap up the knowledge development portion of the course as well as the remaining pool exercises.

Day 3

Here’s your chance to apply the techniques you learned in the pool in an Open Water environment at the Denver Downtown Aquarium. Once again, you’ll be working in buddy teams and performing several of the skills learned in the swimming pool. As in the pool, you’ll be playing the role of a disabled diver and as a dive buddy.

Please note that the starting and ending times are subject to change

Click to view prerequisites and forms

Course Prerequisites, Forms and Performance Requirements

  • Certified Open Water Scuba Diver, or above, by a recognized diver training agency
    Please bring your certification card to the first class.
  • Minimum age 15 years old
  • Be fit for diving
  • Logged a minimum of 10 open water dives within 2 years prior to the starting date of the course. Please bring your logbook to the first class.
  • Logged a total minimum of 20 open water dives to complete the course.
  • Successfully challenge HSA Air Sharing and Life Saving Skills or equivalent. You will be asked to demonstrate these skills on the first day of class.
  • Complete the Medical Form (see IMPORTANT INFORMATION BELOW) 
  • Complete the Course Registration and Liability Release
  • Complete the Dive Buddy Course Application
  • complete the Inherent Hazards and Risks of Diving Activities

IMPORTANT  – When completing the Diver Medical/Participant Questionnaire

If there is a YES response to questions 3, 5, or 10 on page 1 of the Diver Medical form or to ANY of the questions on page 2, the participant will need to sign and date the Participant’s Signature on page 1 AND take all three pages of the Participant Questionnaire and Physician’s Evaluation Form to their physician for a medical evaluation.  Their physician must approve, date, and sign the form to include an MD or DO with their signature.  We are not permitted to accept the signature of a PA or Nurse Practitioner. 

Unfortunately, you’ll not be able to begin the water session until all of the documents have been completed, collected, and reviewed for accuracy.    

Click to view performance requirements
  • Attend all classroom, confined, and open water segments of the course
  • Participate in all role-playing segments in the confined and open water
  • Complete and pass the final exam (Note: this is an open-book exam and conducted as a group)

2023 Course Dates

  • End of May/First of June.  Day 1 & 2 at A-1 Scuba and Day 3 at the Downtown Aquarium (please call Scott if you are interested)

Dive Buddy Course Fee


Click to view what's included and not included


  • All classroom instruction
  • All confined water training
  • HSA Dive Buddy Manual
  • HSA Registration fee
  • Use of tanks and weights
  • Tanks and weights will be provided for the pool and Aquarium dives

NOT INCLUDED            

  • Pool and Open Water (Mask, fins, snorkel, and Octopus Alternate Air Source)
  • $125 Entry fee for open water training dives at the Denver Downtown Aquarium (includes the use of ALL equipment)
  • Parking fee at the Downtown Aquarium

And Finally

The key to your success is to come prepared, willing to learn new skills and information and a desire to have a great time.  Here’s your chance to challenge yourself, sharpen your personal skills and introduce a special group of people to the wonderful sport of scuba diving.  It’s sure to open your eyes and maybe even your heart.

HSA Scuba Instructor

Sign Up Now


Or call A-1 Scuba and Travel Center at 303-789-2450


Where to begin…I cannot express to you my gratitude for facilitating the course that we went through this past weekend. The dedication and passion that you brought to this course were amazing beyond words…I attempted to explain to my wife and family what is was that I just experienced and became very emotional upon my reflection. One cannot understand the emotion and sense of pride of accomplishing this course unless they go through it and my heartfelt thank you to each of you. Even though we have just met, I feel a special bond with each of you and hope that may continue to grow!

At work, I am attempting to get things done but cannot keep from reflecting on the whole weekend and sharing my experience with my co-workers as best as I can explain…I cannot keep thinking about the trust we placed in each other in the course and hope that someday I may be able to instill that trust in others of me.

I look forward to seeing you both again soon and would love to continue this journey that has just begun…Thank you both!

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