PADI Self Reliant Diver

PADI Self Reliant Diver

About the Course

Learn to be self reliant with the PADI Self Reliant Diver course. This course is suitable for all divers looking to become more self reliant, whether diving with a buddy or those looking to progress into solo diving.

Following the successful completion of this course, you will have the skills and know-how to be self reliant whilst diving.

Course Outline

The course is broken up into 2 stages, undertaken one after the other. Click through below to get more details on each of the stages.

Knowledge Development

The knowledge development portion of the PADI Self Reliant Diver course is completely instructor-led. You and your instructor will meet on the morning of day one of the course, during which time your instructor will go through the considerations of self reliant diving, equipment, self rescue, dive planning and gas management, and emergency management.

Typical time commitment: 2-4 hours

Open Water Dives

The PADI Self Reliant Diver course consists of three open water dives.

Following a morning of knowledge development with your instructor, you’ll then look at your equipment and equipment setup. You and your instructor will go through any adjustments you might need to make to your equipment to make it more compatible with self reliant diving. You’ll then plan your dives.

On the first open water dive, your instructor will assess your dive skills and comfort level to ensure you’re ready to progress into self reliant diving. This will also include a fitness test consisting of a 200m continuous surface swim with all standard and specialised equipment in place.

Subject to your instructor’s approval, you will then proceed to practice skills such as navigation, signalling, neutral buoyancy, gas switching, equipment removal/replacement, as well as managing simulated problems. You instructor will demonstrate how to adapt these skills from what you have learnt previously to be able to perform them independently.

Typical time commitment: 1-1½ days

Pricing Options


The solo package includes private tuition, one-on-one with your instructor. This is a great option if you’re looking to tailor your course package completely. You can choose when and where you’d like to do the course and we’ll make it work.

from $1,465


Great for mates and couples looking to do the course together, or if you’re on your own and want to meet a future dive buddy, this could be the package for you. We will work with you and your fellow student diver to tailor this course to the both of you. This course requires 2 students to run.

from $850pp


This package is great if you’re on your own and looking to make some lifelong dive friends, or for a family or group of friends looking to learn together. This course requires a minimum of 3 students to run, with typically a maximum of 4.

from $650pp

More Information

Previous dive experience and/or qualifications: You must be a certified PADI Advanced Open Water Diver or equivilent from another recognised diving agency. You must have a minimum of 100 logged dives.

Minimum age: 18 years old.

Medical fitness: In order to take part in diving, you should be medically fit to dive. As part of your booking process, we will ask you to complete a medical form. If the form indicates that you must get a diving physician’s medical evaluation, we recommend getting this sorted in good time ahead of your course, and prior to finalising your booking. We won’t be able to take you diving if you do not obtain any required approvals, and your deposit may be forfeit. For a list of qualified diving physicians, visit the SPUMS website.

Our base price includes the learning and administrative costs of the course. There may be additional costs to consider depending on the course and your individual requirements, we will confirm these with you when you book onto the course. Find below our typical inclusions, and other costs that you may need to consider:

Package Inclusions
  • Instructor-led learning:
    • 2 days of instruction including
      knowledge development, and
      upto 3 open water dives
  • Certification processing fee
Other Costs to Consider
  • Equipment hire
  • Boat tickets
  • Air fills
  • Travel

There is a common misconception that self reliant diving means solo diving; this is not the case. You can be a self reliant diver whilst still diving with a buddy, or a dive team. A self reliant diver is simply someone who is able to only be reliant on oneself; this doesn’t mean diving alone.

Whilst the PADI Self Reliant Diver course may provide you with the skills and knowhow to more safely undertake solo diving, it cannot teach you the experience or provide you with the mental discipline required to safely undertake solo diving.

The buddy system for scuba diving came from a decades-old water safety concept found in swimming and lifeguard training. The buddy system providers divers with a safety redundancy that diving alone cannot provide. When a problem occurs on an solo dive, there is little or no chance of assistance for the diver in distress.

DIVEGEN’s Position

We love diving and all the social aspects that come with diving with a buddy or in a dive team. We also appreciate there are times when solo diving can improve your dive experience or the experience for others. Photographers and videographers for example, may want to stay and photograph macro creatures for as long as possible to get the perfect shot. This can be boring for other divers, or the photographer may be limited by their buddy’s gas consumption. In this instance, we appreciate that solo diving may be more appropriate and provide a better experience for all divers.

In instances where solo diving is providing little to no added benefit, or is introducing risk or increasing the risk profile, then we always advocate for diving with a buddy.

Continue Diving

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