Dive Tables use to be standard learning for beginning divers. In order to become certified open water scuba diver one must show a proficiency in using the recreational dive tables. Yes, these are typically discarded by divers with no ambition to go further than open water or advanced. Discarded in favor of a dive computer and reliance on dive masters on boats and at resorts. But the knowledge of being able to look at a dive table – any dive table – and having an understanding of how it works is considered important, or it was.
Today some certification agencies are making learning dive tables optional. New digital, calculator looking products are being used instead. Some agencies are actually pushing for the demise of dive tables. This is a mistake.
Dive tables don’t require batteries, are inexpensive, and have an excellent track record when used properly. Additionally, as a diver advances up through higher levels of diving, knowing how dive tables work are required. Moreover, the history of diving is replete with references to dive tables. Self-learning by reading and research will lead the uneducated in efforts of trying to figure out dive tables on there own.
Proper instruction of dive table use can be done with eLearning, videos, and self-study coupled with minimal face to face review and practice. How can any agency feel it is “okay” to not teach the dive tables?