Advanced Snorkel Instructor Course 2024

What does it take to achieve BSACs highest Snorkelling award?

On the weekend of 6th/7th April 2024, Will Whitmore, Oliver Sparrow and Natalie Theaker joined eight other candidates from around the UK to discover what it takes to become a BSAC Advanced Snorkel Instructor.

The Advanced Snorkel Instructor Course and Assessment (ASITCA) is designed to develop and assess the aptitude of appropriately trained Snorkel Instructors, in advanced training and safety management skills. Eligibility is open to those who have achieved the Snorkel Dive Manager award, Advanced Snorkel Lifesaver award and are a qualified BSAC Snorkel Instructors or equivalent.

The course includes training in specialist risk assessment, safeguarding, dive emergency management, Personal Development Plans, and complementary training styles. It is an intense weekend, packed full of both theory and practical sessions, putting the candidates under pressure to perform to a very high level.

These high standards are extra important as many of the successful candidates will go on to develop the future of our diving community, our children, just like all our staff at this club. Training children as divers in any format can be challenging, but provides fantastic opportunities for us to share our love of the underwater world and is extremely rewarding.

The course, run at Wraysbury Dive Centre, tasked the candidates to brave the chilly waters of the lake to demonstrate their advanced snorkelling skills. This included the recovery of simulated unconscious casualties from min 5m depth on one breath, rescue drills, CPR and First Aid, as well as scene management and reporting. There were also other sessions covering site risk assessment, search and recovery, seamanship and navigation.

Back in the classroom, students demonstrated their delivery of complex theoretical topics, such as chart work and position fixing, with presentations and coaching sessions to other candidates, ending with a final written examination. All under the watchful eye of experienced Instructor Trainers, from the Snorkelling Development Team, including our Dive Officer Nick Stevens & Keith Lewis from Ruislip Snorkelling Club, headed by course boss, Snorkelling Chief Examiner Sophie Rennie.

All eleven candidates were successful in completing the course and will be awarded their Advanced Snorkel Instructor qualification on ratification of results by BSAC. They will return to their respective clubs and roles to help develop students of all ages across the country.

In addition to training club members in advanced skills, Advanced Snorkel Instructors will also be qualified to run the new Snorkel Dive Guide course, due to be released soon by BSAC. This commercially rated qualification is a “zero to hero” development course aimed at those working in open water environments, with clients wishing to experience the underwater world without learning to scuba dive. This will include those carrying out sea wilding, marine surveys, and holiday guides.

There is so much more than meets the eye in the world of snorkelling. It is the gateway to the underwater world, open to all from 8 to 80 and beyond…

Congratulations to Will, Oliver and Natalie for a job well done. A great achievement which can only benefit us all.