Back to Back Issues Page
Globally Employabe Sunday Reader Question
February 10, 2013

Navy vs Commercial Dive Training

Welcome to another issue of Globally Employable and the Sunday Reader Question.

Navy vs. Commercial Dive Training



My goal is to get you the best information I can about how you can make more money by getting out of the rat race and enjoy doing some of the most dangerous yet highest paying jobs out there.

I'd like to personally thank Patrick on this weeks' best question. As a former Navy EOD Diver, Navy Dive School Instructor and a current UXO Diver, I'll do my best to answer this question.

Patrick has received 500 entries for the 2013 UXO Training Giveaway for having his question being selected as the Sunday Reader Question. What's your question?

I'm in a tough position. I want to become a diver. That is my true passion, but I don't know which way would be best to go to accomplish my goal.

I was debating on becoming a Navy diver but I don't want to be told that I can be one, sign a contract and end up being stuck in the Navy for 4-6 years and be miserable. But it would be a guaranteed job for X amount of years.

On the other hand, I was planning on going to PDC in South Africa for dive school and get right into diving afterwards, should I find a job.

But that's the only problem is that there's no guaranteed job. I'm just looking for some input or even experience to help me decide. I just don't want to make a wrong choice and regret it for years. I appreciate it. Thank you.




Go Navy!

First, have you ever dove before?  Do you know that you can clear your ears at depth?  If you can't, time to find something else. An easy way to do that is to go to your local pool, hopefully indoor this time of year, jump in and swim to the bottom.

As you descend, you'll feel pressure on your eardrums. This is normal but it can be painful even at 12 feet. What you'll need to do is hold your nose with your fingers and gently, I mean very gently, try to blow air out of your nose.

This will put an outward pressure on your eardrums. Again, if you blow too hard, you'll blow your eardrums out which can put you out of commission for sometime.

If you can "Clear" your ears at 12 feet you'll be good to go at deeper depths.

If you can clear then next step is to understand the requirements to become a Navy Diver.

Do you have a criminal background?  Can you pass a security clearance?

Next is determining how physically fit you are.

Are you in rocking shape?  Go to a crossfit gym and see if you can do that workout over an extended period of time.  If you can't, you better get ready to get in shape.

Need a little guidance for fitness training? Get some great ideas by Clicking Here!

If you can, then you need to meet the testing requirements.  500 yard swim, 10 minute rest, pushups-max needing about 100+ in 2 minutes, 2 minute rest, situps-max effort needing about 100, 2 minute rest, dead hang pull ups- need 6 perfect form, 10 minute rest, 1.5 mile run in about 10 minutes.

Doesn't sound like much but the pull ups kill most people trying. Be able to do 8 to 10 dead hang pull ups before doing the actual test.

If you can do those numbers for time, go to recruiter.  They will have a civilian, usually a former SEAL, that will give you the test.

Take your ASVAB test.  Do well.

Raise your right hand and have a blast!  It's worth it!

If you join and don't make it, you know you tried.  You'll see the world which is fun anyway.  Worth joining for that alone.

Best part, about going through the Navy program is the Navy is paying you for your training.  As soon as you breathe air through a regulator, you're getting dive pay!

If you make it, it's a great brotherhood with a lifetime membership.

If you go the Navy route and don't make it through the program, you'll still go through one of the best dive programs in the world which will help you if you continue to pursue diving through and commercial dive school.

Yes, there is a multi-year commitment to the Navy but you'll also learn all the things you need to know about working off shore, on pier and out to see. That can only benefit you in the long run.

I'd rather have been a Navy veteran going to a commercial dive school than showing up with no experience.

Commercial Dive Training

Another option is to pay your money to get the training. There are no guarantees with this route either. You're probably looking at about $30,000 out of pocket to pay for your training and your gear.

If you decide to go the civilian route, go to Commercial Divers Academy in Jacksonville, FL. One of my friends, Lee Alrid, is a former Navy Diver and is a great instructor. No need to go to Africa unless you're already living there part of the time.

If you're serious about going the commercial dive training route and want more information from my buddy Lee, click here and fill out the form.

It's not an easy decision.  All I can say is glad that I did it through the Navy!  Whichever way you decide, you need to go in with no regrets and an expectation of success.

Back to Back Issues Page