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HomeDEMA Show CoverageDEMA Show 2012: Unified Team Diving and the Extreme Scuba Makeover

DEMA Show 2012: Unified Team Diving and the Extreme Scuba Makeover

Unified Team Diving was started back in 2007 by a group of divers and instructors who were dissatisfied with the inconsistencies between what was being taught to divers in certification classes and what divers were dealing with in the real world of diving.  The roots of Unified Team Diving (UTD) philosophy are based on a minimalist approach to gear configuration, standardization of equipment to assist in consistency, and the goal of helping divers achieve excellence in their diving skills.

One way UTD strives to help divers is through its Extreme Scuba Makeover (ESM).  Based on the principle that breathing is not just about life support, the ESM program trains certified divers to connect the dots between breathing and buoyancy, balance and trim underwater.  Granted, all Open Water scuba certification courses talk about buoyancy control, but none put in the time and effort that UTD does in its classes.

A typical ESM class begins with power point and video presentations of the skills to be introduced. Then it is on to hands-on equipment retro-fitting, where the hows and whys of equipment configuration is discussed. Next comes “dry runs” of foundational breathing, diver trim techniques, precision buoyancy control and propulsion skills prior to entering the water. These dry runs allow students to practice skills on land under the watchful eye of the instructor. Students will enter the water for a minimum of two hours of confined water work where they can put their newly refined skills into practice, all while a videographer captures the in-water session for review.

All UTD classes are videotaped for educational and review purposes.  What better way for a student to review than to be able to visually focus on their own in-water skills?  The end goal for each diver is to leave the class with a keen sense of situational awareness and a unified approach to diving.

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Keep tuned for our extensive coverage (as well as previous years coverage) of DEMA 2012 during November 14-17, 2012 in our DEMA Show Coverage.

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Bruce Zahn
Bruce Zahn
Bruce Zahn is a non-profit executive in the Great Lakes area of the U.S.A. When he is not traveling or drinking wine and rum with the love of his life Jacki, Bruce enjoys riding his Harley and scuba diving.