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Learning to scuba dive with Atlantis Aquatics and PADI is an incredible adventure! Your path to breathing underwater is accomplished in three exciting phases:

1. Knowledge Development - Learn the lingo

During the first phase of training, you develop an understanding of the basic principles of scuba diving. You will learn how pressure affects your body, how to choose the best scuba gear for you and what to consider when planning safe & exciting dives. You briefly review what you have studied in the five knowledge sections with your instructor and take a short quiz to be sure you're getting it.

At the end of the course, you'll take an assesment making sure you have all the key concepts and ideas down. You and your Atlantis Aquatics Instructor will review anything that you don't quite get.

Select the knowledge development option you prefer:

  • Independant Study: Start right now and learn to scuba dive online with Atlantis Aquatics via PADI eLearning at your own pace—anytime, anywhere (great for busy schedules).
  • Instructor Lead: Attend classroom sessions at Atlantis Aquatics (great for meeting new friends and dive buddies).
2. Confined Water Dives - Scuba Skills Training

This is what it's all about – diving. You develop basic skills by scuba diving in a pool or body of water with pool-like conditions. You learn everything from setting up your scuba gear to how to easily get water out of your mask without surfacing. You'll also practice emergency skills, like sharing air, clearning your regulator and hand signals. Plus, you play some games, make new friends and have a great time. There are five confined water dives, with each building upon the previous. Over the course of these five dives, you attain the skills you need to dive in open water.

3. Open Water Dives - Locally or on Vacation

After you have mastered the skills in confined water, you continue to open water! During these 4 open water dives you will demonstrate what you have learned to your Atlantis Aquatics instructor. This is where you fully experience the underwater adventure. Most open water dives take place locally at Lake Hydra. You may opt to do your open water dives while on vacation, either with Atlantis Aquatics or on your own.

It's possible to complete your confined and open water dives in as few as three to four days by completing the classroom portion online via PADI eLearning offered by Atlantis Aquatics.

The PADI Open Water Diver course is incredibly flexible and performance based, which means that Atlantis Aquatics can offer a wide variety of schedules, paced according to how fast you progress.

Your instructors main priority is your safety. Based on your progression your instructor will advance through the course accordingly, so training is based upon skill demonstration, not a time table. This means that you progress at your own pace – faster or slower depending upon the time you need to become a confident scuba diver who dives regularly. You can start learning to scuba dive online right now with Atlantis Aquatics eLearning.

Atlantis Aquatics is proud to offer the PADI Open Water Course starting at $298.00 per student. You will need to purchase your own Mask/Snorkel/Fins/Boots/Logbook/Mask Defog. Atlantis Aquatics offers packages for these items with substanstial savings and personalized fitting of equipment. When you progress to the open water dives you will need to rent your scuba equipment unless you've already purchased your scuba unit from Atlantis Aquatics. The entrance fee for Lake Hydra is $120.00 for the weekend.

Compared with getting started in other popular adventure sports and outdoor activities, learning to scuba dive isn't expensive.

For example, you can expect to pay about the same as you would to get professional trained in:

  • surfing
  • rock climbing
  • kayaking
  • golfing
  • skiing


Learning to scuba dive is a great value when you consider that you learn to dive under the guidance and attention of a highly trained, experienced professional - your Atlantis Aquatics PADI Scuba Instructor. From the first day, scuba diving starts transforming your life with new experiences you share with friends. And, you can do it almost anywhere there is water. Start learning online with Atlantis Aquatics and get ready to take your first breath underwater!

Choosing and using your scuba gear is part of the fun of diving. Atlantis Aquatics will help you find the right gear. Each piece of scuba equipment performs a different function so that collectively, it adapts you to the underwater world.

When you start learning to scuba dive, at a minimum, you want your own:

  • scuba mask & defog solution
  • snorkel
  • scuba fins
  • neoprene boots
  • logbook

These items have a personal fit, and Atlantis Aquatics will help you choose the best equipment suited to you.  

Included in the cost of your PADI Open Water Diver course, Atlantis Aquatics will provide:

  • regulator
  • buoyance control device (BCD vest)
  • depth/pressure/compass gauges
  • scuba tank
  • intigrated weight system

Check with Atlantis Aquatics to confirm sizing available for your course package. It's recommended that you invest in your own scuba equipment soon after starting your adventure because:

  • you're more comfortable learning & using scuba gear fitted for you
  • scuba divers who own their own scuba diving equipment find it more convenient to go diving

The kind of gear you will need depends on the conditions where you dive. You may want:

  • tropical scuba gear popular with travelers
  • local water scuba diving equipment
  • accesorries for different types of diving (ie; cameras & dive lights)

Easy. There is no best gear. But, there is the best gear for you. The professionals at Atlantis Aquatics are trained to help you find scuba gear that best matches your preferences, fit and budget. Our professionals can get you set with the right equipment, plus they provide service and support for years of enjoyable and dependable use.

Call on us anytime to help you review your needs.

If you have an appetite for excitement and adventure, odds are you can become an avid PADI scuba diver. You'll also want to keep in mind these requirements:

Minimum Age:

  • 10 years old
  • Students younger than 15 years, who successfully complete the course, qualify for the PADI Junior Open Water Diver certification, which they may upgrade to PADI Open Water Diver certification upon reaching 15. 

Physical: For safety, all students complete a brief scuba medical questionnaire that asks about medical conditions that could be a problem while diving. If none of these apply, you sign the form and you're ready to start. If any of these apply to you, as a safety precaution your physician must assess the condition as it relates to diving and sign a medical form that confirms that you're fit to dive.

Waterskills: Before completing the PADI Open Water Diver course, your instructor will have you demonstrate basic waterskill comfort by having you:

  • swim 200 meters/yards (or 300 meters/yards in mask, fins and snorkel). There is no time limit for this, and you may use any swimming strokes you want.
  • float and/or tread water for 10 minutes, again using any methods that you want.

About Physical Challenges: Any individual who can meet the performance requirements of the course qualifies for certification. There are many adaptive techniques that allow individuals with physical challenges to meet these requirements. Individuals with paraplegia, amputations and other challenges commonly earn the PADI Open Water Diver certification. Even individuals with more significant physical challenges participate in diving. Talk with us for more information on special conditions.

Learning Materials : Unless you choose PADI eLearning, you'll need and use the following training materials during the PADI Open Water Diver course, and for your review and reference after the course:

  • The PADI Open Water Diver Manual
  • PADI Open Water Diver DVD
  • You will also need your PADI Log book and Recreational Dive Planner.

We do not included 'entrance' fees in any of our courses. You will need to pay that separate from tuition for training.
The reason for this: We use different locations for training and need to adjust the price accordingly or those doing a referral would not need this option.

Often our training is at Lake Hydra and we will add a line item to your bill for the entrance fee when using The Lake. 

Standard scuba equipment is not included in any of our courses or trips because many people have their own equipment or some equipment. We would be overcharging those that have some or all of their equipment if we included it in the price of the course.

Each student is responsible to have their own equipment for class or ask us to make a reservation for rental equipment for you. We have a full line of current rental equipment, just ask.

You can dive practically anywhere there's water – from a swimming pool to the ocean and all points in between, including quarries, lakes, rivers and springs. Where you can scuba dive is determined by your:

  • experience level
  • site accessibility
  • conditions
  • interests

For example, if you've just finished your PADI Open Water Diver course, you probably won't be diving under the Antarctic ice on your next dive. But, don't limit your thinking to the warm, clear water you see in travel magazines. Some of the best diving is closer than you think.

Your local dive site can be anything from a special pool built just for divers like one found in Brussels, Belgium, or more natural sites like Belize's Blue Hole, Australia's Great Barrier Reef or Florida Keys. It may be a manmade reservoir or a fossil-filled river. It's not always about great visibility because what you see is more important than how far you see.

The only truly important thing about where you dive is that you have the scuba diving training and experience appropriate for diving there, and that you have a dive buddy to go with you. Atlantis Aquatics can help you organize great local diving or a dive vacation. Visit today to get started.

No, assuming you have no irregularities in your ears and sinuses. The discomfort is the normal effect of water pressure pressing in on your ears. Fortunately, our bodies are designed to adjust for pressure changes in our ears – you just need to learn how. If you have no difficulties adjusting to air pressure during flying, you'll probably experience no problem learning to adjust to water pressure while diving.

Not necessarily. Any condition that affects the ears, sinuses, respiratory function or heart function or may alter consciousness is a concern, but only a physician can assess a person's individual risk. Physicians can consult with the Divers Alert Network (DAN) as necessary when assessing a scuba candidate. 

DAN has information available online if you wish to do some research.

Sun burn and seasickness, both of which are preventable with over the counter preventatives. The most common injuries caused by marine life are scrapes and stings, most of which can be avoided by wearing gloves and an exposure suit, staying off the bottom and watching where you put your hands and feet.

Contact Atlantis Aquatics for information about exposure protection needed for any of your diving.


When you're lucky, you'll get to see a shark.

Although incidents with sharks occur, they are very, very rare.  Most commonly shark encounters primarily involve spear fishing or feeding sharks, both of which trigger eractic feeding behavior. Sharks main food source is fish and if they can get a free meal they will. 

Most of the time, if you see a shark it's passing through and a relatively rare sight to enjoy.

While we do not need to fear sharks, we do need to respect them and remember we are in their home. Sharks are extremely important to the ecology of the marine environment, they help keep our oceans healthy. Enjoy the beauty and manificence of these amazing creatures.

Aside from pregnancy, no. Because physiologists know little about the effects of diving on the fetus, the recommendation is that women avoid diving while pregnant or trying to become pregnant. Menstruation is not normally a concern.

With the necessary training and experience, the limit for recreational scuba diving is 130 feet/40 meters. Beginning scuba divers stay shallower than about 60 feet/18 meters (age 10/11 divers maximum depth limit 40 feet/12 meters). Although these are the limits, some of the most popular diving is no deeper than 40 feet/12 meters where the water's warmer and the colors are brighter.

That's not likely because you have a gauge that tells you how much air you have at all times. This way, you can return to the surface with a safety reserve remaining. But to answer the question, if you run out of air, your buddy has a spare mouthpiece that allows you to share their air supply while swimming to the surface. There are also other options you'll learn in your PADI Open Water course with Atlantis Aquatics.

People find the “weightlessness” of scuba diving to be quite freeing. Modern scuba masks are available in translucent frames, which you may prefer if a mask makes you feel closed in. Properly fitted exposure suits and scuba equipment help make you feel more comfortable and aid in lowering the feel of claustrophobia

During your scuba diving training with Atlantis Aquatics, your instructor gives you plenty of time and coaching to become comfortable with each stage of learning. Your scuba instructor works with you at your own pace to ensure you master each skill necessary to become a capable scuba diver who dives regularly.

Atlantis Aquatics keeps classes small so that we can give you more time to get comfortable with the amazing world of diving.