Qualifications of a SCUBA Diving Instructor

Qualifications of a SCUBA Diving Instructor
SCUBA or diving instructors have the flexibility to work in many areas, including tropical resorts and other vacation hot spots while participating in an activity they enjoy. To become a SCUBA instructor takes more than a love for diving--years of education and experience are necessary to work in the field.

Types of SCUBA Certification

The Professional Association of Diving Instructors (PADI) grants the necessary certification to become a SCUBA instructor. To become an instructor, PADI requires certification in diving and then certification as an assistant instructor before taking the examination to become a full instructor.


A training course from PADI is necessary to receive each of the three certifications necessary for becoming an instructor. Some employers prefer to hire instructors who have a college degree in addition to this SCUBA instructor training, such as an associates or bachelors degree in exercise science or kinesiology.


To become a SCUBA instructor, experience diving in deep water and at night are necessary. PADI requires 100 logged hours of diving experience.

Other Skills

SCUBA instructors must know lifesaving skills like CPR and first aid in case an accident or injury occurs during a lesson. PADI requires instructors to take a course in emergency first response to learn these skills.


To become a qualified instructor, candidates must demonstrate 20 PADI dive skills and have the ability to swim non-stop, face down with a snorkel and fins for 800m. PADI typically administers the examination to test these skills the last day of the instructor training course, or on a pre-scheduled day following the course.

Article Written By Faith Davies

Faith Davies has been writing professionally since 1996, contributing to various websites. She holds an LAH insurance license in the state of Pennsylvania and has experience as a bank branch manager and lending officer. Davies graduated cum laude from the University of Pittsburgh with a Bachelor of Arts in art history.

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