PADI Specialty Courses

The Dive Academy offers a range of PADI Specialty Diver courses to help you increase your experience, skills, and knowledge as well as give you the opportunity to learn more about your favorite underwater activities. PADI Specialty Courses will also introduce you to new and exciting activities which you can use wherever you find yourself diving in the future.

Click on the links below for information about a particular specialty course or scroll down the page for information on the various courses we offer.

Recreational Sidemount     Self Reliant Diver     Enriched Air     Digital Underwater Photography

Deep Diver     Fish ID     Underwater Navigator     Equipment     Search & Recovery

Boat Diver     Wreck Diver     Peak Performance Buoyancy     Dive Against Debris

Recreational Sidemount

padi-sidemount-course-koh-samuiPADI Sidemount is one of the more recent PADI Specialty Courses and is a whole new way of diving. You learn to dive with either one or two tanks attached to your side as opposed to one tank on your back! Some of the techniques and procedures used in Sidemount are the basics of Tec Diving so Sidemount is a great way to get a taster for Tec Diving while still within the limits of recreational diving.

A PADI Open Water Diver who is at least 15 years old can enroll in a PADI Sidemount Diver course.

Self Reliant Diver

padi-self-reliant-diver-specialtyThere are times when experienced divers need or want to dive alone without a buddy. The purpose of the Self-Reliant Diver Specialty course is to develop the skills and techniques to dive safely by yourself and to develop self-reliance and independence while diving whether as part of a buddy team or alone. The course covers when diving alone may be applicable, the equipment required to dive alone safely, and the additional responsibility of being able to rely on yourself first in an emergency.

To take the Self Reliant Diver Course you must be 18 years old or over, be an Advanced Open Water Diver and show proof of 100 logged dives.

Enriched Air

Nitrox is one of PADI’s most popular Specialty Courses. Diving with Enriched Air (Nitrox) allows you to safely extend your no decompression limits, which means more time underwater and shorter surface intervals. So if you are into underwater photography, wreck diving, or just like to enjoy leisurely diving for longer the Enriched Air Specialty Course keeps you where you want to be… underwater!!

The minimum age for the Enriched Air Course is 12 years old and you must be certified as an Open Water diver. The course covers the knowledge, skills, and techniques for diving with enriched air and is split between knowledge development and practical applications. The course takes 1 day to complete, plus some independent study, or 2 days if you want to experience what it is like to dive on Enriched Air. You can complete the Enriched Air Course without completing any open water dives – the course is based on theory and dive planning using Enriched Air, although we do encourage you to try it out.

Click here to find out how to complete the whole Enriched Air (Nitrox) Course online and become a certified Nitrox Diver with PADI eLearning.


Digital Underwater Photography

DUP is an introduction to digital underwater photography centered around today’s point-and-shoot digital cameras. The course helps you develop the knowledge, skills, and practical techniques necessary to obtain excellent photographs with a digital camera, even on your first photo dive. The course covers what equipment you need to take great underwater photographs, how to prepare the underwater photo system, and basic underwater photo techniques. The course is open to snorkelers, Open Water Diver students, and certified divers who have an interest in underwater photography.

Click here to see about completing the DUP Course theory online with PADI eLearning.


Deep Diver

Deep diving opens the door to many new exciting dive sites like deeper wrecks, reefs, and walls. Divers are usually adventurous people, and deep diving whether to visit a wreck or take photos can certainly be called adventurous.

It’s only natural that most divers have an interest in deep diving. Deep diving is a means to an end. You make a deep dive to see or experience something that you can’t on a shallower dive. There is no reason to take a deep dive if you can make essentially the same dive at a shallower depth.

padi-advanced-open-water-courseThe goal of the Deep Diver course is to teach you about the equipment needed for deep diving, to discourage thrill seeker attitudes, and encourage the proper deep diver behavior. You will learn how to plan and safely execute deep dives, which will add to your enjoyment of deep diving. The course takes 2 days to complete and you make 4 dives, starting with a 30-meter dive and including 1 dive to 40 meters. By the start of the course, a diver must be certified as a PADI Adventure Diver or Advanced Open Water Diver and be at least 15 years old. When you have completed the deep diver course you will be certified to dive to 40 meters, which is the maximum depth allowed in recreational diving. Then you can discover what fantastic adventures wait for you in the deep.

Fish ID

padi-fish-id-courseHave you ever been scuba diving and asked yourself, “What was that?” The PADI Fish Identification Specialty course provides you with the basic knowledge to help you know the answer. You’ll find you enjoy your dives, even more, when you recognize the creatures that you see.

The fun part about this course is you can use the skills you learn on every dive you do, wherever you go in the world because once you learn the main fish families and characteristics it will help you recognize the species you see all over the world.

During two dives you gain hands-on (or, eyes-on) experience in looking for and identifying the fascinating fish you see underwater. You will learn how to identify characteristics of local fish families and Fish survey techniques and strategies. You must be an Open Water diver and at least 10 years old to take the Fish ID Specialty which takes one day to complete and requires 2 dives.


padi-equipment-specialty-courseDon’t miss a dive due to minor issues with your scuba diving equipment. Whether it’s a missing o-ring, wetsuit tear, or a broken fin strap, the PADI Equipment Specialist course teaches you to manage basic repairs and adjustments. You’ll also learn more about how your gear works, making you more comfortable with it and better prepared to take care of your investment.

If you’re at least 10 years old and certified as a PADI (Junior) Scuba Diver or higher, you can enroll in the Equipment Specialist course.

Search & Recovery

padi-search-and-recovery-courseMany factors such as visibility, sea conditions, and topography can affect the success or failure of any search and recovery conducted underwater. The search and recovery dive team cannot control most of these factors, but one aspect of an underwater search and recovery that can be controlled is organization. The other factors must be considered when the team plans a search and recovery, altering how they search and the recovery methods to accommodate them. The goal of the Search & Recovery Specialty course is to develop the techniques involved in locating and retrieving lost articles, large and small, within recreational diving limits and while avoiding disturbing delicate marine life. The course takes 2 days to complete and consists of 4 Search & Recovery Dives where you will learn things like search patterns, lifting procedures, and knot tying. The minimum age for the Search & Recovery Course is 12 years old and you must be a (Junior) Advanced Open Water Diver.

Boat Diver

Most places you go diving will require you to dive from one kind of boat or another, whether it’s a speedboat, a rib, or even a liveaboard. Diving from boats gives you access to dive sites not accessible from shore as well as provides you with a way to visit remote dive sites that are a long way from where you are. The Boat Diving Specialty course covers the knowledge and techniques specific to boat diving. The purpose of the PADI Boat Diver Specialty course is to familiarize you with the skills, knowledge, procedures, techniques, problems, hazards, and enjoyment of diving from a boat. The course covers knowledge of dive boats, proper boat diving etiquette, and basic dive boat terminology and includes important boat diving skills such as entries/exits, and use of emergency/safety equipment and enables you to plan, organize and conduct safe dives. The course includes 2 open water dives and you must be at least 12 years old and at least a (Junior) Open Water Diver.

Wreck Diver

wreck-specialty-courseWhether purpose-sunk as an artificial reef for scuba divers, or lost as the result of an accident, wrecks are fascinating windows to the past. Ships, airplanes, and even cars are fascinating to explore and usually teem with aquatic life. Each wreck dive offers a chance for discovery, potentially unlocking a mystery or spying on something others have missed. The PADI Wreck Diver Specialty course covers safety considerations for navigating and exploring wrecks, surveying and mapping a wreck, using penetration lines and reels to guide exploration and techniques to avoid kicking up silt or disturbing the wreck and its inhabitants.

If you’re at least 15 years old and have earned a PADI Adventure Diver certification or higher, you can enroll in the Wreck Diver Specialty course which consists of 4 dives taken over two days.

Peak Performance Buoyancy

peak-performance-bouyancy-courseExcellent buoyancy control is what defines skilled scuba divers. You’ve seen them underwater. They glide effortlessly, use less air and ascend, descend, or hover almost as if by thought. They more easily observe aquatic life without disturbing their surroundings. You can achieve this, too. The PADI Peak Performance Buoyancy Specialty course improves the buoyancy skills you learned as a new diver and elevates them to the next level.

PADI (Junior) Open Water Divers or higher, who are at least 10 years old, are eligible to take the Peak Performance Buoyancy course.

Dive Against Debris

project awareDive Against Debris is the only underwater debris data collection program of its kind. Taking part in the Dive Against Debris program not only helps improve the health of the ocean ecosystems by having volunteers clean trash from their local environments it also provides valuable information about underwater debris to help inform policy change at the local and government levels. Dive Against Debris encourages scuba divers to remove marine debris from the ocean and report data on the types, quantities, and locations of materials collected.

The fight to protect the ocean planet begins with you. Small conservation actions multiplied by many like-minded individuals can add up to big results. You can be the change every time you dive, travel, and more. To find out ways you can help protect our amazing underwater world take a look at the Project AWARE website:

If you have any questions please contact us and we will help in any way we can.

Continuing Your Education

Advanced Open Water

padi advanced open water course

Rescue Diver