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How deep is too deep...for their little growing bones?


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23 replies to this topic

#16 shadragon

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Posted 10 September 2007 - 06:22 AM

My understanding is that the limits are 40' for ages 10-11 and 60' for ages 12-14. Above the age of 15 is the same as for adults.

FinGrabber is correct, it is 40 feet for the "Junior" qualification.

"A pre-certification, 20-hour course for kids age 10 to 15 teaches basic knowledge and skills. Completing the course earns the graduate a PADI Junior Scuba Diver certification card, so dives down to 40 feet may be made under the supervision of a certified divemaster, assistant instructor or instructor."

Personally, unless they were fully trained I would keep them in the 5 - 6 foot range. They won't care (or even know) how deep they are. If anything bad happens their first instinct will be to kick for the surface with breath held. Using some sort of surface supplied air would be best then they can't go deeper (or further away) than the hose length.
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#17 Walter

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Posted 10 September 2007 - 12:33 PM

FinGrabber is correct, it is 40 feet for the "Junior" qualification.


Nope. OTOH, those agencies who do allow certifications for children under the age of 12 do not allow them deeper than 40 ft during training and recommend a 40 ft limit after certification.
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#18 finGrabber

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Posted 10 September 2007 - 12:54 PM

FinGrabber is correct, it is 40 feet for the "Junior" qualification.


Nope. OTOH, those agencies who do allow certifications for children under the age of 12 do not allow them deeper than 40 ft during training and recommend a 40 ft limit after certification.

PADI restricts kids 10 to 12 years old to 40 feet and must dive with an adult. The Junior cert has a different depth restriction, which I thought was 60 feet

#19 pir8

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Posted 10 September 2007 - 02:50 PM

FinGrabber is correct, it is 40 feet for the "Junior" qualification.


Nope. OTOH, those agencies who do allow certifications for children under the age of 12 do not allow them deeper than 40 ft during training and recommend a 40 ft limit after certification.

PADI restricts kids 10 to 12 years old to 40 feet and must dive with an adult. The Junior cert has a different depth restriction, which I thought was 60 feet

In addition that adult must be Parent, Guardian or Professional. After 12 it loosens up to an adult.
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#20 Walter

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Posted 11 September 2007 - 09:52 AM

PADI Standards only apply to PADI classes. All other limits are recommendations only. They have no authority to place limits on anyone except during their classes.
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#21 Landlocked Dive Nut

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Posted 18 March 2012 - 01:13 PM

In the fitness industry, we do not recommend that children under 12 lift weights because their bones are not yet completely solidified and capable of withstanding the pressure of weightlifting.

Although you are weightless while diving (ideally, anyway!) there is still pressure on the body, and on the bones.

More food for thought.
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#22 WreckWench

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Posted 18 March 2012 - 02:05 PM

Great thread to revisit! :thankyou:

I was asked by a couple who saw me working on the videos and pics I took in the airport coming back from Bonaire and I gave them the official line...but I also know that TOO MANY things are considered safe only to find out they were not. My suggestion is to either keep them in the 10 ft of less range as Simon suggested or just wait until they are 15-16. Its a great incentive to help get them thru the teen years AND you don't have to worry your kid is actually a beta test of some sort. It will not be a happy ending if they are.

A few years one way or the other is vital when compared to a lifetime. Many saturation and professional divers have serious bone necrosis after so many dives and repeated exposure to pressure.. kids are just more at risk...and its not worth it.

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#23 Sharklover

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Posted 18 March 2012 - 05:33 PM

In the fitness industry, we do not recommend that children under 12 lift weights because their bones are not yet completely solidified and capable of withstanding the pressure of weightlifting.

Although you are weightless while diving (ideally, anyway!) there is still pressure on the body, and on the bones.

More food for thought.


Glad to see your post. It angers me when I see parents/coaches doing things which can cause irreparable harm to their kids. I practiced with one of the leading growth and stature experts in the world. We saw a lot of kids with growth plates which were damaged from heavy weightlifting and such. It isn't so much age which is the issue, but puberty. If a child is finished grown and through puberty, there is nothing wrong with assisted resistance training. If they are not, they can damage a growth plate using assisted resistance training unless they are super careful about how much weight they use which they are not, they are always trying to push those limits. Kids who are not through puberty should be limited to strength training which uses their own body weight, good old fashioned push ups, sit ups, etc.

I wouldn't worry about infrequent shallow water dives with kids. I'd worry a LOT more about the basics and their maturity in being able to handle challenges underwater.
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#24 scubajunkie6

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Posted 22 March 2012 - 08:04 PM

I have a son who will turn 14 on Saturday. He is over 5'6", and I think around 130lbs. He's not a ScubaJunkie like me, but will enjoy a few dives, and he is very comfortable underwater. I got him his own equipment and we take it everywhere we dive. His BCD has an octo, and he has another octo attached to his first stage. (I did this so that if someone starts grabbing for his airsource, he would have options). I occasionally made him switch regs underwater for practice. The mama bear in me just wants to make sure he knows his own gear and that he knows the rules of diving. Plan the dive, and dive the plan, along with staying close by to your buddy with lots of hand signals. He has a slate attached to his BCD and has used it before (asking about fish, telling me the rubber band in his braces broke during the dive, etc).

I also had him achieve not just Jr Open Water, but Jr Advanced Open Water, which was also a 1-on-1 class (just the instructor and him).

As for depth, typically we will go around 40 feet or less, and we will stick with that for a long time. PADI says no deeper than 60. Last week we ended up diving much deeper on a wreck dive, with an instructor with us. Again, constant hand signals, checking gagues, etc. He came up with over 500 psi left, as it should be, and he enjoyed the dive.




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