Boy Scouts of America;  Scuba Diving and First Aid Merit Badge

Jerry Bayus is an authorized Merit Badge Counselor for the BSA Scuba Diving and First Aid Merit Badges

 

Click on this link for a brochure about the BSA Scuba Diving Merit Badge

Greater Western Reserve Council, Boy Scouts, BSA

BSA Scuba Diving Merit Badge 

 

Much like scouting, the overall philosophy of scuba encourages the quest for adventure. It is a life changing experience that enables young men and women to embrace challenges in a whole new way. That first breath underwater; the feeling of total weightlessness as you embark into a foreign world enables you to be part of something so powerful it transforms your life!

 

Requirements
• Show that you know first aid for injuries or illnesses that could occur while scuba diving, including hypothermia, hyperventilation,

   squeezes, decompression illness, nitrogen narcosis, motion sickness, fatigue, overexertion, heat reactions, dehydration, injuries by aquatic

   life, and cuts and scrapes.
• Identify the conditions that must exist before performing CPR on a person, and explain how to recognize such conditions. Demonstrate the

   proper technique for performing CPR using a training device approved by your counselor.
• Before completing requirements 3 through 6, earn the Swimming merit badge.
• Discuss the Scuba Diver’s Code with your merit badge counselor, and explain the importance of each guideline to a scuba diver’s safety.
• Earn an Open Water Diver Certification from a scuba organization recognized by the Boy Scouts of America scuba policy.
• Explain what an ecosystem is, and describe four aquatic ecosystems a diver might experience.
• Find out about three career opportunities in the scuba industry. Pick one and find out the education, training, and experience required for

   this profession. Discuss this with your counselor, and explain why this profession might interest you.

 

Minimum Course Content for Open Water Diver Certification
The following abbreviated list represents the RSTC “Minimum Course Content for Open Water Diver Certification.” It is not intended as a complete outline of learning objectives for an Open Water Diver course. Development of learning objectives is left to the respective training agencies.

 

• During the Open Water Diver course you can look forward to learning basic scuba theory and developing entry-level scuba skills required

   for certification. All scuba instruction must meet the minimum training standards for Entry-Level Scuba Certification set by the

   Recreational Scuba Training Council (RSTC). Your course will consist of the topics and scuba skills required by the training organization

   and as outlined in this section. At a minimum, the following will be covered.

• Equipment - Learn the physical description, operating principles, maintenance, and use of the following equipment items—face mask,

   fins, snorkel, BCD, exposure suit, weights and weight system, float and flag, cylinders, valves, regulators/air-delivery system, submersible

   pressure gauge, alternate air source, timing device, compass, depth gauge, dive table or dive computers, knife.
• Physics of Diving - Learn the physical principles of matter and their application to diving activities and hazards.
• Medical Problems Related to Diving- Learn the causes, symptoms, prevention, and first-aid and treatment of diving medical problems.
• Decompression Theory and Use of Dive Tables and/or Dive Computers - Learn how to determine no-decompression limits for single and

   repetitive dives, plus how to use dive tables and/or dive computers to properly plan and execute a dive.
• Dive Environment - Learn information on the local and general conditions of the diving environment and their possible effects on the

   diver.
• General Topics - Learn information on dive planning, underwater and surface communications, diver assistance, recommended diving

   practices (including safety stops), procedures for diving from boats, proper use of personal diving logbook, and local dive regulations and

   protocols.

• Pool/Confined Water Scuba Skills. Learn and practice the following scuba skills in a pool or confined water.
      • Diving system assembly and disassembly
      • Equipment inspection (at water’s edge)
      • Entries and exits
      • Proper weighting
      • Mouthpiece clearing—snorkel and regulator
      • Regulator/snorkel exchanges at the surface
      • Controlled descents and ascents
      • Underwater swimming
      • Mask-clearing, including removal and replacement
      • Underwater exercises—with and without mask
      • Buddy-system techniques
      • Underwater and surface buoyancy control
      • Underwater problem-solving (regulator recovery/retrieval, etc.)
      • Surface-snorkel swimming with full diving system
      • Surface operation of the quick release/emergency function of the weight system
      • Underwater removal and replacement of scuba system
      • Underwater removal and replacement of the weight/ballast system
      • Out-of-air emergency alternatives, including at least one dependent procedure and one independent procedure
      • Equipment care and maintenance (at water’s edge)
      • Open Water Scuba Skills. Perform the following scuba skills while diving in open water.
      • Equipment inspection (at water’s edge)
      • Entries and exits
      • Proper Weighting
      • Mouthpiece clearing—snorkel and regulator
      • Regulator/snorkel exchanges at the surface
      • Controlled descents and ascents
      • Underwater swimming
      • Mask-clearing
      • Buddy-system techniques
      • Underwater and surface buoyancy control
      • Diver assistance techniques (self/buddy)
      • Surface-snorkel swimming with full diving system
      • Removal and replacement of weight/ballast system
      • Removal and replacement of scuba system
      • Out-of-air emergency alternatives
      • Equipment care and maintenance (at water’s edge)
      • Underwater navigation

• Scuba industry standards for Open Water Diver Certification require the student to be at least 15 years of age. Students aged 10 to 14 who

   meet open water scuba performance requirements may earn their Junior Open Water Certification which allows them to dive with an adult

   buddy who has, as a minimum, an open water scuba certification. Junior Open Water Diver Certifications satisfy Scuba Diving Merit

   Badge requirement 4.

 

• Scouts who have already earned an Open Water Diver Certification outside of a BSA activity from a scuba agency recognized by the Boy

   Scouts of America scuba policy may still earn the Scuba Diving merit badge by earning the Swimming merit badge and completing all

   other listed requirements.

© RecTEC Divers, LLC

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