Decompression Diving

Decompression Ascents - Some Secret Sauce

Let me start this month's blog with a couple of caveats; this post is predominantly for open circuit (OC) divers. If you dive a "breather" (Closed Circuit Rebreather or CCR) then some of the techniques I will explain involving breathing control won't work for you. Equally, if you have not mastered "relaxed static stability" then, with all the will in the world, you are not going to be able to complete a safe, controlled ascent as I will describe in this post. Take a look at some of my other posts on buoyancy control, stability, and trim, and master these skills first.

If you are still with me, then I assume that you are stable in the water, can hold trim and are diving open circuit or if on CCR, maybe you are thinking "what happens when I bail out to OC during an ascent?" What follows is some of the "secret sauce" that I have learnt and derived over the past few years of conducting decompression dives and guiding/instructing or acting as safety diver on such dives. If you employ and master these techniques you should be able to safely complete a team decompression ascent, "in the blue", meaning, with no visual reference other than your team-mates.