I’m a blogger, traveller and a fitness enthusiast who’s been an athlete and an adventure seeker all my life. I came to Thailand 4 years ago and did my first open water course and fell in love with diving and especially koh tao. Ever since then I started doing research on diving and wanted to explore more specialties in it. While doing so I stumbled upon tech dive, it sounded interesting and very challenging which I’m always after so I put that in my list. Now fast forwarding the story a little, 4 years later I’m a certified tech 40 diver but let me tell you something, it was not easy and I did not see what I was getting into even though I was prepared for the challenge.
When I started the course, I had about 45 dives, so you know I’ wasn’t a seasoned diver yet but that’s exactly why I got into tech diving because not only do tech divers go beyond recreational limits but they r perfectionists and my sole goal was to achieve that perfectionism as a diver or if not MERELY become a better diver in terms of technic, form and awareness etc. that’s all I wanted, just wanted to try it!
Enter: Jeffrey Glenn!! You see Jeff around, you automatically want to respect him. Such as his professionalism and the way he carries himself. That’s first impression. Second, I had also heard he is one of the most experienced diver and an instructor on the island of koh tao and beyond. Third, would be my personal experience with him and the course..
As we started our sessions in the pool and shallow water, I was miserable and like a fish out of water. Prior to this anything I had tried had come easy, if not never a struggle. It’s a 4 day course and 3 days later, I was still not used to the wing, the trim, nor the twin sets. I would do my skills underwater but failed miserably with my buoyancy. Jeff would say stay at my level in front of me maintaining the trim. But no, I often saw the top of Jeff, sides of Jeff, his fins and sometimes below Jeff often knocking him in his face with my twinsets. I could not even imagine how much I probably pressed his buttons but the level of patience he showed was out of this world for me. Because I have been under a lot of coaches in various sports and training for different things and I know how teaching is personally as well but never had I seen work ethic like Jeff showed. After each single dive for the first four days when we swam back, I wanted to give up as I hated everything about diving by then and sometimes even wondering why am I putting myself through this and Jeff would knock me in my face with honest criticism, no sugar coating what so ever. But back those criticisms with positive feedback and that he would get me through this course. You could clearly see that he is not giving up on you even though you are and the way he talks to you and assures you of his belief in you just wants to make you put all the trust in him which is what I did after crying like a wuss out of frustration when every single dive was done. And I am glad I didn’t give up, we extended my course for 3 more days as he suggested and miraculously, I was getting better, I had stopped fighting the wing and started controlling, more than anything I had started enjoying diving with twinsets maintaining the trim and just staring at an object in one place for minutes. I loved actually planning my dives, holding those deco stops, being aware of everything that is happening around me, (although not completely there yet) and more than anything just to know that tech diving is much safer than recreational as we do proper off gassing and get rid off all the nitrogen from our body.
Finally, on my last day Jeff said I made it through the course.. I thought I would be in tears but no I wanted more! From just trying the course to hating it, I had actually ended up with falling in love with challenge and wanted to grow in it. Tech diving is definitely not for everyone but if you want to something challenging then you must go for it. And there is No-one better to train under other than Jeff he says: ” if you made it, you have definitely earned it” no short cut!
I’m yet to find out which one I like the most, whether it being coached under Jeff or the it being, challenges and amazement of technical diving 🙂