Life in the Scuba Shop

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Life in the Scuba Shop

The Scuba Diving industry is unique. It is designed to provide an unparalleled experience in a world unlike the one humans reside. Divers trade their tennis shoes for a pair of neoprene booties and strap on equipment designed to keep them comfortably breathing underwater. Through the use of an amazing invention, almost any person can dip below the waves to experience the underwater realm at its finest. With emerging technologies, we find scuba divers constantly pushing towards the greater effort of the human experience. Unique indeed...

Diving is not the newest of activities. Through technological advances it has increased in popularity in the last 70 years. We find humans underwater in many places around the world and we find that scuba diving crosses many disciplines. Commercial divers find themselves at great depths conducting work on pylons, pumps and more. Pool gals and guys have jobs that require them to dip below the water line to repair pumps and lights. Technical divers explore depths that include deeper reefs and wrecks throughout the world. Meanwhile, the "reef crawlers" of our very large recreational diving community find themselves exploring new places every single day. Police, fire and lifeguard departments around the world rely on their dive teams to conduct search and rescue as well as emergencies that are water related. There is no doubt that scuba diving is an inherent part of our world today.

Our massive scuba family sees each other on beaches, boats, far-off lands, etc. The techniques of scuba are constantly evolving and the demands of each diver run the gamut from photography to spearfishing to repairing drainage pipes. 

All of this is supported and maintained at the scuba shop near you. 

When you enter a dive shop, they do not look like the typical retail centers found in malls across the world. They have gear everywhere. Items awaiting service, items for sale, older items waiting to go somewhere, shipments coming in and shipments going out; the list is endless. Hundreds of products ranging from dive reels to weight pockets to wetsuits adorn the walls and displays throughout the entire square footage of the shop.

A smiling clerk awaits the patrons and helps determine the needs of each and every client. From a stainless steel bolt to a full compliment of rebreather dive gear, the employee is expected to know it all. They hone their profession through years of practice and actual application. A great deal of individuals who work in the scuba industry are dive professionals. When helping consumers invest, many of the people working in a dive shop are currently using that piece of gear or their hair is still wet because they snuck in a local dive in Orange County before work! The dive shops located in Southern California are no different. You may wander into one and find a full compliment of fins and snorkels while another specializes in spearguns and teaching freediving classes. Overall, the dive shops of Southern California attempt to flow with their customer base and provide the equipment that is currently in demand. That smiling clerk needs to know a lot of information to keep the general population interested and intrigued. 

 

With hundreds of manufacturers who carry hundreds of products; it is a whirlwind of knowledge and understanding to a newcomer in the dive industry. At Beach Cities Scuba, new employees are subjected to many types of gear and techniques during their tenure. Whether it is a pair of swim goggles or high-tech new fin technologies, we find many dive shop employees on a constant race to keep up with the growing trends and popular items. This is what makes the dive industry so unique. There are not too many places in the world where retailers are expected to know the full capacity of 8,000 completely different products inside a store. Couple that with California diving and you can see the increase in equipment needs and knowledge! Within just a few years, a newcomer will become a professional on diving techniques and knowledge within the industry!

The dive shop has more than just a good sales staff supporting it. There are service technicians who spend many hours ensuring top quality function. As many divers know, neglecting scuba equipment is not advisable when scuba diving on a regular basis; we need our gear working in top notch order to ensure our safety and enjoyment of every dive conducted throughout Southern California. There are boat captains who venture throughout our Pacific coastline looking for wrecks, reefs and anything that provides a substantial blip on the side scan sonar. These individuals spend many hours honing their profession in order to safely deliver and return divers who explore our local dive sites like Laguna Beach. There are trainers who hone the craft of teaching the art of scuba diving and ensuring a safe environment for all participants. Outside of the dive shop, we have manufacturers, sales representatives, speakers, specialists and much more providing secondary support efforts for each dive shop throughout the country. As one can surmise, when a diver signs up for a diving class, it takes a myriad of people to support this fun and exciting effort we know as scuba diving! 


Scuba shops around the world are focused on delivering quality training and product to their customers. Whether you are venturing into Laguna Beach to go snorkeling or looking for the nearest PADI certification program, you'll find an outfit ready to help out to the best of their abilities. It is true that Orange County scuba shops compete for customer business, but it is also true that they all know each other and realize that their service areas are the most important thing to them. Your local dive shop depends on seeing a customer's tank for airfills and opportunities to sell high quality diving equipment to continue this wonderful experience we call scuba! Whenever you find yourself in a dive shop in Southern California, take a moment to meet them, see what events they have coming up and their latest technology on the market. You'll help that sales person present their products and start the process of creating an important bond between scuba shop and scuba diver!

Throughout the years, life in the scuba shop is a hectic experience that requires a professionalism that keeps student divers safe and sound while they explore Orange County dive sites and more. The adventures will continue to occur as long as groups of divers continue getting together and finding excuses to dip below the waves of our beautiful beaches and dive sites.The author can speak for any dive shop out there. Their favorite thing in the world is supporting divers both new and old. There's nothing more exciting than seeing a new diver experience the underwater world for the first time. In the end, the dive industry is very unique and can support many types of divers around the world. Venture into one today!!!

About the author:

D.J. Mansfield is a PADI Course Director who dives Southern California and has done so for 23 years. He is currently the Director of Operations for Beach Cities Scuba and is a committed ocean steward and trainer for divers all over the world.

Follow him on Instagram @djmansfield7 or contact him at dj@beachcitiesscuba.com.   


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