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We are enthused about your interest in immersing yourself in the exciting and invigorating sport of Scuba Diving. The underwater world offers excitement and adventure as well as beauty and tranquility, and you can join the myriad of scuba divers who journey below the water’s surface for the first time every year. The first step in beginning your own journey into the world beneath the waves starts by enrolling in a PADI Open Water Diver Course.

The PADI Open Water Diver Course provides the initial Scuba Diving Certification and will enable you to dive as a confident, safe, and knowledgeable diver anywhere in the world down to a depth of sixty feet.

Upon completion of your Open Water Diver Course you will become a fully certified PADI Open Water Diver.

The PADI Open Water Diver certification is the most recognized Scuba certification in the world. PADI, the Professional Association of Diving Instructors, is the certifying agency through which Lancaster Scuba Center administers all of the initial scuba certifications and a vast number of additional certifications. With your PADI certification in hand, you will be able to seek out your own diving adventures or join us on local, domestic, or international dives. You will also be able to continue your diving education to become even more familiar with the underwater world.

Each Open Water Diver Course is conducted by one or more of Lancaster Scuba Center’s PADI Dive Instructors and comfortable class sizes emphasize individual attention to each student during the learning process. The Open Water Diver Course is comprised of three distinct educational activities. Those activities include:

Knowledge Development

The Knowledge Development portion of the class builds your understanding of the basic principles and procedures of diving. Developing this knowledge is accomplished with ease through three modes.

First you begin by reading your Open Water Manual. The facts and information acquired during the reading are then expounded upon by watching the Open Water DVD that coincides with the reading.   Finally, the facts and concepts presented in the reading and the DVD are summarized and covered again by your Instructor. These classroom sessions with your instructor are the perfect time to ask and discuss any questions that you have about any of the material that you have covered.

Confined Water Dives

The Confined water dives allow you to take the basic Scuba Diving skills that you learned during your Knowledge Development and practice them in a local heated indoor pool. Your Instructors and Divemasters will demonstrate and explain the many skills needed in diving and will then have you practice these skills under their supervision.

You’ll learn everything from setting up your gear to clearing your mask of water without surfacing. The Open Water Diver Course is performance-based, meaning that you take as much time as you need to practice each skill until you and your instructor are both confident in your new abilities.

The majority of the Open Water Diver Courses offered at Lancaster Scuba Center are formatted so that the Knowledge Development and Confined Water Dive sections of the course are portioned out across an approximate five week period.   Each week you and your Instructor will cover one section of Knowledge Development with one corresponding portion of Confined Water Dives.We recognize that this 5 week program may not fit everyone’s schedule. In light of this, Lancaster Scuba Center also offers condensed and individually tailored classes to meet your needs.

You may also complete all of the Knowledge Development phase of the class from home via the internet using the PADI e-Learning system, another time saving measure. Please contact Lancaster Scuba Center at 717.39.SCUBA or by email at for additional questions on course details and scheduling.

Open Water Dives

After your confined water dives, you will continue your diving education during four open water dives with your Instructor at a dive site. The Open Water dives are the culmination of all your skill building thus far, and allow you to fully experience the underwater adventure. Most of the students at Lancaster Scuba Center opt to make these dives at one of our Local Scuba Diving Lakes.

These lakes are specifically designed and maintained for Scuba Divers and include underwater platforms for training and underwater attractions for the entertainment of student and certified diver alike. Many of the Scuba lakes that Lancaster Scuba Center frequently uses include Willow Springs, and Dutch Springs and Lake Allure. (Admission to the Scuba lakes is not included in the price of the course).  

If you would like to finish your Scuba certification by completing your Open Water Dives in a more exotic location, you can many times finish your certification on one of Lancaster Scuba Center’s various trips to tropical dive destinations, or we can refer you to another PADI facility anywhere in the world.

Course Tuition

Lancaster Scuba Center’s Open Water Diver Course is an ALL INCLUSIVE package with the exception of your personal gear and entrance fees into the diving lakes, for your certification dives.

The course tuition includes the following: Instructor Fee, admission to the pool facility, PADI Open Water Diver Manual (OR online eLearning), Diving Log, Deluxe Dive Binder, Student Record Folder which includes a Medical Questionnaire which must be completed before participating, Recreational Dive Planner, use of Educational DVD, use of rental Gear, Open Water Certification Dives, and a PADI certification card upon completion of the course.

The personal gear needed includes mask, snorkel, fins, boots, and a weight belt and may be purchased at Lancaster Scuba Center. Making sure that you are comfortable and confident in these items is paramount to your success in the Open Water Diver Course. The Lancaster Scuba Center Sales Staff will work closely with you to ensure a perfect fit of these items and to educate you in your available choices. Participate in a Discover Scuba if you are interested in Scuba Diving but would like to give it a try before you take the plunge into an Open Water Course!

You may pick up your release form at Lancaster Scuba Center or download and print the forms below from home.

For upcoming course dates, click the button below or contact Lancaster Scuba.

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