Bridging the Experience Gap

Techniques for Reducing the Stress of Zero Visibility Training
  • Steven H. Sellers
Part of the The Springer Series in Underwater Archaeology book series (SSUA)


Zero visibility diving may be the most stressful activity the vast majority of divers ever experience. When zero visibility conditions are encountered, even seasoned clear water divers may find themselves stressed to the point that they must terminate the dive. Some training techniques useful in preparing divers for the zero visibility environment emphasize composure, others have more emphasis on problem solving abilities while still employing stress. Techniques are available which will aid in the training process while reducing the stress element. Designed to be conducted with supervision in a shallow pool, the Zero Visibility Maze and associated techniques offer divers an introduction to the sightless diving environment with a minimum of stress. Unlike an obstacle course, there are no entrapments, entanglements, restrictions or time limits (other than air availability). The divers must solve only minor problems of direction and orientation, while completing a series of objectives. This approach allows divers new to the sightless or extremely limited visibility diving environment time to become acclimatized and aids in developing confidence, tactile and orientation skills.


Visibility Condition Dive Site Maritime Archaeology Visibility Training Experienced Diver 
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Literature Cited

  1. Sellers, S.H., and R.J. Scharf, 1990. Training scientific divers for zero visibility diving, in W. Jaap (ed.), Diving for Science, pp. 313–322. American Academy of Underwater Sciences, AAUS, Costa Mesa, CA.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1998

Authors and Affiliations

  • Steven H. Sellers

There are no affiliations available

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