Dive into Kinesiology 101

In the Discover Scuba class, a Missouri Southern student practices the basics of diving in the Southern pool.

Special to the Chart

In the Discover Scuba class, a Missouri Southern student practices the basics of diving in the Southern pool.

Alexandra Nicolas

Kinesiology 101 no longer has to mean badminton or bowling with aquatic education now available at Missiouri Southern.

The pool at Young Gymnasium hosted the diving instructors of Calypso Dive Shop for an introductory look at scuba diving Sept. 20.

The campus recreation center hosts events such as CPR/First aid classes and paintball to give students a chance to explore activities they would otherwise not be exposed to.

The scuba introduction offers a free preview for a Kinesiology 101 class taken through Calypso where students become fully certified scuba divers.

“What makes [the class] especially nice is there’s a lot of people who thought I’d like to do that sometime, but that’s money to invest to find out if you even like it,” said Valerie Earl, manager of Calypso Dive Shop. “So by doing this, people who think they might want to scuba dive can actually come and try scuba, actually being in the water breathing on scuba.”

Campus recreation is now in its third year of doing the scuba introduction and is pleased with the direction it’s taking.

“We had a pretty good turnout, last year we had about 15 but this is the best crowd we’ve ever had, so were really excited, we have about 25 people,” said Kristen Earnest, senior nursing major and campus recreation worker.

This year’s 25 participants range from 18-year-old freshmen to non-traditional students like Beverly Jones, junior Spanish major.

“I always wanted to learn how to scuba dive,” she said. “I’m 58 years old and I think its about time.”

“You gotta keep up with the kids, that’s what keeps me young.”

Many of the students who attended the preview also expressed an interest in joing the scuba course this spring.

“I absolutely loved it, I think its neat how whenever your down there its like your weightless,” said Eric Madden, freshman physical therapy major.

With 14 students enrolled in the fall semester scuba class, the high level of intrest taken in the course has led to the addition of a second course this school year.

“There will be a spring semester class for the first time, its that popular,” Earl said .

The class covers the essentials of scuba diving and at the end of the class students have the option of receiving full dive certification through participating in open-water dives.

Students take a once-a-night course that lasts aproximately four hours per night. The class costs regular tuition plus $150 for the class and a minimum of $145 for personal equipment incuding mask, snorkel, fins and boots.

The actual certification costs $69 to cover the cost of processing fees through Scuba Schools International or SSI. Joel Dannelley, scuba instructor at Calypso, said an average of 99 percent of students who enroll in the class recive their full certification and go on to continue to participate in scuba.

“I think what I’ve experienced so far will make me want to go to more scuba diving locations,” said Matthew Gentry, sophomore biology major and scuba student.

After finishing the scuba course, in addition to being a fully certified diver, students have the option to come in for unlimited practice sessions at Calypso.

“Anyone who has taken a class can come in and use and abuse the pool, use and abuse our air and gear, come and enjoy the heated pool,” Dannelley said.

The scuba introduction offers a unique and free chance to see what scuba is like in a safe and controlled enviroment instead of the dangerous enviroment that scuba has come to be associated with.

“Recreational diving ranks right up there with bowling for accidents,” Earl said, “Diving has this perception of being so dangerous and so high-risk and if you don’t know what you’re doing it is, Diving is a safe sport but its only as safe as you make it.” The class meets every Thursday night at Calypso dive shop at 1840 N. Range Line Road.

For more information please contact Valerie Earl at 624-0900.