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BSA Snorkeling is ideal for teaching scouts how to snorkel safely and is the recommended procedure for conducting BSA swimming activities using masks, fins, and snorkels. This program has been around since 2002 and is one of the of the options and entry point forScouts that have not met the required age for Scuba BSA or the Scuba Merit Badge program. PADI Instructors are qualified to sign off on this badge for your scouts. Scout must meet the BSA Snorkeling Requirements for participation. Length: about 2 hours. (Discount for Groups of 4 or more)

 The popularity of scuba diving with the scouts has grown exponentially over the

last several years. Much like scuba, the overall philosophy of scouting encourages

the quest for adventure. It is a life changing experience that enables  young men and

women to embrace challenges in a whole new way. That first breath underwater;

the feeling of total weightlessness as you embark into a  foreign world enables you to

be part of something so powerful it transforms your life!




  Achievement of the Scuba Diving Merit Badge will result in a 

PADI Open Water Diver Certification. This is a lifetime certification that is

 only the first step into an endless world of new

experiences, adventure and fun. After completing the certifications scouts and crew members

will have the ability to go scuba diving in a variety of different environments and continue their

education to further enhance their skills.


The Open Water Diver Course is just the first step to tapping into an abundance of educational

opportunities, programs and adventures for scouts. There are many additional programs offered

by White River Dive Company that compliment other scouting programs. The PADI and Boy

Scouts of America partnership has now opened the door to making these accessible to troops.

Have you always wanted to try scuba diving, but you just aren't sure you are ready to go all the way and earn the Scuba Diving merit badge? Scouts can earn the Scuba BSA activity patch by completing the PADI Discover Scuba Diving experience in a pool. You get to try diving with real scuba equipment, but don't need to do all the things getting certified entails. This patch can be earned in a single evening so it makes a great activity for your troop, team or crew.


Th e Scuba BSA experience contains two parts—Knowledge Development and Water Skills Development. During the first part, participants learn basic dive safety information and overview skills to be used during their water experience. The Water Skills Development session introduces essential dive skills, such as mask clearing, regulator clearing, and alternate air source use. You can download the BSA booklet and application from the BSA website. Read this booklet in advance so you are ready when the time comes to get in the pool.

Achievement of the Scuba Merit Badge will result in a PADI Open Water Diver Certification. This is a lifetime certification that is only the first step into an endless world of new experiences, adventures and fun. After completing the certification boys will have the ability to go scuba diving in a variety of different environments and continue their education to further enhance their skill sets. The Scuba Merit Badge program consists of four parts:


1. The BSA requirements (use of BSA Scuba Merit Badge booklet)

2. Scuba Knowledge (use of PADI training material)

3. Confined Water Dives and skill development

4. Open Water Dives

We currenlty work with the local Ship and several Venturing Crews in obtained their certifications in order to attend Sea Base and participate in other high-adventure activities. 


Scuba is one of the eighteen electives available to Venturers who are in pursuit of the Ranger Award. There are three steps to successfully complete this segment of the training:


1. The Venturer must become certified as a PADI Open Water Diver (or obtain an equal certifi cation from an accredited agency.

2. Make a presentation to their crew, another crew or a Cub or Boy Scout group on what it takes to become certified and some other subject related to scuba Diving

3. Assist with a Discover Scuba or Scuba BSA program as teaching others is a key characteristic of Venturing.


Frequently Asked questions

How long does it take to earn the Scuba Diving merit badge?

You can complete your confined and open water dives in as few as two days if you completing knowledge development via PADI eLearning.


How much does it cost to earn your Scuba Diving merit badge?

Scouts and Venture team members can get certified for $295, a significant discount from the regular course cost. We do require a minimum of four participants. We also offer scout-speficic specials on personal gear (mask, fins, snorkel & boots) as well as special programs for certified scouts, so be sure to identify yourself as a scout or scout leader, even if you are down with your family.


Is scuba diving safe?

Statistically, scuba diving is a very safe sport, with very few incidents compared tothe number of dives performed annually. In addition, scuba diving is non-impact and non-competitive.


How often do I need to renew my certification?

Although refresher training is recommended after periods of inactivity, dive certifications are good for life.


Can my Scouts earn this merit badge if we don’t live close to the ocean?

From a swimming pool to the ocean and all points in between, you can divepractically anywhere there’s water - including quarries, lakes, rivers and springs.


How do I find a merit badge counselor for the Scuba Diving merit badge?

Firstly, we are Scuba Diving merit badge counselers in the Ozark Trails Council. If you choose to complete the confined water portion of your diving prior to doing open water dives with us, contact your local Council Merit Badge coordinator. Second, contact your local PADI Dive Center or Resort to see if they have Scuba Diving Merit Badge counselors on staff.


Do we need to purchase any equipment to learn to dive?

Most dive centers require each student diver to have personal snorkeling gear which includes mask, snorkel and fins. Some stores may also require the student to have his own hood, dive boots and gloves, depending upon location and water temperature. We are not most dive centers and do not require our scouting students to provide personal gear. However, we do recommend scouts have their own personal gear as it will help ensure a better fit and more enjoyable diving experience. We offer several scout-only pricing packages to help keep things within budget.


Are there any medical restrictions for learning to dive?

All student divers complete a brief medical statement that asks about certain conditions that could be problematic while diving. If any of these apply to you, your physician must assess the condition as it relates to diving and sign a medical formthat confirms student divers are fit to dive.


Can Scouts begin training online?

Yes! You can get started immediately with your knowledge development online using the PADI eLearning system.

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