Updated: Nov 17
Yvonne Press - TDI (Tech Diving) instructor trainer and RAID examiner.
Yvonne started her professional diving career in Scotland and spent the last decade or so in South East Asia before relocating to Gozo, Malta, earlier this year(2023). Her favorite 'dive toy' is her Kiss Sidewinder rebreather at the moment. She is the owner of the Tech diving operation Dark Horizon https://darkhorizondiving.com/about/
When did you start diving?
I started diving in 2003 and just celebrated 20 years of being underwater a few months ago!
What made you want to become a diver/dive pro?
It was all my friend Ulrike’s fault. We were traveling around Australia together, and she wanted to do her advanced course. So, I had a choice of sitting around or signing up for my open water. Twenty years on, I’m still underwater.
What is your best/most memorable dive?
How much time do you have? Let’s go with a couple of recent dives on some of the World War I and II wrecks in Malta. They combine history with beautiful reefs, great visibility, and challenging tech dives. You also need a special permit to dive them. I loved getting that opportunity recently and look forward to doing more.
Most gratifying course you took or taught?
That’s just as hard, so I’m going to go with a bit of a wildcard answer. Earlier this year, I was introduced to the magic of practicing stability and trim without fins. The first time was anything but magic – more like semi-controlled flopping. Since then, I’ve practiced it again a few times, and it’s just about transformed the way I hang underwater, giving me more ‘brain space’ to focus on other tasks.
5 qualities of a great dive pro?
A great dive pro is someone who’s …
1. willing to learn more and develop their own skills
2. able to explain not just ‘how’ but ‘why’
3. open to sharing their own experiences to allow students to learn
4. happy to find different ways of teaching for different students
5. taking diving seriously without forgetting that diving is fun!
Do you think women are different divers than men and why?
I think women approach diving differently than men. Perhaps we have a tendency to consider things a little more (or even worry about them) before jumping in (see what I did there). Those are not bad qualities in good divers!
One piece of advice for someone starting diving.
Think of your diving as a journey. There is always more to learn and more to discover, but don’t be afraid to go at your own pace and find the right instructor to help you reach your goals.