The two most well-known scuba diving certifications around the world are SSI and PADI. SSI stands for Scuba Schools International and PADI is an acronym for Professional Association of Diving Instructors. The basic difference between SSI and PADI is that SSI requires its Dive Masters to be affiliated with a physical store whereas PADI Dive Masters can teach independently, without a store as well. The SSI certification is recognised by 110 countries and PADI certification is recognised by 183 countries and territories around the world. However, India only recognizes PADI. Where PADI focuses on reaching larger groups, SSI gives preference to smaller groups and smaller teacher to student ratio.
Other well-known scuba diving certifications and organisations in the world include International Organization for Standardization (ISO), Confédération Mondiale des Activités Subaquatiques (CMAS), National Association of Underwater Instructors (NAUI) etc.
There are a number of both PADI and SSI scuba diving courses in India and each of these levels or courses enable the diver to reach different depths and difficulties underwater. The most popular scuba diving certification in India is the basic open water diver course wherein the divers learn to dive up to a depth of 18 meters. The advanced diver course teaches diving up to 30 meters. Other diving courses include rescue diving wherein divers are taught to prevent and solve problems underwater, as well as master diving which enables the diver to help share their love for scuba with others by teaching them the know-how of this sport.
Other courses offered by PADI include Adventure Diver, Boat Diver, Altitude Diver, AWARE Shark Conservation, Cavern Diver, Deep Diver, Digital Underwater Photographer etc.