- Association of Sport and Technical Divers (ASTD) is a training organization operating in the field of training sport and technical divers and paramedics.
- Diving training includes all aspects of sport recreational diving including Nitrox diving and wide range of specializations.
- The second part of the training covers technical diving including diving with special Trimix and Heliox mixes, diving in enclosed areas and diving with closed and semi-closed circuits.
- In the area of paramedics training ASTD provides training of medical specialties focused on diving and training of medical personnel according to law.
- The entire training program is based on the implementation of current knowledge.
- The supreme body is Training Directors committee.
- The committee is responsible for establishing, maintaining and updating of the Standards and Procedures Manual in accordance with the most recent findings in the field of diving in the world.
- The committee organizes regular training sessions for its collaborators – Instructor Trainers and Instructors who then run training programs in accordance with the ASTD training system to the extent of their qualifications.
- The committee issues each mentioned collaborator an active status for the period of one year.
ASTD courses are divided into 5 basic units. It is about:
- Sport Recreational Diving
- Technical Diving
- Technical Rebreather Diving
- Instructors / Professionals
- Medical Courses
For recreational purposes. Sport recreational diving is carried out using air or nitrox mixes up to 50% of oxygen while divers are immersed in the recommended depth of not more than 40 meters in free - open water. Ice diving, cave diving and decompression dives can be also included in the sport diving after going through proper education and gained experience in special training.
Technical Diving (Extended Range Diving) includes all types of diving designed for recreational purposes exceeding the current limits of sport recreational diving. Technical diving is carried out using air or nitrox mixes up to 100% oxygen in case dives are done to the recommended depth of more than 40 meters in free-open water. Also in an Overhead Environment environment. Wreck diving, diving in flooded caves and mines, decompression dives with long decompression times and diving with SCR/CCR rebreather - with semi-closed and closed circuits can be also included in technical diving after going through proper education and gained experience in special training. However diving with semi-closed and closed circuits creates his own group.
Technical Rebreather Diving comprises all kinds of diving with devices that are based on semi-closed or closed circuits. Specifically these are devices with a closed eCCR or mCCR circuit, devices with semi-closed passive or active SCR circuits and oxygen rebreathers. A course also includes the training of practical knowledge of the rebreather configuration, techniques used in diving with closed circuits and training with the additional equipment used - the open circuit backup system or the backup rebreather.
Instructor courses are designed for all experienced divers who can independently teach dive courses after they have successfully completed their training. Instructor courses are part of the ASTD Professional Program which means that instructors are supported not only by their own teaching instructors but by ASTD organization too. The instructor's program is divided into two basic units. The first is a sport recreation program that includes, above all, the basic instructor's stone - a qualification for Sport Diving Instructor. The second unit contains the technical program. The structure of the instructor's technical program is, more complex due to the variety of technical diving, but again is built on the basic stone - in this case Technical Diving Instructor qualification.