Verband Deutscher Sporttaucher e.V. (VDST)

20.12.2016 by ricardo
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The Organisation Verband Deutscher Sporttaucher e.V. (VDST)

The foundation of VDST occurred in 1954. The basis for it was a call made by a diving magazine, after it was ascertained that there was still no German umbrella organisation for diving. After this call to action, different representatives of diverse associations reported themselves and sent their delegates. This is how VDST emerged. The objective of the compiled association is the promotion of diving and the environment concerned by it. The training courses are based on the CMAS guidelines.

The organisation is part of the German Olympic Sports Association (DOSB) and is ranked as the top association for diving in Germany.  The headquarters of the association are in in Offenbach am Main. It is a charitable organisation.

Worldwide 112 diving schools are affiliated to the organisation. In addition there are 922 associations belonging to it. The VDST is one of the largest diving organisations in the world, which operates on a non-profit basis.

The trainings system at VDST is EUF certified.

Courses offered by the VDST

Introductory Courses

Introductory diving

Introductory diving enables participants to be acquainted with diving for the first time and to gain experience.

  • Procedure: For the participants, there is a brief theoretical insight into the most important information about diving. In addition, first experiences can be had in restricted open water or in the pool.
  • Requirements: Participants of introductory diving must be able to swim safely.
  • Minimum age: 8 Years
  • ISO-Certification: Introductory Dive in accordance with ISO 11121:2009

Beginners’ Courses

DTSA Basic Diving Certificate

The basis for further diving courses is the Basic Diving Certificate, which can be acquired with this course.

  • Procedure: The theoretical part is made up of six lessons, in which the basic principles of diving are taught. The practical part contains a course with exercises about the equipment as well as timed diving for 30 seconds, distance diving, deep diving at 5 m and snorkelling.
  • Requirements: A valid medical certificate of diving fitness must be presented, which cannot be older than 2 years for divers younger than 40 years and not older than 1 year for divers above 40 years of age.
  • Minimum age: 12 Years
  • ISO-Certification: Supervised Diver in accordance with ISO 24801-1:2007 and EN 14153-1:2003


After completion of the course, participants of the DTSA* can then take part in courses that are led by experienced divers.

  • Procedure: There are six units for the theoretical part as well as a practical part, which includes timed diving and distance diving as well as 5m deep diving and snorkelling. This is followed by dives at a depth of up to 15 m.
  • Requirements: A medical certificate of diving fitness, as well as proof of a CPR Course done within the last year have to be corroborated.
  • Minimum age: 14 Years
  • ISO-Certification: Autonomous Diver in accordance with ISO 24801-2:2007 and EN 14153-2:2003


Advanced Courses


With the completion of the course, the diver learns how to carry out his dives independently and with equivalent divers.

  • Procedure: In the theoretical part, there are course contents regarding scuba diving, which were not dealt with during the previous courses. The practical part is about timed diving with change of location, distance diving with or without neoprene as well as apnoea diving in open water at 7.5 m. This is followed by dives of up to 25 m.
  • Requirements: To take part in this course, a medical certificate of diving fitness as well as a CPR course completed within the last year have to be presented. The DTSA* training level or its equivalent must be fulfilled. The number of mandatory dives is 25 dives at a depth of up to 25 m. A special course in “Orientation while diving”, “Group leadership” as well as “Marine biology” are also recommended.
  • Minimum age: 16 Years


After the completion of the course, the participant can carry out, in theory as well as in practice, the organisation and leadership of different dives, which take place under complicated conditions.

  • Procedure: There are six theoretical course units and dives up to 40 m, distance and deep diving.
  • Requirements: DTSA** Certificate or its equivalent, 10 mandatory dives at depths of 30 – 40 m, medical certificate of diving fitness.
  • Minimum age: 18 Years
  • ISO-Certification: Dive Leader in accordance with ISO 24801-3:2007 and EN 14153-3:2003


  • DTSA****

Special Courses

  • DTSA Nixtron 1* (Nitrox in accordance with ISO 11107:2009)
  • Group leadership
  • Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation
  • Orientation while diving
  • Medical practice
  • Night diving
  • Diving safety and rescue
  • Apnoea
  • Diving respecting the guidelines for historical monuments
  • Ice diving
  • River diving
  • Water body analysis
  • Life at sea
  • Marine biology
  • Oceanology
  • Problem solving while diving
  • Scooter
  • Sidemount
  • Scuba diving in sea caves
  • Current diving
  • Fresh water biology
  • Diving for nature conservation
  • Diving with children
  • Deep diving
  • Dry-suit diving
  • UW Archaeology
  • Wreck diving

Professional Sector

  • Assistant Diving Instructor (Instructor Level One in accordance with ISO 24802-1:2007 and EN 14413-1:2004)
  • VDST Diving Instructor* (Instructor Level Two in accordance with ISO 24802-2:2007 and EN 14413-2:2004)

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