SNSI Logo 1200x630

Snorkeling Instructor Manual – INSTRUCTOR GUIDE TO SNORKELING GUIDE COURSE – Academic Session 2



I. Approaching the customer.

Candidates must learn “to know” the customers so they can understand what they expect from their excursions. Candidates must also understand what make the excursion a fun experience for each customer.

a) The meeting:

  • The handshake: a professional needs to have a firm handshake (but not crushes).

NOTE: You must “give attention” to “receive attention”, candidates must acquire the ability to be directed to others. It’s important to develop a good human relationship to convey feelings.

II. Planning excursions.

a) Excursion purpose.

Explain to candidates that when they will operate as Snorkeling Guide they must have clear the aim of the excursion they are going to organize and lead. In this way they will be able to communicate and share with the participants, as well as work to pursue.

b) Gathering the excursion participants.

  • Snorkeling Risk awareness.
  • List of participants.
  • Clarity in conveying information: customers must be well informed by the Snorkeling Guide regarding all the proposed activities:
    • Place and Time.
    • Equipment required.
    • Prices.

c) Checking the snorkelers’ level.

  • The excursions must follow the established program.

Candidates must learn to develop a professionalism that would allow them to say to prevent customers to participate to an excursion in case they don’t have the proper skill for that excursion.

  • Select the program depending on the levels:
    • Experience.
    • Physical requirement.

d) Assessing the environmental conditions at the excursion site.

You have to make sure to teach candidates the greatest caution. Teach the class in case of any doubt concerning weather conditions they have to cancel the excursion.

III. The equipment.

a) Check-list.

A snorkeling guide can’t forget anything. It is not expected by a Professional.

b) The snorkeling guide’s equipment:

  • Mask and snorkel.
  • Suit.
  • Fins (neoprene socks if necessary).
  • Surface buoy and rope.
  • Whistle.
  • Any means to measure time.

c) Plan for handling emergencies:

  • First aid kit.
  • Oxygen unit.

IV. Leading excursions.

Your role, as SNSI Instructor, is to transfer to SNSI Snorkeling Guide candidates the most possible practical experience so that, once certified, they will be able to proper organize and lead excursions. Use your experience to make example on real situation you lived.

a) Shore excursion:

  • Transporting the equipment.
  • Preparing the area for assembling the equipment and dressing.
  • Prepare the entry point.
  • Place ground staff to help.
  • Provide shaded area.
  • The surface buoy.
  • Entering and exiting from the shore.
  • Entering and exiting from a platform.
  • Entering and exiting in the presence of breaking waves.

b) Boat excursion:

  • Specific briefing about boat.
  • Excursion wit the boat anchored.
  • Drift excursion.

c) A full day in the boat:

  • Specific briefing about boat.
  • Preventing seasickness.

d) Night excursion:

  • Minimizing the effects of a reduced attention.
  • Proper nutrition.
  • Adaptation to the dark.
  • Equipment for night excursion.
  • Night communication.
  • External lighting.
  • The briefing for the night excursion.

V. The snorkeling guide behavior during the excursion.

a) A discrete control.

b) Responsible for the safety and the environmental protection.

c) To convey feeling.

VI. External supervision..

Explain your candidate how to carry out the supervision from a base station.

a) Base station position.

The snorkeling guide shall ensure that all participants can be monitored at all times and can be reached rapidly if required.

b) Water access.

The snorkeling guide shall be in a position to enter the water immediately and to respond to needs of participants in an emergency.

c) Boat supervision.

VII. Knots.

Give to candidates some pieces of rope and teach them how to make the most important knots. You’ll have time, during practical exercises to ask them to do knots on boat and in the water.


I. Before the excursion.

a) The pre-excursion briefing:

  • Required equipment and proper use:
    • Mask.
    • Snorkel.
    • Fin.
    • Snorkeling vest (if necessary).
    • Exposure protection (if necessary).
    • Weight system (if necessary).
  • Snorkeling:
    • Clearing of the mask and the snorkeling.
    • Kicks.
    • Equalization.
    • Surface dives.
  • Group assignments (buddy teams).
  • Recommend the entry procedures.
  • Indicate the ideal path to follow.
    • Interest points.
    • Environmental features.
  • Proper behavior to avoid disturbing marine life.
  • Set the maximum excursion time.
  • Recommend the exit procedures.
  • Emergency and routine hand signals (including emergency recall signal).
  • Safety consideration.

II. Debriefing.

a) Give advise to increase comfort.

Teach the class that one of the fundamental role of a snorkeling guide is to act as an advisor to help customers to increase their comfort during the snorkeling excursions. It is important that they understand that they must not take the attitude of the instructor who teaches, but that the friend who suggests how to correct bad behavior or techniques in order to increase the customer’s fun.

III. Workshop.

Give to each candidate a excursion map and 10-15 minutes to prepare a briefing. Discuss each briefing with the class to identify the missing points.


I. The Snorkeling Guide legal status.

a) Civil liability:

  • The non-contractual liability.
  • Predict and prevent the damage.
  • The Third Party Liability Insurance.

b) Professional liability:

  • Common diligence for a Snorkeling Guide.
  • Importance of SNSI Standard.

c) Criteria for assessing the Snorkeling behavior:

  • Foreseeability of the event.
  • Avoidance of the event.
  • Superficial behavior.

II. The “Responsible snorkeling guide”.

a) Forms to be filled out before the excursion:

  • Evaluation of customers’ level
  • The risks are explained clearly, simply and understandably.
  • Sign the liability release form.

b) Forms to be filled out after the excursion.

  • Log the excursion data.


At the end of this session students have learned:

  • How to organize and manage snorkeling excursions.
  • How to conduct Briefing and Debriefing.
  • The snorkeling guide responsibilities.


  • The students should read Chapter 3 of the SNSI Snorkel Guide Manual and complete the Chapter 3 review questions.
  • Tell the students the time, date and location of the next academic session.


  • Training Record: Both you and the students must initial and date in the appropriate space in the training record section for academic session 2.