What Chat-THD can do for you

- english gareth lock teamwork Apr 16, 2024

I recently put together some example materials for many of the training agencies to show the practical aspects of building teamwork into instructor activities, this included an output from the Chat-THD tool.

The content of this blog was produced using the Chat-THD tool that is available to all L1: 10-week live webinar graduates and L2: face-to-face graduates. The format is slightly different from that submitted to the agencies, but the content is a straight copy and paste from the Chat-THD outputs.

Starting out: the Initial Prompt

The prompt used to generate the first series of answers is below.

I am the director of training for a diver training agency and looking to put some teamwork materials together for rebreather divers. What would be the five most critical elements to discuss? I will then ask you for specific examples for each of those critical elements and how to teach them

and this led to the following output: 

Focusing on teamwork materials for rebreather divers certainly aligns with enhancing safety and performance underwater. Drawing upon recent learnings and incidents, here are the five critical elements that would be beneficial to discuss in your materials:

  1. Pre-Dive Checks and Equipment Familiarity
  • Stress the importance of conducting equipment checks as a team. This collective approach helps in identifying potential issues that an individual might overlook.
  • Encourage sharing knowledge about personal equipment setups to enhance mutual assistance capabilities under water.
  1. Gas Planning and Management
  • Highlight the process of collective dive planning with individual gas calculation followed by a team review. This method ensures redundancy in critical safety calculations and fosters a collaborative team dynamic.
  • Incorporate exercises that simulate gas planning scenarios, prompting team discussions and problem-solving.
  1. Computer Settings and Emergency Protocols
  • Emphasize the idea of keeping computer settings simple and planning for worst-case scenarios as a team, especially for rebreather divers.
  • Implement drills where divers must react to hypothetical emergency scenarios, ensuring they understand how to adjust their equipment and aid a teammate effectively.
  1. Problem Solving and Situational Awareness
  • Utilize case studies where teamwork and situational awareness played a key role in preventing or managing an incident. This can demonstrate the value of immediate and coordinated response to emergencies.
  • Organize role-play situations that challenge teams to navigate unexpected problems, reinforcing the importance of staying alert and supporting one another.
  1. Leadership and Communication
  • Discuss the role of leadership and effective communication within a dive team, particularly in situations requiring quick decision-making and problem-solving.
  • Provide opportunities for divers to practice leadership skills in training scenarios, focusing on clear directives, feedback, and decision-making processes.

By incorporating these elements into your training materials, you can offer a comprehensive approach to teamwork among rebreather divers. Teaching these concepts through a combination of theoretical knowledge, practical exercises, and reflection on real-life incidents will encourage a deeper understanding and application of effective teamwork practices underwater.

The responses above are fairly high-level, and for many people, more detail is needed to create practical tools, techniques, and activities to bring the ideas to life. As such, what I did was run a query for each of the five topics listed above.


Give me practical examples of what to teach under Pre-Dive checks and equipment familiarity as a team


To teach Pre-Dive checks and equipment familiarity as a team, here are some practical strategies inspired by real-world learning and incident analyses:

Buddy and Group Checks

  • Step-by-Step Checklist Walkthrough: Similar to the method where one diver goes through the checklist aloud while all team members action the checks. This ensures thoroughness and team familiarity with each member's equipment setup.
  • Peer Teaching: Assign each team member to explain a part of their setup to the group, highlighting specifics like DSMB or knife location. This builds equipment familiarity across the team.


  • Simulated Equipment Issues: Set up scenarios where a piece of equipment is deliberately misplaced or adjusted incorrectly. Have team members identify and correct the issue, promoting vigilance and familiarity.
  • Cross-Checking: After individual checks, swap roles where one diver checks another’s setup. This reinforces the attention to detail and deepens mutual understanding of equipment configurations.

Incident-Based Learning

  • Learning from Near-Misses: Share stories like the instructor evaluation dive incident, wherein a piece of debris compromised equipment functionality. Analyse the events, focusing on how team checks and familiarity could prevent or mitigate similar incidents.
  • Mock Drills: Simulate situations where something might go wrong due to equipment setup issues. Encourage team members to manage these drills, fostering quick thinking and familiarity under pressure.

Dive Master Integration

  • Dive Master (DM) Engagement: Have the DM or dive leader participate actively in checks, showing it’s not just for novices but an essential safety practice for everyone.
  • DM-Led Demonstrations: Utilise the DM to demonstrate unique or less familiar equipment setups (e.g., i3 BCD inflation/deflation mechanisms) to enhance team knowledge and readiness.

Incorporating these strategies into your training regime can significantly elevate the team's cohesive efficiency, situational awareness, and safety underwater. Adapting these approaches to the unique dynamics and skill levels of each dive team can create a robust safety culture around pre-dive preparation and equipment familiarity.


Give me practical examples of what to teach under Gas Planning and Management as a team


To effectively teach Gas Planning and Management as a team, drawing from insights and strategies learned from recent training, here are practical examples that will empower rebreather teams to manage their gas more efficiently:

Collaborative Gas Planning:

  • Joint dive plan initiation: Start with a team briefing to outline the dive’s objective, depth, time, and potential overhead environments. Using this information, each member then independently calculates their gas needs considering bottom time, decompression requirements, and contingencies.
  • Calculation review and consensus: After independent calculations, reconvene, compare results, and identify any discrepancies. This peer review process helps catch errors and ensures everyone's calculations align. Opt for the most conservative figures to add an extra safety margin.

Scenario-Based Learning:

  • 'Worst-case' drill: Simulate a scenario where the dive plan goes awry (e.g., unexpected decompression stops, longer bottom time). Let divers recalibrate gas management plans reflecting these changes, reinforcing the need for contingency planning and flexibility.
  • Gas sharing drill: Enact scenarios requiring gas sharing among team members, even if not immediately necessary, to practice managing reserves collectively under stress, promoting a shared understanding of everyone’s gas status.

Equipment Familiarity:

  • Rebreather configuration understanding: Have each diver present their rebreather setup and explain how gas integration works, including bailout procedures. This knowledge-sharing strengthens the team's ability to assist in an emergency.
  • Computer setting alignment: Ensure all team members’ computers are set with the same 'worst case' gas mixes, facilitating a coordinated response to any situation requiring a switch to bailout gases.

Real-life Examples and Reflection:

  • Case Study Discussions: Review real-life incidents where gas planning and management were pivotal. Analyze what went well or poorly, and discuss how effective team planning could have altered the outcome.
  • Debrief Post-Dive: Make post-dive debriefs standard practice, focusing part of the discussion on gas management. Discuss consumption rates vs. planned, any variances, and why they might have occurred. This reflection period is invaluable for continuous improvement.

By integrating these teaching examples, you not only enhance the gas management skills of individual divers but also foster a strong teamwork ethos, ensuring that all team members can rely on each other for their safety and success underwater.


Give me practical examples of what to teach under Computer Settings and Emergency Protocols as a team.


For effective teaching on Computer Settings and Emergency Protocols as a team, especially in the context of rebreather diving, drawing on practical exercises and integrating the lessons from a recent training course can significantly enhance safety and team coordination. Here are practical examples:

Simplified Computer Settings for Team Diving:

  • Unified Bailout Settings: Conduct a workshop where each team member practices setting their computer to a unified 'worst-case scenario' gas mixture for bailout situations. This simplifies the process during an actual dive, eliminating the need to navigate through multiple gas options.
  • Practical Simulation: Create a controlled environment where one team member simulates bailing out to a predefined gas mix (e.g., 16/45 as the most conservative option). The rest of the team then adjusts their computers accordingly, reinforcing the practice of mutual assistance and simplified settings.

Emergency Protocol Training:

  • Incapacitated Diver Scenario: Run drills simulating an incapacitated diver unable to adjust their computer settings. Other team members must then manage the situation, ensuring the ascent is planned around the diver with the most decompression obligation, emphasizing the team’s collective responsibility.
  • Quick Reference Guides: Develop laminated cards with step-by-step instructions for adjusting computer settings in various emergency scenarios. This aids in reducing stress and streamlining the process when under pressure.

Leveraging Real-Life Learning:

  • Case Study Analysis: Incorporate analyses of incidents where computer setting mismanagement contributed to a problem. Discuss as a team how simplified settings and a unified approach to gas management could have mitigated these issues.
  • Post-Dive Debriefs: Make it a regular practice to review the dive, focusing on the computer settings used, any changes made during the dive, and how well the team’s emergency protocols were followed. This can help in identifying areas for improvement and reinforcing good practices.

By embodying these examples into training, diving teams can cultivate a robust understanding of effective computer management and emergency handling. Such preparedness not only enhances safety but also builds a stronger, more cohesive unit capable of enjoying the thrills of diving with an anchored sense of security and mutual trust.

Give me practical examples of what to teach under Problem Solving and Situation Awareness as a team.


Teaching problem-solving and situational awareness (SA) as a team, especially within the context of rebreather diving, involves a nuanced blend of technical skill mastery and the development of non-technical skills such as communication, teamwork, leadership, and the ability to adapt to changing situations. Here are practical examples leveraging our insights into how to enhance these critical competencies effectively:

Scenario-Based Training:

  • Unexpected Situational Changes: Design scenarios where conditions change unexpectedly, such as a sudden shift in current or visibility. This teaches teams to maintain situational awareness and adapt their plans on the fly, fostering "thinking operators" who can anticipate and mitigate risks.
  • Near-Miss Analysis: Discuss real-life near-miss incidents, focusing on the precursor events and decision-making. Encouraging divers to identify similar potential situations in their experiences helps in recognising early warning signs, improving SA.

Communication and Teamwork:

  • Closed-loop Communication Drills: Practice underwater scenarios requiring divers to communicate equipment failures or navigational adjustments. This reinforces the importance of clear, concise communication and ensures that messages are accurately received and confirmed by team members.
  • Role-playing and Role Rotation: Assign different roles to divers during training dives to simulate leadership and delegation under various conditions. This not only enhances team cohesion but also extends each diver's understanding and empathy towards different roles within the team.

Reflective Practices:

  • Debriefing Sessions: Post-dive debriefs should be structured to reflect on what was planned versus what occurred, highlighting both successful outcomes and areas for improvement. Sharing experiences and lessons learned builds a collective reservoir of knowledge, enhancing the team's ability to predict future events and outcomes.
  • Continuous Learning Loop: Establish a routine of learning from every dive, using it as an opportunity to enhance technical skills and situational awareness. Encourage divers to keep a dive log detailing not just the dive statistics but also observations and reflections, fostering a habit of continuous improvement.

Stress and Fatigue Management:

  • Performance Shaping Factors: Acknowledge and train on the impact of stress, fatigue, and other performance-shaping factors. Teach divers to recognise signs of these factors in themselves and their teammates and implement strategies to mitigate their impact, such as adequate rest, clear communication, and stress management techniques.

By blending these strategies into the training programmes, we aim not just to prevent adverse events through enhanced situational awareness and problem-solving but also to empower divers to become adept at navigating the complexities of safety in diving.


Give me practical examples of what to teach under Leadership and Communication as a team.


In the context of diving, under the pillars of Leadership and Communication within a team, a few practical teachings could include:

  1. The DEBrIEF Model:
    • D: Define the scope and objectives upfront to ensure clarity and focus.
    • E: Example of humility by the leader sharing personal mistakes, fostering a psychologically safe environment for open dialogue.
    • B: Basics and logistics planning before the dive, discussing timings, roles, and ensuring everyone understands the plan.
    • R: Review the execution against the plan, encouraging open dialogue about what happened and why.
    • I: Internal reflection by each team member on one thing they did well and one thing they could improve, fostering self-awareness and personal growth.
    • E: External focus on team performance, discussing aspects that worked well and areas for improvement as a team.
    • F: Follow-up actions to ensure continuous improvement, which could include equipment checks or modifications, and sharing learnings within and outside the team.
  2. Leadership Styles and Relationships:
    • Understanding and acknowledging each team member's motivations and expectations, ensuring alignment towards the team's common goals.
    • Emphasising that leadership is about facilitating the path for others to achieve the common objective, not just focusing on the goal itself.
    • Promoting continuous improvement by making everyone in the team feel valued and supported, ensuring that everyone's voice is heard, and their contributions are acknowledged.

These teachings, drawn from the extensive experience and insights, not only aim to improve technical skills but also to enhance the team cohesion, communication, and leadership abilities within diving teams, ultimately contributing to safer and more enjoyable diving experiences.


Chat-THD is a tool that has many applications for the diving community. Two recent external blogs (InDepth and DAN SA) give more examples of how it can be used. The challenge with creating a paradigm shift for technology and ideas is that there has to be a perceived benefit for the change before it is even considered. The application of human factors has made demonstrable improvements in safety and performance in other high-risk domains, but cognitive biases like 'differencing through distancing' and the status quo bias mean that adoption in diving is slow.

The Human Diver is committed to making that change easier, not harder. Changing the language used is one simple way, and Chat-THD takes on the tone and values of The Human Diver. 'Normal' ChatGPT models take the language from thousands of sources which are biassed towards accountability, compliance, and a punitive approach, whereas The Human Diver is about curiosity, learning, and reflection.

If you're already a graduate of a L1 or L2 class, check your emails for details about how to access Chat-THD. For those who aren't and want to explore the capabilities, head over to this page and sign-up

Gareth Lock is the owner of The Human Diver, a niche company focused on educating and developing divers, instructors and related teams to be high-performing. If you'd like to deepen your diving experience, consider taking the online introduction course which will change your attitude towards diving because safety is your perception, visit the website.