Before you can become certified as an Open Water Diver you will either participate in an online theory course or complete theory training at the dive center. Upon completion of the theory portion, you will then visit the dive center or resort where you will participate in a review so the diver instruction can confirm your understanding of diving theory and the safety factors. Then you must pass and complete a succession of five confined (pool) dives and training dives in open water consisting of four dives in the hands of a PADI Instructor. You must master the required skills (in a swimming pool) confined water conditions before you venture on to open water to display those same skills in an ocean, sea, or deep-water lake. Once you are certified and receive your Basic Open Water Diver ID you can dive without an instructor if you choose, rent diving gear, have scuba air-tanks filled, and dive anywhere, anytime you wish. Keeping in mind you should never dive alone or above your skill level.