Amateur Scuba diver? Feeling nervous? There is no need to worry because we are here to help you take the plunge into the world of Scuba diving (pun intended).
Where to begin?
- Be informed
It is important to get some basic facts regarding eligibility and physical fitness checked to know what standards you should meet to be able to scuba dive. These standards vary from destination to destination, and may also be subject to change in accordance to the duration and the difficulty of the dive.
- Choose an instructor
Now that you have some basic scuba diving knowledge, the next step is to choose an instructor or institute that you are comfortable with. There are thousands of institutes and instructors who offer courses in scuba diving with levels ranging from beginner to advanced to trained professionals.
- Dive in!
Now that you’ve chosen a facility to train with, you get to start training sessions. The training often comprises of three phases :classroom study, pool training and check-out open water dives. In some institutions the classroom study part is offered as an online course. In others, it may be spread over the week, or only on weekends, and some institutes may have an even more flexible schedule.
- Gear up
Now hat you’ve acquired the basic skills to scuba-dive, you’re ready to purchase some scuba-gear. The minimum requirement would be a mask, fins and snorkel. After that, additional stuff like wetsuits and buoyancy compensators can be bought too. Be sure to get equipment of good quality from certified dealers.
- Decide where you want to go
Having learned all the stuff, bought the gear and packed your bags, all that’s left to do is decide on a destination and enjoy! Destinations are important in terms of what experience you want to have. For beginners, it’s better to dive at shallow locations with clear water and high visibility. As you keep on progressing to advanced levels of scuba diving, you can opt for more challenging courses. Still nervous about that first dive? Well, here is a collection of a few tips to get you off to a good start.
- Breathe naturally and stay calm
You don’t want to deplete your air supply too quickly. Try to breathe naturally. Also, DO NOT hold your breath under water. It is dangerous to hold your breath as it can cause lung problems.
- Keep hydrated
The filtered air that is supplied through your regulator can be very dry and while swimming, your body tends to lose water through perspiration quickly. It is important to be well hydrated before going for a dive.
- Try to swim shallow
The shallower you are, the easier it is to breathe, and the lesser air you use up from your tank. This essentially means that you can dive for a longer amount of time.
- Learn to communicate
Learn how to communicate with your diving team using specific hand gestures and signals. This allows for better co-ordination of the group.
- Descend at a slow pace
Try to descend and swim a little slowly. Rapid movements use more energy as well as air supply. Thus it is important, that for a long dive, you should conserve your energy and air supply.
- Take your time
Do not ignore important safety precautions in a hurry to get into the water. Follow a logical checklist method and make sure that you have all your gear in place before you enter the water. After entering the water, take a moment to acclimatize yourself and signal to your buddies when you’re ready to go.
It is important to pay close attention to the safety instructor before diving, Keeping all this in mind, don’t forget to enjoy yourself and have a fun time while diving!