Scuba diving is one of the most exciting water sports out there. When you dive in, you will be able to see breathtaking coral reefs, spooky shipwrecks, and rich marine life. However, you will also need to know how to stay safe at all times. If you’re a beginner, you will have to learn how to dive safely while avoiding all the dangers. Check out some of the best tips for safe sea exploration!
Why Should You Take Extra Care?
Yes, scuba diving comes with some risks and dangers, but that shouldn’t frighten you if you’re interested in exploring the deep blue sea. Taking lessons with a dive instructor is one way to learn about dive safety. Still, you should also research all possible dangers on your own to learn how to prepare correctly.
One of the biggest dangers comes from the increased pressure of the sea environment. This pressure could feel unpleasant in your head and body. It could also lead to complications such as pulmonary embolism. Another risk has to do with malfunctioning equipment.
So, you should take extra care before you jump in. You should examine your physical health along with the quality of your equipment. Other dangers you could face are oxygen toxicity or aggressive marine life. Fortunately, though, most of those risks are rare. You will learn how to avoid them completely during training.
Check Your Physical Capability
One of the best scuba diving tips is to catch any health issues early on. If you get a checkup by a qualified physician before you start your training, you could identify any problems early on. For example, losing consciousness is one of the biggest causes of scuba diving accidents. This usually comes as a result of various heart issues. The general rule is that any underlying medical condition gets worse when you’re deep underwater.
Obviously, it’s your responsibility to find out if you are healthy and physically able to become a scuba diver. Therefore, the first step is to talk to a doctor. You can ask your physician about the best examinations and tests you should take as a diver.
If you’re unsure, your diving organization can provide you with a health checklist. You can use it as a reference guide during your check-up. What’s more, your physician will assess your medical history. They will look into any medication you might be taking to get a better overview of your condition.
However, if you have pre-existing conditions, you can see a dive-medicine specialist. For instance, if you have a pacemaker or you’re constantly having migraines, a scuba diving medicine specialist could fully assess your condition to see if you are capable of going underwater.
Apply and Work on Certifications First
Diving without a certificate is not illegal. Yet, most dive centers will not let you in if you don’t have the necessary certifications. If you apply for a diving certification and complete all the necessary refresher courses, you’ll be able to increase your safety.
Generally, studying for diving isn’t difficult. But, your certification and the process of getting it will give you the specific skill set required to make diving safe and fun for you and your buddies.
During your scuba lessons, you could learn many useful things, such as planning your dives and checking your air. You’ll also learn about the essential underwater signals and other diving procedures. You can do this at your dive center, or you can even sign up to get a diving certificate online.
Continuously Practice Your Breathing Exercise
What we haven’t mentioned so far is that a regular breathing exercise is essential for scuba diving. Not everyone knows how to breathe underwater. Basically, you will need to breathe through your mouth when using scuba gear. This could feel unusual. It will take some time until your body adapts to it. The trick is to master your breathing technique to improve air consumption.
For example, you breathe approximately 20 times per minute on land, but you will need to slow those cycles down while diving. What’s more, breathing techniques will allow you to inhale slowly. They will also enable you to be in control of your breathing to improve air consumption. The trick is to slow down the way you inhale and exhale to get more air in and out of your lungs.
As you may know, one of the golden rules of diving is to never hold your breath underwater. With breathing exercises, you could slow down your breathing cycles to 10 times per minute. As long as you keep breathing slowly, you will not experience any pain in your lungs and you will feel less tired physically.
Always Check Your Diving Gear
Scuba gear enables you to enjoy the sea world by letting you breathe underwater or see more comfortably underneath the surface. But, regardless of whether you’re using tropical, temperate, or cold-water scuba gear, you will need to inspect it before you embark on an excursion.
Essentially, your gear will be your life support, and while it’s rare to experience malfunctions, you will need to be prepared. This applies to your own gear, any other gear that you might rent from a dive center, and your buddy’s equipment.
For example, a failing depth gauge can result in decompression sickness, and a broken regulator can put your life in danger.
First, you will need to test if your equipment is ready for a deep dive. Then, focus on the gear assembly. The most important thing to inspect before you dive in is the BCD, the releases, and the weight. This is usually followed by a final checkup.
It’s nearly impossible to do all this on your own when you suit up, so you’ll have to perform a buddy safety check. Remember, taking a few more minutes to make sure everything works as well as checking your dive buddy’s gear could save your life.
Be Accompanied and Always Check People Around You
Another golden rule of diving is to never enter the water alone. Way too many accidents can happen if divers move away from their buddies and venture into the unknown on their own.
When diving, it’s absolutely essential that you stay close to your teammates, especially if you’re a beginner. This is one of the reasons why you should take lessons and get certified. When you’re underwater, communication is quite difficult, and you will need to prepare ahead of time and learn the proper signals so that you won’t be a danger to yourself and to other divers.