Learn Scuba Diving – A Quick Guide

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Introduction

This is a beginners guide to scuba diving intended for people who dream about joining the club of divers but have not yet had the chance to make the plunge. You’re maybe a snorkeller and have scratched the surface and have heard the call. Or you’re just curious to see what life is like swimming like a fish. Maybe you’re dreaming of moving to a tropical island to work in scuba diving.

You’ll discover the basics of how you begin with certification, what you need to know about lessons so you can dive in the open water and travel to any dive spot in the world. This article will outline the practical considerations a beginner scuba diver needs to take into account before planning a course either at home or while on vacation. throughout this article there are links to information about equipment, the marine environment and practical suggestions for health considerations. 

Diving is an activity that promotes well-being and respect for the planet and its creatures.

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What you need to know

Getting Certified

Learn to dive

What can I do with my diving certification?

Practical scuba concerns

What scuba equipment do I need?

Upgrading your certificate.

What you need to know

Scuba stands for Self-Contained Underwater Breathing Apparatus. Taking scuba diving lessons will give you the freedom to explore the beauty and instant serenity of the underwater world, experience the feeling of being weightless, explore beautiful coral formations and see countless species of fish and aquatic animals. It is tranquility itself in a sublime sea of living poetry. Being a scuba diver is a way of life, with its own community and language and a path to respect and protect the marine environment.

Getting certified

Scuba certification is painless and fun. How long does it take? Only 3-4 days and elearning courses make it easy to learn at your convenience.  You’ll almost always find “scuba lessons near me” and you’ll always find one close to good diving locations. The PADI open water certification is the most common course but it’s not the only game in town, with quality schools under the SSI, SDI, NAUI, CMAS and BSAC. While they differ slightly (some are non-profit while some are more technical, for eg.), they all follow the same general framework established by the World Recreational Scuba Diving Council. Find a dive center, resort or elearning resource that offer courses all over the world and always use your instincts and best judgment: if you don’t trust the scuba diving shop, just find another one! Scuba diving lessons should be fun and almost always are.

Learn how to dive

Scuba certification consists of both THEORY and PRACTICAL scuba diving lessons. Divers are awesome people. Generous and kind, they’re always willing to share their passion and it’s infectious. Getting your diving certification means putting theory to practice and combines classroom work with confined water training in a pool or shallow waters as well as actual open water dives. Among other things you’ll be able to plan a dive, clear a fogged mask underwater and communicate using signals. It arms you with practical knowledge needed to keep you safe and to keep our oceans protected to sustain the health of the natural world. Almost everyone who gets certified usually becomes an advocate for protecting the sea.

Read our 10 things scuba divers should know.

What can I do with my diving certification?

Now that you’re a certified diver, you know the rules to safely maximise the joy of diving and can travel to amazing destinations around the world on diving vacations. You can rent equipment, buy air and descend to depth generally not more than 18 meters. An oxygen tank will give you up to an hour under water. You’re ready to explore some of the best things scuba diving can offer including wreck diving, a liveaboard adventure (a floating dive hotel), cave diving and the extreme beauty of the undersea world surrounded by aquatic life like you’ve never experienced. 

READ ABOUT BEING AN ENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY DIVER

50 Fascinating Facts about the Ocean

Practical scuba concerns

Read our 11 tips to safer diving, but here is some quick tidbits of advice. When planning a scuba dive, no matter where it is, remember you SHOULDN’T FLY within 18 hours after your last dive, so plan accordingly. Best not jump into the ocean with a hangover as dehydration and pressure don’t always make for good bedfellows below the surface. Eat and drink responsibly as your dive buddy needs you to keep scuba diving the awesome life-changing experience that it is. Likewise if you have any ear problems (ie.: infections) related to a cold you might find equalising on the way down uncomfortable. Scuba diving with asthma isn’t a problem, but, check out our advice first.

What scuba equipment do I need?

When you learn to scuba dive you’ll learn about the wonderful world of scuba gear & dive equipment. All dive shops provide gear for rental but, like most people you can’t help but check out the kit. Since dive computers and dive watches have become so central to planning and logging our dives, some first-timers invest in these gadgets. A well-fitting mask and fins are often recommended. Scuba diving with Underwater photography can also give you pictures to salivate over when not diving, but perhaps you should wait a bit before buying a camera. Otherwise, here’s a quick summary of the gear you’ll strap on when scuba diving. We’ve added some reviews of some solid kit on the market. Basic scuba gear consists of:

Upgrading your certificate

Now that you’ve scratched the surface of scuba diving, you can try the more technical scuba courses too. With the advanced diving certification, sometimes called open water 2, you get brilliant night diving experience where the true colors of the ocean are lit-up by your as well as certification to 30 meters. But while deep diving is for thrill seekers, colours, corals as well as marine life can be most brilliant within the 20 meter range so, beginner divers, don’t fret. Next level certification will teach you to locate and help divers in distress, giving you perhaps more peace of mind as you experience Neptune’s kingdom.

Some people do, and choose to become a professional scuba diver. Divemaster is the first professional level giving you a license to work for a shop guiding divers, while instructor level certificates are self-evidently didactic. One good thing with this career is that you’re making a living doing what you love. A career in diving allows you to travel the world and meet many unique people in beautiful settings – the perfect job!

 

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