Whether you have just gained your scuba diving certification or have been diving for decades, there’s always room to learn something new.
One of the best ways to advance your scuba diving skills is to dive and dive often!
But beginners who are just getting their feet wet may find it handy to keep these expert tips in mind to make those first few dives stress free.
A log is more than just a collection of your favorite memories of your past diving trips.
It’s essentially a map of essential scuba information that will help you out on all subsequent dives to come.
By keeping track of important factors, like the ones below, you can be prepared for all future experiences.
Scuba diving is meant to be enjoyable, but if you are constantly stressed or nervous under the water, you’ll be unable to relax and enjoy the dive. Not to mention, heavy breathing can wreak havoc on your air consumption.
So keep calm, monitor your breaths and keep them nice and slow, and focus on having fun.
It may seem obvious, but initial dive jitters can be a problem that plagues many beginners, or even experienced divers who are checking out new sites for the first time.
Just as your breath should be slow and measured, so should your entire pace throughout your dive trip.
The faster you move, the more your air supply will dwindle. Also, cruising through open waters is an obvious way to scare away all the amazing marine life that you came to see.
So do yourself and the critters around you a favor, and move gradually. The slower and more stationery you are, the more likely that other ocean residents will feel comfortable and come out to play.
A ‘full-tank’ reading should always be tested to ensure that it’s accurate.
Once you’re suited up and have on all your gear, take four big breaths from your regulator and keep an eye on your pressure gauge.
If the pressure gauge needle stays still and remains at the full position, then you are ready to go.
But if the needle drops down to 0 and then bounces back up, then your air is not fully on and needs to be addressed.
Obviously, you want to listen to your dive guide and their specific instruction on the site you are about to explore.
But it’s imperative to research your dive sites on your own, before a trip. This practice is so you can get an idea of the landscape and what’s in store.
Because weights have an effect on so many factors of your dive, it’s important to make sure they are correct.
An up-to-date log that tracks your weights and buoyancy will go a long way in planning for future dive trips. And you should also pay attention to any varying circumstances that might change your typical weights.
Think about factors like the thickness of a wetsuit, saltwater versus freshwater destinations, different tank sizes and other gear or environmental factors that can have an effect on buoyancy throughout your dive trip.
It’s easy for equipment to get shuffled around on the deck of a crowded dive boat, so ensure that you leave the vessel with what you came with by marking what is yours.
Use a permanent marker for your masks, flippers, and other gear and use a waterproof pen for any drinks or snacks in the communal cooler.
When you get out of the boat, it can be frustrating to find that the water or beverage you’re craving has somehow disappeared.
If you have trouble descending, as many new divers do, play a little trick on your mind to get down.
Take a big deep breath and let it out slowly, focusing all your attention on feeling “heavier” in the water.
Before you know it, you’ll be drifting down in no time and ready to start your explorations.
Being an expert and completely comfortable diver takes time, so don’t feel like you have to be a master after your first few dives.
Instead, simply focus on relaxing, paying attention to your gear, and having fun. The more times you go under the surface, the better you’ll naturally become at scuba diving.