Born to Chill
One of the most important concepts when Scuba Diving is moving slowly. It always amazes me to see divers swim as fast as they can, wasting air, and valuable potential memories behind them. What’s the rush?
I lay it out to my students whenever I let them lead me on the dive, to get some experience. I always find myself breathing heavily trying to catch up. You see, my idea of a quality dive is one you hardly move on, relax, work on your buoyancy, and allow things to happen in front of you.
1. When diving, moving slowly helps you conserve energy, thus wasting less air and increasing bottom time. As we move fast three things contribute to increased air loss:
A: moving faster simply takes more effort; we use our muscles harder and demand more oxygen, thus breathing harder and emptying our tanks faster.
B: By moving faster we increase water drug on our buddy, it actually becomes harder to dive, and again, our tank is emptied sooner than planned…
C. You might not realize your buoyancy isn’t neutral till you slow down and stop propelling yourself. Slow down, fine tune your buoyancy and see how much easier scuba diving can be.
2. Diving slowly simply makes underwater navigation a whole lot easier, making it easier finding your way back to the boat or exit point.
3. Yes, you see more of the surrounding that way, but what do you really make out of it? By diving slowly you’d be able to see more for two main reasons:
A: you allow your eyes enough time to scan the area, look for irregularities, check for small or camouflaged creatures such as Sea Horses, Frog Fish and others, look underneath overhangs for Lobsters, Moray Eels, Nurse Sharks, Check inside cracks crevices and holes for Juvenile fish, and on and on.
B: as we can be quite intimidating to the marine creatures we visit, due to our size, and the noise our respiration system make, they may tend to hide from us on the first few moments. Be patient, allow the marine life surrounding you some time to get used to you and you’ll find you can a lot more than before.
Find great tips on finding cool creatures underwater from our Divemaster and Scuba Instructors here