If you consider yourself a true adventurer, you may enjoy exploring new places not only above ground but also beneath sea level. Scuba diving (or Self-Contained Underwater Breathing Apparatus) is a popular sport that allows you to journey into the ocean’s depth and come face to face with all of the wonderful textures, colors and life forms of the aquatic world.
The Allure Of A Dive
Want to swim with catfish, sharks and minnows and explore their natural habitat? When you go scuba diving, you can do just that and much, much more. This fact propels record numbers of scuba divers to pack their gear and head to destinations worldwide, eager for such experiences.
When you feel that urge to leave the hectic pace of day-to-day life and connect with nature, scuba diving is also a hobby that can offer the perfect escape, at least for a few hours or a few days. Instead of dealing with traffic and bills and politics, the underwater environment offers a peaceful, yet colorful, setting where you can appreciate the true wonders and beauty of nature.
Scuba Diving Basics
Whether you want to go for a dive off the coast of Florida or prefer to head for a tropical island, numerous destinations await you. But if you are a novice at this hobby, the experts stress a few key points to keep in mind before you go in order to ensure your ultimate safety. First, it’s important to get professionally trained and certified before you go diving for the first time. This is a multi-part process that will help you learn some essential basics so you’ll know how to dive safely and what to do in a variety of situations.
Next, until you’re an experienced diver and completely comfortable in this role, it’s also best to participate in planned dive trips that include an instructor and guide to coordinate your adventure and help to ensure it goes smoothly. You can find such options at most popular destinations and resorts.
Finally, remember to take scuba diving as the serious activity it is. While it may feel like a fun hobby, it’s also one that comes with great responsibility; therefore, you need to be sure to always act cautiously and responsibly.
Perhaps you want to try your hand at scuba diving while on vacation. Most resorts offer an introduction class to teach you some basic skills and also give you certification training, which is an important step to ensuring your ultimate safety. Because of the perilous nature of scuba diving, this certification is often a requirement before you participate in any dive trips, or are even eligible to rent any equipment. You can find these dive certification classes locally through a dive school in your area or through some continuing education programs. The Professional Association of Diving Instructors (PADI) has a searchable database of teaching sites worldwide and offers different levels of certification that are widely recognized. The basic classes start with a classroom portion, then progress to a dive pool and finally, may move to the open water. To make the process accessible for almost anyone, PADI also offers an option to take the classroom part of the certification online.
Other reputable websites you can use to find dive courses either near where you live, or at your travel destination, include Scuba Schools International and the National Association of Underwater Instructors Worldwide (NAUI).