Blog about Underwater Life and Scuba Diving

Scuba Diving: Myth and Reality

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Myth: Diving is Sport for the elderly.

Reality: If you think that diving is not sufficient extreme for you, then you know very little about this sport. I am sure that most people dive in pleasant and quiet water and look at the nice quiet fishes. But if you’ll pass a special course of training and get suitable equipment, then you’ll discover the other side of diving. Try to swim in the surf zone in Southern California and you will need vitamin pills, not for your grandfather. This isn’t enough for you? Have you ever hand feed sharks? Studied expanses of underwater caves? Chased for 180 kg of marine fish span rig? There have been corroded in the corridors of the sunken ocean liner? Dive under polar ice?

This is just a small list of what can be done by a diver, and only by a diver. But you have to grow to that level. Therefore, before you enter into the taste, leave away your ego, to express respect to the elderly and take the first step to obtaining a certificate, entry-level (Open Water).

Myth: Diving is a hobby only for those who live in the tropics.

Reality: There is little that can compare with impressive emotions from immersion in the warm clear tropical waters, where your body as if suspended, and you are not feeling its weight, diving among beautiful coral reefs.

If only there you are not diving off the coast of California – in the bush of algae, along with a small herd of sea lions. Or maybe you’ll like to explore the wonder of the remaining wrecks of a wooden ship in Lake Michigan, or seem more exciting to find a shark tooth of million years, which is perfectly preserved in the waters of the Copper River in South Carolina, or … the list could go on and on.
No matter where you live, there is always a chance that somewhere nearby there is a popular place for diving. You do not believe me? Ask anyone who you will see with the red-white dive flag on the car. Lakes, quarries, rivers, flooded mines – almost anywhere there is water, you can see the divers. And that’s not all – far from the city Abilin, Texas, you can dive in the flooded mine launcher. In each of these places you will gain a unique experience, as well as get an opportunity to begin to engage in this sport. Of course, not every seat will come all the divers dive, but diving – is not only a sport, it is the same style of living, expanding social circle. Even if your local pond is not famous place for diving in the world, then grill, portable refrigerator, a pair of cylinders with air and a dozen friends can bring you many pleasant moments. Palm trees can be added on request.

Myth: Ocean is full of sharks and they eat divers. Do not try to deny it; I’ve seen movies «Jaws» and «Open Sea».

Reality: Do not tell this to Hollywood producers, but in reality, statistics «sharks against divers» is very boring. Sharks do not have the habit to attack divers. Moreover, with few exceptions, under certain conditions, sharks usually do not even swim around, when a diver dives into the water. Let’s try to look at this situation through the eyes of the sharks. You swim, visiting the space, and suddenly from nowhere dumps substance that looks and moves like no other in the ocean, creating a lot of noise and air bubbles, and the same is beginning to shine on your lights (camera lights). For the Sharks it must be very unpleasant meeting. And what are the first steps of most sharks? Turn and swim away!

Previously, a diver could live a whole life, never met the sharks and see the beauty and majesty of this animal up close. There is no better way to understand these amazing creatures, than to see them around, whether in a cage dive with great whites in Australia, or with hand-feeding reef sharks in the Bahamas. In our time, carefully planned dive permits to do so.

Still not sure? Then let me give you a really serious cause for concern – your dog. Yes. Behind these lovely eyes is hidden a cold-blooded brain of predator, which, according to the statistics, are far more dangerous than sharks. According to reports of emergency aid for 2008, «the best friends of man» killed 27 people and seriously injured 4.7 million people. And it is only in the USA. And under international archive, registered number of shark attacks reported 58 incidents for the same 12-month period around the world and only 4 people died because of it.

Myth: I must buy a whole bunch of equipment just to start learning.

Reality: Diving – this is sport, in which much depends on the equipment, but to start learning, you need three basic things: a mask, snorkel and a pair of flippers. These items of equipment should apply to you in size that they were comfortable, so it’s best to buy them, even if the shop can give them for rent. All other diving gear is easy to rent. Usually there are special discounts for students, and sometimes the use of more sophisticated equipment is included in the dive price. And when you get diving certificate, you will want to acquire your own equipment. Initially it will be very difficult to restrain myself from having to buy anything get under his hand, and if your wallet allows, do not deny yourself the pleasure. But most divers are continuing to use the services of hire and purchase equipment gradually.

Myth: To start diving, you must be a trained athlete

Reality: Of course, if you’re in good shape, you really feel more comfortable in the water, but if this myth was true, then it would be logical to assume that the bike is only for cyclists to ride the Tour de France. Diving is an active sport, and fitness depends on the extent to which you will easily cope with stress, but a healthy person with average will be able to do. Perhaps the emergence of this myth to blame for mandatory standards, which you will need to swim at the beginning of any training courses diving. You will need stamina to swim about 180 meters without stopping, but you’re not limited in time, and none of you do not pursues. Instructors need to be sure that you can stick in the water and not feel discomfort, a person immersed in water. That’s all. And when you understand that any diver from 8 until 80 years can pass this severe test of physical preparation, it is clear that each person whose level of activity above «chronic slugabed», may engage in diving. Well, get up and finally start diving.

Myth: Diving is a sport for real men and there is no place for women.

Reality: It may be true, but only if you go back to the fifties, a time of «Sea Hunt» movie series. But even then, it was not pure truth. Pretty Zeyl Parry, actress, was one of the «girls», and was almost a professional diver in the whole team. And when the magazine «Sports Illustrated» in May 1955 decided to make this new born sport theme of the journal, this girl got on the cover.

Myth: Because of the diving I may hurt my ears.

Reality: Maybe it’s a true, but only if you do not equalize pressure during a dive. And this is almost the first thing what you are taught in a dive learning center. This is called method of Valsalvy, and is used in a very easy way: try to squeeze your nose and breathe out through it until you feel that pressure on the ears weakened. Try it! See? It’s easy. Tell me honestly, you’d like to know about this, when, as in the fifth grade, with friends you dived to the bottom of the pool?

Myth: To get a certificate I must be rich.

Reality: You do not understand much of diving, don’t you? Take the average bill for dinner, add to it price of cinema tickets, a little bit of popcorn, plus a coffee after movie – you will easily get to $100 (of course, if it is not a fast food). And how it relates to diving? It depends on where you live, but the average price of courses, after which you will get a certificate, are ranging from 250 up to $500 or more, with dinner and watching movies like this. And in return you get a pass into the world of maritime adventure, not to mention the new style of life that you’ll be able to brag at the office. Let’s compare the price for diving lessons from anything, and you will see that this is a good deal, especially if we compare it with a homemade simulator, which is now collecting dust in your living room.

Myth: I can not dive. I have (put here the name of your disease).

The Reality: Why not get a third-party opinion? Doctors are usually very cautious people, and often do not understand the specifics of diving, so if you ask whether you can dive with a disease, the answer is likely to be «no», because this option is for you the most secure. But before we abandon dives, you and your doctor should consult with medical experts from the DAN (Divers Alert Network) *. This is a nonprofit organization works in conjunction with Duke University Medical Center (Duke University Medical Center). DAN specialists will help you better understand the requirements for the physical condition of diver, and how it relates to your health. Contact them and you may be surprised by the result of conversation heard in the answer: «Yes, you can safely engage in diving». Over the past 10 years, asthma and diabetes are no longer contraindications for diving. In both cases, if the patient carefully monitored and supervised by professionals, and it can withstand a certain exercise, a swimming pool is usually open for diving.

Myth: Snorkeling is the same pleasure as scuba diving.

Reality: Do not get me wrong. I love to swim with the tube near the surface, descending to the reef from above, but for me it is just a way to kill time between dives. These two classes will never stand in same row – at least if you like action.

Dive with the tube – it is akin to watching a football match outside the window airship that hovered over the field, and to dive with an aqualung – is directly involved in the game. Put on the back cylinder with air, you become a complete player. You swim with sharks on an equal footing, to get acquainted with a giant sea bass, or just for fun look up and see the fans with a swim tube, floating on the surface and covering a light.


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