Snorkelling is a lot of people’s dream hobby. When you consider the fact that it gives you a chance to float around in the ocean encountering rare marine life, it is not hard to see why. However, amateur snorkellers often report bad experiences because they are unprepared. As long as you are a confident swimmer the only real thing you need to do is to research prior to your trip. Conducting extensive online research will help you to prepare yourself mentally and physically for snorkelling.
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This post will tell you everything you need to know about going snorkelling so you can prepare and get the most out of it.
Until you are confident snorkelling you should not attempt to go out on your own. While in theory snorkelling seems like it should be simple, in practice it rarely is. There are many variables that need to be considered, like aggressive marine animals and even poisonous fish. Hazards will be addressed in more detail later on in this post, however. Classes with a professional instructor will help you to educate yourself about the hazards and pitfalls of scuba diving. Make sure to hire a qualified and experienced instructor.
Ask any snorkeller, the most important preparation you can make is finding a good location. Finding locations with clear water, coral reef, and marine life will make every snorkel experience entertaining and educational. In the United States, Florida is considered by many to be the best place to scuba dive. There are countless guides detailing what some of the best snorkeling spots in Florida are. If a trip to the Sunshine State interests you, then read some of these before going.
Unless you own your own equipment there is no point going scuba diving. While most scuba instructors provide students with equipment, the fees for using your instructor’s equipment will likely be astronomical. It is also worth noting that if you damage rented equipment, you will have to pay to replace or repair it. Another thing to think about is the fact that rented equipment will have been used by other people before you. This year America is experiencing one of its worst flu seasons. Do you really want to be using a mask that somebody else has been wearing with this in mind?
Confidence underwater can only be built through practice and experience. As touched upon earlier, it is not safe to go out snorkeling on your own until you have some experience. Take as many classes as you need before diving independently. Most instructors will offer payment plans if you are unable to pay the full cost of your classes upfront. Something else worth considering is buying a package of classes, i.e., buy 10 at a time rather than one or two. Speak to your chosen instructor and explain your financial situation to them if you are short on cash.
To become a pro snorkeller, you need to start slowly. The worst thing you can do is to try and rush things. Scuba diving is something that can take years to perfect. The main thing you need to focus on achieving is feeling comfortable underwater. For a lot of people, the hardest thing to assimilate to is being underwater and breathing with an oxygen tank. You can seriously injure yourself if you are not in control of your breathing when you are wearing a diving rug. Your instructor will teach you the proper breathing techniques and exercises.
There is a multitude of hazards that you need to consider when you are taking up scuba diving. The main threat posed to scuba divers is aggressive marine life. In Florida, sharks are a problem. The same is also true in California and in other coastal states. Sharks become more of a problem the further out to sea you go. While your chances of encountering an aggressive shark are extremely low, you still need to know what to do in such a situation. There are special courses you can take that focus on teaching people how to react in these kinds of encounters.
When you are confident scuba diving, you may be tempted to take your boat out to sea alone. It is vital to your safety that you always take a company with you. Even the most experienced scuba divers can make mistakes. If you have only just learned how to scuba dive, going out on your own is dangerous. If you live in Florida or another coastal state, there should be scuba clubs you can sign up for. These clubs are great places to meet people who share your passion for snorkeling and also find groups to go out with.
Do not try to take risks when you are just getting started snorkeling, like going too deep for example. A lot of amateur scuba divers try to come to the surface too quickly, which can be extremely dangerous. It is possible to kill yourself by rising to the surface too quickly. Again, provided that you take classes with an experienced and qualified instructor, all of this should be covered. It is important to take as many courses as you can afford so you can learn everything there is to know about snorkeling and its hazards. Online videos can also be a good way of educating yourself about the dangers of snorkeling. The good thing about them is that they are usually free to watch.
One last thing to think about is spearfishing. If you enjoy fishing, then why not use snorkeling as an excuse to catch bigger, rarer fish? Sea fishing can be a lot of fun but it can sometimes be difficult to get a bite. When you are underwater fishing, as long as you have good aim you can catch anything. You do not have to lure fish to you because you can go to the fish, in other words. Take spearfishing classes as, like snorkeling, spearfishing can be extremely dangerous. Spearfishing is also banned in some places. It is also worth noting that some species of fish cannot legally be hunted. Educate yourself on the legality of spearfishing before heading out.
To many people, snorkeling seems like an expensive and complicated hobby. However, it is not. Snorkeling is arguably one of the easiest sports to take up. Classes are only needed so people can come to terms with and understands the risks associated with the sport. Actual diving is something that can be learned in under a day.