Every day around the world certified divers do stupid things while underwater, good chance you saw one on your last dive trip.
When you first started diving, you learned a number of items that you should never do while scuba diving. These are to be strictly followed and are drilled into us at each class.
For the sake of labels lets call them the “Golden Rules.” When you are a certified diver and are reading these rules and there is something new to you, you need a reactivate or other refresher course before your next dive.
Here is a fast review of the 5 most important rules we all learned as open water divers.
1. Never dive without a plan.
The commonly used phrase, “Plan your dive, dive your plan” is a key element to staying alive. Dive planning in BC (before computers) took time to calculate projected maximum depth and the amount of bottom time it gave you. Residual nitrogen time needed to be calculated from previous dives if any.
If you were diving with a dive guide from a dive center, you might have been given the max depth and time for the dive by the dive master based on previous experience.
Dive tables have been replaced by dive computers for the majority of users which makes planning easier and allows us better controls over our dives. However, the ease in determining bottom time should not lure use into minimizing other portions of the dive plan. Fully plan each dive and follow the plan.
2. Never exceed your comfort level.
If you are nervous that a dive is beyond your abilities and your dive buddy is saying “don’t worry I will take care of you” makes you feel better, cancel the dive.
You need to stay within your comfort zone as well as within the scope of your training. You will only get better by expanding your limits. However, it needs to be done in a manner that are small steps or accidents will happen.
Currents are a good example, if you were not introduced to diving in a current during your training, start with diving in a mild current before drift diving in a strong current.
3. Never Hold Your Breath.
The more accurate statement would be [never hold your breath while ascending. However, it is much easier to imprint in your mind NEVER do it.
Going back to the basics, as we ascend the air in our lungs, and other air-spaces expands. If we do not allow the air to escape and you can can suffer a pulmonary embolism. This can also happen while we are breathing when our rate of ascent is too fast.
Sometimes you will hear experienced divers say they hold their breath while taking videos. While there is nothing wrong with that if your depth is stationary, there is possibly a better alternative. Take a breath and don’t exhale.
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This article is published by The Scuba Page, the online magazine for Scuba Dive lovers around the world. The Scuba Page is part of RUSHKULT : the online booking platform for adventure sports. Visit the RUSHKULT platform to book your next Scuba Dive training, guided trip and accommodation.