Hi New Diver, here’s 5 tips for you!
Ok so you’re new to this whole ‘diving thing’ or you are a diver that doesn’t get to go under as much as you may wish. You’ve booked your dives or your trip but you are not really sure what to expect or how to behave, or anything really ….
Lucky for all you newbies out there, the dive community is large, friendly and very social. So there will always be somebody around willing to give you advice and tips. Often even when you didn’t ask for any 🙂
I guess I can count myself among those, as here I’m about to give you 5 very easy and basic tips for brand new divers!
1 Enjoy yourself!
Yeah diving comes with risks and ‘they make you sign your life away’, No you’re probably not the best diver on the boat, and sure you’re gonna make a mistake or forget something.
You know what? NEVER MIND, for now this is all probably just a hobby and you’ve paid good coin to be going on that dive, so just enjoy it like any other activity you would carve out special time for. And if you enjoy yourself you want to do something more often. With scuba diving this will make you extra good at it!
2 Ask Questions
Unsure how to do something? Don’t know what the bow is? Don’t know why everybody got excited about some octopus with blue dots on it? Just ask!
You know, you’ll learn something on each dive you do. From the first one to the last one you’ll ever take. Maybe you’ll learn something about technique, or maybe you’ll learn something about reading water & weather conditions. Hey maybe you’ll even pick some words in another language.
So if you don’t know something, if you’re unsure or if you are just curious ……. ask away!
3 Be aware and respectful of your surroundings
Yeah sure you came with friends, you came to have a good time and we’re all here to enjoy ourselves. But we have to behave ourselves on the surface as well as underwater. Because chaos leads to stress, stress leads to panic and panic …. well that is a whole other story!
So underwater we are not disturbing any other divers, we are not harassing any marine life ‘to take a video shot’ and we’re not killing/breaking any corals by touching them. And we’re definitely not sticking anything in our pockets to take to the surface as a souvenir!
On the surface we have to remember that for the (boat)crew this is probably just a regular working day so there’s no reason to give them an extra hard time, and maybe there’s people on the boat from other countries or you find yourself diving in another country. There may be some customs and ways to behave that are different than what you know…. so just try and be aware of your surroundings.
4 Dive Dive Dive!
Rather than signing up for a follow up course after your first one, just go diving!
Book dives, go on trips, find water and dive! Dive in as many different circumstances as you can. Different sea/ocean than you learned in, dive of different boats, dive in different weather conditions, just dive as much as you can.
All these different dives will not only add to your general skill and comfort level, they will also slowly slowly determine what type of diver you are. Do you prefer warm waters over cold, do you like discovering and searching for small marine life, spotting the big ones or maybe non of those but diving wrecks. Experience from just diving is valuable, it is accumulated knowledge you can’t learn from a book. It is one thing to read about something, see a video and enact a scenario; it is something completely different to actually have the experience yourself and act.
Somehow as a dive professional I feel more comfortable in the water with an Open Water diver (or Scuba Diver even) that has a log book showing me plenty of dives at different locations, than a Rescue Diver with just training dives in his/her log. Even though the Rescue Diver is ‘higher’ in qualification level, the Scuba Diver/Open Water diver has more practical experience under his/her belt. Even if it is just in simple things as preparing gear, and ascend and descend.
Get experience in different water conditions, different locations, in different weather conditions. Get as much diverse experience as you can, because all this different type of diving will just add to your general skill and comfort level and in scuba diving that is a really good thing!
5 Get Some Basic Scuba Gear Pieces
When you just got your license it is tempting to straight go and get all your gear together. My advice would be to get the basics that will give you comfort and are easy to travel with. So a mask, a pair of fins and maybe a simple wetsuit to start you off.
Not only will you save yourself some good coin that you can use for just booking dives and getting awesome at it, delaying purchasing your full kit will pay out at a later point in time. Rent gear like BCD’s and regulators, and just dive with as many different types of equipment as you can. It will again add to your comfort and skill level, but it will also give you a very good idea about what is out there and what suits you and your style of diving. Once you have figured out what type of diving you’re into and what BCD style you enjoy and what regs you breath from comfortably, go out and buy your own. No point in splashing on expensive equipment at the start that you end up not enjoying down the line.
Always keep in mind, it is NOT the equipment that makes you a good diver, it is your experience that does that.
Throw some working scuba gear in a pile, doesn’t matter what size or what brand, and I’ll probably can dive with it. Luckily I find myself in a position where many divers stop by. If I see anybody that has some piece of gear I have not seen before or that I am curious about, I always ask if I can give it a try. Just for the experience (how does it work, how easy does it deploy, how do I float, how easy is it to clean/fix etc.)
You can do the same. If you find yourself on a dive boat and you’ve made a friend, ask if you can puddle around a bit with their fins or BCD or whatever else got your interest.
So that were my 5 very easy going tips for newbie divers, I hope they will be useful to you. Just remember to have fun with it. At this point is isn’t your profession, it is a hobby, so enjoy & dive dive dive!
If you enjoyed this post please share it with your friends or on your social networks, so hopefully we have the world population diving in no time 😉
If you’d like to get into diving and eventually make this your job, consider signing up with me and go through all your programs with a personal touch whilst experiencing real dive situations almost at a daily basis. I am active along the Aegean coast of Turkey and the Greek islands of Kos & Samos, so let’s get diving!
Happy Diving Everybody!