Tuesday, 27 March 2007

Part 3: A discussion on diving and air consumption: Positive buoyancy at the surface

This is a huge issue and should have been stressed time and again on your initial dive course. In my experience, over 30% of all qualified (and experienced) divers we take diving are slightly out of breath before they start their first dive, especially when they have not dived recently! Think what this will do for air consumption on the dive.

Why is this the case? They are paddling, don’t have enough air in their BCD’s, are uncomfortable with the surface conditions etc. Basically, they forgot to trust and use their equipment. It’s not only air consumption at stake here.

A large percentage of all diving incidents occur on the surface, mostly through over exertion. A good way to overcome this is to hang about on the surface. Let the dive boat pick someone else up first after a dive whilst you float around. Have enough air in your BCD to lie back and stop kicking completely. If there is a short swim to the dive site, it is often easier to do this a couple of metres under the water than at the surface – especially in choppy conditions.

Believe me; if you can avoid getting even slightly out of breath you will save masses of air.