If you’ve been reading my blog, it’s no surprise that I love the thrill of scuba diving. In one of my earlier posts on how to get started in scuba diving, I’ve covered the basics of scuba diving. One of the first steps to scuba diving is determining your physical condition, and while diving is a fun and exhilarating experience, not everyone is physically capable of participating. Fortunately, scuba diving isn’t the only way for you to explore the water. In shallower waters, you can go snorkeling instead, which still allows you to observe different types of aquatic life without subjecting you to the same pressure and forces of deep-sea diving.
Being properly equipped will not only keep you safe, but it will also enhance your snorkeling experience. You’ll want to start with a good snorkel and mask, which can come in a traditional configuration or a newer, full-face snorkel. Make sure you select one that fits you properly and is comfortable. For those who have struggled with a traditional snorkel, the full-face rig has made things significantly easier. While it may look novel, all you have to do is put on the mask and breathe as you normally would. Other equipment I would recommend are swim shoes, swim fins, and a wetsuit or rash guard. If you’re less than confident in your swimming ability, it’s okay to use a life jacket or flotation device.
Getting In the Water
When you’re finally ready to get in the water, be sure to pick a location with calm waters and no currents, if possible. It’s a good idea to go snorkeling in a group or with a partner, and always pay close attention to your surroundings and follow all safety precautions given to you. Start in the shallow water where you can touch the ground, then get ready to have your face in the water. The snorkel should stick directly up and out of the water, and remember that you’ll be breathing through your mouth!
Snorkeling is mostly about floating, although you do need to know the basics of swimming. Once you’re comfortable breathing through the snorkel, lift your feet off the ground and lay face down in the water. Relax and focus on your breathing, and when you feel ready, try swimming a little bit. Now, all that you need to do is practice! When you’re ready to take it to the next level, you can add swim fins.