Scuba Diving lessons
By erik

9 Reasons why you should do your Scuba Diving International (SDI) Open Water Scuba Diver Course

9 Reasons why you should do your Scuba Diving International (SDI) Open Water Scuba Diver Course

 

According to statistics, there are over 6 million certified divers in the world[i].  When you think about it, there are over 7 billion people alive today, so when you do the math, we are talking about 0.1% of the entire world’s population.   That means that people who actively dive are part of an elite group of individuals who get to see parts of our planet that the other 99.9% of the people in the world never will. If that’s not enough reason for you, here’s a few fun facts.

Get a new perspective on how you see the world.

Once you’re in the water you’ll have an entirely new perspective on the world. Everything under the surface is calm and you’re surrounded by the most amazing creatures. Schools of colorful fish big and small, invertebrates, crustaceans, colorful coral formations that date back to an age before time itself existed are all there waiting for you to come and meet them

When you are a certified diver, you can start exploring all these sites and as a beginner you don’t even need to go deeper than 18meters/60 feet to see the most beautiful sights the world has to offer.

 

The scuba diving community

Scuba Diving friends

No matter where you go in the world, you will meet divers.  I have met some of my oldest and dearest friends through scuba diving.  Whether you take a trip to Playa del Carmen or Cozumel, a liveaboard in the Red Sea or simply join a dive club in your location for weekday pool nights and occasional local dive trips, you will see that as a certified diver, a  whole new group of individuals will welcome you with open arms to help you become a better diver, gain experience and simply have fun!

If you travel solo, you’ll never be bored because with diving, you will fill your days with excitement, and who knows, you might meet some really cool people on the dive boat who will become your travel friends, and even lifelong friends!

 

More reasons to travel

Scuba Diving Travels
Travel to Playa del Carmen for excellent scuba diving for you and the family

Not that anybody needs more reasons to go to amazing locations, but many of the world’s greatest and best known dive destinations are surrounded by white, sandy beaches, turquoise water and warm sunny climate.  Some other great locations might be inland, a bit colder, but with amazing dive opportunities. You’ll never know until you start diving and start exploring the 70% of the planet’s surface that is covered in water.

 

Get away from it all

underwater cell phone
enjoy the quiet of disconnecting from the world while scuba diving

There is no cellphone reception, no wifi, or any of the many things that contribute to our daily stress. For me personally, I love the fact that when I am under water, all my troubles stay on the surface along with my phone. Nobody can call me, text or email me.

 

Be an advocate for environmental conservation

environmental conservation scuba diving

As you have probably noticed, our planet is not doing great at the moment. There’s too many people, too much pollution, overfishing, plastics in the ocean choking the life out of it. As a diver, you will be part of the elite group of people who will advocate for conservation, who will help clean up even if just a small patch of a beach, remove garbage if you spot it during a dive (which could save a turtle’s life), remove ghost nets and fishing lines from reefs and wrecks, saving the lives of countless animals and feeling super good about doing your part to protect our fragile planet.

 

Get healthy and exercise

Did you know that even the laziest drift dive will burn between 300-600+ calories per hour?  That’s because when we dive, we are exercising several muscle groups.  Being in good shape obviously is a good thing, and getting in shape will certainly improve your diving, but the great thing about scuba diving is that divers come in all shape and sizes. Of course, you should check  with your doctor before enrolling in any scuba diving course or starting any form of physical activity if you have questions about your health.

 

Get up close and personal with the world’s ocean inhabitants

I remember my first night dive about 30 years ago, and I was looking into a small crevice on the coral when I spotted the first shark I ever saw in real life.  That moment changed my life forever.  I was always passionate about sharks as a kid, but seeing one in full color, close enough to touch (mind you, WE SHOULD NEVER EVER EVER TOUCH ANYTHING), gave me a whole new outlook on these animals. Now every time I go diving (even after 10,000+ dives) coming across a shark, a turtle, a sting ray, a small hermit crab or a giant lobster reminds me of how lucky we as divers are that we can enjoy these places and meet their colorful local inhabitants.

 

It helps you live in the moment

Once you’re in the water all of your troubles stay on the surface. You need only think about you, your buddy and enjoying the moment you are spending surrounded by beauty. One of the very first things you will learn in your SDI Open Water Scuba Diver course is to relax and enjoy breathing under water.  This will make everything else in your dives a whole lot simpler and you will enjoy it a whole lot more.

When you only need to worry about what is going on right around you it becomes so easy to live in the moment.

Because you want to!

Our daily lives on the surface are stressful.  You have 10,000 different things to worry about. But when you are scuba diving, all that goes away.  Becoming a diver will help you get rid of some of your daily stress, will help you become more confident, and will help you enjoy your life and our planet a whole lot more.   So join us and sign up for the SDI Open Water Scuba Diver course and start living life to the fullest!

 

[i] http://www.dema.org/associations/1017/files/Diving%20Fast%20Facts-2013.pdf

Scuba Diving lessons
By erik

Should I do a refresher course?

When should I do a scuba refresher course?

 

This is a question we are often asked.  We recommend that people who have not been diving in more than one year do a refresher course. Of course, this all depends on the experience of the diver. Someone who has been diving for several years, and has hundreds or thousands of dives, but has a lapse of a year in diving wouldn’t necessarily need to do a refresher (unless they wanted to). However, someone with just a few dives, and more than a year of not diving, might benefit from it.

padi open waterdiver

In fact, we recently had a gentleman who came to the shop and wanted to go to the cenotes for some cavern diving.  He said he was certified open water diver since the mid 1980’s, when we asked him when his last set of dives had been, he dropped a bomb on us…   For someone who has not been diving in over 20 years, a simple refresher course would not do the trick.   Unfortunately, certification cards do not require you to do a certain number of dives per year.  Once you are certified, it is good for life. However, we said to this gentleman that we could not take him out to the cenotes without doing a thorough refresher course and evaluation (and a couple of shallow open water dives in our local Playa del Carmen reefs),  and that in fact, after a 22 year absence from scuba diving, we would recommend redoing the entire open water diver course.

He was quite offended, said that XYZ shop had told him they would take him, and that in fact their price was WAY cheaper than ours,  and stormed out of the shop.  The following day, we were leading a group in one of the cenotes and we came across this gentleman with a group from XYZ shop. After seeing him in the water, we were all quite relieved that he was not diving with us (especially after witnessing his panic attack within the first 3 minutes of the dive because of his absolute lack of understanding of buoyancy control or equipment function). After speaking with the guide for XYZ shop, he said that he was aware that this person had not been diving in several years, but did not know how many as the owner of the shop had not given him any more information other than “he hasn’t been diving in a few years, so watch him”.

On the other hand, we have had people who insist in doing a refresher course even though they may not necessarily need to do it, but they just want to get comfortable in the controlled conditions of the pool prior to going to the open water.  We always welcome that, and we are grateful for people who are proactive and take a hands on approach to their safety when scuba diving.

PAdi Courses PLaya del Carmen

 

So this wasn’t meant to sound like we were preaching or like we were trying to put ourselves above everybody else.  It is just a reminder that just like everything else in life, skills are forgotten when we don’t use them in a while.  Scuba diving is not like riding a bicycle.  The consequences of a poorly executed dive can be disastrous.  So much has changed over the last 20 years in terms of equipment and knowledge of decompression theory…

Even if a refresher “course” is not needed for you, we always recommend starting out shallow and easy on your first couple of dives after an extended dry period.   There is always time to do something a little more challenging.

 

For more information on our courses or dive trips click the links below:

 

Scuba Diving Courses in Playa del Carmen

 

Scuba Diving in Playa del Carmen and Riviera Maya