I am a scuba instructor for more than 15 years in PADI, SSI, NASDS and CMAS.
When I start an Open Water Diver Course, I know two things will possibly happen throughout the course;
- My student, regardless of age, sex and nationality, will be afraid to try to conduct the “removing and replacing the scuba mask skill“
- He / she will most likely think that scuba diving is a hard sport / activity requiring endurance and “maybe it is not something for him / her” (fewer than #1 but still valid)
In this post, I want to show you the way for success in scuba diving and how to kill these two points above (if you also have / had them) easily!
Ok, let me start with the first one;
Removing and Replacing Your Scuba Mask is NOT easy?
Yes, I know that for some fellows, the only place to breath is on-land.
No doubt for a starter in a scuba diving course.
When we jump into water for scuba diving, we face something different.
This is the time we realize how “different” (for some, it is even difficult) to breath underwater than on land.
When the instructor asks the student to remove his / her mask, this becomes more complicated.
“I am not even breathing like the way I do on land, now you want me to remove my mask?!?!?“
Dozens of people who have just started scuba diving or people who are not experienced enough (like having less than 25 logged dives) experience this struggle.
I strongly advise you to read my Removing Mask: A Challenging Dive Skill post. Read both the post and the comments below.
This will help you to see that you are not alone and gives you tips on how to perform this skill, tips from me and the other divewithseaman.com readers (read the comments, too).
Removing and replacing a mask is NOT something ONLY related to the skill that you are performing.
It is more complicated than a regular scuba diving skill.
This skill is a measurement of how related you are with the sea / ocean. Are you a sea person, or a land person or both but lacking experience on swimming, scuba diving, snorkeling, whichever water sport it is…
It measures how comfortable you feel underwater.
Let’s go with our second topic;
Scuba Diving is not Something for You?
If you think scuba diving is not something for you, you must identify what the problem really is.
This can be a result of two different situations;
- If you have tried scuba diving and didn’t really like it, I can say nothing. Don’t waste your time and energy, go find another hobby that you can enjoy all your life.
- Or, you were trying scuba diving only because your sister, husband, uncle, boyfriend, best friend, whoever he / she has wanted you to try it (peer pressure). You tried it but didn’t like it just like the way your buddy likes it.
Be honest and tell your buddy that “maybe you guys can do something else together, but not scuba diving“
On the other hand, if you “think” you didn’t like it, however you liked scuba diving deep inside but think that you cannot perform it well, then I have something to tell you.
What to Do Then?
First, you must understand the fact that hesitating to remove / replace your mask underwater is not something simple, it is not something just about a scuba diving skill. It is something that you must practice and succeed.
I am not only talking about spending time underwater with your scuba unit.
Swim, enjoy your hot tub if you have one, go fishing but touch the sea water frequently. Grab a mask and snorkel and try removing it while taking a shower.
But first of all, read Removing Mask: A Challenging Dive Skill.
If you think scuba diving is NOT good for you and you just realized that you were lying to yourself (you were afraid of fish, water, coral, reef, whatever it is), believe me that you’ll succeed it by doing the same and work on it.
Practice, practice, practice.
Don’t quit something that you really enjoyed or even loved because of difficulties.
Keep on working on it till you master it!
What I see is that 80% of my scuba diving students feel much more comfortable when they reach (in average) their 30th scuba dive.
Because just like the motto of Scuba Schools International (SSI);
Comfort through repetition
If you have any question in mind, feel free to use the comment section below.
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