Monday January 27 2020
March 18, 2018

Key for Success in Scuba Diving

I am a scuba instructor for more than 15 years in PADI, SSI, NASDS and CMAS.

I have trained over 750 scuba diving students in this period. 

When I start an Open Water Diver Course, I know two things will possibly happen throughout the course;

  1. My student, regardless of age, sex and nationality, will be afraid to try to conduct the “removing and replacing the scuba mask skill
  2. 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?!?!?

Don’t worry, you are not alone. 

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 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;

  1. 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.
  2. 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.

The more time you spend with water, the more you will feel comfortable. 

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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About Seaman


Hi, my name is Murat Demirağ. I have been diving since 1996 and teaching scuba since 2005. I wanted to share my knowledge through

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  • Alex
    2018-03-27 06:58

    Hi Seaman
    Great article! As a PADI instructor myself, I can absolutely confirm your considerations here. So many times I had this situation, that my fellow students get crazy when it comes to removing the mask. And I think you are right on spot when you say “It measures how comfortable you feel underwater. ” People that feel comfortable, don’t have that kind of trouble. Give me a call when you are in the Huatulco area at some point, I would love to show you the beauty of the underwater world here!

    Best regards,

    • Seaman
      2018-03-28 10:58

      Hello Alex,

      Welcome to and thank you for your motivating comment.
      I’d love to dive with you in Huatulco one day, bro.

      Take care.

  • Russell Bowyer
    2018-04-30 15:50

    When I trained scuba divers for BSAC, invariably the tricky part for many was mask clearing. It was always a great feeling for me when I managed to get someone ‘over the line’ and to be happy with removing their mask and clearing the water. This was especially true of those trainee divers that had particular difficulty with this skill. To help them overcome their fears always gave me a great deal of satisfaction

  • Scuba diving is very interesting. I heard about it through my friends, it sounds amazing, to know the sea adventures and the spirited world of the sea, I also want to become a diver. This is also a great career opportunity for everyone, too. Thanks for the important info about diving.

    • Seaman
      2019-01-02 17:18

      Great ad! But thank you :))) Good luck

  • Bali Diving
    2019-01-28 08:09

    Nice post, this post is really helpful for me. Thanks for sharing.

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