How to be a Great Diver

7 Handy Hints on How to Be a Great Diver!

Being a great diver isn’t about how many dives you’ve done and where you’ve done them. Nor is it about how fantastic your buoyancy skills are and how long you can dive on one tank of air.

Great divers are people who care for their buddies. They care for their marine environment and  are considerate towards other divers.

Do you think you can become an even greater diver? Why not check out these 7 handy hints:

Two dive buddies at Steenbras Deep in Gordon's Bay

Mind your buddies

Be careful not to bump into other people under water. Try to keep at least an arm’s length away from other divers and stay away from their fins.

Be aware of other divers around you. Try not to swim directly in front of them by suddenly changing your direction. Look around before darting about!

Try to keep your hands tucked in and don’t swim using your hands. To be a great diver, it’s always best to keep them either in front of you or at your side. This way you will conserve air. You’ll also and stand less of a chance of knocking someone’s mask off their face.

If another diver is looking at something that you’d also like to see, position yourself beside them instead of above them without crowding them. This way they know you are there and when they move away, you won’t crash into each other.

great divers steady themselves on bare rock

Keep your hands to yourself

Many sea creatures such as sponges, anemones, corals and sea fans are very delicate and can easily be harmed by touching. Fish have a protective layering on their skins and you can remove this through touching them. This leaves them unprotected and susceptible to infection. If you need to put your hand down somewhere, be a great diver by making sure it is on a bare rock where nothing can be damaged.

Additionally, if you touch something that is venomous, such as a lionfish or scorpionfish, you could get a very nasty injury. Sign up for DAN membership so that should this happen, you have professionals to assist you.

Don't touch marine life

Watch the marine life

Interacting with wildlife can be an exhilarating experience. However, rather than chasing them, wait for them to come and inspect you. Chasing after marine life can stress them. Stressing certain creatures such as puffer fish can cause them to puff up, making them easy prey.

Be a considerate photographer

If you are taking photographs, take your photos before the rest of the divers reach you and then move away. Don’t hog whatever it is you are taking a photo of. Additionally, don’t push the other divers out of the way to take a photo of what they are looking at (or what they are photographing!). Rather, be a great diver and wait for them to move away before going in for your shots.

If someone in your group is taking photographs, allow them the time and space to take their shots. If you are curious about what they are photographing, keep your distance and wait until they are done before moving in for a closer look.

Great Divers are considerate underwater photographers

Sharing is caring

If you see something really unusual, interesting or beautiful, show it to the divers closest to you. Sharing the experience underwater as it happens, is far more rewarding than telling everyone about it on the boat afterwards. Diving is a bonding experience and those moments shared are what being a great diver is all about.

Great divers share what they see with other divers

Leave it in the ocean

Don’t remove anything from the ocean, especially not shells. This includes items you might consider trash, such as glass bottles, jars or tins, as many marine animals quickly make these their homes. Furthermore, if you see something growing on it, please leave it where it is.

Pufferfish inside a discarded tin can in Lembeh

Take out the trash

Please, however, be a great diver and pick up plastic bags as these are harmful to many creatures. Turtles often eat them, mistakenly thinking they are jellyfish – one of their favourite types of food!

Do you have any additional tips for divers? Please add them in the comments below!be

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