5 tips to conserve air on a scuba dive

7 Oct

While virtually anyone can learn to SCUBA dive, the great care and attention to detail necessary for the activity should not be underestimated. For many people, SCUBA is something that brings people face-to-face with their mortality. There needs to be that attention to detail, because without it, you risk injury and death.

But we all make mistakes, especially when we are learning, and they are bound to happen at one time or another. The following mistakes are actually quite common, but have a considerable impact on your diving experience. Taking the time to think through your impending dive experience, and making sure you are capable and gear-ready before you get on the boat will help ensure you don’t pull these 5 rookie moves.

Lack of Buoyancy Control

This mistake is a big one, and without a doubt, buoyancy control is a skill that is acquired with time and practice. But poor buoyancy control can lead to damage to local marine life or other SCUBA divers, as well as injury to yourself if you ascend too quickly. It is important to take all factors into consideration when adding weight, such as wetsuit material, buoyancy characteristics of the tank(s), and the type of dive you are doing. If you only add exactly as much weight as the situation calls for, you will have more success achieving neutral buoyancy. You’ll also stay within other divers’ social graces by not trampling a coral reef or kicking someone in the face.

Running Out of Air On a Scuba Dive

An air shortage is the type of mistake that shouldn’t happen to a conscientious diver, and by far poses the biggest threat. It is absolutely crucial that you monitor your gauges and the time you’ve spent underwater to avoid a panicked situation. The only way to ensure your safety is to be mindful of checking your stats frequently. A tip to help you remember is to write the acronym DATA on your hand, which will remind you to check:


Enjoy all the sea has to offer. But don’t let it distract you from staying alive!

Straying From Your Dive Buddy While Scuba Diving

There is excellent reasoning behind the buddy system implemented by SCUBA divers. You are engaging in an activity that has life-threatening potential. There are amazing people out there who have managed to rescue themselves from certain death, but more often in life, the goal usually has an assist. Dive buddies are your life’s backup plan when exploring the depths. Communication is key underwater, and having an extra set of eyes, along with extra air if necessary, can mean the difference between a great dive and an emergency. Don’t make the mistake of losing track of your dive buddy.

Awareness of Others

This one is how to avoid mistakes — just be aware of the world outside yourself. Contain your gear within a gear bag, and make sure it is out of the way where people will not have to step (or trip) over it. Having a positive attitude and an interest in learning is one of the best ways to make your and everyone else’s experience enjoyable. No matter how many dives you have been on, pay attention to the dive master’s briefing of the dive site. Take responsibility for your own safety, and don’t compromise the safety of other divers. Pretty basic stuff.

Losing Your Gear

Because the act of SCUBA diving involves complexities with equipment to ensure the diver is properly suited for the dive, it can be an expensive hobby. This is one great incentive to make sure your gear and accessories are attached correctly and securely. Spending over $100 on a pair of good quality fins is meaningless when it isn’t tight enough on your foot and sails off with the ocean currents. Always perform checks topside to avoid losses like this underwater. Mistakes like this cost you more money!

Guest blog by bookyourdive.com

Photos via runneralan2004Thespis377Scuba_thib

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31 Jul

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Live-a-board Red Sea 2008 – Daedalus, Elphinstone, Rocky

14 Feb

Follow this link if you have 20 mins to spare and would like to watch an edited video of my live-a-aboard trip to the Red Sea in 2008. http://vid.ly/0p6h4b


Basking Sharks

31 May
An encounter with Basking Sharks off Malin Head in May 2010. There were about 7 off them. We were returning from two good dives at The wreck of the William Mannell and Devil’s Cut. By chance we saw the reflection off one of the fins and went to investigate. Great excitement followed and two of us made it into the water to swim with them

Take the poll – what is your favourite divesite

19 Jan

Lions mane Jellyfish does a graceful dance

30 Jun
Spotted this guy during the safety stop after our dive on the Maerl beds at Cushendall. Not the best camera work you will have ever seen but if you watch until closer to the end it gets better
Formats available: Quicktime (.mov)

Spiny Spider Crab

30 Jun
This fellow was seen in the sea grass beds at Waterfoot Bay in Co Antrim during a seasearch survey dive, and apparently he is the most easterly ever recorded in our waters.

Maybe the Laurentic

24 Apr

Anenome City

16 Dec
Following a very pleasant dive through a hard coral garden, we ended the dive and did our safety stop at this Anenome City were I took the opportuntiy to capture some video of the residents. I particularly like their posturing as they defend their homestead, understandable and very reminiscint of dare I say of the film “Finding Nemo”
Formats available: Quicktime (.mov)

Oceanic Whitetip Shark

10 Dec
A young Oceanic White-tip shark pays us a visit on our safety stop under the boat at Daedalus Reef in the Red Sea during our liveaboard safari on the Blue Peral at the end of November 2008

Hammerheads at Daedalus

10 Dec
A school of hammerheads vsited us on a dive at Daedalus Reef in the Red Sea on 29th November 2008
Formats available: Quicktime (.mov)

oceanic whitetip shark

5 Dec


Originally uploaded by waveneyavenue

One of several we saw on our recent liveaboard safari to the red sea. We charterdt eh “Blue pearl” and spent a week touring the reefs in the South of the Red Sea. Marine Conservation Parks, Including Elphinstone, Daedalus, Rocky Island and Zabergad as well as Fury Shoals and some smaller reefs on the way back north to Marsa Alam. This OCeanic was seen during our safety stop at Daedalus.

Ling at St Johns Point

21 Sep
First time I’ve seen one swimming freely or at least first time when I’ve had my camera handy! I mistook this for a conger oops. Thanks for putting me right Richard!

Lochgarry bow swim through

18 May

William Mannell, October 2007

21 Oct
The start of our dive on this downed trawler. Another great wreck found off Glengad Head Culdaff Bay, Co.Donegall this fishing trawler served as an excort vessel in WWI and was converted into a minesweeper for WWII. She was named after a crewman who served onboard the Victory with Lord Nelson at Trafalgar. Ummm, that sounds familiar I think I wrote it on a video i took last year of this wreck, oh well. Anyway , great dive, great conditions, a wee bit of a run but nothing we couldn’t handle, and as a bonus I worked out how to manually adjust my white balance on the camera whilst at 27metres so i am expected some interesting results.
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