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5 Things to Expect in Your First Scuba Diving Experience Edit

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Kevin Ngkaion  • Contributor
Opinions expressed by Explora.ph Contributors are their own.

1. Scuba courses are taught in baby steps

If you are a first timer, your first dive will be in a safe and secure environment, usually a pool. This is usually preceded by a classroom session where your instructor will explain the theory and practical application of the SCUBA System and skills. In the pool, you will practice the basic skills several times to ensure comfort through repetition. Through these exercises, you will learn that everything about SCUBA diving relies on being relaxed and comfortable in the underwater environment!


SSI Scuba Schools International in Makati has their own 14-foot diving pool, which has a four-foot ledge on the side and an interesting glass window at the bottom peeking into the Mares shop. 


Students learning to adjust their weight system. Photo by Jasper Barcelon

You will learn the basics of SCUBA which are:

  1. The different parts of a SCUBA system
  2. How to put on your SCUBA system
  3. The effects of pressure on your ears and lungs
  4. How to breathe using a regulator
  5. How to remove water from your mask in case water goes in it
  6. What is neutral buoyancy
  7. How to achieve neutral buoyancy and what it feels like
  8. Finning techniques while using SCUBA.

Pre-dive briefing. Photo by Jasper Barcelon

Why attend a Scuba diving event?

If you want to experience Scuba diving, you can join LALIM which is an event curated for first timers or beginners. What's great is that it will be held in a safe and secure environment to ensure a calm, relaxed and enjoyable experience for everyone. Check out this upcoming event by Scuba Academy of Manila and Mares, LALIM: A try scuba dive event on April 14, 2019. Learn more

Learn SCUBA Diving this 2019


Experience the joy in diving with only the most professional instructors from Scuba Academy Manila. Reserve now!

2. Getting Used to Breathing Underwater

It takes a while to get used to breathing through only your mouth. You might find your mouth starting to dry up, or some initial discomfort and strain with the regulator in your mouth. Don’t worry! Your instructor will teach you the proper use of a regulator and give you tips to have an awesome dive experience.


Getting ready to take their first breaths underwater. Photo by Jasper Barcelon

3. Flying Rather Than Swimming

The best way I can think of to describe SCUBA diving is that it is like you are flying through a different world underwater. This is all possible thanks to the concept of buoyancy, which your instructor will discuss during your academic training. It might take you some time to master it and truly feel the weightlessness, but once you get the hang of proper breathing underwater, it is out of this world!


Flying over the coral reef. Photo by Jasper Barcelon

This is as close as you can get to experiencing ‘Zero-Gravity’ in outer space. The knee-jerk reaction of first timers is to fight the water and struggle a bit, but when you start to relax and let the surrounding water and your equipment support you, your lungs act as a ballast and you can glide in different directions without much effort underwater.


Hang Loose! Photo by Jasper Barcelon

4. Seeing Underwater

Our eyes are not designed to see underwater. It needs a medium of air in order to clearly see an image. This is why we use masks in SCUBA diving. Just like each one of us has a unique face shape and size, your SCUBA mask comes in several shapes and options as well. Having a mask that is too big might create gaps between the skin and mask, while a mask that is too small might make creases in the mask, both allowing water to come in. This is why your SCUBA mask is one of the most personal items in your SCUBA system. Your instructor will provide you guidance when purchasing or renting a SCUBA mask.


Photo by Jasper Barcelon

Saltwater magnifies objects by 33% so things look closer or larger than they actually are. Next time you find yourself next to a turtle, think about how big it is compared to you!

5. Every Dive Is a Training Dive

SCUBA diving is all about comfort through repetition and being ready for everything. While you will be taught how to be ready to SCUBA dive on your own with your buddy, you will surely learn something new every dive. Whether it is customizing the position of your equipment and gear as you realize your preferences, or developing the proper breathing pattern. Keep practicing and you might even learn how to do tricks underwater like blowing bubble rings!


Bubble rings! Photo credit: Sam Hilado

These are some of the things you can expect when you go scuba diving for the first time. As you continue diving regularly, breathing through a regulator, the weightlessness, and maneuvering underwater will become second nature. It takes effort, money, and time to get a license, but it is totally worth it in the end.


Happy student, Photo by Miguel Rage

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