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Physical & mental preparation for Scuba diving

Absolutely Fit to Dive

While scuba diving is a recreational and non-competitive sport, it can only be truly enjoyed by understanding basic “fitness for diving” principles. The Ocean is dynamic and divers can be challenged occasionally by the sea or diving conditions.

Here are 5 things that you can work on to dive safely and make your diving more enjoyable:

  1. HEART & LUNGS: Cardio-vascular fitness is important to maintain stamina, reduce physical stress and help in better breathing when needed while diving in challenging conditions. Swimming, running or even climbing up and down staircases are simple ways to build this kind of endurance

  2. CORE MUSCLES: Carrying scuba diving gear on or off boats, swimming in a stable and streamlined posture and maintaining “trim” are all challenges that a strong back and abdominal muscles help with. Crunches, Planks & Yoga are the best here.

  3. HIP & THIGHS: Have no doubt; strong hip and thigh muscles will save the day, every day! Shore Diving, getting on & off boats or boat ladders, finning effectively through a mild current – all of these will be a whole lot easier to deal with when the thigh muscles have been paid attention to. Squats and swimming from the hip and thigh are some easy ways to get strong thighs.

  4. CALVES: Go diving in the “Maldives” and sample their famous “Channel Dives” which are all about handling some seriously strong current. A good diver will always use the calves as much as the thighs (knees and ankles being weak areas to Fin from). Many divers can suffer cramps in calves due to improper finning techniques, dehydration (a Big No-No while diving) or even mineral imbalances. Staying well hydrated & replacing essential salts is critical to happy diving.

  5. THE MIND: A healthy body and mind go a long way in diving safely. Keep your worries away before Diving and don’t dive when you don’t feel like it, simple. This is a recreational sport, not the Navy Seals! Undue stress, mental or bodily fatigue is all avoidable when diving. Stay sharp, connected and aware so you not only react better to not OK situations but also truly enjoy Diving for what it gives best – peace of mind and happy memories.

Author: Seemant Saxena - CMAS and PADI Instructor

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