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It's OK to scuba dive
without a Snorkel!
By David Holt NAUI #15465

As an instructor,  I teach snorkel use to conserve air and energy at the surface.  Both are valid reasons for students and inexperienced divers.  However, advanced divers quickly learn that there is more air than there is time on deeper and repetitive dives and that if energy is being expelled rapidly, something is wrong.  So much for the valid reasons.

Another use for the snorkel is to use it to swim to and from the descent point. Thatís fine if you prefer to swim face down.  I, however, prefer to swim on my back, and Iíve noticed most experienced scuba divers also prefer that method.  Swimming on your back has several advantages:

Some divers complain that they cannot see where they are going if they swim on their backs, or that they swim "off course" and have to constantly adjust their direction. There are several techniques for managing this problem.


What about entanglements?  It is extremely difficult for a back Ė swimming diver to transverse a kelp canopy.  Plan your dive so that you swim beneath the kelp at the end of the dive instead of swimming through it at the surface.  If you have air left in your tank (as you should), you can swim face down at the surface or pop down a few feet and swim under the canopy.  After all these types of problems are what the last 500 pounds is for, use it.

Snorkels are necessary and wonderful things for snorkeling, but they can be a scuba diving nuisance.

Snorkels and snorkel attachments can:

Isnít it time to rid scuba diving of the snorkel menace? If experienced scuba divers want to use a snorkel, thatís fine; but I think itís time to say that it is acceptable for competent experienced diver to dive without one.

Dive safe and dive often,
Bwana
 
 


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