Following on from my post about snorkelling on every continent, I jotted down 7 of the best ways to snorkel like a professional, even if you’ve no idea what you’re doing, and stay safe in the process.
Follow these and you’ll feel like a fish in the water!
- Practice. Sounds dumb, but seriously. Don’t wait until there’s a spectacular reef in front of you to realise you can’t use your snorkel properly. Use your snorkel as much as possible, even if you’re in a swimming pool or a sea without much to look at. Become really comfortable with the fit and the strangeness of wearing a mask.
- Breath. One of the hardest things to get to grips with is regulating your breath. Breathing only through your mouth, and whilst exercising (swimming), takes a bit of mastering. That’s why number 1 is key. Being aware of your breathing, helps control it.
- Never step on coral. Mainly because it’s bad for the reef, but it’s terrible for you too. If you are unlucky enough to scratch yourself, get it seen to straight away. Coral cuts easily become infected because of hidden shards left in the wound. You should seek medical attention immediately, even for a minor scrape.
- Never touch or take anything away from the reef. Aside from the fact that whatever you pick up may harm or poison you, the things that live in the sea like to remain there and reefs strike an especially sensitive ecological balance to survive.
- On a snorkelling tour? Don’t forget to look up. Whilst ogling at Nemo, it’s easy to drift away in the water (especially if there’s a current) and get separated from the group, or even worse left behind (which has happened by the way). Regular checks above water are essential.
- Check your energy levels. It’s easy to become fatigued without realising and this is especially dangerous if you end up further away from land or a vessel than you intended. With so much to see swirling around you, it’s important to remain mindful of how much energy you have left if you can make that swim against the current back to shore.
- Buddy up. If you’re stepping in to the water in an unknown country, seek local advice about conditions, currents and dangers. Wherever possible, find a buddy and don’t go in alone. If you must go solo, let someone know your plans before you leave and regularly check your distance from shore whilst in the water (see number 5).
Missing a top snorkelling tip? Comment below with your best advice whilst exploring the sea!
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