FitDiver® SPECIAL EDITION May 2015 - Page 35

While you may not be physically stressed during a leisurely relaxing dive in beautiful warm water, an unexpected change in conditions or other diving emergency can suddenly test you to the max and you may find you are unable to meet the challenge. It is important to maintain your physical fitness year round.

Service and Maintain Your Skills

If it’s been six months or more since you were last in the water, it might not be a bad idea to get back in a pool with an instructor or a dive master and take a refresher course. Maybe you got a new BC or some other piece of equipment; get in the pool to try it out. If you have a relationship with a dive shop (and you really should) they will often allow customers to try out newly purchased gear in their pool for free or at a low cost.

A refresher course is a really good idea to brush up rusty emergency skills.

When was the last time you practiced sharing air with your buddy, deliberately completely flooded and cleared your mask, or recovered your dropped regulator? Do you remember reaching over your shoulder to find the hose? Maybe - maybe not.

Stephen C. Mendel is a Los Angeles County Instructor Trainer, a NAUI Instructor Trainer Emeritus, a PADI Master Scuba Diver Trainer, a Handicapped Scuba Association of America instructor, CMAS and former YMCA Silver Scuba instructor. He also teaches First Aid and AED. He is co-author of the PADI Scubafit Diver Distinctive Specialty. When not teaching scuba he is an actor, a voice over artist, singer, guitar player and raconteur.

Three ways to get ready for a new dive

season or an upcoming trip

Maintain your gear - Maintain your body - Maintain your skills.

Three of us planned a night dive on the house reef. As they had done the night before, the dive shop left our requested weights on the counter for us to pick up later. In the meantime, another diver decided to join us, but by the time we returned to the dive shop it was closed - no weights. We were in an area in the Cayman Islands that was all iron shore - not a rock to be found. Fortunately there was some sand. So we scrounged for these plastic bottles in the recycling can and filled them for weight. Our fourth diver was able to join us and the improvised weight was perfect for our shallow warm water dive. -gma

Would you or wouldn't you?