Taking up a sport at an early age is always a good idea. After all, professionals in all areas of sport start very young, and work extremely hard at it! If you’re looking to enjoy a sport just for fun, scuba diving is a great choice.
Nothing else brings you close to the wonderful marine life that we have in the lakes, seas, and oceans of Earth, and it’s an exhilarating experience every time. Below, we will look at what scuba is all about, and give you some advice on getting started.
How Old Do You Have to Be to Scuba Dive?: The Professional Association of Diving Instructors stipulate the youngest age for their certified courses is 10 years old. There are however some instructors who will begin training in an enclosed environment such as a swimming pool with children as young as 8 years of age.
Scuba and Youngsters
First, what is scuba diving? It is a form of diving in which you carry tanks of oxygen (in fact a mix) that you breathe while underwater. It is this aspect – underwater breathing – that is most difficult to get used to, as it is not natural for us to do so.
This is why starting to dive early is a major bonus. You can learn what scuba stands for here and there is more about the other equipment you will need, but before we go on, let’s answer the question – how old do you have to be?
To go scuba diving, you have to be trained, and by a professional who is accredited to recognized diving bodies. The reason for this is because of the inherent dangers; safety is paramount when in the water, and always comes first.
PADI – the Professional Association of Diving Instructors – is one such body, and they stipulate the youngest age for their certified courses is 10 years old. However, there are some instructors who will begin training in an enclosed environment such as a swimming pool with children as young as 8 years of age.
One advantage of learning to scuba dive is that you get a better sense of the sheer majesty of our seas and oceans, and many people who dive also do what they can to help save our oceans from the vast amounts of pollution that we have subjected them to over the years.
What About Free Diving?
There are many experienced divers who like to diver without scuba gear, but this seriously limits the depths you can get to. A very experienced diver may be able to swim for a short while at, say, 40 feet, but beyond 60 feet and you begin to feel the effects of lack of oxygen and the rapidly increasing pressure of the water.
It is not recommended to go deeper without scuba gear, although there’s information on how deep a human can dive without scuba gear that might open your eyes!
Scuba diving is a great pastime to get involved in, and one that gives you a far greater appreciation of the wonders of the oceans. If you have a child who wants to start, you should get in touch with a local diving club and see if they run classes for youngsters. It could be the best thing they have ever done!