First, diving may look fun and easy as you see it however, there are a lot of consideration and preparation to take in order to become a diver. Exploring the wonders of the sea is really an exciting and fun adventure. If you are looking for other water activities for fitness aside from swimming, diving is one of the best and overwhelming water-based experiences you can try and will surely exceed far beyond your expectations.
What makes diving a challenge? You have to be prepared because diving includes some obstacles that you have to overcome such as:
- Experiencing the difficulty in propulsion through the surrounding water.
- Experience rapid heat loss as the surrounding is much cooler than your body.
- Breathing gas of compressed density
- Altering the cardio-respiratory system to adapt to change in environment.
- In order to prevent damage to air-containing spaces in the body, the diver has to accommodate to changes in gas volume and pressure
- Accommodation to the effects of the partial pressure of gases that can cause toxic, narcotic, stimulatory and gas solubility changes to bodily functions.
If you are not physically, mentally and systematically ready, you may end up in accidents leading to injuries or illness that can occur during or after diving. From there, you have to undergo different exercise and workouts to help you body be prepared for diving. Exercise that are pool exercises (that can help you be at ease with water), stretching exercise to avoid cramps while under water, and other regular land workouts which can improve muscle strength and endurance for diving. Nevertheless, if you are already a good swimmer, you are actually capable of becoming a good diver.
There are different considerations to take before being allowed to dive. Fitness are assessed by physicians who are already knowledgeable to the physiology needed for diving and the environment a person may go through while diving. The medical evaluation should consider absolute, relative, or temporary disqualifying conditions as well as excessive smoking and substance abuse. Poor muscle tone, lack of conditioning, obesity and other evidence of dietary indiscretion should be a stimulus to advise the diver about fitness. A medical condition that could injure the diver or his buddy diver should disqualify the diver. The buddy-diver system is the universally recognized practice of pairing scuba divers for mutual safety and implies that each of the pair is fully capable of providing effective aid to the other.
Obesity represents a hazard to divers because of the common lack of adequate physical condition in obese individuals and because inert gas exchange and its relationship to decompression sickness are modified unfavorably. Total body fat of less the 22% in males, and less than 28% in females is desirable. Pregnant women are also discouraged to go diving for the sensitive condition may incur accident for the mother and the baby in the womb.
It is a must for divers to have a reasonable level of physical and physiological fitness because of the obligatory stresses of the underwater environment. They must also be free of other limitations compromising safety in the underwater milieu. For safe diving, the millions of recreational and sport divers should maintain a reasonable level of fitness, the medical requirements for sport diving not being stringent. With all that said, hope you are now aware of the risks in diving to prepare yourself if ever you opt to try this as a fitness activity. Good luck and stay fit.