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Scuba & Snorkeling Equipment

Buying scuba and snorkeling equipment can be a daunting task for inexperienced divers. Many people like to own their own gear because of the convenience it provides for them to go on a dive whenever they like and do it much more comfortably. Let’s take a look at what gear you might need and how you can select these items.

Do scuba diving and snorkeling require tons of equipment?

No. There are only a few pieces of gear you need in order to enjoy scuba diving or snorkeling. These basic pieces include a diving mask, a snorkel, and fins or flippers.

How should you choose a diving mask?

Masks allow you to see clearly underwater. These products come in different designs and colors, but the most important factor to consider is how comfortable the mask feels. Here are some tips to help you select a suitable mask for your purposes:

  • Size: Find a size that fits you without leaving gaps.
  • Color: Go for products with lighter colors; these are easier to see through.
  • Material: The best masks are made of 100% silicon. Rubber and PVC are not suitable mask-skirt materials. The mouthpiece on this piece of equipment should be made of soft silicone for comfort.
  • Lenses: The lenses should be made of impact-resistant material.
How should you choose a snorkel?

This equipment helps you breathe while swimming underwater in the ocean. Following are some of the different types of snorkels:

  • Standard tube snorkels: These are simple tubes that you breathe through. Most standard tubes don’t have a mechanism to help expel water if the item gets flooded while snorkeling or diving.
  • Semi-dry snorkels: These are designed to deflect water on the surface. However, the snorkel will still flood if a diver gets submerged.
  • Dry snorkels: These have a purge valve that closes when a diver goes underwater, meaning the equipment stays dry.
  • Roll-up snorkels: These are easy to carry in your pocket, making them convenient.

When buying this kind of equipment, you should look for one with a purge valve at the mouthpiece to allow you to expel water easily in case of flooding. Alternatively, you can go for dry snorkels, which stay dry even when you are diving.

How should you choose your diving fins?

Fins or flippers help you move around in the ocean efficiently. Diving fins should be chosen carefully; a poor selection can spoil a diving experience. If you don’t have strong legs, you should purchase smaller flippers. Ensure you can wiggle your toes when wearing a pair of flippers or go for a slightly larger size. More experienced and stronger scuba divers are able to use bigger and less flexible ones comfortably.

What else do you need for diving and snorkeling?

Other types of equipment are useful for diving or snorkeling.

  • Exposure suits: These are meant to keep a diver warm when diving. The suits work by keeping water off your body. A good exposure suit should fit comfortably and not restrict movement.
  • Buoyancy Control Device (BCD): These devices give you control underwater. They are designed as jackets, wings, or traveling BCDs. You can combine wing-style BCDs with harness systems.
  • Dive watches: These are useful if you intend to dive multiple times in a single day, letting you keep track of how long you’ve been diving.
  • A dive knife: Dive knives and shears help you cut through ropes, fishing lines, and vegetation that may trap you as you dive.
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