Snorkeling is an excellent way explore the underwater world with minimal training and skills. However, before you hop in the water for the first time, read this article to understand some basic information about snorkeling. What Exactly Is Snorkeling? How Is It Different From Scuba Diving and Freediving? Snorkeling is an activity that allows participants to observe the underwater world from the surface using a mask and a snorkel tube. Snorkeling requires less training and gear than scuba diving and free diving, and the basics can be learned in a short period of time.
Snorkelers typically stay on the surface of the water, and may even use floatation devices such as life vests or snorkeling vests to float comfortably on the surface (although neither of these are strictly necessary). The snorkeler breathes with a snorkel tube and mouthpiece. While the snorkeler’s face is in the water, the tube remains above the water’s surface If a snorkeler chooses to dive below the surface, it is generally for a relatively short period of time.
- Scuba Diving:
Scuba diving requires more complicated gear than snorkeling, including a compressed air tank and regulators which allows the participant to breathe from the tank while completely submerged. A scuba diver may stay underwater for an hour or more without surfacing, and certified scuba divers commonly descend to depths of up to sixty feet. People who are interested in trying scuba diving must enroll in either a 1-day scuba experience class or a multi-day scuba diving certification course.
Freediving is a sport in which the participant holds his breath while swimming below the surface of the water for an extended period of time (instead of breathing continuously through a snorkel). Freediving, like snorkeling, uses relatively minimal gear, but does require more advanced training. An entry-level freediving course typically lasts two or more days.
- Who Can Snorkel?
Almost anyone who is comfortable in the water can snorkel! Unlike scuba diving, snorkeling has not minimum age. Children, teenagers, adults and even seniors can participate in this relaxing activity. However, whenever snorkeling at a new or unfamiliar site, be sure that your snorkel skills are sufficient for the environment.
The Take-Home Message About Snorkeling Snorkeling is an enjoyable, relaxing activity that is available to almost everyone! Snorkeling requires less training and equipment than other water sports such as freediving or scuba diving, and can be learned in a short period of time. Those who are new to snorkeling will benefit from a snorkeling course, during which they will learn basic skills and increase their comfort in the water. Whenever snorkeling in a new location as Chania, be sure to inquire with Omega Divers as to the conditions and local safety protocols before entering the water.