Not to scare you off or anything, but I would make darn sure you know what you are getting into. SCUBA is very dangerous. Skydiving is safer. My Dad was a Master and an instuctor. And he rarely bubble dived. He would get Nitogen Narcossis fairly easy. You have to be in very good shape. Not much of a drinker or smoker, and be able to handle panic situations like a pro. You see a shark, and bolt topside, your toast. Be very, very carefull. Bubble diving isnt for everyone. I dont bubble dive. Snorkling is just fine with me.
It's not as scary as Gary is making it out to be. It is safer than skydiving. Try landing without a parachute. I can ditch scuba gear on any dive and swim to the surface if I had to. I am (actually, was) an assistant instructer & divemaster. I quit DM'ing due to rising insurance rates that we are required to have.
It is an expensive hobby if you let it. It just depends on how much you will dive. I used to dive out of POC almost every weekend during the summer. The cost to run offshore & spearfish for a day is about the same cost as a day of fishing...except we don't have to buy bait.
Since you put it that way, skydiving without a parachute would be more dangerous. LOL
I can do "Ditch and Recovery" myself. And come up without water in my mask. But be honest. How deep can you drop gear and surface on one breath without getting bent? It can be done if you follow the smallest bubbles up while exhaling, very slowly. And you know how folks tend to underweight. But as an instructer, you see how people react. You know why I am being cautious. Bubble diving isnt anything to take lightly.
And what is the thing about flying, then diving? Pressurized cabins, I forget. Its been many years.
Getting "bent" and narcosis are 2 different things. I have yet to experience either, but have friends that have done both.
For the most part, people tend to overweight, not under.
Ditching gear and swimming to the surface is a function of how long you've been down, rather than how deep. If you are beyond your "no decompression limit" (which any good recreational diver will not be...that's why it's called recreational diving), then yes, you can most assuredly count on getting bent by doing an emergency ascent. But again, If dive gear fails at depth, you can make it to the surface. You may get bent in th process, but you will at least have a better chance than if that parachute fails. I've only heard of 1 skydiver that bounced. That chute and it's reserve fail...you're toast.
The rule about diving & flying is to not fly for 24 hours after diving. That can be shortened to about 12 or 18 with the use of dive computers and nitrox blends, which are becoming more popular.
And yes, ComeFrom? I have seen a diver puke through his dive gear. And no, it wasn't me.
Gary...as for in-shape, I'm a 24 year old who doesn't smoke, rarely drinks, and exercises regularly. As far as keeping my cool in tight situations...I guess I'll have to feel that one out. Thanks for the warnings, though.
Dissipator...thanks for the address. I knew there would be costs involved, but I guess I'm willing to part with the money if the sport is as rewarding as I've heard.
Go for it, you will not be dissappointed! I began diving in 1982 and never had a problem, just lots of great experiences. Diving is as safe as you make it. One thing I have seen in alot of people who tried to dive was that some of them experienced problems clearing their ears from the beginning of their lessons. If you can't get beyond clearing your ears, you may have recurring problems on trips. At any rate, take the lessons and get certified. By the time you have completed the lessons you will know if you want to continue.
I had logged close to 1,000 dives prior to having lung surgery about 6 years ago and believe me, I would still be diving today if it wasn't so risky for me now.
What is the difference in PADI and NAUI? I am going for my open water dive in lake travis this weekend to become a certified diver from NAUI. So far it has been fun but lots of things to know before you actually get in the water.
difference between NAUI and PADI is like the difference between a Chevy truck and a Ford truck. Both will do basically the same thing, just look different.
PADI's origins lean are recreational diving in nature, where NAUI evolved from ex-military divers. Old-time NAUI instrurctors will tell you that you get a better course if you go with NAUI, bot the truth is, both will get you your C-Card. The basic NAUI course has a few additional lessons in it.
Go for you O/W dives at Lake Travis. I've been in Travis when you literally couldn't see your hand in front of your face, and I've been when it was very clear and could see for miles. I hope your dives are more like the latter, it can be unnerving for new divers to be in low-viz situations. (and sometimes for old divers as well)
I didnt come accross as paranoid, or trying to scare anyone. I just wouldnt everyone to think that its no big deal bubble diving. If anyone gets over cocky, and think they are superman, they can end up in a world of trouble. Maybe the training is better than it used to be in the 60s. Didja know that JC Pennys, used to sell tanks to anyone? With or without a license. My Mom worked in a dive shop. A customer brought in his tank for re-filling. My Mom didnt catch it, but it seems the customer thought it was a good idea to oil the valve......
Our dive instructor told us stories of students he had and had us cracking up. He said some quit because they just wanted to start with the full scuba gear. We got lucky and got a good teacher and one that had patients because not everyone one was learning on the same pace but worked with them. The down side is I already have too many expensive hobbies and I am just adding another one. At least I will be ready when I go to Jamaica and don't have to sit for the 2 hour crash course they give at the resort.
save yourself some money and don't go to Jamaica just for diving. If you are going to be there otherwise, go ahead and dive. Jamaica is not known for it's diving since they use to practise dynamite fishing over the reefs.
I got my C-Card thru the YMCA on Bellaire blvd... The Y course is close to the same as PADI... We did our open water at Travis.. This all took place in 1984... Don't know if the Y still does it anymore... Have logged close to 400 dives since, Aruba is nice, but so is the flower gardens in the gulf, rig dives are fun also, have speared a few fish but I would rather catchum on a rod....