3 Snorkeling Tips for Beginners
Before you can start exploring the high seas and diving into the deep, you have to get comfortable being in the water.
Getting that confidence is not always easy, especially if you didn’t grow up taking trips to the ocean as a child and teenager. It may even take two or three experiences for you to start feeling more at ease. But if you are new to snorkeling and you want to get the most out of an upcoming snorkeling trip, there are some tricks and tips you can follow to jumpstart your proficiency in the water.
You might even be surprised at how much some of these simple tips can improve your snorkeling experience.
1. Give Your Gear a Test Run
Many people plan to rent snorkeling gear on their trip. Assuming you are provided with quality equipment and have some experience with snorkeling, there is nothing wrong with going this route.
But if you are new to snorkeling, you might want to consider investing in your own set of snorkeling gear. There are a ton of really high-quality, affordable options available that you can start testing long before your trip is scheduled.
If you have access to a pool, throw your gear on and slowly start exploring it. Get a feel for the fins and how they carry you throughout the pool before you even bother putting on the mask. Once you feel better about swimming with your fins on, go ahead and start adjusting your mask to find a place that feels comfortable and secure.
Do a few quick dives just below to the surface to make sure you aren’t taking in water. Then dive a bit deeper and practice blowing air through your nose to combat the pressure in the mask.
At this point, you might notice that your snorkel mask is beginning to fog up from your breath or from the heat of your body. If this is the case, you might want to consider investing in some anti-fog spray. Even if you manage to master snorkeling, it won’t matter if you aren’t able to enjoy the environment around you.
2. Float Before You Swim
You’ve probably seen a million scenes in films where people are free diving below the surface with nothing more than a snorkel mask and fins on as they go past coral and exotic fish.
It’s not exactly movie magic — this level of diving is definitely possible. But it isn’t necessary for the vast majority of snorkelers to ever leave the surface. Most really good snorkeling locations are clear and shallow enough that floating, not swimming, is good enough.
Adventure doesn’t have to mean that you are putting in enormous amounts of effort to dive into the ocean. Adventure can mean getting to enjoy brilliant views with very minimal effort, which leads us into our third tip...
3. Conserve Your Energy
It is absolutely essential for you to conserve as much energy as possible when you are snorkeling. For the most part, you should primarily be floating when you are taking in views. If you find yourself severely out of breath, it might be a sign you are using too much energy.
All that splashing around might even scare away some of the wildlife.
Just being in the cold water makes your body work overtime just to keep your internal temperature higher. Luckily, there is an easy solution: wetsuits.
Wetsuits keep a thin layer of warm water between you and the ocean, which prevents your body from having to continually produce excessive body heat. If you are planning to spend a long period of time in the water, you should definitely consider purchasing a high-quality wetsuit.
Even if you only get one use out of it, the best snorkeling experiences come when you are properly fitted with a wetsuit that can keep you warm for long periods of time.