How Fit Do You Need To Be For Scuba Diving?
One of the great things about scuba diving is that it offers a fantastic opportunity to interact with the natural environment while engaging in quality family time! It is an activity that is suitable for people of all ages and athletic abilities which makes it a great family activity. However, even though the effect of weightlessness that being under water creates, scuba diving does require some degree of strength and stamina. With that in mind, let’s take a look at some of the health and fitness requirements that you should consider if you would like to take up scuba diving.
Are You Fit Enough?
One of the most important things to realize about scuba diving is that the conditions can be unpredictable. That means that from time to time you may need to perform a strenuous task with little notice if any unexpected situation arises. You may also need to swim against the current or for an extended period of time in order to reach your dive site or return to the surface. All of this means that you will need to have a reasonable standard of fitness and mobility in order to cope with the demands that scuba diving will put on your body. This is why you must declare any illness or injuries when you are learning.
Conditions That Restrict Your Ability to Dive
There are a number of medical conditions and / or illnesses which can mean that you will be unable to participate in scuba diving temporarily. These include colds, flu, joint / muscle injuries and also pregnancy. In the case of colds and flu, these illnesses can result in swelling and blockages in the sinuses and airways which could make it difficult for your body to equalize with the water pressure during a dive. Similarly, joint and muscle injuries can not only restrict your range of motion in the water, but also can cause an increased risk of decompression illness, so it is best to wait until such injuries are fully healed before participating.
In terms of pregnancy, the main issue is that there is no data relating to the effects that scuba diving could have on an unborn child, therefore this kind of sport is not recommended during pregnancy and a responsible dive tour company will not allow pregnant women to participate .
Enjoying Your Experience
With all of the above, you may be a little put off trying scuba diving! However, as long as you are in good health and moderately fit you can enjoy this activity. Even if you do have a long term health condition, it does not necessarily mean that you can not participate, it may be the case that you simply need consent from your physician. It is also best to make your instructor or dive leader aware of any conditions that you have so that they can be prepared. Even if you have restricted mobility you could still participate in scuba diving by joining shallower dives and those accessed from shore.