SCUBA diving is such an eye-opening experience, particularly for people who never imagined in a million years that they would voluntarily don a tank and regulator and learn how to breathe underwater. Learning to dive enhances your poise under pressure, critical thinking, patience, and respect for the sea…or at least it should. There are some divers who just don’t seem to get it, from a lot of different angles, and diving with them can really sully your experience if they’re bad enough. We are never done learning when it comes to SCUBA diving, and we all have our faults, but the following are 5 types of divers you don’t ever want to be.
This type of diver doesn’t particularly care what anyone else says — she or he’s already done it, dove it, learned it, and taught it. They will often be doing their own thing on the boat while everyone else is getting ready to dive, or even worse, will talk over the dive guide as he briefs the rest of the divers on the boat. They disregard any guidelines set out by the leader, shame other divers who don’t meet their high standards, and basically act like the SCUBA industry owes them something. Don’t be this diver.
The Sticky Fingers
If you paid any attention at all in your training, you would remember that one of the main tenets of responsible diving is, “take nothing but pictures, leave nothing but bubbles,” but the sticky fingers diver obviously slept through that portion. This type of diver chases marine life, thrusts his hands into holes and crevices, and thinks riding a manatee is a great photo op. Don’t be this diver.
Good grief, these poor divers. The panicky diver presents a threat to anyone around them, because you have no idea if or when they are going to freak out on the dive and rip your mask off your face or your regulator out of your mouth. Now, we’ve all had those panicky moments, but that’s why our training tells us what to do beforehand, and our skills tests allow us to act out scenarios which could incite panic. If you find yourself getting panicky on a dive, remember your training and focus on remaining calm, instead of shooting to the surface or otherwise endangering yourself and others. Don’t be this diver.
The Lone Wolf
The lone wolf is a guide’s worst nightmare, as they tend to disregard the dive plan entirely and just do whatever they want. This could be because they are part know-it-all, or part sticky fingers, but the only thing they really are is irresponsible. Peeling off onto your own journey is disrespectful to your buddy, the guide, and the rest of the group, but more importantly, it puts you at risk of getting into a situation you need help with and not having the backup you should have. Don’t be this diver.
We’ve all dived with the drag at least once before, and a certain amount of slack does get cut to newbies, because they are usually so task loaded they don’t even notice. But an experienced diver should always be aware of his or her buoyancy, and take care to tuck away gauges and accessories so they don’t silt up the dive for everyone else. Luck be with you if you’re with the drag in a cave! Don’t be this diver.