Hooking on scuba gear and blindly diving into zombie-infested water is a wonderful way to mix the two childhood terrors of being eaten and drowning. Mark Brooks
Myth 1 – lots of divers get killed by sharks
‘Jaws’ did no good for the reputation of sharks and scuba diving. Anyone who has watched the film now counts themselves as an expert on all things diving and how ‘unsafe’ it is due to the sharks lurking in the water.
The record for sharks killing divers is rather dull to look at. In the US in 2005 27 people were killed by dogs. Whereas only four people worldwide died from sharks, suggesting that in actual fact ‘man’s best friend’ is more dangerous than sharks.
Myth 2 – diving equipment will cost you an absolute fortune
Another myth which puts people off diving is the belief that you need to save up huge amounts of money to simply buy the equipment for diving, and that’s before you even learn to dive. This is simply not true. Of course it helps, as with all sports, to have the best possible equipment but to start off with you only need two basic pieces of equipment; a mask and a snorkel.
Generally the rest you can rent from a dive shop. You may even be able to rent out the mask and the snorkel from the dive centre, it depends which dive centre you dive with. Renting out gear will not cost you a great amount, and it is how most new divers start.
Myth 3 – divers need to be Olympic level swimmers
Another myth is that you need to be a top class swimmer otherwise you can forget about diving. False! Of course being a great swimmer will add to your experience but if this were true then surely this would mean you could not go cycling if you were not up to competing in the Tour de France or you could not go running if you were not able to running the London Marathon.
This is clearly a myth, but if you are confident in water this will mean you are more confident when learning to dive. My instructor has taught people to dive who didn’t even know how to swim a length in a swimming pool. If you have the determination to become a diver nothing will stand in your way.
Myth 4 – getting scuba lessons costs a fortune
When you go diving at any dive site in the world you need to be certified as a diver. You only get certified through having had scuba lessons. The biggest certifying agency is PADI. When you start your scuba lessons with PADI you’ll begin with the Open Water Course. A myth exists that this certification costs a massive amount.
It costs somewhere between $250-$500 depending on where in the world you do your course. A diving certification for life for $500 is relatively cheap.
Myth 5 – diving is a macho sport which doesn’t welcome women
*ahem* I’m a woman and have been welcomed into the diving community with open arms. No one has ever looked down on me for being a woman and diving, if anyone tells you that you’re not welcome they are clearly living in the wrong century.
Scuba diving is not a macho obsessed sport which is NOT negative towards women. Maybe five or six decades ago it could have been said that diving is a macho sport, but this is far from true. Female participation is now greatly encouraged in the sport.
It is still true that male participation is higher than women, but the ration is now only 67/33 scuba diving is now very much a sport for females as well as men, no one has the right to tell you you aren’t allowed to dive because you’re a woman.
So now you don’t have an excuse! Grab your fins, and get diving!! 🙂