Pneumatic Spearguns

 Air Powered Spearguns  Comments Off on Pneumatic Spearguns
Nov 012013
 

In this post, we review and take look at Pneumatic spearguns – what they are and how they work. Essentially, they use compressed air as a means of projecting spears at underwater targets, usually fish. Unlike the band powered gun (the principal alternative available to the spearfisherman) that uses a rubber band, this type of gun has a piston that moves down the length of the barrel and surges to the front of the barrel whenever the spear fisherman pulls the trigger.

pneumatic
The power to reload this piston can be adjusted by the amount of pressure you pump into the gun’s air chamber. Pneumatic guns are not so different to load from band spearguns. They require the same amount of force to load as they shoot.

Usually, pneumatic guns have less drag and make much less noise when fired (and when moving through water) than band-powered guns. Cheaper pneumatic guns might be an exception to this advantage, as they are built more “cost effectively” (a polite way of saying “on the cheap”!!). While you can keep a pneumatic gun loaded for a long time without actually affecting anything, their power reduces as you go deeper underwater. A pneumatic speargun will be better off with annual servicing to make sure that they do not damage or lose pressure due to sand in the barrel. However, repair means that you send the gun back to the manufacturer, as very few local stores will have the necessary equipment to service it.

Longer pneumatic guns have a longer effective range and exhibit more accuracy. Shorter guns are suitable for close shots. When adventuring out there in the ocean, the point would be to bring the longest pneumatic gun you can carry!

This video shows how to correctly load:

The best and most respected brands to look out for include Cressi, Mares and Omer

Go here for a discussion on band versus pneumatic spearguns.

Basic Elements of Scuba

 Scuba Diving  Comments Off on Basic Elements of Scuba
Apr 272016
 

As with everything in life, if you want to get better at something, to experience more pleasure and simply have more fun, you mustn’t stop learning. That’s precisely the reason why we have dived deep into our own experience and collected for you just a few of those important things that will make your life easier while scuba diving. Oh, and that will push you forward and make progress on the way.

1. Keep a Diary
Regardless of the number of your previous dives, whether it’s your 3rd or 50th; it’s a good idea to keep a diary. It allows you to track your progress and provides some objective insights – you can keep track of your weighting, the gear you used, the gas consumption, and the tank size. And, if nothing else, you can use it simply for the purpose of storing your precious experiences and being able to relive them again. This will make your future planning much easier.

2. Buoyancy
This is probably the single most important thing in scuba diving. If this is bad, you will not have the greatest time of your life, that’s for sure. It depends on several factors, where weighting is the most important one. If you bring too much stuff with you, your buoyancy is not going to be great, but weighting can also depend on the thickness of your wetsuit, and the type of water you are in.

3. Relax
Once you learn to relax in the water, you will be able to feel the full scuba-dive experience. It’s more than just going underwater and being able to breathe there. It’s about experiencing a whole new dimension, the new world if you will. Once you start moving at the slower pace, the animals will adapt to your presence and start swimming out from their shelters; you will not be perceived as threat anymore – just a large floating object.

You will also minimize air consumption and your buoyancy will be much better.

We hope these tips and tricks will improve your experience. Until next time – happy diving!

 Posted by at 10:26 am

U.S. Divers Mercury Shorty Adult Wetsuit

 Diving Equipment  Comments Off on U.S. Divers Mercury Shorty Adult Wetsuit
Dec 052015
 

The U.S. Divers brand is known for their high quality gear – snorkels, fins, masks and all kinds of accessories for watersports and snorkelling. They have everything a watersports fan could wish for, and their gear is available at many premium brand sporting goods stores and in online stores as well.

Shorty WetsuitTheir Mercury Shorty Adult Wetsuit is quite popular among watersports enthusiasts. The wetsuit is made out of highest quality materials and its combination of performance, fit and style makes it a very popular choice.
The Shorty Wetsuit features 2 mm side panels that encourage movement, as well as 3 mm chest panels. The titanium blended chest panels reflect the heat back to the wearer, thereby keeping him or her warm, so the wetsuit is a good choice for divers and surfers who are often in cool currents. The super-stretch panels that are located under the arm provide freedom of movement.

The neck, wrists and legs of the suit are equipped with neoskin seals, making sure the water stays out. High quality flat lock stitching provides extra comfort and adheres to the skin perfectly. The suit is also equipped with a heavy-duty YKK #10 zipper that is able to withstand a lot of stress.

It’s good to know that such a suit comes in a range of sizes (from small to XX-Large) and with a two year warranty. Many are also surprised about its affordable pricing.

Those who have tried the suit in action praise it as one of the best purchases ever made. It’s very comfortable, looks good and delivers what it promises –the suit is a perfect fit: the water stays out and you stay warm. It’s a good idea to consult the size table before purchasing one, though, to ensure that it really does fit like a glove.
There’s no more need to cut short on snorkelling trips, jet skiing or surfing. With the U.S. Divers Mercury Wetsuit, you can stay in water, even in cooler currents, for hours without getting cold. No more goosebumps while diving!

 Posted by at 1:38 pm

Cressi Pro Light Open Heel Diving Fin

 Fins  Comments Off on Cressi Pro Light Open Heel Diving Fin
Nov 212015
 

Cressi is one of the largest manufacturers of water sports and diving equipment out there. The company covers four market areas: snorkelling, spearfishing, diving and swimming, and they also have a global presence. They have achieved this by providing recreational and professional swimmers, divers and water sports enthusiasts with high quality gear; their offer includes anything related to water sports, from diving fins to spear guns.

What’s really great about the company is that they also value development and innovation: they were the first to introduce open heel adjustable diving fins, as well as the first ones who offered a diving mask with a nose pocket. What’s admirable about Cressi is that they one of the very few companies worldwide that produces complete lines of equipment and accessories for each market area they cover. Should you wish to do so, you could buy all the diving equipment you need from Cressi.

cressi finsWith such a great company, it’s no wonder that the Cressi Pro Light Open Heel Diving fins remain so popular among the diving community. They offer both comfort and performance. The diving fins, available in all black, blue/black or yellow/black combination come with a two-year warranty, and are a great pick for beginners and professionals alike. They are a favourite of many diving instructors and technical divers as well. Many praise them for their durability too, and say they are comparable to models that cost much more in all aspects.

The fins are lightweight, have longer blades and they are a bit on the stiff side. Their design makes them generate a lot of power, which really helps when you wish to reach a certain area fast. The heel strap has good grip and a wide range of adjustment points, making it a good fit on any foot. The clips on the strap are solid, heavy duty and they make sure the strap stays in place. The foot pocket is snug, comfortable and placed beneath the blade, which is why the fins are able to generate that much power.

The sizes range from XS to XXL, so everyone should be able to find their perfect fit. They do run a little large, however, but this is perfectly understandable as it’s advisable to wear diving boots with this type of fins. Should you prefer to wear them without boots, you should be careful not to purchase a larger size: if you are have a size 13 shoe size, L to XL should be more than enough for you.

 Posted by at 1:19 pm

U.S. Divers Full Adult Wetsuit

 Diving Equipment  Comments Off on U.S. Divers Full Adult Wetsuit
Nov 142015
 

Every experienced diver knows how important a good wetsuit is. Without a proper wetsuit, there’s no way you will be able to snorkel or dive for longer periods of time. A good, high quality wetsuit will keep you warm and be a perfect fit; it won’t be uncomfortable in any way. Depending on what kind of waters you plan to dive in, the suit will have the appropriate thickness.

The U.S. Divers Full Adult Wetsuit offers great value – it’s made of the highest quality materials you can find out there, everyone can find their perfect fit thanks to a multitude of sizes, and on top of that, it comes with both style and performance.

Full Wetsuit

Those who dislike cooler waters will be happy to know that the full size type U.S. Divers Wetsuit will make sure you stay warm – the titanium blend 3 millimetres chest panels won’t let any heat escape. The suit also has 2 mm side panels, which is enough to keep you warm and preserve plenty of flexibility. This thickness is most appropriate for water temperatures of 60°F/15°C and above.

The suit’s flexibility is further improved with super-stretch panels under each arm. This really makes a difference while diving; it gives you improved freedom of movement and you won’t feel trapped inside your wetsuit.

The legs, wrists and neck of the suit feature neoskin seals, which really do an amazing job at keeping the water out. Some might feel that the neck opening is too small, but it’s actually a good fit; you just need to get used to it. Some people have also commented that all the sizes of the suit seem a bit small and that the suit is difficult to get into, but wearing the suit for shorter periods of time usually does the trick, and you will feel completely comfortable after a day or two. Should you feel restrained after that, it’s probably time to get a larger one.
The suit comes at an affordable price, so purchasing a pair of diver gloves and diving boots with it shouldn’t be an issue. Don’t skip on these items if you wish to achieve proper thermal retention. If diving in cooler waters, a wetsuit hood and a rash west will help you stay warm.

A wetsuit is only as good as its stitching, and the U.S. Divers Full Adult wetsuit will not disappoint you in that regard – the flat lock stitching provides additional comfort and fits the suit tightly around your body. Your knee caps will be safe behind anti-abrasion knee pads that will keep any scraping or rubbing at a bare minimum. The #10 YKK zipper, made to remain corrosion free and withstand a number of various conditions, makes sure that the suit remains fully sealed. A two-year warranty is an added bonus; should something not function properly, rest assured, you will get a new suit.

Many praise the U.S. Divers Full Adult wetsuit as a great and well-rounded deal; it’s made of quality materials, it’s a very good fit, it keeps you warm and provides you with enough flexibility.

 Posted by at 1:15 pm

Fantasy Diving Watch List (V 2.0)

 Diving Watches  Comments Off on Fantasy Diving Watch List (V 2.0)
Mar 162014
 

Late last year, I put together a list of some of my favourite diving watches, with the vague promise of further fantasy lists. True to form, here’s a second list of some of the watches I would love to own.

PITA Oceania 5000m
Man, hwo tough does a watch have to be to make it down to five thousand meters and still survive? About as sturdy (and huge) as this beautiful beast from PITA. It’s over 2cm thick! Not a household name, or even a famous one amongst divers, Pita is a Spanish brand that knows how to manifacture stunning watches. It’s probably the fact that they are not part of the usual Swiss clan that they manage to pull something fresh out of the bag. I just love the curved dome and the massive thickness of the Oceania.

Clerc Hydroscaphe
CLERC HydroscaphFor my next fantasy watch, we are getting into a watch that would easily empty the bank account of the average diver! Clerc make high end watches that are just drop dead gorgeous. Just look at this spec:
BRUSHED TITANIUM & BLACK DLC TITANIUM
4.0MM GLARE-PROOFED SAPPHIRE CRYSTAL
AUTOMATIC HELIUM ESCAPEMENT VALVE
WATER RESISTANT TO 1000 METRES
DIAMETER: 44.6MM / 49.6MM
CALIBRE C602, AUTOMATIC WINDING
28 JEWELS, 28’800 VIB/H
45-HOUR PO

It’s a true high end watch that bucks the trend with me, as I usually don’t like faces that are over-busy, but the mechanical look of the Hydroscaph just draws me in!

Berkbinder & Brown T46
They only make one watch and it’s devine. Take a look at the bronze T46 and I dare you not to feel the masculinity that the watch oozes. This is what Berkbinder & Brown have to say about the awesome T46:

The two-piece case is still closed with a miniature bolt circle that has been slightly expanded to permit a axial “O” ring gasket, and larger engraving. All the fasteners are proprietary, enhancing the unique look of the watch. The case is machined on a CNC lathe and milled from a solid bar stock. The lug pockets holding the strap have been slightly enlarged and are internal to the case.

It’s by far the least expensive of the three watches on my second fantasy watch list, but I am pretty sute it would be the Berkbinder I would buy – the screws on the bronze face just look fantastic.

 

 Posted by at 7:25 pm

Anatomy Of The Perfect Diving Fin

 Fins  Comments Off on Anatomy Of The Perfect Diving Fin
Feb 142014
 

An experienced diver knows how to preserve air, because such a person is much more relaxed underwater. Instead, a beginner may need to preserve more air. An efficient pair of scuba fins could mean less energy used and less consumed oxygen. There are many options to choose from when buying such equipment. Many divers still enjoy using the traditional full foot products. Some manufacturers can provide more complex diving equipment, manufactured using advanced engineering for improved efficiency and durability.

scuba finsThe reason for which some people may prefer traditional equipment is that they can get frustrated with advanced equipment, because of its complexity. There are two main factors to consider when you are in the search for the best pair of scuba fins: comfort and fit. If you don’t feel good in the equipment, it may not serve your purpose very well. Another secondary factor that could influence the type of equipment you buy can be the color. There is a great variety of colors available, but brighter equipment is easier to see underwater.

In order to be able to reach a decision about the type of scuba fins that you buy, you could do some research for knowing what every type has to offer. The equipment can be classified according to the blade types that are used and other criteria and there are benefits for each type:

Standard Fins
The blades of this type of equipment are just flat, controlling the water flow while they are moved. While the water is pushed backwards, the diver can go forward. For improving the equipment strength, reinforced bars are used.

Channeled Fins
This type uses various materials for the blades that can make them control the water more efficiently. Propulsion can be improved very much, because the U shape that is formed can create a more focused water jet.

Hinged Blades
Hinged blades usually include a standard or a channel blade. Additionally, there is a hinged point on the blade that allows the blade to offer the best performance by moving automatically at the optimum angle. Others features included can be bungee style bends, simple narrow sections and central flexing bars.

The Split Type
Split fins imitate the solution brought by nature for propulsion. By splitting the blade in two, the drag is reduced on the fins, making the job easier for leg muscles when they work for long periods of time. In other words, the propulsion of a single blade can be obtained, but with less efforts.

Force Fins
These types of fins are a lot smaller than other types but they can have an advantage: those who feel comfortable in the equipment can benefit from an equal kicking force, imitating a small scale whale tail.

For every type of scuba fins there are several other designs that you can choose. If you’re a professional diver, you may surely want to choose a pair that is efficient and durable. This could mean spending a little more, but it may worth it. On the other hand, if you are a beginner, you can choose the traditional type (full foot) and the simplest designs.

This video on YouTube is quite cool and should help you a bit more with this tricky decision:

What To Look For in an Underwater Scuba Camera

 Underwater Photography  Comments Off on What To Look For in an Underwater Scuba Camera
Feb 022014
 

Choosing the perfect underwater camera depends on several factors, and today we will bring them closer to you. Diving is a marvellous experience and many divers wish to catch some of their best underwater moments on camera as well.

First off, you will have to choose whether you wish to buy an underwater camera or a special housing for your regular digital point and shoot camera, compact camera or DSLR. The most commonly used lenses for underwater photography are macro lenses or wide-angle lenses. They allow close focus, so there is no need for longer distances between the subject and the camera. Wide-angle lenses will help you get close enough to your subject. Fish eye lenses also do the trick. The image may end up being distorted because of the glass port when using the underwater housing, especially if a wide-angle or a fisheye lens is used. There is a solution however: a dome-shaped port or a fish eye port: both of them correct the 25% distortion – you will get the same angle you have on land this way. Sometimes you will have to buy a shader to eliminate sun flares as well.

underwater cameraThe camera and lenses you choose will also depend on whether you will shoot large or small subjects. Point and shoot cameras usually don’t work that well with larger subjects. It’s hard to get them to be wide angle. Most cameras today have 24 or 28mm lenses built in. If an auxiliary port is used, it can bring the lens to about 20 mm. When using a DSLR camera, before you go underwater, you will have to decide whether you want to shoot macro shots or wide angle shots, as there is no way to change the lens underwater. There is an option available to change the ports without destroying the camera, but they are still a bit limited.

The greatest difficulty of underwater photography is using the flash/strobe. The flash should never be used as a primary light source: its main usage is restoring lost color and supplementing the overall exposure. It takes a bit of practice to find the perfect balance between the strobe and the sunlight. Digital cameras make it easier to learn how to properly utilize underwater flash, so the learning curve isn’t that steep anymore.

In order to make sure your underwater pictures are perfect, you will have to choose whether you want automatic or manual exposure. Many underwater cameras usually have automatic exposure, but a good number of them also give you the freedom to control the exposure and shutter speed manually. Make sure the camera you choose has a highlight warning to avoid overexposed photographs.

The top point and shoot models at this moment include the Canon PowerShot D20 and Olympus Tough TG-1 iHS. Canon PowerShot D20 is a quite tough 12-megapixel camera that can go up to 33 feet underwater. It’s sturdy and can survive drops (up to 5 ft) and it operates very well in quite cold temperatures (14F). As with most rugged compact cameras, the lens is in the top corner and the controls are in the back. The focal length of the lens is from 28 to 140 mm, and the rear display is three inches in diameter and very bright and crisp. The images it produces in difficult lighting are very good and it also includes GPS, but it takes a bit longer to lock onto a signal. The price of the camera is $349.99. The Olympus Tough TG-1 iHS is a very speedy 12-megapixel camera that is of a bit different design than other point and shoot cameras; its lens is in the middle of the camera and the lens covers 25 to 100mm focal length, which is quite impressive. The f/2 aperture makes it possible to shoot at faster shutter speeds without the ISO going up. You can purchase a fisheye converter lens for the camera for $120, while the camera itself costs $399. The rear display is 3 inches in diameter and uses OLED instead of LCD technology, making the viewing angles much better. The camera can be used underwater for up to 40 feet (as well as the converter).

Should you be interested in interchangeable lens cameras and if you can pay a bit more, you will be interested in the Nikon 1 AW1, which is the world first camera with interchangeable lenses that is also waterproof and is readily available for $800 for a one lens kit or $1000 should you wish to purchase a two lens kit. The 13.2 mm x 8.8 mm sensor will help you catch great underwater pictures, and the ISO range is from 100-6400. The 14-megapixel camera can go as deep as 49 feet and withstand cold weather (as low as 14F) and falls from up to 6 feet. It has a 3-inch rear LCD display and a build in GPS system with altimeter, compass and depth meter, as well as action control system for gloved or underwater operations.

Unlike the typical scuba diving knife and (even less expensive) scuba torch, you should note that underwater photography costs quite a pretty penny. Nikon, Canon and Sony make very good DSLR cameras that will make great pictures and you will easily find housings for these cameras. You should note that not every camera has a housing for underwater photo shoots, but you will easily find housings for the above mentioned names. The bigger the sensor of the camera, the higher quality of photos – DSLR and mirrorless cameras will have the best underwater photos. The prices of the cameras usually range from $200 to $1200, while the housings cost from $250 upwards.

To take a look at what an underwater photography pro can really do, take a look at these photos by Tommy Schulz. And while you’re there, read some of the great advice on snapping during a dive.

The Humble Dive Torch – Do You Really Need One?

 Diving Equipment  Comments Off on The Humble Dive Torch – Do You Really Need One?
Jan 102014
 

LED dive torches are certainly indispensable tools for those who are passionate about scuba diving, especially if you plan to dive deep into the ocean where the visibility is diminished. There are hundreds of different variants of the basic dive torch available on the market, and while some of them use halogen bulbs, others rely on advanced LED (light emitting diodes) systems to deliver a bright, white, cost-effective and energy-efficient alternative to traditional torches.

There are several different aspects that must be taken into account when determining the efficacy of such a torch – the effective distance of light under the water is surely the most important one of them. On average, a good dive torch should deliver a bright light to a distance of 25 meters or more.

These torches are made from high-quality, durable material that is designed to withstand both impact and the high pressure delivered by the water. A heavy duty torch is of utmost importance both for professional divers and for amateurs, and most of them are made from an aluminum alloy which is not only very lightweight and designed to prevent hand fatigue, but also very durable as well.

SL4 Diving TorchThese torches are waterproof, as they are designed to be used under the water – however, different torches have different recommended depths, and some of them can go 100 meters deep or even more. Most manufacturers offer a guarantee for the distance to which you can submerse the torch. Also, they are anti-corrosion and they usually have a matte black finish that is both durable and very aesthetically pleasing.

Last, but not least, the number of lumens delivered by the torch should also be taken into account – in a nutshell, the power of the light emitted by the LED torch is measured in lumens. The more lumens, the more bright and intense the light. The average dive torch has approximately 1,800-2,000 lumens.

Every diver needs a dive torch, as they are diving into the unknown and they never know what to expect down in the abyss. A torch will deliver long-lasting, efficient, powerful and continuous light that will let them explore the underwater world and inspect everything to the smallest detail. The torch is particularly important for those who go for underwater expeditions, searching for ancient sites or traces of ancient civilizations.

What Dive Torch Do I Recommend?

The Underwater Kinetics SL4 LED Dive Torch is brought to you by the UK manufacturer and it is surely a great addition to the gear of every professional diver. It has a light power of 400 Lumens and a total burn time of up to 10 hours. Moreover, it also comes with a lamp and one high-intensity white LED! Overall, the torch is lightweight and very compact in size, thus being very easy to carry around. Its penetrating light beam can reach a distance of up to 622 feet, it is waterproof and it can be submerged into water up to a distance of 500 feet, more than the average dive torch.

This video on Youtube shows some divers in Dos Ojos Cenote, Mexico using the SL4, watch it to see the flashlight in action and how effective it is:

Scuba Diving Knife Roundup

 Diving Equipment  Comments Off on Scuba Diving Knife Roundup
Jan 052014
 

I have already made a few posts on what to look for in a scuba diving knife and what (in my humble opinion) the best diving knife is. This post takes a look at some of the other top knives that you can acquaint yourself with before you take your next dive.

Obviously, I don’t own all of them, but have distilled reviews from existing customers from Amazon as a quick way of presenting actual user reports, so you don’t have to trawl the darkest corners of the net to see what’s worth buying.

Tusa FK-940ti X-Pert II
Tusa is not a brand that I had previously heard of, but I came across some very positive reviews of their X-Pert knife and thought it should be included in this round-up. The blade is manufactured from 6-4Ti (Ti-6Al-4V) titanium, which makes it highly corrosion resistant. A Nice single button sheath lock release means that the knife will be easy to handle underwater. Words used in reviews at Amazon include “flawless”, “professional grade” and quite simply “this knife is awesome”. Some satisfied customers out there, I’d say!

Diving Knives

Atomic Aquatics Titanium Ti6 Titanium
Atomic Aquatics is a well known and solid scuba brand, so you know right off that this knife is going to have to live up to their standards of excellence. This certainly seems to be the case – the Ti6 gets a full five stars on Amazon and is featured in the “Three Best Dive Knives” at Knifeup.com.
The blade is full-tang titanium and features a serrated edge and large line cutting notch. Curved 4 inch cutting edge. Comes in both blunted and pointed tip flavours. If you have around $120 to invest in a quality blade, then this knife should certainly be at the top of your list.

U.S. Divers Titanium
Another titanium knife, but this time from US Divers. The knife sports a 5-inch titanium blade with a one-piece tang that’s sturdy and sleek. On the top of the blade sits a serrated edge for cutting through tough materials, while the bottom surface features a line cutter next to the main blade for safety. This knife also features quick-release sheath and rubber leg straps, which should make it practical when you are submersed.
The US Diver Titanium scores consistently highly with customer reviews and retails at around $80-90. One to look out for.

RUKO Stainless Steel Dive Knife
We’ve had a look at a few “top tier” titanium knives. Let’s take a look at something at the other end of the scale that offers bang for your buck. Retailing at around the $20-$30 mark (i.e. 100 bucks less than the Ti6!), the RUKO offers a Razor Sharp 420A Stainless Steel 4-1/4″ double edge serrated blade and skeleton design stainless steel handle. These skeleton-handle dive knives are ubiquitous in the world of diving knives and for good reason. They are strong, corrosion-resistant, low maintenance and (perhaps best of all) very cost effective.
The RUKO has managed to generate plenty of good reviews, which would indicate that, for the price, it’s great little knife and hard to beat.

So, there you have it. A mini-list of some of the top knives out there. Feel that I’ve missed out an essential blade that you think should have been included? Drop me a line with your suggestions!

Decompression Sickness – Causes and Symptoms

 Scuba Diving  Comments Off on Decompression Sickness – Causes and Symptoms
Dec 302013
 

Decompression sickness is a serious risk to all divers. Every diver is well aware that he or she can’t stay in deep water until their scuba tank is empty, as emerging quickly from deep waters is a very high health risk. If a diver does so, he risks decompression sickness (also known as “The Bends”). The divers aren’t the only one affected – people who find themselves in a situation where the pressure around their body rapidly decreases will suffer from it too.

The air that we breathe consists of 78.09% nitrogen. When the pressure around the human body increases, as during a dive, the nitrogen in absorbed into the body tissue and it continues to do so until it reaches the saturation point. At this point, the pressure within the body and around it is equal. During ascension from a dive, the nitrogen escapes the tissues and reverts to gas, or in form of bubbles at first, which then quickly dissolve into gas.

If the ascension happens too quickly, the bubbles can’t dissolve and they pose quite a threat, especially if they happen to be on the arterial side of the bloodstream. Aside from a rapid ascent there are a few other factors that have been said to increase the chances of a diver suffering from decompression sickness. These include:

  • Diving in cold water
  • Taking part in strenuous exercise at depth
  • Deep diving for an extended amount of time

Some doctors also claim that factors including obesity, pulmonary disease and dehydration can also be linked to decompression sickness although this has not been conclusively proven.

Decompression SicknessThere are several types of this sickness, the type I being the least serious – usually accompanied by rash and pain in the body. The type II is more serious – the bubbles may affect the nervous system (Neurological type II) and cause numbness, tingling, unconsciousness and respiratory issues – if it’s not treated immediately, it may cause death. The pulmonary type II affects the lungs; the bubbles may impair the blood flow to the lungs and cause respiratory and heart problems. The Cerebral type II is the most dangerous type: the bubbles form in the blood stream of the brain and may cause an embolism. The symptoms include blurred vision, confusion, headaches and unconsciousness.

The following is a list a few signs and symptoms that you should look out for:

  • Pain in the joints
  • Tingling, numbness or paralysis
  • Fatigue
  • Itchy skin or a blotchy skin rash
  • Vertigo or dizziness
  • Confusion and personality changes
  • Amnesia
  • Unconsciousness

The speed with which these symptoms manifest varies – from within 15 minutes of surfacing from right through to 24 hours after the dive. Should any of the symptoms be present after a dive, the affected diver should immediately get oxygen therapy and basic first aid on site, and then he should be transported into a recompression chamber as quickly as possible. The sooner he gets there, the smaller the risk of any complications.