Breathing underwater for the first time
Our Newbies Poppy and Grace are telling us about their Open Water Course with GVI.
Yesterday we completed our open water course. We both arrived in Mexico never having dived before, and the experience seemed daunting.
However, we got the hang of things pretty quickly. Our very first time breathing underwater was in a pool in Playa del Carmen, where we learned the most important rule of diving, to be continuously breathing. This rule may seem simple, however since your brain tells you that you are not supposed to be breathing underwater, it took a bit of getting used to. Our first dive outside the pool was in a cenote, where the water was exceptionally clear. It was a brilliant place to do a first dive, and we felt confident in facing the ocean next.
We learnt many skills during our open water lessons, including how to flood and clear our masks and how to use a compass. Swimming with a buddy was something we both had to adjust to as well. When we had our first dive in the ocean, the conditions were fairly rough, a strong current and low visibility. Therefore, it was important that we were there urging each other on and providing support.
The dive within which we completed our open water was exceptional. The water was clear and calm and we felt thoroughly prepared. Within ten seconds of rolling off the boat we looked down into the water and noticed a massive male loggerhead turtle. Furthermore, he didn’t even swim away when he saw us, but hung around for a minute. After descending, we also found it incredible that we could also already identify some of the organisms around us, having studied them throughout our week and a half. We would definitely have to say that the difference between our first dive and our last dive, as open water students, was quite vast. We went from monotonous tiles to brilliant fish, corals, and a turtle.
So far, the open water course has been an experience that neither of us will ever forget, and we are looking forward to progressing our diving skills over the next eight weeks.
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