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Do you enjoy snorkeling or would like to give it a try? There are some rules forsafe snorkeling!
Highly accessible, snorkeling is great fun and an excellent way of discovering nature for the whole family. The most important thing is to remember a few basic safety rules, anticipate the risks associated with the sea and use your equipment properly.
Here's a detailed review of snorkeling safety precautions with Subea!
Essential safety precautions for snorkelers
At sea, common sense prevails! This means taking the following precautions :
never go snorkeling alone
keep an eye on the weather
anticipate an entry point and several safe exit points to avoid injury
don't overestimate your physical abilities.
Before leaving, don’t forget to tell a family member or a close friend where your exit point is, and when you plan to return : this will make it possible to deal with any problems, such as a cramp, and call for help as well as making it easier to look for you if you drift…
How to avoid problems when snorkeling?
As amazing as it may be, sports in natural settings have inherent safety risks that can ruin the pleasure of snorkeling.
Here are some upstream recommendations to help you cope!
Fighting off the cold
The human body cools off much faster in the water than out of it, so remember to cover up.
It's best to limit the amount of time that you spend in the sea and to wear neoprene thermal protection, a top, a shorty or a wetsuit suited to the water temperature and your body size.
Shivering? Blue lips? These are signs that it’s time to get out of the water, especially for children who often don’t feel the cold!
Preventing cramps and hypoglycaemia
Several factors are the cause, anticipate them!
The cold, physical effort, fatigue, alcohol, being unfit, insufficient hydration, hypoglycaemia, stress, or even unsuitable equipment... There are many reasons for muscle cramps.
To avoid them, build up slowly with fins suited to your body shape and finning technique.
Use a snorkeling buoy to make things easier for your children. Warm up before you start.
And do some stretching afterwards!
And, as a careful snorkeler, don’t forget to stay close to the shore.
Sufficient food intake is also important before snorkeling. Indeed, hypoglycaemia causes fatigue and especially cramps.
Forget about jumping into the water after a long spell in the sun!
Give your children the right example by putting water on the back of your neck with your hands and then on your body.
The snorkeling mask
One golden rule : never dive head first when wearing your diving mask!
Although its window is often made of tempered glass (a type of glass that’s up to 5 times more resistant and that breaks into small pieces to ensure that you don’t get injured), it can still break.
If you descend while freediving, it’s a good idea to inject a little air into your mask when descending ; that way you’ll avoid mask squeeze and black eyes… And don't tighten it too much : it won't prevent water from getting in, it's quite the contrary!
The easybreath mask
Subea innovation designed for adults and children over 10 years old.
The Easybreath mask must be the right fit for your face to ensure your comfort.
Correctly choosing the size of your Easybreath mask will ensure it’s watertight.
As a reminder, this mask doesn’t enable you to go underwater since it stops you from accessing your nose and performing the “Valsalva” manoeuvre, a technique that we’ve all used at one time or another in the mountains or on a plane! It's intended to get round the problems experienced due to the pressure difference between the water and your internal ear as you descend. Freedivers and scuba divers use it when they send air to the middle ear via the Eustachian tube in order to equalise their ears.
Be careful! This manoeuvre should only be performed while descending, NEVER when returning to the surface! Blow through your nose while pinching it with your fingers, and do so very evenly until you no longer feel any pain at all. If you force things, you may experience barotrauma which can result in pain, vertigo, nausea, bleeding, buzzing / whistling. It’s better to blow a little, don’t you think?
Your indispensable ally.
Your Subea snorkel fills up with water when you freedive. Blow into it calmly to empty it once you reach the surface.
Calmly take a deep breath to stop the feeling of suffocation that might occur. Lastly, keep your snorkel perpendicular to your face so you don’t get a mouthful of water with every ripple!
Proper maintenance of your snorkeling equipment
Regular maintenance of your equipment is important for ensuring peace of mind and safety.
Just like snorkeling itself, taking care of your mask-fins-snorkel is simple, but essential. This involves :
soaking for a few minutes to remove all of the salt
drying in a cool place in the shade
For snorkels with valves, make sure that grains of sand or specks of dust don't prevent the valve from sealing. Are you and your gear ready? Then you're ready for the water, well-prepared and with peace of mind!