It is perhaps not difficult to understand how some might be afraid of diving. The dark depths of the ocean, concerns about breathing and even a fear of sharks can all be daunting prospects for the novice diver. However, it is entirely possible to overcome these fears and join the ranks of over one million divers who enjoy this pastime across the globe. Here are our top five tips for tackling your fear of diving in the deep:
Confront your fear
The first step to overcoming a fear is to confront it head on. Take some time to ask yourself what exactly it is that you are afraid of. Is it being able to breathe? Or perhaps you are afraid of the darkness? By isolating the root of your phobia you can focus your efforts on combating this.
The next step is research. By reading about diving and learning more about the science behind it, you can rationalise your fears and reassure yourself that it is actually incredibly safe. In addition, it might be that certain types of diving are more appealing to you. For example, if you do not like the thought of darkness, perhaps diving in the shallow and clear oceans of the Caribbean might be preferable? It is even possible to dive in some aquariums, allowing you to experience life under the water without worrying about getting lost.
Talk to others
Talking to other divers is one of the fastest ways to tackle your fears and concerns. Those with experience can reassure you and offer advice. Why not stop by a local diving shop, where there are sure to be staff who are happy to talk to you? Divers are a friendly bunch who are eager to share their passion, so there is no need to feel shy. Many friendships have been formed by diving over the years – you never know who you might meet!
Take a course
There are a huge range of diving courses available around the world. A properly accredited course will teach you to dive in safety and an instructor can deal with any specific fears or concerns. The most popular and widely-recognised courses are those administered by the Professional Association of Diving Instructors (PADI). Courses are available at various levels, from beginner right through to more advanced technical diving and free-diving. A friendly and tranquil environment is the best place to learn – PADI courses Thailand are one option, offering quality expertise in the diving haven of Koh Tao in Thailand.
Confront your fear!
Once you have completed a professional qualification, you will be prepared to face your fear head on, and experience life under the sea! Diving is a brilliant pastime that becomes a lifestyle for many, allowing you to be one of the lucky few who are able to experience the wonders of life beneath the surface. Diving can be a great way of seeing the world and making new friends, too. Once you are initiated, you will wonder why it took you so long to face your fears!
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Jeff Glenn is the Founder of Go Pro Asia, one of Thailand’s most popular professional dive training resorts. Jeff is a PADI course director and technical diving instructor trainer and has over 20 years’ experience in the dive industry.