05/10/17/Coral Gardens Swimming Pool/8am
When the dive instructors arrived I was very excited to start my dive training. Actually getting to see the equipment instead of just looking at pictures helped me better identify all the different components. The whole apparatus was assembled and disassembled 5 times and now I fully understand the purpose and location of everything on the suit. It was extremely heavy, but once we got into the water it became weightless. The training began in the pool which was a little difficult because of the size and how many of us there was.
- Some of the different skills we learned:
- Being able to take our respirator out and find it again
- Taking it out and changing to our buddies
- Full and half flooded mask
- The hover and learning how our breath controls our ascend and descend
- Learning how to equalize,
The biggest challenge I had was trusting the regulator under water and controlling my breaths. I was breathing to fast and not taking deep breaths. After trying for a while I finally got the hang of it, but it still made me nervous when I thought to much about it. Another challenge I had was taking the mask on and off and remembering to breath when I cleared my mask.
05/10/Coral Gardens Reef
After hours of training in the pool, we moved to the sea! The water was a little choppy which made it a little difficult to put the fins on. Diving in the ocean was a lot different and at first I was very nervous. It was a turtle grass habitat we dove in with a depth of 20ft. It was difficult for me to descend that far to the bottom because I kept floating to the top. When I was able to get close enough to the reef some of the organisms I cam encounter with were:
- Yellow finned snapper
- Christmas Tree Worms
- Feather Duster
- Porcupine fish
- Parriot fish
- Blue Tang
- Sea Turtle
The behavior of all these organisms were all different. For example the yellow snappers would come really close to you almost interested in what you were doing. The sea turtle was just munching on some grass un-bothered by what we were doing. It was amazing to see how all these different species coexist together making an ecosystem.
Conditions were definitely different in the sea then the pool. The sea is salt water which burned my eyes when we did the mask clearing skill kneeling on the bottom of the ocean. Learning hoe to breath was a big challenge for me but I think it was easier in the sea because I focused more on the fish and organisms and breathing just came naturally. Not being able to hear anything besides by breathing was unusual but there was also a peacefulness of the silence when we were down there. Towards the end of the dive, my bouncy was off and I kept floating to the surface. I was using my scuba gear including my regulator to “snorkel” at the surface still being able to see some fish. Our scuba instructors Bill and and Aloway were so helpful and thoroughly explained everything. They made sure we knew what we were doing and I look forward to working with them this week.
Ending the day at the Tiki Hut with the crew!