scuba diving

Ways to make scuba diving easier

Diving can be challenging & exhilarating or a relaxing escape from everyday life. Whichever sort of diving you are looking for, have you tried these ways to make scuba diving easier? Stay shallow & stick within limits Obvious, but frequently overlooked. Deeper and more challenging diving comes with more risks and increased stress, particularly when done before the diver is ready. Limits of depth and … Continue reading Ways to make scuba diving easier

Turning teaching scuba divers inside out

The neutral buoyancy teaching debate focuses on how skills are introduced.  Do you start your students off by kneeling on the floor of a pool and gradually work towards neutral skills? Would having them lie prone on the bottom be a better start? Or should we go the other way and start from the surface and work our way down, learning everything without touching the … Continue reading Turning teaching scuba divers inside out

Mental Rehearsal for Scuba Diving

When we do something new, we often benefit from rehearsing the skills and getting familiar with the situation. To actually do this, we need to be in the real-life situation. In scuba diving that usually means underwater, with all of our kit and people to dive with. But we don’t have to be! We can also practice skills using mental rehearsal for scuba diving. What … Continue reading Mental Rehearsal for Scuba Diving

Scuba Divers in North-East England completing PADI Psychological Diver

There is something I find fundamentally terrifying about teaching this course! Although the course is about theories of human psychology, it connects deeply to people’s real experiences as divers. In writing PADI Psychological Diver, every part has some connection to my own experiences as a diver. The concepts and case studies then link to the students experiences and provide ways to understand situations they may … Continue reading Scuba Divers in North-East England completing PADI Psychological Diver

Struggling to learn to scuba dive, should I tough it out?

Divers frequently talk to me about the difficulties they have had with anxieties in scuba diving.  Struggling to scuba dive in training is not unusual. Once, I talked to a woman who had not managed to complete her open water training, but had faced some difficult conditions on the course dives.  She said: “It was really hard, but I toughed it out and got through … Continue reading Struggling to learn to scuba dive, should I tough it out?

How can I get more comfortable with the scuba diving mask skills?

Your ability to flood and clear, or remove and replace your mask is an important part of being a scuba diver, and essential to be a calm, safe diver. However, these scuba mask skills are sometimes a bit of a challenge. In this article, explore some of the issues divers have with mask skills and how psychology can help you be okay with, and without, … Continue reading How can I get more comfortable with the scuba diving mask skills?

Why do I panic underwater?

Because your mind and body sense a threat We are underwater.  We would not survive long without our scuba equipment.  Experiencing emotions like anxiety and fear is perfectly normal.  These emotions are our signals to detect problems.  But anxiety can sometimes get out of control, and its useful to reflect on the question “why do I panic underwater?” We have an instinct for survival.  We … Continue reading Why do I panic underwater?

What happens if you panic while scuba diving?

Most of the time, a scuba diver who panics will be probably be lucky enough to escape without injury. But that is not always the case, because panic is a state that makes people do strange things. The instinctive actions of someone in a panic underwater can make them a danger to themselves or other people. So what happens if you panic while scuba diving? … Continue reading What happens if you panic while scuba diving?

Diving to heal

 As a psychologist I understand post-traumatic stress as something that affects the body and mind; the mental, emotional and physical all wrapped up together.  An analogy I often use to explain this when I work with people experiences the after effects of trauma is: if you had ran a marathon your body has been used hard, muscles will be sore, joints inflamed. If you go … Continue reading Diving to heal