Wednesday 23 October 2013

Bubble Bubble...Toil and Trouble- Diving for Kids

This past week, we have had an inordinate amount of children coming through the doors of our Dive Centre wanting to try Scuba Diving.

Generally speaking we do not push for the little ones to come diving with us but occasionally, one of the adult diver's children wants to try or the Diver wants the child to see what the underwater world is like and this is how we come by our BUBBLEMAKERS!

A bubble maker is a program from PADI, designed to allow children as young as 8 years old to experience Scuba Diving in a Controlled Environment.

So...what does a Bubble Maker program involve?

Basically, having completed the apprpriate paperwork, the instructor (or Assistant Instructor) will give the child a quick briefing as to the equipment they will use, how to equalise the air spaces in the body; such as ears and sinuses, mask and lungs and how to clear a mask and regulator.

Once this is complete, the little bubble is then taken to confined water and taken for a scuba dive.

When we refer to confined water, we mean a swimming pool or an open water site that has pool like conditions relative to clarity, calmness and depth.

The maximum depth that a bubble can go to is 2metres. For this reason, when the weather is perfect, we can take bubble makers to a couple of different local dive sites here in Cyprus, with the main one being Green Bay but they remain at all times in the shallows and, although the standards suggest that one instructor can take 4 bubblemakers, we at Scuba Tech Diving Centre will only take the children in on a one to one basis.

This means that any child that dives with us here will have their own instructor with them at all times. The reason for this is simple. Children of 8 years to teenage years all progress at a different rate and quite often the younger children do not understand the concepts of scuba diving but will pretend they do to try and please an adult. We have an instructor with each child to ensure they are always breathing, equalising the ears and, if they get scared at any time they will be at the surface in 0 seconds flat.

Yes, ok, we are never going to be rich by taking one on one dives but safety is paramount and, especially so when it comes to children who are scuba diving.

Although, the smiles on their faces when they surface having swam with the fish life is bigger than any jack-o-lantern smile and the thought of turning another generation into ambassadors for the sea is worth all the effort that diving with kids entails

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