Do you want to reduce your air consumption? Enjoy more comfortable diving? Are you wandering why you keep going up and down during a dive?
Here we find out how you can fix all of the above – and it’s all about buoyancy control! It’s impossible to achieve neutral buoyancy if you are not carrying enough weight, likewise it’s not a good idea to compensate for being over weighted by inflating your BCD. If you are carrying just the right amount of weight, you will have the smallest amount of BCD inflation. That means less drag and more efficient finning. Less BCD inflation also means less buoyancy shift with depth, so you’ll need to make fewer adjustments.
How Many Weights Do I Need?
Correct weighting depends on your personal buoyancy needs and is influenced by a number of factors—from the composition of your body and where you are diving in the world to the thickness of your wetsuit. Our Bali Scuba Divemasters and Instructors will help advise you on your weight requirements.
Make a Surface Check
A relaxed diver with a full tank and an empty BCD should float at eye level at the surface, while holding a normal breath of air. As you exhale you should gently start to sink.
During Your Dive
Try to make only small adjustments to the air in your BCD. Add and release air in small increments only. After each adjustment give it time – take breaths in and out to see if you rise and fall with your breathing. You may have already done enough!
Make The Most of your Safety Stop.
The goal is to be neutrally buoyant while making your safety stop. Try letting all of the air out of your BCD and take breaths in and out again. If correctly weighted (with a tank that’s holding 50 Bar) you should rise and fall slowly with each breath. Make note of what happens and adjust your weights accordingly for your next dive.
Record Your Dives in Your Log Book
This will help you in the future. Record the thickness of your wetsuit and if it’s long or short, the weights which you carried and if it was enough, not enough or the correct amount.
If you’d like to improve your buoyancy with us here at Bali Scuba, a great way to get started is to take the PADI Advanced Open Water Course. If you are already advanced certified and would like to take a more in depth look at buoyancy, why not sign up for the PADI Peak Performance Course? You’ll be diving like a pro in no time!
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