It is estimated that 43% of adults in the western world will make New Year’s Resolutions. It also estimated that by the time you read this 80% of those people have given up. Only 10% will keep working on the resolutions until the end of the year. Many of the most common resolutions can be related to scuba diving and as a diver, you may have made some other dive related resolutions.
Do a Reset
If you are one of those who made a resolution but has given up already, fear not all is not lost, just do a reset. The National Health Services Choices has a set of suggestions about setting New Years Resolutions. The tips can be used anytime and there is no reason you have to wait until next year. If you do your resolution properly what you are really doing is setting a goal for yourself. A goal is measurable and has a time frame. I want to lose 30 pounds is a wish, I want to lose on average 3 pounds a month until I lose 30 pounds is a goal. It is also a goal with manageable steps. If you did not have a resolution then make one, if you have and have faltered, start over. Let’s see how some of the top resolutions relate to your scuba diving.
Lose weight / Get in Shape
The world’s number one resolution. The one that has sporting good stores selling out in the beginning of January and the second-hand shops overstocked by March. This is a resolution that is very important for your scuba diving. There are many overweight divers out here, sadly myself included. There are also divers that are physically unfit (not me this time). Individuals fitting these conditions are at increased risk of death, and that often shows while scuba diving. Scuba diving is not seen as a strenuous exercise, however, when we are underwater our body is working hard. The Compendium of Physical Activities study used widely in the health and fitness scientific communities places a leisurely dive at the same level of effort as jogging. They rate both at 7 METS (a met is a unit of physical activity – One MET is defined as the energy it takes to sit quietly). A moderately paced dive, such as that with a slight current, comes in around 11 METS, the same as running nine-minutes mile pace.
For an individual that has health concerns because of being overweight and/or out of shape will find themselves physically stressed while diving. At the time those stresses can lead to a heart attack or other cardiovascular condition. Immediate first aid might be enough to maintain life until medical treatment can be obtain but that first aid can not be administered underwater.
On a less serious note, being in a proper physical condition and having a healthy weight will allow you the benefit of longer and possibly more enjoyable dives.
Travel and scuba diving go together like peanut butter and jelly. While exact numbers are only guessed at, it seems that a large percentage of divers only get to dive when they go on a vacation. If you are a warm water diver and not live near warm water, then traveling is an integral part of your diving. Even if you do have local diving, the draw of some of the best dive locations will have you traveling.
It has been proven that traveling make you a better person. You can learn about different cultures and have experiences vastly different from your home town. People who travel are generally happier. Studies have shown that the period leading up to a vacation can be stressful but at the same time the anticipation will also make us happier. Face it, it hard not to beaming inside, when you remind your co-workers or friends that you will be flying out to some exotic location for a few weeks.
Start planning out your next vacation and make sure it includes some diving. As part of the run up to your vacation, get your scuba kit serviced. Look over the dive sites and review your own diving. Should you get in a refresher course before you go? Maybe you just might need to plan a few simple dives to start your vacation off.
Learn a new skill
There is a saying “If you are not learning, you are not living”, there are also hundreds of variations on that. Learning a new skill can certainly be applied to scuba diving. If there is an aspect of scuba diving you have been interested in but have not try yet, try it. You have no more excuses not too, it is part of your resolution.
Thinking a little out of the box might be needed if you can not dive year round. Are you interested in underwater photography? Start by taking an introduction to photograph class. Many communities sponsor classes in topics like these. The classes may only last a few weeks, but they are generally well taught and are at a low cost even free at times. Underwater photography does have different challenges they your typical land based photography. Still, the principles are the same. Learning about exposures, focusing and composition can go along way to improving your underwater photograph.
Finding love is always a difficult task and really does not fit into a resolution since it is not something you can really control. Having a common passion is one of the anchors of love and scuba diving can clearly be a passion. Sharing a drink after a days diving, is a great way to meet new people. Scuba diving itself is a great bond. PADI has a little tongue in cheek video about falling in love with a diver.
Lets Get Going?
What are your dive related resolutions? Care to share? Let us know in the comments below.