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Snorkeling Articles The Dangers of Snorkeling

Planning a vacation in the Caribbean or another beautiful, tropical location? Along with flight plans, hotels, and work arrangements it will be beneficial to plan for recreation, particularly snorkeling. Although you can arrive and receive some information and equipment that will allow you to experience the captivating undersea adventure, your experience will be much more positive and fulfilling if you prepare ahead of time. Problems vacationers have experienced range from leaking masks to unnecessary injuries. Many of the dangers of snorkeling manifest themselves because the participants have a lack or preparation or training and can be avoided.

Most areas have resources to learn snorkeling. Lessons will prepare you to be comfortable with using equipment and also allow you practice with techniques of keeping water out of your snorkel and how to dive underwater. Keeping water out of your snorkel is very important. Breathing in water can cause choking and other problems. Drowning is a danger when snorkeling. Taking time to learn snorkeling before you go on vacation will also allow you to test equipment. There are snorkels with "dry tops" on them which is a one way valve that will close off the top of the snorkel when you go underwater or have a wave splash over you. It is also important to be comfortable with equipment so when you enter the open waters if get separated from your group you do not panic.

When you find something you like it is nice to buy your own and bring it with you. One thing people don't like is the thought of a hundred people using the mask and snorkel before them. Another concern with a resorts equipment is that equipment fits different on everyone and the mask they provide may not be comfortable, fit your face well and therefore leak, or be the style you like for seeing the underwater life.

Follow directions on where to snorkel and stay in bounds. The equipment that you wear if very important, particularly your life preserver. Unlike a pool, an ocean has currants. Even if it looks calm, there can be dangers. If something should happen you will be able to stay afloat while you wait for rescue. Having a guide can be helpful especially if it is your first time. Never go alone. If you do not have a guide practice have along at least one other individual. The snorkeling area should be marked off with buoys. Some snorkeling areas may not be marked off. If this is the case you should use a dive flag and also extreme caution. If boats can come into the open water they propose a danger as they can hit divers and cause injuries.

While snorkeling in shallow waters the sun is constantly beating down on you and will cause sunburn. Apply your sunscreen often. Waterproof sunscreen can still come off in the water over time. Reapply every one to two hours for maximum protection. Severe burns can occur if this precaution is not taken. Along with the physical ramifications, the enjoyment of your vacation will be cut short.

There are animals that propose some threats, although not severe. Coral is beautiful and prevalent in the ocean, but also dangerous. Coral is sharp and can cause cuts and abrasions on the skin. These cuts are slow to heal. Also if coral is damaged it takes a long time to regrow and snorkelers should be cautious to avoid injuring this animal. Another animal that can cause injury are sea urchines. They have spikes that can break off and get trapped in your skin if you brush against them. These pieces, if trapped in your skin can be painful and can get infected. Be aware of your surroundings and where you are going. You want to avoid touching dangerous animals and colliding with other participants.

Snorkeling can be enjoyed by the entire family. Preparing before hand can make it a positive experience for everyone and very safe. Being aware of the potential dangers and learning how to prevent them is the key to a successful trip.

About the Author
Rob Daniels is an avid snorkeler and outdoor enthusiasts more at Snorkeling Shop and Kayak Escape

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