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Snorkeling Articles What is Snuba?

Snuba is a portmanteau word, combing the words scuba and snorkel. Snuba divers wear similar equipment to that of scuba divers: fins, mask, and a bodysuit. However, the air tank commonly worn on scuba divers back, is attached to a specially designed raft floating on the surface of the water. The air that the snuba divers breath travels through a twenty foot hose, only allowing the diver to travel to a maximum depth of twenty feet. The raft bearing the water tanks is designed to move in coordination with the snuba divers movements.

Essentially, snuba contains the benefits of both snorkeling and scuba diving; snuba offers the security of snorkeling as well as the freedom to venture under water to examine native fish or flora. Snuba is a patented underwater diving system, literally combining both snorkeling and scuba diving. Snuba allows users to not only view scenery from the surface, but to travel a total distance of twenty feet from a raft that supports your air tanks.

There is no snorkel or scuba experience needed for snuba, making it a safe and easy adventure. No extensive training is required as well as no certification or license. Unlike scuba diving, there is no need for heavy equipment in snuba, for the users air tanks are supported by a floating raft. In general, snuba is relaxing and even those who are not as strong swimmers can enjoy Snuba.

Snuba is a way to bring your children and family together; it is a family activity. Though Snuba uses compressed air, users do not have to worry about decompression issues because of the relative shallow depth. Snuba has minimal complication of equipment, and contstant connection to the surface over bodies of water.

Like a scuba diver you should not hold your breath while under the water and remember to descend and ascend slowly. Slow ascents and descents will allow your ears (and lungs) to pressurize in a similar way to being on an airplane.

While snuba users are restricted to a depth of twenty feet, in general, Snuba allows users freedom of movement and full control. Users breathe through a standard diving regulator, which is connected to a 20-foot air tube to an air tank that floats on the surface of the water in a floating raft. As you move about underwater, the raft is designed to follow you, allowing users to dive to a maximum depth of 20 feet. This raft ensures the necessity of heavy diving equipment needed for scuba diving.

Similarly to scuba diving, snuba gives you the feeling of being a part of the underwater world. The reefs you swim in have beautiful and abundant marine life, but you must remember to respect the ocean by not touching or breaking coral or taking anything out of the ocean.

Coral is very fragile and it is possible to break thousands of years of growth in a matter of seconds. Corals such as fire coral is dangerous. Fire coral can sting if touched, and many other types of coral have defense mechanisms, so it's always best not to touch any variety of coral. Because snuba allows you to go deeper than the average snorkeler you will encounter more ocean life, such as eels and poisonous fish. Becareful to just observe and not touch or provoke the ociean life you see. A no touch policy is the safest way to ensure a succesful snuba experience.

Before you go snuba, be sure to take off all of your shiny jewelry, especially silver. Though quite rare, sometimes silver jewelry in the water resemble small fish, which could potentially attract a fish such as a barracuda. It might get the wrong idea about your jewelry and come closer than you or other swimmers might like.

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

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