Learn to Dive

Horn Shark, Heterodontus francisci, Redondo Beach CA, East Pacific Ocean 100007
Visit my underwater photo gallery to see many more great shots.

- So you want to learn to dive:

The first step to taking photos underwater is getting in the water.  You can take pictures without being a Scuba Diver but at some point you will want to get more time under the water so you can get that perfect shot.  That means getting certified.  There are a few good organizations that offer certifications and they monitor the quality of the instructors within there organizations.  Although it is not the law that you have to get certified you will not be able to buy the equipment or ever get your scuba tank filled with air unless you can show the dive shop that you have been properly trained.

>Diving is very safe if you follow the rules and have been trained to avoid doing dangerous thing.  It is very dangerous if you do not know what not to do.  NEVER try to learn to scuba dive without the support and guidance of a certified diving instructor from one of the recognized certification agencies.

- So what are the agencies?

There are a few but I will mention the big 3 for now.
PADI - The largest training organization with trainers all over the world.
NAUI - The second largest agency and they are also all over.
YMCA - A familiar name for may and yes they also teach scuba diving.

If you happen to make it to Michigan and want to get certified or do some ship wreck diving you can stop in at the dive shop where I got my start over 30 years ago. Yes they are still there and doing great. Tell Bob that Mark sent you. He is a PADI instructor and really knows his stuff.

Once you have learned to dive you will be eager to get out there with your camera.  I suggest that you do about 25 dives after your certification before you try to take you camera down with you.  The first 10-30 dives are needed to get totally comfortable with all the new equipment.  The last thing you will need it to have your hands full with a camera.  Once you are comfortable then get that camera and start shooting.  Please listen to this advice.  I have trained a lot of people to dive and I know it takes a few dives to learn how to control yourself underwater.  You did not learn to walk in 1 day it took time!

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