Skin diving is diving without a portable air supply, often done with minimal equipment. It is popular in beach resorts and cruises and is called snorkeling. Skin diving keeps divers closer to the surface, reducing the risk of cornering. Professional skin divers collect clams and check fishing nets, using a technique called “packing” to stay underwater for minutes. Scuba diving is popular in freshwater springs, where visibility is not a problem. Precautions should be taken, such as diving with a buddy to combat latent hypoxia.
Skin diving, or breath holding, is the practice of diving underwater without the use of a portable air supply, as is common with scuba diving. Free diving can be done with minimal equipment, such as a mask and snorkel, or without any equipment at all. Typically, the activity requires no additional skills other than knowledge of how to swim.
Because it requires no additional skills, scuba diving is a popular activity for those who visit beach resorts and take cruises. Often, in these situations, it is called snorkeling. Cruises offer such adventures in almost every port of call they go to in warm climate areas. Some resorts offer equipment at no extra cost.
Skin diving has the benefit of keeping divers closer to the surface, so there is less worry about cornering. This is a potentially fatal condition caused when divers ascend too rapidly from deeper depths and nitrogen is released into the blood. Most of the time on skin, because their air supply is at the surface, divers don’t descend far enough where this would become a problem.
In some locations, individuals may become professional skin divers, where their jobs include collecting clams and checking fishing nets. In many cases, these divers are able to stay underwater for minutes at a time. This is done with a technique called “packing”. Using this strategy, a diver swallows like a fish when finished breathing to pack as much air into the lungs as possible. Perfecting this technique requires a significant amount of practice and can be dangerous.
Scuba diving is also very popular in fresh water springs. These springs make it very easy for divers to see some of the natural freshwater wildlife. In many cases, lakes and rivers are too murky to fully enjoy diving. Visibility is usually not a problem at natural springs, known for the clarity of their waters.
As with scuba diving, there are certain precautions that should be taken when skin diving. For example, there is a condition known as latent hypoxia, which can cause those who hold their breath for long periods of time to pass out. This often happens suddenly and without warning. It is especially common where divers are required to hold their breath. The best way to combat this problem is to always dive with a buddy.