Scuba diving–breathing underwater
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     Experiencing the thrill of a sport like scuba diving may change your life forever! There’s simply something so spine-tingling and exciting when you’re able to breathe underwater and explore the unknown.

scuba diving,breathe underwater,John Smeaton,Jacques-Yves Cousteau,Emile Gagnan,cave diving,wreck diving,ice diving,deep diving,military diving,scientific diving,Pascale Bernabé,Nuno Gomez

     However, if it weren’t for the diving equipment that we have today, recreational diving would have been impossible. Can you picture a life without scuba diving? We surely can’t and don’t even want to!
     Scuba diving is a type of underwater diving in which a diver utilizes a self contained underwater breathing apparatus, as in “scuba”, to be able to breathe underwater. Contrary to other forms of diving, which depend either on breath-hold or air pumped from the surface, scuba divers have their own source of breathing gas, generally compressed air, granting them better freedom of movement in comparison with an air line or diver’s umbilical and longer underwater endurance unlike breath-hold. A scuba diver mainly propels through water by using fins affixed to their feet, but external propulsion can be supplied also by a diver propulsion vehicle, or a sled brought down from the surface. 

 

scuba diving,breathe underwater,John Smeaton,Jacques-Yves Cousteau,Emile Gagnan,cave diving,wreck diving,ice diving,deep diving,military diving,scientific diving,Pascale Bernabé,Nuno Gomez

     People scuba dive for various reasons. Some are doing this because of the amazing reef and the sea life that inhabits it, other for the thrilling experience of adventuring deep inside a wreck or cave. However, most people wouldn’t disagree that they’re mainly doing this for the absolute enjoyment of discovering the underwater world, a world so far detached from ours that it will genuinely astonish you in different kinds of ways. It doesn’t matter if you just want to relax while taking photos of brilliantly colored tropical fish, be exhilarated by the power and grace of sharks, or work underwater, scuba diving includes all of these.
     Nevertheless, you shouldn’t neglect that scuba diving is, in fact, an extreme sport with its own specific injuries and potentially life-threatening risks. The majority of these scuba diving perils come from the consequences of the enhanced water pressure of the underwater habitat, but there are also threats posed by marine life and defective equipment. Each diver’s life relies upon one thing and that is his own gear. Diving is a sport that depends very much on equipment. It doesn’t really matter how experienced a diver is, if his gear isn’t working properly, he could find himself in a dangerous situation. A faulty depth gauge can cause a mild case of decompression sickness, while a defective regulator might lead to drowning.

scuba diving,breathe underwater,John Smeaton,Jacques-Yves Cousteau,Emile Gagnan,cave diving,wreck diving,ice diving,deep diving,military diving,scientific diving,Pascale Bernabé,Nuno Gomez

One of the most common injuries in recreational diving is barotrauma, which happens due to the increased underwater pressure on the air pocket in the middle ear. Also, the increased underwater pressure causes decompression sickness when the body’s tissues absorb more nitrogen. Another nitrogen-related risk consists in the narcotic effect of all that extra nitrogen in the body. Nitrogen narcosis is life-threatening because it damages judgment and sensory perception. Deep divers who descend below 135 feet face up another problem which consists in oxygen toxicity, when the body absorbs extra oxygen under the increased underwater pressure. Another danger encountered by a diver who quickly ascends to the surface is pulmonary embolism; the increased underwater pressure causes the gas a diver breathes to become denser. The gas contained in the lungs will expand simultaneously with the decreasing pressure on the body, so a fast ascent can make the lungs to swell and even burst like a balloon. Furthermore, divers should keep in mind that every dive will take them to an untamed wilderness. Although most sea creatures are inoffensive and attacks are very rare, incidents do occur, so a diver cannot afford to forget that he or she is surrounded by wild creatures.



History
     Humans have had an overwhelming interest in going underwater for centuries. Ancient manuscripts include descriptions of early divers. Century old artifacts show that humans dove for different materials, for jewelry like pearls. Greek literature makes mentions of early sponge divers. Herodotus (500 B.C.) says the tale of Syllis, a Greek sailor, who utilized a reed for breathing purpose when he cut the mooring lines of Persian ships. This particular interest made people establish more improved ways of staying beneath the sea for longer period of time and at more enhanced depths. The immense desire to go beneath the sea perhaps has existed since forever, to hunt for food, reveal artifacts, repair or sink ships, and probably only to observe sea life. Until people discovered a method to breathe underwater, every dive was inevitably short and frenetic.

scuba diving,breathe underwater,John Smeaton,Jacques-Yves Cousteau,Emile Gagnan,cave diving,wreck diving,ice diving,deep diving,military diving,scientific diving,Pascale Bernabé,Nuno Gomez


     Ancient divers had the custom to cut hollow reeds in order to breathe, the first fundamental snorkel utilized to increase our abilities beneath the sea. Around 1300, Persian swimmers were creating basic eye goggles from the thinly chopped and polished shells of tortoises. Before the 16th century, wooden barrels were utilized as early diving bells, and for the very first time humans could dive underwater with more than a single breath of air.
     John Smeaton, a British engineer, was the person who invented the air pump in 1771. A hose was attached between the air pump and the diving barrel, permitting the air to be pumped to the user. Afterwards, in 1772, Sierur Freminet, a Frenchmen, designed a re-breathing device. However, his invention wasn’t that good as he died from lack of oxygen when he used his own device for 20 minutes.
     In 1825, William James, an English inventor, created another self-contained breather, more precisely a cylindrical iron belt connected to a copper helmet. The belt contained approximately 450 psi of air, plenty for a 7 minute dive.
     In 1876, Henry Fleuss, an Englishmen, designed a close circuit, oxygen re-breather and this invention was initially meant to be used in the repair of an iron door of an inundated ship’s chamber.

Jacques-Yves Cousteau- Emile Gagnan-scuba invention aparatus
     Later on, Jacques-Yves Cousteau, a French naval lieutenant, and Emile Gagnan, an engineer for a Parisian natural gas company called Air Liquide, co-invented the advanced demand regulator and an ameliorated autonomous diving suit. On 1942, these two persons made a new design of a car regulator and created a demand regulator that would mechanically fresh air whenever a diver would take a new breathe.



Types of scuba diving
•  Scuba diving may be practiced by people for any reason, be it personal or professional. Recreational diving is practiced simply for enjoyment and has a large variety of technical disciplines to intensify underwater interest, for instance like wreck diving, cave diving, ice diving and deep diving.
•  Distinct divers have different concepts about when a dive is regarded as a deep dive. For example, an Open Water Diver is certified to dive to 60 ft, as in 18 m, whereas an Advanced Open diver is certified to dive to 100 ft, as in 30 m. A student from the Advanced Open Water course will accomplish a deep dive to 100 ft, as in 30 m, thus for an Advanced Open Water Diver if a depth is larger than 60 ft, as in 18 m, it could be considered deep. There is also a limit of recreational diving and it’s mainly 140 ft, as in 40 m, and this is the depth that a certified diver in deep diving is allowed to descend to. In general, a deep dive is conceived to be a dive when it’s not more than 140 ft, as in 40 meter, and not less than 100 ft, as in 30 m.
•  Cave diving is a form of technical diving in which specialized scuba gear is utilized to make possible the exploration of natural or artificial caves which are partly filled with water, at the least. Due to the abilities and equipment needed, and of the life-threatening hazards few people have ever dived to these cryptic yet wonderful underworlds!

scuba diving,breathe underwater,John Smeaton,Jacques-Yves Cousteau,Emile Gagnan,cave diving,wreck diving,ice diving,deep diving,military diving,scientific diving,Pascale Bernabé,Nuno Gomez

 


•  If you’re determined to push your diving to the extreme, then ice diving is most likely something you should try out! As its given name suggests, it means that you have to dive under ice usually by making just one entry and exist point and diving in.

scuba diving,breathe underwater,John Smeaton,Jacques-Yves Cousteau,Emile Gagnan,cave diving,wreck diving,ice diving,deep diving,military diving,scientific diving,Pascale Bernabé,Nuno Gomez


•  Wreck diving is a form of recreational diving in which shipwrecks are explored. Even though the majority of wreck dive sites constitute shipwrecks, there’s an enhancing tendency to scuttle abandoned ships to make artificial reef sites. Wreck diving can refer to diving to crashed aircraft as well.

scuba diving,breathe underwater,John Smeaton,Jacques-Yves Cousteau,Emile Gagnan,cave diving,wreck diving,ice diving,deep diving,military diving,scientific diving,Pascale Bernabé,Nuno Gomez


•  Divers may be hired professionally to execute different tasks underwater. Some of these jobs are suited for scuba. Professional scuba divers are prepared to handle any kind of situation in which they may have to deal with vertigo or entanglement.
•  There are divers who are employed either full or part-time, for example in the recreational diving community as instructors, assistant instructors, dive masters and dive guides. In several jurisdictions the professional nature, which is strictly connected to responsibility for health and safety of the customers, of recreational diver instruction, diver leadership for reward and dive guiding is distinguished and set by national legislation.
•  Other specialized domains of scuba diving come with military diving, with a prominent history of military frogmen in different roles. They can execute activities like direct combat, infiltration behind enemy lines, setting mines or utilizing manned torpedo, bomb disposal or organizing operations. When it comes to civilian operations, a lot of police forces run police diving teams to do “search and recovery” or “search and rescue” procedures and to help with the detection of crime which may include bodies of water. Sometimes diver rescue teams may as well pertain to a fire department, paramedical service or lifeguard unit, and may be classified as public service diving.
•  Ultimately, there are professional divers connected with the water itself, for instance like underwater photography or underwater videography divers who record the underwater world, or scientific diving with marine biology, oceanography, geology, hydrology and underwater archaeology.



Scuba diving world records
- Pascale Bernabé holds the present-day depth record for open circuit scuba diving with a dive to 1082 ft, as in 330 meters, in 2005.
- Nuno Gomez holds the Guiness World Record for the deepest open circuit scuba dive, with a dive to 1043 ft, as in 318 m, in 2005 as well.



Interesting facts
•  There are more than 1 million people who get scuba diving certifications all over the world, every year.
•  In North Carolina takes place an annual underwater bike race attempted by people in scuba equipment.
•  In Maldives, one can find an underwater spa and also an underwater restaurant at 16 ft, as in 5 m, below sea level, where passing fish can observe you eating or during your message, in case you prefer another kind of view and atmosphere rather than the earthy one.
•  In Florida, the Lower Keys Chamber of Commerce keeps an annual underwater concert, and in a scuba equipment music lovers can arrive there easily. As well, you have the possibility to get married underwater and your guests who remained on the surface can see your “surreal” wedding with a live video feed.

 

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Sources:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scuba_diving
http://scuba.about.com/od/whatisscubadiving/a/About_Scuba.htm
http://traveltips.usatoday.com/dangers-scuba-diving-2492.html
http://www.padi.com/blog/2013/12/05/scuba-diving-a-short-history/
http://marinebio.org/oceans/scuba/
http://www.extremesportsguide.co.za/cave-diving.html
http://scuba.about.com/od/specialties/a/whatisdeep.htm
http://www.originaldiving.com/types-of-diving/ice-diving
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wreck_diving
http://www.worlddivingreview.com/some-interesting-facts-about-scuba-diving
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/men/the-filter/qi/9824135/QI-some-quite-interesting-facts-about-diving.html
http://scuba.about.com/od/scuba101/p/How-Deep-Can-You-Scuba-Dive.htm
Photos:
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http://www.aquasubscuba.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/09/07-norbert-rosecastle-newfoundland-aquasub.jpg
http://www.divingkarpathos.gr/wp-content/uploads/2013/05/bg23.jpg
http://www.toptenz.net/wp-content/uploads/2013/05/scuba.jpg
http://www.gooddive.com/diving-photos/photos/6/orda-cave-russia-tomasz-e.jpg
http://scubadiverlife.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/05/Dollarphotoclub_61374452.jpg
http://www.alpha-divers.com/images/My%20Pictures%20trio%20divers.jpg
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http://www.pageresource.com/wallpapers/wallpaper/oceanic-whitetip-shark-relation-humans-scuba-diving-accidents-and_693759.jpg
http://api.ning.com/files/APRsiSRava-REwYEn6SpyqUJm44CniL4N4qRsQxU5PcVyfihGHeh5uUvrCdila3q/DSC_0089.JPG

Published by Claudia Barbu

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