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  • What Is Snorkeling?

    Snorkeling is an excellent way for a swimmer to see what goes on beneath the water. It is an easy activity to get involved with because it requires minimal equipment and training and takes little effort. And for all of its simplicity, there are great payoffs, with the chance to see colorful fish and underwater sea creatures not visible above the water.
     
    What Is Snorkeling?

    Function

    Snorkeling allows swimmers in the open water to observe the sea and coral life below by looking through a mask and breathing through a tube called a snorkel.

     
     

    Snorkeling Equipment

    Typical equipment used for snorkeling includes a snorkel or dive mask, which covers the nose; a snorkel to breathe through; and fins that help to minimize the energy a snorkeler expends. Many snorkelers also choose to wear a life vest for safety and to improve buoyancy in the water. 

    Types

    Although most snorkeling is done during the day, on the surface of the water, night snorkeling is also a popular activity, along with free diving, where a snorkeler holds their breath and dives below the surface. Free diving allows snorkelers to get an up close and personal look at marine life. It cannot be done with a life vest on. 

    Geography

    The best places to snorkel are reefs that are protected from the open ocean, attract marine life and have plenty of visibility. Beach snorkeling is good but snorkeling in the open water by taking a boat can ensure better visibility.

    Considerations

    A major hazard when snorkeling is sunburn, which can occur on your back, which is exposed to the sun; to prevent this, wear a wetsuit or rash guard.

    Be aware that snorkeling is hard work. Make sure that you have some energy reserved for swimming back to the boat when you are finished snorkeling. 

    Swimming in the open water comes with some inherent dangers. Unexpected currents and riptides can pull a swimmer far from shore. To escape a riptide, swim parallel to shore. Once you are free from the riptide, swim diagonally back to shore.

    Unseen underwater hazards like rocks can cause injuries. Quick changes in water temperature can make it hard for even strong swimmers to move through the water. 

    Article Written By Shiromi Nassreen

    Shiromi Nassreen has been writing professionally since 2005. She specializes in travel and outdoor topics, and her articles have appeared in various print and online publications, including "DISfunkshion Magazine" and Matador Travel. Nassreen holds a Bachelor of Arts in theatre studies from Rose Bruford College of Speech & Drama.

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