Practice, Practice, Practice!

This is me practicing my mask removal & replace skill for my PADI Open Water qualification. Yes, I’m a wuss…I hold my nose until I’m comfortable with a) breathing through my regulator without my mask in place (those bubbles feel a little strange coursing over your uncovered face and eyes!) and b) psyching myself up a little to let go and trust that I won’t breathe in through my nose.

When I’m comfortable breathing in through my mouth and then move onto finding my nose piece and pushing the strap over the front of the mask so it doesn’t get tangled when I put the mask back on,  I must admit that I go a little ‘zen’!

Next weekend, I’ll be practicing this skill wearing my neoprene hood and gloves – we’ll be wearing drysuits at Capenwray at the end of the month as it’s going to be a little chilly! One thing I can’t prepare myself for is the shock of cold water on my unprotected face when I have to remove my mask during one of the qualification dives, but if I get the mechanics of this skill to be second-nature, the cold will be just be the motivation I need to get a wiggle on and get the mask on and cleared in record time! 🙂

I also had a go at the pesky detach and reattach of the BCD hose skill…

Pesky as it took me a while to get the knack of what to do again… pull back the spring-cuff to detach it, then pull it back again to get it onto the connection but then pushing forwards to get the ‘click’ to show it’s connected properly.  My fingers were a tad sore – the video is my fourth attempt…

Next week, it’ll be practicing that skill with my neoprene gloves on as we’re gluttons for punishment and have decided to do our Drysuit Specialty (yes that’s spelt right…PADI are American…) after we pass our Open Water. We’ll already have done our Open Water qualification dives in drysuits so just a few more skills to demonstrate!