It is only natural for scuba divers to want their children to experience the joys and excitement of scuba diving and to become certified scuba divers as well. However, if the initial experience into scuba diving is not fun, then the child is unlikely to want to continue with scuba diving or even snorkeling. Whenever someone tries something for the first time, if the experience is fun and enjoyable, then they are much more likely to continue with that activity.
The most common problem that children faces as a scuba diver is scuba diving equipment that just does not fit well. It is only natural to want kids to try scuba diving before investing in the cost of equipment, but ill fitting equipment very often leads to an experience that is just not fun and means that the child will not want to continue. Any child taking scuba lessons should have the appropriate children’s diving equipment.
Scuba Mask for Children
Many parents try and purchase as inexpensive a mask that they can find when shopping for their child. The rational is that the child will outgrow the mask and quality is not cost effective. However, this is not true. A child’s face does grow but grows at a very slow rate. A quality scuba mask with last several years and the child will benefit from the extra quality. Inexpensive Scuba Masks are make of cheaper materials and do not fit as well. Consequently, the lesser grade mask is harder to clear and the child does not have as enjoyable an experience as they would have with a quality scuba mask.
Buoyancy Control Devices or BCD’s for Children
Children are not only smaller then adults, they do not yet have the shape or body contours that an adult has. Consequently, a buoyancy control device for children needs to be designed not only smaller but to fit the child so it does not slip or ride up during the scuba dive. The Rebel BCD from Sub Gear and the Zeagle Ranger, Jr from Zeagle are two good options for the child scuba diver.
Scuba Regulators for Children
A very common misconception is that any regulator with a small mouthpiece is appropriate for children. Not only does the mouthpiece need to be tailored for children but the hose length as well. A regular length second stage hose is too long for most children. If it is too long when the child his/her head to the right the regulator will push outward making it very uncomfortable and in turn making the child insecure. A regulator for children needs shorter hoses so the Junior Scuba Diver has better control on keeping the mouthpiece properly positioned.
Wet Suits for Children
Whether you child is participating in scuba or snorkeling if they are cold they will not enjoy the experience, they will only focus on their discomfort. A properly fitted wet suit designed for children, while it probably will only fit for one season is a good investment. A child that is comfortable will enjoy scuba diving more and will want to continue diving. Neosport by Henderson makes quality wet suits for children.
Finding a Dive Center to teach your children to scuba dive is not a simple matter. Any Dive Center can teach scuba diving, but for children you want to make sure that the Dive Center specializes in scuba lessons for children. They should have staff who are used to dealing with children and their shorter attention span. The Dive Center should also have in stock not just small scuba equipment, but Scuba Equipment especially made for children.
Scuba Diving has become so popular for children and young adults that the Boy Scouts of America now recognize it and have a Scuba Diving Merit Badge. Introductory programs also exist for Scouts like the Scuba BSA patch and the Girl Scout Activity Patch.
Share The Joy of Scuba Diving
One of the great joys of life is sharing with you children. Sharing the love of the underwater environment is something that you can give to your children that will last forever.