Kara Sewell: Scuba Diving: Conquering Fears in a Pool - Cincinnati News, FOX19-WXIX TV

Kara Sewell: Scuba Diving: Conquering Fears in a Pool

(FOX19 NOW/Kara Sewell) (FOX19 NOW/Kara Sewell)
(FOX19 NOW/Kara Sewell) (FOX19 NOW/Kara Sewell)
(FOX19 NOW/Kara Sewell) (FOX19 NOW/Kara Sewell)

Call it a New Year’s resolution or just an excuse to be adventurous but in an effort to do more activities (that don’t involve going out to eat) my husband and I agreed to try something new every month during 2016.

We barely made our January deadline after embarking on our first experience on the 31st, a scuba diving lesson. We scored this affordable class on Groupon for $30 thanks to Scuba Unlimited up in Blue Ash.

I will be honest, my husband and I both have a fear of deep water and I am claustrophobic; neither of us were exactly excited about this lesson but we felt we needed to embrace our fears and hopefully push past them.

The class started with a quiz and instruction about the equipment before we moved to the YMCA pool in Blue Ash. We changed into our swim suits and a t-shirt; Scuba Unlimited provided flippers, goggles and anything else to help us get our scuba on – like oxygen!

Our instructor, Craig, taught us how to use the regulator, read gauges and inflate the buoyancy pack before we ever went underwater. There are certain hand signals you use underwater to make sure everyone is okay; oddly enough, thumbs up does not mean you’re okay, it means ‘surface’ so I screwed that up a few times! Ha. Breathing with the regulator felt more natural than I expected, Craig told us our movements underwater should be slower and more deliberate (the same as our breath).

Only a few minutes into the lesson we were tasked with our first test, taking the regulator out of your mouth underwater then put it back in.

Wait! Hold up! I wasn’t expecting that but Craig assured us since we were only in 3 feet of water we would be fine (oh duh)! Well, he was right. The next test came when we moved to the deep end - 10 feet of water. I felt a tinge of panic but took a deep breath through my regulator and pressed onward. Craig dumped a few toys in the deep end which helped distract us from our surroundings yet he constantly checked in on us (he was underwater the entire time).

During our time in the deep end we learned to how to use our flippers, get water out of our mask without coming up and pressurize our ears. The two and a half hours flew by and I have to admit I was exhausted mentally and physically when we were done. I only had to surface unexpectedly once because my throat got really dry; Craig asked me if I was swallowing – oh! You’re supposed to do that?! It’s the little things.

It’s safe to say we plan to get certified later this year. The course is seven weeks followed by four dives in open water with an instructor, you can do those four dives in one weekend if you choose.

Nick and I like to travel and believe being certified will enhance our experiences in the future but even if you’re just looking to try something new this class is worth it.

We’re not sure what we’re doing next month but I don’t think it will involve conquering any fears.

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