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HOW TO SNORKEL SAFELY
Snorkeling is one of the most rewarding activities you can do year-round, but there are a few things you can do to keep you safe in and out of the water. Check out our snorkeling safety tips and minimise discomfort and mishaps with our know-how below.
SNORKELING SAFETY RULES
Within everyone's reach, snorkeling is an entertaining and natural sport that is practiced in an exceptional environment.
As an activity in an environment that is not our natural element, it requires following classic safety rules:
• Do not go snorkeling if you have any ongoing respiratory or cardiovascular issues including but not limited to chest infection, asthma, high/raised blood pressure (hypertension), heart disease or angina etc. If you have any doubts or questions relating to this please check with your medical practitioner.
• Breathing through a snorkel is more demanding than simply swimming. If you feel tired, short of air or dizzy, remove your mask and get out of the water.
• Do not practice alone. Always go snorkeling with a buddy.
• Do keep in mind how far you have swum and keep in mind the currents; the return journey to shore may be exhausting.
• Practicing putting the mask on and taking it off several times before using it could possibly help prevent injuries and deaths.
• Check the state of the sea and the conditions before practicing. Protect yourself from the cold and the sun depending on the conditions.
• And of course, never touch the marine fauna or flora!
Before you leave, let a loved one know the route you have planned, don't forget to let them know once your adventure is over...
WHAT EQUIPMENT DO YOU NEED FOR SNORKELING?
THE EASYBREATH MASK
There are many obstacles to go snorkeling: breathing with a snorkel is not natural and its mouthpiece can be considered uncomfortable and unhygienic. The field of vision of a snorkeling mask is reduced and sometimes the presence of fog on its mask does not allow you to fully enjoy the wonders of the underwater world.
To answer those insights, Decathlon - Subea design teams revolutionised the practice of snorkeling in 2014, by developing the world's first full-face snorkeling mask, allowing you to see and breathe in water as easily as on earth.
The Easybreath Decathlon by SUBEA mask is suitable for the whole family (children from 6 years old).
From now on, a complete product range exists for all uses: for people practicing only on the surface to explorers who practice up to three meters.
Decathlon's Snorkeling Range: The monsters
There were several ideas around the Decathlon snorkeling mask!
30 tracks have emerged, with 1 single point in common: encompassing the eyes, the nose and the mouth together...
• The prototype of the Easybreath mask (or monster) #1 is a non-functional model that illustrates the concept of the integral snorkel mask.
• Following the first tests of monster #2, the design team noted anomalies caused by its curved window which caused disturbances of vision and gave nausea.
• On prototype #3, the field of vision was improved. The anomalies were erased thanks to the replacement of the curved glass with flat glass. On the other hand, this version did not yet solve the problem of fog appearing on the glass.
• For prototype #4, the teams focused their efforts on air circulation to solve the fogging problem. Many adjustments were necessary to find a solution that does not affect breathing comfort or vision. This 100% functional prototype has not yet been stylized by the design team.
• The last prototype #5 is functional and integrates part of the final design. The design of the glass so characteristic of EasyBreath and certain aesthetic aspects have been worked on and then validated with this version. It has the same characteristics as the product available in store #6.
Our tests to develop a unique and safe aquatic experience
The easybreath is a mask that allows you to see and breathe on the surface. There is currently no specific standard for snorkeling face masks. To ensure a secure experience, we rely on demanding tests at our partner laboratories (INPP, IRBA, CRITT, Sport controle, DAN).
Eye protection is validated by respecting the standard for diving masks EN16805 and the PPE regulation (personal protective equipment) 2016/425. To limit the risks of OPI (Immersion Pulmonary Edema) inherent to any aquatic practice, we validate the respiratory effort by respecting the snorkel standard EN1972 §3.4
Finally, in order to ensure that the additional rate of inspired C02 linked to the use of the mask does not involve cardio-respiratory complications, we carry out physiological measurements on testers in stress conditions representative of snorkeling, under medical supervision. Following these tests, the medical consultants certify that the use of easybreath is risk-free for anyone not suffering from cardiovascular pathologies (lung infection, angina, asthma, hypertension, heart disease, etc.).
Limit risks through regular maintenance
After each session, it is necessary to maintain all of your equipment (mask, fins and snorkel) to ensure peace of mind and safety during your next snorkeling trips.
Doing it is simple: first rinse your equipment and then soak it for a few minutes to remove the salt. Finally, dry your equipment away from the sun. If you use a snorkel or a mask that has a valve or a buoy, always remember to check if dust or grains of sand are present in the valve as this can affect its sealing.
DECATHLON tips for a serene practice
Exercising a sports activity in the middle of nature is often magnificent but implies the appearance of several factors that can affect your pleasure...
How to snorkel and fight the cold?
Your body cools faster in water. It is essential to reduce the duration of your session and to wear something protecting you from the cold such as a neoprene top or a wetsuit. It has to be well adjusted to your size but also to the temperature of the water.
Quivering? Blue lips? These Indications show that it is necessary to get out of the water, especially for children who are less sensitive to the cold!
When entering the water, go gradually, especially after too much exposure to the sun. Wetting the neck with your hands as well as the rest of your body is probably the best solution.
Anticipate cramps and hypoglycemia.
Many factors lead to muscle cramps: low temperatures, lack of sleep, alcoholic beverages, effort, lack of physical condition, stress, dehydration, hunger or even inadequate equipment… To fight against the appearance of a possible cramp, move forward slowly using fins corresponding to your size and adopt a good kick.
For children or people less comfortable in the water, a buoyancy aid is always welcome. In addition, it is important to always warm up before each start, as well as to stretch at the end of your session. During the practice of snorkeling, it is often recommended to stay close to the coast in order to avoid any additional problems.
As in all sports, snorkeling requires sufficient energy resources, depending on the effort made. Indeed, hypoglycemia is often characterized by fatigue or cramps.
The possible risks with your snorkeling equipment
The equipment for the practice of snorkeling remains rather basic. However, there are dangers to consider in case of misuse. It is therefore essential to read the various instructions for your equipment before using it for the first time.