I’ve been diving with DiveMania for about 18 months whilst I love being under the water, the process of kitting up and getting to the water’s edge causes me lots of issues due to a number of previous surgeries to both my legs.
Some of the staff at DiveMania recommended that I try sidemount diving because you can move your kit to the water’s edge piece by piece and complete the final assembly in the water. So I booked on the course to see for myself if this style of diving would benefit me.
The course stared with a session in the pool where I learnt how to set up the equipment and went through the core skills that I would need to demonstrate in the open water environment, as you would expect it focused on the skills that were different to diving back mount such as gas management and gas sharing.
Once this was complete we made our way to Buckland Lake in Kent for 3 sidemount dives covering a variety of skills and different entry and exit techniques. My personal preference was completing the final assembly in the water as this took a lot of the pressure of my legs. Once the diving started I felt so relaxed and found the sidemount rig really helped with my streamlining and was easier to adjust my trim. In addition I had a lot more air available and was therefore less anxious about running low on air.
I really enjoyed the diving and felt more comfortable, more relaxed, my buoyancy control was better and so was my air consumption.
Sidemount diving in my opinion is the way forward and I intend on doing a lot more of it.
Thank you DiveMaina for the opportunity to give it a go, and I would recommend it to everyone to have a try too.