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Scuba Diving Experience and Courses UK
Learn to scuba dive on a PADI Discover Scuba experience. Available at pools and scuba training centres around the UK, these taster experiences aim to give you an introduction to what diving is all about. So take the plunge into the underwater world on what could be your first step towards achieving your PADI qualified diver certificate. Scuba Diving FAQs
Whether you’ve always dreamed of scuba diving in warm, tropical waters surrounded by colourful fish, or just want to see what breathing and swimming underwater is like, these taster scuba diving experiences are the most easily accessible way to try scuba, with sessions taking place at pools near you.
Who it's not for
Whilst you don’t need to be an amazing swimmer for these taster experiences, you will need to be OK with being in water. You might also struggle if you are severely claustrophobic. But there are other ways to get out on (rather than in) the water and one of the most tranquil is sailing and yachting.
Will I be learning to dive in swimming pools or open water?
For these taster scuba diving experiences you will be taking your first breaths underwater in swimming pools around the country. They may be indoor or outdoor private pools owned by the scuba schools or municipal baths, it depends on each supplier. It’s only once you’ve mastered the basics in a pool (or what divers call ‘confined waters’) that a PADI instructor would even consider taking you into open waters.
Will my ears hurt when I go scuba diving?
A bit like when taking off in a plane, diving in water means changes in pressure on your ear drums and that’s what can make them hurt or ‘pop’ as we commonly say. Your dive instructor will talk about your ears hurting, what to expect when you dive and what to do about it, so don’t worry, they’ve got it covered!
Can you dive if you wear contact lenses?
Yes you can. Dive schools recommend that you use soft contact lenses, but other than that there’s no reason why you can’t go scuba diving if you’re a contact lens wearer. Just be aware that if your eyes react when you go swimming in chlorinated water, the same may happen on these scuba sessions if they take place in indoor swimming pools.
Do I need to know the diver hand signals?
This is how divers communicate with each other underwater. You’ll be shown the basic signals you’ll need as part of your safety briefing on dry land, so that once you’re in the water you can tell your instructor if you’re OK!
How much do scuba diving lessons cost in the UK?
It depends how far you want to go with your scuba training. These taster lessons are very reasonably priced, as the aim is to see if you like the idea of learning to scuba dive. And don’t forget, the vouchers we sell are for two people to try scuba diving together, making them even better value!
Is it illegal to dive without a qualification?
It’s not actually illegal to dive without a qualification. But given all the equipment you need (mask, fins, harness, regulators, cylinders and wet/dry suit) you really do need to know how to use it all before you go diving. We would always recommend you take lessons and go for an appropriate qualification, such as the PADI Open Water Award, before you start diving.
What does PADI Open Water Award mean?
PADI is the Professional Association of Diving Instructors and the lead body in the sport of diving. The PADI Open Water Diving Award is the entry-level certificate that shows you know how to dive. It’s internationally recognised, so with it you can book for a dive at schools around the world and they know you have a certain competence level. The Discovery experiences that we offer have been put together by PADI as the ideal lead-in to the PADI Open Water Awards, without having to commit to a training course before knowing whether you like diving or not.
Is all the material included?
Yes. There’s quite a lot of gear needed to go scuba diving and it’s all quite expensive. For these taster courses you just need to bring yourself, swim gear and some enthusiasm to learn how to dive!
Do I need to know how to swim?
For these taster experiences you just need to be confident in water. However, if you decide you like diving and want to continue for your PADI Open Water Award, you will need to be able to swim for 200m and tread water for 10 minutes (with or without floatation aids).
How deep will I be diving?
The water doesn’t need to be deep to learn how to use the diving apparatus, as it’s all about learning the techniques of breathing underwater. Once you’re on open dives, it’s recommended that novices dive no more than 18m, but actually most diving is around 10m and there is lots of stunning sea life to see at this depth.
Will I feel claustrophobic under water?
Some beginner divers feel a little uneasy in the water. This is often because of the mask and the regulator, which is something they’ve never experienced before. Tutors are excellent at building confidence and assisting with making sure you have a mask to suit you that you’ll feel comfortable in.
What about sharks?
Luckily, there won’t be any sharks near you whilst you scuba dive in a swimming pool.
What’s the difference between scuba diving and snorkelling?
Snorkelling uses fins, a mask and tube called a snorkel to swim on the surface, but with your face in the water, using the snorkel to breathe. With scuba diving, you have the mask and fins, but also the air cylinders and regulator, so you can dive down completely into the water and still breathe.
Are there scuba diving taster sessions near me?
Yes. We have teamed up with official PADI (Professional Association of Diving Instructors) recognised scuba diving schools around the UK to offer these Discover Scuba taster experiences. There’s bound to be a scuba school near you. Current locations include: