How to Breathe Underwater While Scuba Diving? – The Complete Manual for Beginners

The very first rule of life is to breathe! It is the same when you’re diving. When you’re breathing calmly everything is better than perfect! In this post, we will explain everything you need to know about the experience of breathing underwater. We will answer all the questions that you might have in your head before you sail the waves!

Diver in a horizontal position clear crystal water

Is it hard to breathe while diving?

It is not hard, definitely, but you need to get used to it, learn how to control it, and improve with time. Breathing on land is something that we do automatically, of course, breathing while diving is something a bit not so natural. Your breath is the key to remaining underwater, remember your oxygen now is inside a tank, cylinder, it will help to keep you steady while diving, but as you might have guessed already, it will end at some point.

As we mentioned, your breath is the most important thing when you scuba dive. Both your buoyancy and your steadiness depend on it. Keeping a good and nice position depends on your buoyancy which depends on the control of your breathing as well as your BCD (Buoyancy Control Device) but to keep you steady, your breath will help a lot more than you think.

Why is breathing control so important while scuba diving?

Keep a lingering, easy, and nice breathing cycle will help you get the best of your dive and enjoy as much as possible.  When you learn to control your breathing your air consumption will be sluggish and you will secure enough air to stay more time underwater and thus admire all the wonders that you will get to see on your way.

But the most important thing is that breathing control will keep you calm in an unpredictable situation. Most of your dives will be quite enjoyable but keep in mind that diving is a controlled risky activity. You need to be prepared for unexpected situations. Always double-check your equipment and review the dive plan, this is a must so you are safe.

Riviera Maya Diving

How do scuba divers breathe?

Scuba Divers breathe underwater thanks to special equipment. Most often used by scuba divers are the following:

  • Snorkel – which is used on the surface to save some air, before going underwater.
  • Scuba tank & air (Cylinder) – filled with compressed air or other gases depending on the type of diving or your training.
  • Two-stage Regulator – with the inflator hose –  that goes attached to the Buoyancy Control Device (BCD) – and Submersible Pressure Gauge (SPG)

The first stage is to check the tube that goes attached to the cylinder. Carefully verify that it is intact and assure that it won’t leak and there are no blockages, so the air will pass fluently. And you can breathe just fine from the second stage that we call regulator. Be confident to put the regulator in your mouth and make sure you don’t bite it hard, to avoid getting your jaw stiff and hurting at the end of the dive. Check also the airflow of the regulator.  You should be able to get as much air as needed when you inhale and exhale it without any trouble.

woman checking her regulator cenote Dos Ojos Tulum Mexico

Women diver touching her regulator

Which type of gas do scuba divers use?

Scuba divers use a combination of oxygen, nitrogen, and helium. The deeper you go, the higher the pressure and that pressure requires you to use the proper mixture of these gases, so your lungs can breathe comfortably. The combination depends on how far you will attempt to reach. Recreational divers use compressed air, but if you are interested in expanding your limits you can try Nitrox Enriched air diving.

diver with two tanks on the sides, cenote carwash Tulum Mexico

How to improve your breathing while diving?

Step 1. Know your rhythm

Each person is different, every organism works differently, there are no steps to learn how to breathe we can not teach you how to do it. It depends on you, you need to know your body, you need to know yourself, you need to find your balance & your rhythm. But we can say that taking a long deep breath and even a longer exhalation is what you need to get in touch with it and perfect it. Each person has its rhythm when you start scuba diving more often you’ll develop your own, most of the professional scuba divers use some techniques to master and better control their breathing.

Step 2. Meditate so you can control your breathing

You don’t need to become a Tibetan Lama but if you want to improve your air consumption or maybe you are thinking of exploring the amazing world of freediving in Mexico, practicing meditation regularly will help you to improve. Researches have found that the practice of mindfulness will be a benefit in many different ways:

  • lower heart rate
  • lower blood pressure
  • less anxiety
  • lower your respiration rate
  • and many other benefits

Here is a guide we highly recommend… How to Meditate

Step 3. Be prepared in advance so you can remain calm in difficult situations.

Meditation will help you control your breathing. Furthermore making a dive plan and assuring that all of your buddies understand the plan and the emergency exiting procedures will help you feel confident and remain calm that you and your dive buddies are in good hands and you can get help from your instructor or divemaster.

Step 4. Never dive alone

One of the very first rules of diving is to never dive alone. You will always be guided and safeguarded by a divemaster, but as you’re getting better maybe you will want to go to explore on your own. For your own safety, this is never recommended to anybody you should always go with a buddy that actually can help you in case something unexpected happens.

diver taking picture of a woman freediver

Learn to dive and how to control your breathing with us

As we discuss “never dive alone” is one of the main rules of diving, it may seem very scary but we can assure that once you get to see the wonders of the underwater you will forget all the fear that you may have. Learn to dive with Koox  Feel safe! Our instructors are highly trained for any unforeseen they will teach you patiently and amusing step by step going forward in this defiance. Imagine getting your first bubbles under the clear emerald water of Casa Cenote?


How to Breathe Properly by Blowing Bubbles Underwater by
How to Hold Your Breath Underwater by WikiHow
5 Breathing Techniques to be a better Scuba Diver by ScubaDiverMag.

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