A lot of people enjoy snorkeling. After all, what’s not to love? You get to watch all the wonders of the ocean, without all the expensive equipment, training, and certification that’s usually required in scuba diving. It also has a ton of educational benefits, being a great way to learn about what goes on in the ocean, a world so foreign to us who live out our lives on the surface. There’s no other way to put it—snorkeling is truly a great way to experience the sea as it should be experienced.
The good news is that nearly anyone can participate in snorkeling. The most critical aspect is having the correct equipment before starting out. Why is this necessary? Because snorkeling, while fun, carries various risks. Using low-quality or improperly fitting gear could exacerbate these dangers. As a snorkeler, you’re responsible for your own safety while in the ocean, so taking all necessary precautions to prevent mishaps is essential.
To help you pick the right gear, you can refer to the snorkel set reviews below.
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Frequently Asked Questions
What do beginners need to know about snorkeling?
If you’re new to snorkeling, you may find yourself caught between a few things, such as what gear to choose or how to get started. Personally, I can definitely assure you that the feeling is natural, so it’s always a great idea to have some tips and guidelines at the ready.
Fortunately, since snorkeling has been around for quite some time, there’s plenty of information out there to help you figure things out.
Snorkeling gear usually consists of the following:
Mask and Snorkel – This might sound quite obvious, but the most basic gear you’ll need is a mask and snorkeling. This piece of equipment allows you to see what’s below you, while you breathe through the tube-like snorkel near the water’s surface.
Quality masks also prevent blurring, allowing you to catch a clear glimpse of the pristine sea life below, while quality snorkels block out the water, helping you to breathe normally.
Fins – To swim more efficiently, fins may also be used in snorkeling. Fins make it easier for you to move from one point of the ocean to another and are really handy whenever you want to cover great distances.
They’re great for novice and expert snorkelers alike, though the former may still have some trouble adjusting to the required technique.
Snorkeling Vest – Like a life jacket, a snorkeling vest allows you to stay afloat. It’s mostly used whenever a snorkeler gets exhausted, and it’s quite helpful in that regard. However, unlike a conventional life jacket, air can be pumped in and out of a snorkeling vest, allowing the snorkeler to float or submerge at will. But keep in mind that a snorkeling vest shouldn’t be used as a substitute for a good life vest.
Rash guards – If you want to protect yourself from the elements, wearing a rash guard is a must. A rash guard will help you fend off the scorching rays of the sun, reducing the risk of numerous health issues ranging from sunburn to skin cancer.
It also protects your skin from underwater hazards, such as sharp rocks, jagged corals, and sea urchins. Moreover, you can get rash guards just about anywhere! Almost everyone at the beach wears a rash guard, so you better invest in one as well.
Snorkeling does entail some risk, but the chances of actual injury can be significantly mitigated by the type of gear you use. For the most part though, beginners can get away with affordable gear.
But if you want to take snorkeling seriously, then it’s highly recommended that you invest in quality gear to ensure your safety and improve the overall quality of your experience.
What makes a good snorkeling set?
A good snorkeling set shouldn’t just function well, it should also provide an above average level of comfort. The process of choosing the best snorkel set is based on that principle. The mask should fit your face snugly, the snorkel should allow you to breathe easily, and the fins should help you to naturally dart through the water.
Though each person may have his own preference as to the best snorkel gear, the feature we discussed in the preceding paragraph should be considered as a minimum baseline for your choice.
What should you look for in snorkeling gear?
Aside from the obvious stuff like the quality of the materials used in each product and the excellence of their workmanship, you should also consider the following features:
Splash-proof system – A splash-proof or dry top system prevents water from flowing into the snorkel, helping you avoid the discomfort of accidentally inhaling seawater. Most mid-range snorkels now feature a splash-proof system, so you don’t normally need to worry about looking for one.
An adequately-sized tube – You want to be able to breathe properly, so it’s best to look for a snorkel with an adequately-sized tube. You may think it’s bulky, but you have to consider the functionality and safety of the snorkel before anything else.
A comfortable mouthpiece – Many snorkelers find it incredibly annoying if a mouthpiece doesn’t fit properly. This does not only cause you discomfort but also increases the chances of seawater making its way into the snorkel.
Take note that it’s best to have your own snorkeling gear, so you can avoid using unhygienic rental ones. Moreover, having your own gear lets you customize and maximize your snorkeling experience. You’ll be able to feel more comfortable and enjoy all the unique features that seem important to you.
What is the best snorkeling gear for beginners?
This is kind of a tricky question. I would normally give you a direct recommendation on what to use, but you may not like it, so I’m ruling that out. I guess the first question you need to consider is whether or not you want take up snorkeling for seriously or simply as a hobby.
I suggest you don’t answer that question yet, since you still don’t have all the information you need to make an informed choice. For now, while you’re still starting out, you should probably go for the cheaper route.
You can buy an affordable set first, to see how it works for you. Breaking into the world of snorkeling can take some time and if you find that it’s not the product you want, you’ll be glad that you didn’t spend a lot of money on it.
However, if you do feel that you’re into it, then go ahead and find something similar but of better quality. For that purpose, I can only give you a few reviews which I already included above.
Whatever your needs may be, choosing the right snorkel equipment should be a priority. As mentioned, snorkeling is a sport that’s heavily reliant on the type of gear you’re using. Many people out there often purchase low-quality equipment. That’s probably the reason they can’t get into the sport. But with the right combination of goggles, snorkel, and fins, you’re sure to enjoy your time in the water.