Dive Into Wellbeing and Scuba with PADI

Written by Becky Roberts

Written by Becky Roberts

Mindfulness and meditation are buzzwords of the moment as it’s widely recognised that taking time-out from demanding lives is beneficial when it comes to looking after our mental health and wellbeing.

For those seeking alternative ways of alleviating stress and anxiety, calming a busy mind and being present in the moment or for those simply looking for a new challenge – scuba diving is an unexpected option promoting a fit and healthy body and mind.

According to PADI®, the world’s largest recreational diver training organisation, scuba diving has myriad benefits with many divers testifying to its healing power, while benefiting from exploring the ocean and interacting with marine life, experiencing new cultures and meeting like-minded people.

No longer the domain of those interested in extreme sport – more and more people are taking to the underwater world to relax and experience tranquillity while keeping physically fit and mentally healthy.

It’s quiet underwater and diving gives you a break from your normal routine. Phones and laptops won’t work underwater, so you can enjoy a digital-detox while you leave your worries on the surface. 

Similar to yoga and meditation, scuba diving focuses on breathing, which is calming for the mind and body. Scuba diving requires controlled, rhythmic breathing which can significantly increase our ability to cope with emotional feelings, improve sleep and increase general wellbeing and happiness.

Clinical Psychologist Dr Laura Walton comments: “There are so many aspects of scuba diving that may be beneficial in directing our minds away from worries, stresses and daily demands. In modern life, we are constantly pulled into the past and present, through our ability to think, but when we dive beneath the water our attention is captivated by absorbing experiences of entering another world. To an extent, we leave our ordinary selves on the surface and wholly fill our mind with focusing on a new environment, leaving no room to think about unnecessary concerns, so we connect with ourselves in a different way and become present in the moment.”

Flexibility and strength are increased as muscles tend to work harder in the water due to resistance of the water and swimming against the current, helping to maintain and increase fitness and endurance levels. Scuba diving and swimming not only strengthens your legs, but it can also build up your core.

Cortisol levels decrease in the water, reducing blood pressure and heart rate and aiding relaxation. Before and after a dive, the body is often exposed to sunlight increasing vitamin D levels to help keep bones healthy and strong, and exposure to the sun also increases endorphin production within the brain.

No two dives are ever the same and once you’ve taken the plunge below the surface an entirely new underwater world with an abundance of marine life awaits. From stunning coral reefs, brightly coloured fish and wrecks to swimming with dolphins, manta rays and sea turtles – each dive is bound to be an experience you’ll never forget.

Diving provides opportunities to meet others with common interests. If you are not already diving with a partner, you will be paired up with a dive ‘buddy’; and whether you’re on a dive boat or diving from shore, it’s always an easy way to make friends and meet new people whom you can share your experience with.

While there are plenty of opportunities to scuba dive in Europe diving often leads to travel to other parts of the world, brining holiday, adventure, new experiences and great social benefits. For those looking for travel recommendation, PADI Travel offers expert insight for local and international dive destinations to help you find the perfect holiday for your particular interests.

Whether you’re a novice and want to ‘test the waters’, you’ve tried an introductory dive on your travels and want to explore more, or you’re an experienced scuba diver seeking advanced certifications, you can enjoy this exhilarating sport at more than 6,600 PADI Dive Centres and Resorts around the world.

About PADI  

PADI® (Professional Association of Diving Instructors®) is the largest purpose-driven diving organisation with a global community of 6,600 dive centres and resorts, 128,000 professional members and more than 29 million certified divers to date. Entirely committed to our blue planet, PADI empowers people around the world to experience, explore and take meaningful action to protect the world beneath the surface. For over 50 years, PADI is undeniably The Way the World Learns to Dive®, setting the standard for the highest quality dive training, underwater safety and conservation initiatives. For divers by divers, PADI is obsessed with transforming lives and connecting the passionate through Learning, Club, Travel, Gear and the PADI AWARE Foundation, with a singular goal of creating ocean change. Seek Adventure. Save the Ocean. SM  www.padi.com

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