Prepare for your first scuba dive

How to Prepare for Your First Scuba Dive: 3 Tips for Beginners

Your first scuba dive can be both an exciting experience. This guide will give you all the information to make your first experience a real success.

Scuba diving is an exciting experience that allows you to explore a whole new world. You will be able to witness the beauty of marine life up close. If it’s your first scuba dive, the idea of breathing underwater may seem daunting. But let us help you. This guide will give you all the information to make your first experience a real success. This includes:

  • Choose the right dive center for your first scuba dive
  • Select the right scuba experience
  • Prepare for your first time diving underwater


Choose the right dive center for your first scuba dive

Choosing the right dive center is the first and most important step in becoming a scuba diver. In general, there are 3 key factors that a good dive center should have.

  1. An experienced and well-trained instructor
  2. Well-maintained diving equipment
  3. Good safety track record

Diving instructors

Both before and underwater, an instructor will be the one that took care of you. They must be well-trained by reputable diving organizations e.g. PADI, CMAS, or SSI. They will know how to teach you professionally and correctly. A good dive center such as Nava Scuba Diving always seeks and only works with certified instructors.

Well-maintained diving equipment

Scuba diving involves many equipments but all are designed to help you underwater. By general standards, some equipment needs to be serviced at least once a year. This includes BCDs and regulators. You can always tell how they take care of the equipment by the looks. After all, this diving equipment allows you to scuba dive safely.

Good safety track record

It is true that scuba diving comes with a risk of decompression sickness among others. Yet, the goal of scuba diving courses is to ensure the highest safety. It is not common at all for a dive center to have any diving accident if they always follow the standard.

Take the time to research different dive centers in your area and check online reviews. It is always a good decision to ask for a recommendation from other divers. Although sometimes if all diving centers seem the same for you, you should choose the one with the right vibe. Some dive center locates just right by the beach!

It’s always a good idea to contact the dive center and ask for the information that you’d like to know. A good dive center should be able to provide you with all the information you need to make an informed decision.


Select the right scuba experience

The common myth is that to scuba dive, you need to become certified. This is only half correct. There are several diving experiences available for you either a beginner or experienced. For beginners, there are 3 options you might want to consider:

  1. Discover Scuba Diving
  2. PADI Scuba Diver Course
  3. PADI Open Water Course

Discover Scuba Diving

This is by far the shortest experience you could have for scuba diving. You’ll get to experience the basics and the feel of breathing underwater for the first time. It covers the fundamental theory and skills required to dive safely. Specifically for Koh Tao, discover scuba diving is most of the time offered in a pack of 2 dives. This gives you the time to get comfortable underwater and enjoy the world beneath the surface!

PADI Scuba Diver Course

This is also a possible option but not generally recommended. This course includes classroom and confined sessions, followed by open-water dives. It can complete in 2 days’ time with less theory and dives than the Open Water course. This is not recommended because, with less time, you’ll be able to dive at 12 meters max. Also, it will be more expensive if you decided to continue for a PADI Open Water certification later.

PADI Open Water Course

This is by far the most well-known course for beginners all over the world. This equips you with the basics of deep-water diving. In Koh Tao, the course takes 3 days. Passing the course would certify you as a PADI Open Water Diver. This would allow you to dive at every dive site all over the world to the max depth of 18 meters. Moreover, you can dive almost everywhere in the world with your dive buddy!

There are also other courses such as Advanced Open Water, Rescue Diver, and Divemaster. All these can help you improve your skills and gain more experience as a scuba diver.

One important thing before you start the courses is to make sure you’re physically fit. Scuba diving requires a certain level of fitness, and you should be in good health. If you have any health concerns, speak to your doctor or check with the dive center before taking the course.


Prepare for your first time diving underwater

You’ll get to learn a lot during your first-time scuba diving experience. Equalization, buoyancy, and equipment usage are among the fundamental of diving. It’s always challenging at first but you’ll feel more comfortable with more practice.

Scuba diving is a team sport, and it’s important to dive with a buddy. Your buddy is there to help you if you run into any problems underwater, and you’re there to help them. Diving with a buddy is not only safer but also more fun. You can share your discoveries with each other, and help one another improve your skills.

Scuba diving is not a race. Take your time, and go slow. Dive at a comfortable pace, and take breaks when you need to. Don’t push yourself too hard, especially if you’re a beginner. Remember to breathe slow and deep, and never hold your breath


There definitely more questions before your first experience that may not include here. It’s always a great idea to contact a dive professional for the best recommendation. Nava Scuba Diving is one of the well-established dive centers on Koh Tao. We can always answer your questions. Please feel free to contact us on any of our channels if you need any help.

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