dinsdag 24 juni 2014

Is diving a sport?

Is diving a sport? There is some debate as to whether scuba diving in general is considered a sport. Those who say no point out that you have: no competitors, no exertion, no accumulation of points, no goal, no teamwork, no spectators, and no one wins. They claim that diving is a hobby because it’s something you like to do. You can see scuba diving both as a sport and as a hobby. In fact, it’s been dubbed “The Lazy Man’s Sport” because you attempt to exert as little effort possible in order to extend bottom time. Cave diving has also been dubbed; “The most dangerous sport on Earth”. Scuba diving has a lot of the characteristics of a sport that opponents listed above claim don’t exist. No competitors? How about with yourself or even with your dive buddy? You are constantly trying to improve your performance by breathing and moving more slowly. Performance is usually measured by bottom time or cave penetration distance. Ever asked another dive team how far they got, and then compared their “score” with yours? Have you ever compared your gas consumption with your buddy’s? Is playing golf any less of a sport when you decide to play nine holes alone? No accumulation of points? How about accumulated bottom time, penetration distance, or number of dives? Divers are logging their dives and keeping up their “point accumulation”, like time the have been underwater. We just usually refer to them as dive statistics. Numbers matter and there are a lot of them in diving. Scuba diving has rules and even penalties for breaking those rules. For example, if you exceed the no-decompression limit for a given depth, then your penalty is X amount of deco time. No teamwork? Shoot! Diving is all about teamwork when you agree to buddy up. From dive planning, to sticking to the dive plan, to helping each other in emergencies, teamwork is what it’s all about. Without teamwork, Will Goodman, Tec instructor at BLUE Marlin Trawangan, Gili Islands, Indonesia, couldn’t do his world attempt without his team. No goals in diving? In cave diving especially, we have a dive plan and objective where we’d like to reach before we had to turn to exit. Sometimes we make it, other times we don’t. The more experienced you get, the more times you make it because you start understanding your physical limitations and therefore plan your dive around it. What about exertion? You ever breathed hard after lugging your 50 kg rig to and from the water? Or promised yourself you’d start exercising more after you did lug the gear? How about fighting a strong current or making a long swim? Ever gotten leg cramps during a dive? Diving requires a lot of endurance. It’s a physical activity. The better shape you are in, the better your gas consumption rates will be and the less risk of DCS as well. Just like in other sports, you can get hurt or even killed while diving. Do have to agree on one point though. Scuba diving is not a spectator sport. In that sense, it is a hobby because we are there because we like it. We’re not there to impress others, receive praises or applause for our performance, nor do we get paid to do it. Also, divers even wear matching uniforms – our dive gear. And the closer you conform to DIR principles, the more “matching” your uniforms appear. Finally, is there ever a winner or loser in diving? Sure there is. If you live through your dive, you’re a winner for that “game”. If you die or get injured, then you “lost”. So do you still think diving isn’t a sport? Well, Forbes thinks so. Forbes Article Then again, a dive buddy of mine once stated that cave diving in particular is not a sport, it’s a lifestyle. This may have some truth to it. Once you get into technical diving, you are talking about people who have out a lot of money, time, energy, and learning invested in the activity. In other words, these are the serious divers. So they tend to be more concerned about their physical well being, what they eat, etc and how that affects their diving than does perhaps the resort/sunny warm day diver. So we guess we could define some aspects of diving as being a sport while the serious side could be considered a lifestyle. We can say “is diving a sport?” is a hard question. For more information about diving write us an email to info@oceans5dive.com or visit our website www.indonesia-idc.com

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