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body weight concerns

Discussion in 'New Divers and Those Considering Diving' started by jimineycricket, Sep 12, 2000.

  1. jimineycricket

    jimineycricket Guest

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    hey guys,

    im not yet certified but i hope to be soon. ive enjoyed reading all of your posts and i have a few questions.

    im a big guy (6'1" and 350lbs) can anyone tell me how this will affect my diving.

    ive contacted local dive shops and they say the weight thing is not a problem.

    i know that i have to be able to tread water for 10 min. and have to swim 200 yards. i dont have a problem with either of those.

    do i have to wear a wetsuit in warm water?

    is it going to effect my bouyancy?

    i dont really know what all to ask but if anyone can think of things i might need to know it would be really helpful.

    thanks,
    jim
     
  2. King_Neptune

    King_Neptune Founder

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    Heya jiminey,

    Welcome to diving! (or soon anyway)

    Do you have to wear a WetSuit, No. Its really a matter of comfort, but wearing a wetsuit WILL add bouyancy to you.
    As fat muscle is heavier than fat the more muscle the better you will sink. The more fat the more positive bouyancy you will have.

    The dive shop was right, you shouldn't have a problem with the weight, assuming youre in good health and all, and diving will contribute to better health too!

    Believe me, Ive been diving with those MUCH bigger than you, heck they would make you look like Danny Devito standing next to Andre the Giant. Just as everyone does you will gradually learn what is the right amount of weights for you and you will end up doing just fine. Good luck and let us know how it goes!

    =-)

     
  3. Dr Deco

    Dr Deco Loggerhead Turtle

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location: Issaquah [20 miles east of Seattle], Washington.
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    Jiminey:
    While buoyancy control and such is possible, from your height and weight, it would appear that you are “a bit heavy” for your height. Such individuals should bear in mind the fact that some forms of DCS are the result of an excessive number of gas bubbles in the venous blood stream. These bubbles come from adipose (= fat) tissue in which nitrogen is very soluble. These bubbles can find their way, under some circumstances, into the arterial blood circulation. From there, they are carried to either the brain or spinal cord where they can cause neurological DCS.

    Thus, conservative diving is important. That means,
    [sp] slow ascents
    [sp] reduced no-decompression limits (NDLs)
    [sp] no strenuous exercise following the dive


    Good diving!
     
    Lorenzoid likes this.
  4. Beachman

    Beachman Nassau Grouper

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    I dive occasionally with a fellow about your weight, but lacking a few inches in your height. He feels that diving is the one athletic activity he can do without being disadvantaged by his weight. In other activities he quickly tires or becomes short of breath from the exertion of carrying all the extra weight.

    Remember, when diving correctly you are neutrally bouyant.
    That means you are essentially weightless when in the water. Doesn't matter whether you weigh 100 lbs or 500 lbs on land or in the boat, you weigh nothing in the water! Imagine the feeling of weightlessness when you're used to carrying 350 lbs around all the time. I'll bet you feel like a kid again.

    You may have a bit of a problem buying gear off the rack, but all gear can be special ordered in sizes customized to fit virtually any size and shape. Look around on any dive boat and you'll know that some of those folks could not have found their gear in a shop (ha, ha).

    Go for it, and get wet often.

     
  5. Mario S Caner

    Mario S Caner Member

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: San Diego, CA
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    Jim,
    Let me first start by saying "Welcome to diving". Once you experience the beauty of the ocean, you're hooked. Size and weight will have little to do with your diving ability. I've trained several guys with similar proportions to yours. If there is one bit of advice you retain from these boards do this:

    Think about buying a weight integrated buoyancy compensator. Guys with your build usually have to combat a traditional weight belt because it has the tendency to want to wind up around your ankles... trust me this is not good. A weight integrated BC has specialized pockets that allow you to distribute the weights in the most optimized way possible. This will spare you most back pain and allow you to do a few skills more easily throughout your training process. It will also allow you to float with less effort on the surface.

    During your training your instructor will most likely tell you that the majority of diver distress happens on the surface, not during the dive itself. With a non-weight integrated traditional style BC, the BC will want to keep itself on the surface (while inflated) while the weight belt will want to see whats on the bottom.... Since the two systems aren't somehow tied to one another this could be quite awkward. Some students try to compensate for the problem by tightening their cummerbund, which does nothing but put pressure on the sternum, which in turn makes the student sea-sick. Nice huh?

    There are also safety related issues in favor of the weight integrated BC that can be addressed as well. Such as not having to deal with a weight belts tendency to want to hide the buckle (the belt likes to spin at depth). Plus the fact that a good weight integrated system won't come off unintentionally at depth. One other point is that a weight belt is a two inch nylon webbed belt that has all the weight on it, if you think about how your body is positioned while diving, the lower back isn't the best place to put that kind of pressure. A weight integrated BC on the other hand will distribute the weights throughout the length (app. 24") of the BC while diving as well as during the entry/exit process.
     
  6. Beachman

    Beachman Nassau Grouper

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    Why is it that I knew you would eventually have a reply?

    Most of what you have to offer I agree with and feel serves somebody well. BUT, I'd hate to be at a party with you and try to have the last comment!

    Peace, but I couldn't resist.

    DSAO
     
  7. ScubaBaby

    ScubaBaby Loggerhead Turtle

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    Ok - i know this was mentioned a while again now but I havent been keeping track of this thread!

    For years now I have been saying "fat floats" whenever me and my mum and sister use to go swimming - only joking about with them of course.

    From the comment King Neptune made earlier - it makes it sound true - is it really????

     
  8. Mario S Caner

    Mario S Caner Member

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: San Diego, CA
    1,803
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    Yes Abby, it's true. It has to do with Archamedis Principle and the relationship of the differing densities of your body composition. Everyone is unique in build, and therefore it's highly variable.

    This is primarily the reason why some people can sink effortlessly to the bottom of a pool and just lay there, while others have to fight to get the the bottom, and the moment they stop they bob to the surface like a cork.
     
  9. ScubaBaby

    ScubaBaby Loggerhead Turtle

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    Cheers Mario

    Nice to know. I told you a while ago about my instructor friends and how they weigh me down - I think that says it all really!!!!!!!

     
  10. Mario S Caner

    Mario S Caner Member

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: San Diego, CA
    1,803
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    Judging from your pictures, it didn't look like you need to switch from Guinness to Guinness Light anytime soon. Then again I could be wrong... perhaps the 'towel' added a gram or two? LOL!

    And what's this about my ugly mug? If you think that's bad, wait till you get a look at 'ol Mad Dog himself! Yikes!
     

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